Albertsons Takes Page from Walmart’s Book with Shoppable Video Content

Albertsons Companies, the third-largest grocer in the United States, is getting into contextual commerce. In a joint news release with “shopper-tainment” platform Firework, the grocer announced Wednesday (Sept. 22) that it is launching shoppable videos and livestreams.

In its initial launch, the partnership will feature “short video content and cooking experiences,” followed by expansion in 2022. The partnership also creates additional ad sales opportunity for the grocer, with the platform allowing Albertsons to sell in-video ads to brands.

“This partnership is an important step in Albertsons Companies digital transformation journey to redefine customer engagement in the grocery retail space,” Chris Rupp, chief customer and digital officer at Albertsons Companies, said in a statement. “This isn’t just about creating new ways to feature our products. This is about bringing delight and inspiration to digital shopping to make online experiences as fun as discovering new products in our stores.”

The Context 

Albertsons is far from the first grocer to get into shoppable video content. The leader in the space has been Walmart, which has multiple commerce-integrated video series, featuring high-profile celebrity collaborations, including its “Cookshop” culinary videos, its family-focused Make it with Walmart interactive shoppable activities (and “Snacktivities”) and its in-store augmented reality (AR) integrations. Earlier this month, the retailer partnered with media giant Meredith Corporation to create shoppable ads that allow consumers who interact with the media company’s content to add ingredients directly into their Walmart e-carts.

Additionally, many retailers, Walmart included, have been getting into shoppable livestreaming beyond the grocery category. Amazon, Nordstrom, Abercrombie & Fitch, Sephora and Clinique are among the brands and retailers that have made entries into the quickly evolving space.

Related news: Walmart Partners With Meredith for AI-Informed Contextual Grocery Commerce

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By the Numbers

Sure enough, the data show that live commerce is on the rise. Coresight Research predicts that the U.S. livestream shopping market will grow to $11 billion in 2021, a sharp increase from $6 billion last year. For a glimpse into the future, the livestream shopping market in China, which has been a leader in live commerce, grew 280% from 2017 to 2020, reaching about $171 billion in 2020, per a McKinsey analysis, with the industry expected to grow to $423 billion by 2022.

Additionally, PYMNTS’ study, The Bring-It-to-Me Economy, created in collaboration with Carat by Fiserv, which surveyed over 5,200 U.S. consumers, found that significantly more than half (57%) are now ordering groceries online, with 46% of all consumers doing so more often than before the pandemic.


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Read more:New Study: Bring-It-to-Me Economy Ascends as Consumers Embrace Home-Centric Lifestyles

What Experts Are Saying 

Cooking content of the kind included in this partnership is especially shoppable, with the necessary ingredient purchases that accompany any recipe making the format a natural fit.

“Recipe content has always been incredibly shoppable,” Jason Young, president of digital shopper marketing platform Chicory, told PYMNTS in an interview. “What’s happening is, we now have the pipes all connected so that you can go very directly from content like recipes into transactional moments. But if you look at recipes historically, they’ve always been a point of inspiration, a point of kicking off the food shopping process.”

Additionally, livestream commerce allows retailers to build an emotional connection, driving sales.

“Whether you’re Peter Frampton or Paul McCartney or Garth Brooks or Matthew McConaughey, or whether you’re the Hungry Monkey Baking Company in Illinois, what you’re trying to provide — whether it’s for your fans or your customers — is the same thing,” TalkShopLive Founder and CEO Bryan Moore told PYMNTS. “You’re saying, ‘Come in and have an experience. Let me tell you the story behind my product.’ And that’s really where we’re seeing the sales drive and the sales convert.”

See also: Soon All Content Will Be Shoppable, Says Contextual Commerce Platform Chicory 

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