Facebook is planning to amp up its ad platform with "shoppable" video ads to contest for market share with YouTube, a key competitor.
The video ads will allow users to tap and buy products, thereby helping partner brands drive consumer purchases and not just improve brand awareness, The Information reported.
Much like YouTube, the interactive ads will provide information to users in a clip when they tap on the video. For purchasing the product, they'd have to tap on it again, which will then direct them to the retailer's website. If Nike were to market itself on Facebook through shoppable video ads, The Information explained, it could use a running model whose shoes could be clicked upon by the user for information on them, and a second tap would direct the user to Nike's product page for purchase.
The format will be much like Google's shopping ads, which let users seek additional information on the product by clicking on the "i" button.
Facebook's video ads are reportedly still in development, and they are projected to be rolled out in test mode sometime next month.
Shoppable video ads are Facebook's latest attempt to drive sales on its social networking platform. Just last week, the company announced that it was extending ads to third-party mobile applications and websites. With the change to its Facebook Audience Network, Facebook ads won't just be visible to users logged into their accounts but to anyone who has ever visited its website.
Facebook currently extends its advertising services to over 1.6 billion users. The Menlo Park-based company saw over 80 percent of its $5.20 billion revenue come from mobile ads in its first quarter this year.