Roku, a leader in the streaming industry across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, has announced its unique collaboration with Shopify. The partnership promises to provide Roku users with a novel shopping experience, allowing them to purchase products directly from Shopify merchants through their televisions using Roku Action Ads.
With a user base of 70 million active accounts as of the end of 2022, Roku’s platform is perfectly positioned to ride the wave of the growing online video shopping industry.
And, for those who don’t know, Shopify is a SaaS platform that lets you launch and manage an online store. It was started in 2006 in Ottawa and currently powers the shopping experiences for more than 4 million websites across the world.
How will the Roku Shopify Collaboration Work?
In traditional advertising, the video pauses, and the ad is played on your screen. Sometime, during the life-cycle of the add, you see a button that you click and navigate to a website or an app to complete the discovery and purchase journey. Right?
Roku, with this collaboration with Shopify, have challenged this “traditional” journey.
So, when an advertisement from a Shopify merchant appears on the screen, viewers can click ‘OK’ on their Roku remote. This action enables them to dive deeper into the product details and purchase it straight from their television sets.
The entire transaction process will be facilitated through Roku Pay, Roku’s native payment platform. Following the transaction, customers will receive an email confirmation directly from the Shopify merchant, marking the successful completion of their purchase.
In essence, you don’t have to leave the platform to complete the shopping experience!
Peter Hamilton, the Senior Director of Ad Innovation at Roku, had this to say –
“Bringing a Shopify purchase experience to television for merchants is an industry first, and innovation opportunities like these are precisely the reason I came to Roku. Roku democratizes access to TV advertising, and now, we’re collapsing the funnel for Shopify’s merchants. This is a great example of Roku’s unique platform position to make advertisers unmissable across the streamer’s journey, from power on to purchase complete.”
Mani Fazeli, the Director of Product, Checkout at Shopify, said –
“Shopify is on a mission to make commerce better for everyone, and by partnering with Roku to make Shopify Checkout available through new channels, we are making it easier for more brands to drive deeper engagement with shoppers and reach new audiences.”
Who’s Trying it Out?
his integration signifies an industry-first move in amalgamating TV-based purchases into Shopify’s independent merchant experience.
Why is this Interesting?
Roku’s commerce partnership with Shopify is an important step for the streaming industry. With more streaming services turning to AVOD, or a hybrid AVOD-SVOD model, innovation is needed to make the purchase journey smoother & less intrusive for users. That is, apart from solving the most important problem of targeted advertising – showing the right ad to the right person, at the right time!
Of course, with Roku’s detailed information on each of their users, they should be able to target ads better. But, this initiative takes the advertising experience one step further by shortening the distance between brand awareness and purchase, delivering a more immediate, seamless, and engaging shopping experience.
More importantly, it provides Shopify advertisers access to Roku’s audience at the point of sale, allowing them to gather more customer data and gain deeper insights into purchasing trends. It also provides better attribution to advertisers by keeping the entire journey (from display, to purchase, and confirmation) under a single umbrella.
Perhaps, we will see the emergence of more live-shopping channels on Roku with an accompanying Shopify store to provide a seamless experience?
And, will other Smart-TV manufacturers follow suit?
Krishna Rao Vijayanagar
Krishna Rao Vijayanagar, Ph.D., is the Editor-in-Chief of OTTVerse, a news portal covering tech and business news in the OTT industry.
With extensive experience in video encoding, streaming, analytics, monetization, end-to-end streaming, and more, Krishna has held multiple leadership roles in R&D, Engineering, and Product at companies such as Harmonic Inc., MediaMelon, and Airtel Digital. Krishna has published numerous articles and research papers and speaks at industry events to share his insights and perspectives on the fundamentals and the future of OTT streaming.