YouTube is beta testing a new feature that will allow users to buy products they see in videos directly from the platform. Viewers can discover and shop for products featured in select videos on YouTube.
The new feature is currently under beta testing by the video-streaming platform with a select number of users in the US on Android, iOS, and the Web. Few chosen creators who are part of this pilot project can add certain products to their videos which can be purchased via a shopping bag icon.
The Google-owned company posted details about this new feature being beta tested on a Google support page. YouTube says that this feature will enable viewers to get relevant information and options to buy products they see in videos. The platform says it is working with few select creators for this pilot.
What to Expect:
In this new feature a small shopping bag icon will appear at the bottom left corner of some video. Viewers can see a list of featured products by clicking on that button. From there, one can explore each product's page, where they will be able to view more information, related videos, and options to purchase the desired product.
YouTube had started showing Google shopping ads to users six years ago, in an attempt to become a digital storefront. These ads allowed users to shop for products directly via the videos.
How it Works:
In Bloomberg’s report on October 2020, it was said that YouTube started asking creators to use YouTube software to tag and track products featured in their videos. As per that report, the data was supposed to be linked to Google's shopping tools and analytics. According to that report, a YouTube spokesperson had confirmed that the video sharing platform was beta testing the features through a limited number of video channels and those creators would have full control over the products that are displayed.
YouTube's on-going beta test run appears to be an expansion of the same idea. It is expected that YouTube will roll out this feature to more users over time.