Imagine being able to discover new products, browse video reviews of products relevant to you, and purchase in just a few clicks, all from the same app. Well...
Enter Google Shoploop - the latest from Google’s Area 120, its “in-house incubator” for products on the more experimental side.
What Is Google Shoploop?
Created by Lax Poorajy (the mind behind Touring Bird), Shoploop allows users to browse a feed full of videos of influencers trying different products out. Think of it as the TikTok of product shopping.
Shoploop is currently only operating in the beauty sector (focusing on makeup, hair, nails, and skincare) and only on Mobile. Visit shoploop.app on your mobile to find out more and get familiar with the latest in Google Shopping.
Not only does Shoploop give influencers a new platform for doing video product demos and build affiliations with different brands, but it gives businesses a fantastic way of reaching their consumers in a relevant way.
According to Statista, product reviews, tutorials, vlogs, interviews, and tips made up around 47% of beauty content consumed on YouTube in 2018. This is predicted to rise even higher in the 2020s.
With most mainstream social media platforms looking to increase their eCommerce capabilities, Google seems to have hit the ground running with this one. With time more important to consumers than ever before, being able to quickly and easily find out more about relevant products while on the move is clearly attractive.
And it makes sense for Google to test this app on beauty products first, as finding the right “fit“ often involves either trusted word of mouth or 1-3 video reviews where you can see the products in action.
Consumers don’t want to feel like they have to purchase the product to know whether it’s genuinely what it claims to be. For products, being able to convey trust and transparency before the purchase is the new competitive edge.
The Future of eCommerce?
The inspiration behind Shoploop is rooted in consumer behaviour; the increasing ability to swap between different websites (online stores, blogs, forums, YouTube) and apps (Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest).
Conducting such extensive product research can be somewhat time-consuming, and trying out new beauty products on gut instinct is not something we do often. Customers who don’t particularly enjoy researching will either stay loyal to the brands they currently use or base their buying decision on word of mouth.
With expert opinions more easily accessible than ever, this type of consumer behaviour is surely going to change. As a result, it’s likely that we will see brand loyalty becoming harder to maintain.
Brand perception will also become increasingly relevant; with so many options on the table, consumers will want to choose products that also represent their values and world views. Someone who values quality, sustainability, and the preservation of nature will most likely no longer base their decision on packaging, ingredients, and origin alone.
How To Make The Most of Shoploop
While Shoploop allows users to navigate to the brand website in just a few clicks, it can also increase organic traffic to the site, as consumers might want to browse for similar products. We know that people often buy with their eyes and might not be entirely certain that this is the product they need.
When browsing Shoploop 90-second videos, they might not always remember the brand but might remember the product name - Googling will probably lead them to your website organically.
It is this brand and/or product recall that makes conversion optimisation so important. Your website needs to be easy to navigate, with relevant products discovered in a matter of a few clicks.
Indeed, it’s common to see website drop-off rates of up to 80% simply because customers either find the website too difficult to navigate or get frustrated in the process. Fortunately, it’s often the small changes that make the biggest differences.
It might also be that consumers will use Shoploop during the discovery phase of their journey, move on to consideration phase research “the old way“, and finalise purchases on your brand website. It’s here that multi-channel coherence is essential - despite Shoploop’s intentions, it’s unlikely consumers will stop using multiple channels and platforms to make purchasing decisions.
Shoploop combines most stages of the current product research model into one app, making it easy to discover, evaluate, and buy products on the go. While it is convenient, it’s unlikely to instantly reshape how product research is done.
But, as an experimental platform, that’s probably not the point, and we will likely see Shoploop become an important step in the process, but not become the entire process. Not yet. But for now, it remains a brilliant way for beauty brands to get more visibility as part of a multifaceted digital marketing approach.