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10 Personal Video Shopping Use Cases (Plus 1 Emerging Opportunity)

Annie Clark

June 13, 2022

Personal video shopping use cases

As retailers pivoted their business plans in 2020, many had to establish new ways of forming lasting connections with their customers in order to continue to create sales. During this time the different live shopping formats gained traction in the retail space. What we’ve learned from this time now that brick and mortars are back open (and thriving), is that live shopping is here to stay. Personal video shopping creates one on one customer experiences that result in higher AOV, LTV, fewer returns and so much more. This one product, on one platform, has endless use cases. After working with insights taken from merchant feedback, we’ve categorized the ten use cases (plus one emerging use case) that help to deliver an outstanding customer experience. Here we’re breaking down the different use cases of personal video shopping – taken directly from the feedback of both physical and online retailers using Boutiq – and how they can benefit your bottom line… 

1. Discovery

Boutiq was created with the goal of replicating the unique experience of walking into a store and having a one-of-a-kind, personalized and human interaction. This conscious approach helps the customer discover the perfect piece and inspires them to come back for more. This type of discovery wasn’t possible online until now. Personal video shopping carries the flair of shopping in a boutique into an online experience that excites and interests the client.

2. Virtual Fittings

Shopping online is exciting…until it’s not. There’s nothing quite like going from perusing through pages of products, researching and completing a purchase, and waiting for your order to arrive only to unbox your order and be disappointed by fit, color or material. As a merchant, these scenarios are equally as frustrating when returns negatively impact your bottom line – and the environment. Personal video shopping mimics the human interaction that occurs in brick and mortar stores. Virtual fittings create an opportunity to show a client product specifications, sizings, lengths and even discuss further alterations if necessary. This one-on-one service guides your customer through the entire process, giving them the confidence to convert without buyer’s remorse. This specific use case is great for fashion, clothing, lingerie, and even bikes.

3. Product Specifications and Details

When it comes to personal video calls, there are no trivial questions. Sometimes answering a question that seems small or minute, can make all the difference in your customer’s buying process. On a personal video call your team not only has access to product specifications that go beyond product descriptions, but they can ideally show the customer the product on screen and give a 360 look at the item.

Some common questions include:

  1. How does that necklace close? Can you show me?
  2. How dense is that pillow? 
  3. How large is the arm opening on that dress?
  4. How oily is the foundation?

These details lend themselves to talking points and if a product isn’t the best fit you now know what details the customer is looking for.

4. Complete the Look

Take the customer’s shopping experience even further by completing the look. Personal video calls give even more access than in store shopping ever could with access to the customer’s wardrobe, shoe assortment, jewelry collection, home decor and more. This is an excellent opportunity for the customer to show you an item in their closet, while the sales team finds and suggests the perfect accessory or item to complete the look. If a customer is concerned about contrasting metals in their jewelry they can hold items up and have the sales associate suggest the best piece. Similarly, if a customer is looking for a rug, or throw pillows they can show their space and receive the best style, size and texture recommendations. This not only impacts the customer experience but it’s certainly an AOV booster. The more you can suggest, the more you earn.

5. Special Occasion Shopping

People love to celebrate and look good while they do it. Whether it’s a wedding guest dress, an engagement ring, or holiday outfits, personal video shopping is an opportunity to provide a curated style service for those special occasions. Offering expertise saves your customer multiple trips to the store and encourages instant purchasing.

6. Consultations

In personal video shopping calls, it’s essential to consider the ways customers look to your sales teams. Consultations have become very common during the pandemic when modes of shopping were forced to alter, and now they are here to stay. Personal video consultations create an opportunity for your brand and sales team to become trusted partners and advisors. Truly understanding your client’s needs is an art that solves their problem while building a coveted relationship. These consultations provide customers with the information needed to make a confident purchase and investment in certain cases. This rings especially true in beauty and skincare where skin type, texture, and preference are all taken into account and may need more explanation than a chat bot or product description can provide.

7. Cross-selling

Now that you have a customer on a personal video call and they are shopping, one of the best use cases for increasing the order value is to cross-sell. If they came for shoes, pair them with socks. Is it a dress? Here’s a belt and purse that complement and complete the look. This happens naturally in brick-and-mortar stores where a sales associate can show you other products or bring additional items to a fitting room. Personal video shopping allows for the same curation online. The sales team has access to customer history, preference and behavior and can utilize those details to suggest more products to create a larger AOV.

8. Upselling

Similar to cross-selling, when you know what your customer is looking for and might like you also have an opportunity to upsell a better and premium version of the product. A very good sales associate in physical stores already does this but it’s difficult to do online. Enter in the personal video call. If your buyer is looking for a dress for occasions, you might suggest a few more options at different (i.e. higher) price points. Perhaps a customer is looking to replace their watch and instead of helping them select a replica, you can offer a newer model, with more bells and whistles. Now is the time to upsell a more expensive product that not only functions as the customer wishes but symbolizes status and style. This approach helps the customer secure a quality product while increasing the average order value for your store.

9. Reduce Returns/Build Buyer Confidence

By touching on other use cases previously mentioned (product specification, details and virtual fittings) buyers inherently have a better idea of what to expect from their purchase after personal video shopping calls. However, customers have also become accustomed to ordering the same item in different sizes or colorways (e.g. swimwear, shoes, lingerie) in the hopes of finding the best choice and returning the rest. At the end of the day this hurts businesses’ bottom lines. In the last year, online return rates have skyrocketed north of 20%. Collectively, returned products make up around $761 billion of merchandise. Brick and mortar return rates, however, level out closer to less than half of that of online returns. Today, personal video calls are able to provide the customer service and detail a customer can expect from an in store shopping experience, but online. This in turn reduces the rate of returns and reinstates buyer confidence. Buyers are now able to shop online knowing they’re as informed as possible which reduces annoying returns and dissatisfaction on their end and a loss of profit on the merchant’s end.

10. Build Lasting Customer Relationships

Through personal video shopping merchants are able to build lasting customer relationships that result in higher LTV. By delivering a customer-first and VIP experience, customers are able to place trust in the merchant, while the merchant is able to service the buyer with the utmost care. Personal video shopping also shortens the customer journey showing how well the analytics know your customer.

Emerging Bonus: Springboard to Private Traffic

Private traffic is an emerging trend in China but, elsewhere, not many brands have capitalized on its promising effectiveness just yet. So what is it? Private traffic is a form of personal two-way conversations between a customer and a sales associate. The key is forming trust that leads into a lasting personal relationship resulting in higher LTV (like old-school black-book clienteling). For an online store the biggest question is how to initiate and build that personal trusted relationship. In a brick and mortar it can be done when the customer walks into the store. But how do you replicate that experience online? Enter personal video shopping. Having that personal human touch on a 1:1 video call goes a long way to building a trusted relationship that can then be then leveraged for private traffic.

Conclusion

While not all merchants require the same use case – they’re all unique as is – chances are more than one of these use cases outlined can support your business. For one, they can help to shape your personal video call strategy. Identifying which use cases are the most relevant for your business will help you decide what to train your teams on. Once those use cases are well established, then it’s time to test different use cases to see what your customers respond to. At the end of the day, having a team of skilled omni associates or sales associates who can cater to each customer and optimize each use case will be essential in your personal video call success.

To learn more on what use cases might be relevant for your brand, book a Boutiq demo.


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