Back in the bygone days of 1981, a little-known network called MTV launched with a preposterous concept — airing music videos, 24 hours a day.
The first video aired was an appropriate choice: the 1979 song “Video Killed the Radio Star”, by English new wave duo The Buggles. In subsequent years, MTV’s meteoric rise in popularity all but killed the radio star, and artists with the splashiest videos scored the biggest hit records.
So, what do The Buggles and MTV have to do with selling on Amazon?
Recently, Amazon made adding Product Videos to your listing available to registered brand sellers. The potential impact this could have for your brand is, well, MTV-like.
Here are five statistics that will show you the potential impact for your brand:
- According to Cisco, as of 2019 — this year! — it’s expected that 80% of all internet traffic will be video.
- Videos appear in 70% of the top 100 search result listings.
- 90% of customers say videos help them make buying decisions.
- Conversion rates on landing pages with video increase by 80%.
- 44% Percent of consumers start their product search on Amazon.
In other words, having product video on your listing is a game-changing addition that will give your product a competitive edge in a crowded marketplace. With over 60,000 registered brands on Amazon, it’s an edge you can’t afford to ignore.
And now is the time to capitalize on this, because your competition probably hasn’t — yet.
Let’s dig deep into Amazon Product Videos and learn how they can make your brand stand out. Within this ultimate guide, we’ll learn who can use them, their benefits, guidelines, best practices, and talk to an expert as we uncover the best strategies to use.
In 1981, video killed the radio star. In 2019, Amazon Product Video will kill the ordinary product listing.
Why Use Product Videos?
Having a product video on your Amazon listing is one of the best possible ways to optimize that listing. Videos provide an opportunity to build a relationship with a potential customer.
Good videos highlight product features, benefits, and show its uses. Explainer videos dive deeper into what a product can do, or how it works, than any set of bullet points is capable of doing. Comparison videos show what the product is capable of, relative to the competition.
For shoppers, videos let them receive a large amount of information quickly. They inform them about how they are supposed to feel about a product, striking an emotional chord. It’s information they want, so they’re more likely to stay on your listing and keep watching if the video is providing value.
Most importantly, product videos help shoppers understand your brand and product, help them to make a purchase decision, and increase sales.
Need more proof? Here are some numbers to back it up:
- 96% of consumers find video helpful when making online purchasing decisions.
- 79% of online shoppers would rather see a video to get information about a product than read the text on a page.
- The right product video can increase conversions by over 80%.
Now that we know Amazon product videos work, let’s learn who can use them.
Who Can Use Amazon Product Videos?
Amazon Product Video is not available to all sellers. At the current time, it is available to two primary groups:
* 3P Sellers, who own a brand registered in Amazon’s Brand Registry. Video is available through Enhanced Brand Content (EBC) at Seller Central.
* 1P Sellers, who are brand-owning manufacturers that sell wholesale to Amazon. Video is available through A+ Content at Vendor Central or Vendor Express.
If you are a 3P seller with an unregistered brand or no brand at all, you are limited only to video posted by customers in reviews. We’ll talk more about this later.
3P registered brands and 1P sellers can also use video in Amazon Storefronts. Both are also able to have customers post video in reviews.
What this tells us about Amazon and product video is that Amazon is focused on providing the best features to brands that are trusted and make it the most money. If you’re not one of these brands or sellers, your options have clearly been limited as a result.
What Are the Benefits of Amazon Product Video?
We’ve touched on a few of these already, but let’s list the many benefits to your brand that come with listings that incorporate product video:
* Videos capture attention and stop the scrolling. 70% of Amazon consumers never click past the first page of search results.
* Videos that are authentic to the product boost consumer confidence.
* Videos talk to the consumer, not at the consumer — which builds a relationship and trust.
* They are an opportunity to focus on product attributes without distractions.
* They show the buyer that they are getting exactly what they want.
* Videos increase your conversion rate.
* It’s the best way to show the product’s value adds, uses, brand information, and unique selling proposition.
* Video helps reduce or eliminate negative reviews, by clearly stating what the product offers and what it doesn’t.
At this point the savvy brand owner is probably thinking, “Okay, this sounds too good to be true. What does it cost?” We’re glad you asked.
What Do Product Videos Cost to Add to an Amazon Listing?
For 3P brand-registered sellers, adding a product video to your listing or Amazon Storefront is free.
Unfortunately, 1P brands must pay extra to use product video. It’s considered a premium module and an extra cost. The price is around $1500 per detail page, which covers one ASIN variation family.
For all brands and sellers, product video posted in a customer review is free, with certain exceptions which we will discuss later.
In terms of video production costs, high-quality product videos are cheaper than ever to produce. With advances in camera, editing, and lighting technology, video has become extremely cost-effective to produce.
Considering the low cost threshold for video between free posting and declining production costs, product videos make even more sense for your 3P Amazon-registered brand than ever.
How to Add an Amazon Product Video
From here out, we’re going to primarily focus on Amazon brands posting product videos via Enhanced Brand Content.
The process for vendors using A+ Content is similar, with the primary exception being that rather than adding video to listings, vendors are building A+ detail pages for families of products.
The process of adding video via EBC to a brand’s product listing is fairly simple and straightforward:
- Go to your Seller Central account.
- Click on Advertising.
- From the dropdown, select the Enhanced Brand Content tool.
- Read the Video Guidelines pop-up linked to Create an Enhanced Product Description.
- Select the “Upload Your Product Video” box on the Enhanced Brand Content home page.
- Enter the SKU that you wish to add video to its listing.
- Select the desired EBC template for the listing.
- Fill in the text and image slots in the template.
- Follow the onscreen prompts to upload the video and its component parts.
- Video file
- Image thumbnail
- Video title
- Video description (Used for categorization, not visible to shoppers)
- Save your changes.
- Submit for approval.
The review process can take a week, and sometimes longer. Once it’s accepted, you can view the content on your listing and see the status in the EBC home page. If it’s rejected, you can also find out why by clicking Edit for a specific SKU.
To learn more about working with EBC to boost your listings, check out our Amazon Enhanced Brand Content guide on the Judolaunch blog.
Amazon Product Video Best Practices
When creating a product video for your brand’s products, you have two main options: either create the video in-house, or contract the video creation out to a production company or agency that specializes in Amazon product videos.
Due to the lower costs and high quality of available cameras and editing software, either is a fine option. Which to choose is ultimately dependent on your budget, time constraints, and expertise of in-house personnel vs. an agency or production company.
Regardless of whether you do it yourself or not, you’ll still need to be very involved in the process in order to maintain the integrity of your brand, and assure the highest possible quality of the resulting video.
Here are some key areas and best practices to consider when creating your Amazon Product Video:
Pre-production and planning are the keys to success in any form of video production, whether it’s for your brand’s newest widget or Marvel Studios’ latest blockbuster superhero film.
In the case of your product video, it’s crucial to carefully consider how you want to present your brand, your product, and the product information to include.
How is your brand positioned, and how will the production present it? Is it high-end or a product for the masses?
What features and benefits of the product, and how are they solving a problem for customers?
How do you present your product in a way that helps customers understand it, and want to buy it?
What questions do customers commonly ask, and how can you answer them in the video?
Are there product variations? Do these require separate videos or can they be rolled up in one?
Once you get clear on these kinds of questions, you’ll be able to move into the next steps.
Here’s where you decide what kind of video you are you making. There are four common types most often used for Amazon products:
Product Highlights Video - is clean, simple, and focuses completely on the product. It is often the product on a white background, with 360° video. You’ve probably seen similar videos on late-night TV infomercials.
Customer Experience Video - Designed to show the product in use by customers, this helps potential buyers understand the product better and see what it can do.
Explainer Video - Really focused on the benefits of the product and how it can solve problems for customers. A great script with direct-response copy is key here.
Comparison Video - Shows the product in comparison to competing products or in comparison to the outcome if a customer did not have this product in their life.
At this stage, you also need to consider narration. Is there an on-camera narrator or an off-camera voice over? Maybe there is no narration at all, but the story is told with images, captions, and graphics?
Consider the goals you decided in pre-production, then choose the format that best helps you convey the right information to your ideal customer.
Scripting and Length
Now that you know what you want and how you’d like to present it, it’s time to script it. If you’ve never prepared a video script before, you might think, “How hard can it be?” The answer is pretty hard — especially for shorter videos.
The ideal length for video marketing content is less than one minute, but it can be longer. However, once you’ve gone beyond two minutes, your video won’t have the impact or attention you’d like. The best rule of thumb is: the shorter, the better.
In a script for a one-minute video, every word and image count. You’ll need to introduce the product, its benefits, and its uses — while keeping it engaging and in sync with the right images.
This is good time to hire a professional script writer or copywriter to distill your message down, present it in a compelling visual and narrative way.
Especially in a short video, having the right piece of music is essential for the viewing experience.
You don’t want to overwhelm the narration or distract the viewer, so have your music be complementary to the rest of the presentation.
Make sure that you do not use copyrighted music without permission. If you want to save a few bucks, there are quite a few rights-free music websites where you can download tracks for your video. You can also use a paid service to get the exact tune you need.
Be sure to get the highest quality download possible, as bad audio will make even the best-looking video into an unwatchable disaster.
You’re making a product video to showcase your brand’s products. As such, you’ll need to make sure that your branding stays on point throughout the process.
Have high-quality digital and/or physical logos prepared to insert in the video. Use brand colors in the background, or perhaps even in the clothing choices of on-camera talent.
You are essentially making a commercial for your brand, so take advantage of the opportunity to show it off.
Now is when you need to gather together everything needed to create your video.
Things to do: Create graphic elements, gather high-quality photos, get your music files ready, prepare a filming space, test all equipment.
One of the most important things to remember at this point is to have multiple copies of your product for filming purposes. Use the best-looking ones as “hero” products for close-ups and product shots only. Use different items for showing the product in use. Keep cleaning supplies on-hand to touch products up if needed.
To be truly effective, your video needs to include a call-to-action. Tell your customers what action you want them to take after watching your video.
Do you want them to make a purchase, visit a website, sign up for an email list, or download a coupon?
Let them know with a graphic title card, in the narration, or both. Again, consider a late-night TV commercial that is very specific in what it wants a viewer to do — which is usually to buy the product.
Amazon Product Video Guidelines
As with all content on the platform, Amazon has very specific guidelines when it comes to the technical aspects of EBC product videos.
Your Amazon Product Video must meet the following specifications to be approved, per Amazon:
Video File - We recommend uploading files in the highest available quality setting. Acceptable file formats are 3GP, AAC, AVI, FLV, MOV, MP4, and MPEG-2. Currently, Apple ProRes files are not accepted. We also recommend uploading succinct videos to improve upload performance and playback experience.
Image Thumbnail - This is the initial screen customers will see before they begin playing the video. Upload the highest quality image files in JPEG or PNG format, with the following specifications: 16:9 orientation/aspect ratio; 1920 x 1080 preferred resolution (minimum 1280 x 720); color profile RGB or DPI 300 preferred (72 minimum).
Video Title - This is the title displayed below the video in the “Related Video Shorts” widget on the product detail page. 100 characters maximum.
Video Description – This will be used for video categorization but not displayed to customers. 400 Characters maximum
Related ASINs - There can be a single ASIN or multiple ASINs referenced.
Amazon Product Video Violations
Your Amazon Product Video is subject to approval based on the terms specified for all Enhanced Brand Content. As such, there are a number of things that would constitute a violation of those terms, resulting in your video not being approved.
Your video will be rejected by Amazon under these conditions:
- Referencing your company as a seller or distributor, or providing any company contact information.
- Mention of competitor’s products or seller authorization such as “product only sold by authorized resellers”, etc.
- Pricing or promotion information and shipping details - “cheapest widget on Amazon”, “Free shipping”, “shipping timelines”, etc.
- Use of copyright, trademark, or registered symbols in the text or images.
- Time-sensitive product information: “on sale now” or “best new product of the year” and comments such as “top-selling product,” “the hottest item,” “#1 Selling item”.
- Information about customer reviews from Amazon or any other site.
- Adding editorial or 3rd party quotes from external sources such as magazines and television shows.
- Blurry or low-quality images or images containing unreadable text. Lifestyle images not showing the product.
- Images or text that attempts to mimic Amazon logos, detail page headings or details.
- Content that duplicates many of the images from the main image block on the detail page.
- Any warranties or guarantees of any form.
- Logos from brands or organizations other than your own, or multiple brand logos on an image.
- Web links or language attempting to redirect to other sites inside or outside of Amazon (including your other products).
- Grammatical errors, punctuation errors, misspellings, strings of all caps text, or abusing font features – Bold and Italics are only intended to be used to highlight headings or a few select words.
- Any mention of products being used for criminal activity.
- Any violations of category requirements or Selling on Amazon policies.
What if I Want Video But Have No Brand or an Unregistered Brand?
If you’d like the benefit of product video but are a seller with no brand, or you have a brand that is not part of the Amazon Brand Registry, then you are limited to only one option.
That option is Customer Review video. A customer may post a review to your listing and include a product video with it.
To enjoy the benefits of product videos, your best options would be to:
a. Register your brand, allowing you to use the full suite of EBC options - or -
b. Focus on creating a great product with stellar customer service and an optimized listing, and the reviews with video will take care of themselves.
We do not recommend either falsifying reviews to add video, or using one of the shadier services that have popped up which promise to add video reviews to your listing. Amazon always catches up to you eventually. You are risking suspension of your seller account — or worse — if it does.
Amazon Product Video represents a great way to really make your brand stand out. It creates a connection with potential customers, shows them how your product solves their problems, and lets them really understand what it does.
With careful planning and execution, a product video strategy will result in increased sales for your brand. The time to do this is now, because the internet and eCommerce is only becoming more and more video-oriented, and not all your competition has adopted the strategy yet.
Stay aware of best practices and content guidelines when creating your video. Make it short, engaging, and with a strong call-to-action. Amazon product Video is a cost-effective investment for brands that will pay off now and in the future.
At Judolaunch, we want to help your brand stand out from the competition and continue to grow. We have a suite of services designed to set you up for Amazon success. We’re happy to offer you a free consultation with a listing optimization and opportunity analysis for your Amazon brand today.