ITV Mainstreams Shoppable TV with Love Island & Boots
With connected TV (CTV) advertising spending projected to hit $9bn globally in 2021, British television network ITV has tapped into the technology’s potential to provide frictionless e-commerce and contextualised product discovery. During episodes of the phenomenally successful dating show Love Island, viewers can purchase products seen on-screen – from UK health and beauty retailer Boots – directly through their TV.
ITV’s project is available exclusively on CTVs (2019 onwards) from Korean tech brand LG, as they feature built-in tech from US shoppable TV specialist TheTake that identifies when a purchasable item appears on-screen. This triggers an interface that viewers navigate with their remote control. Users can scroll through items, which refresh when different products are shown during a programme, or view all shoppable items at once. Purchases are completed via the vendor’s site on their connected TV, or through a link sent to viewers’ smartphones (after they scan an on-screen QR code). To avoid unwanted disruptions, users must opt-in to access the service.
While the technology underpinning shoppable TV isn’t new, recent developments including US TV network NBCUniversal’s shoppable platform show that the format is entering the mainstream. For more, see Digital Commerce: 10 Trends & Opportunities.
ITV’s project (the first of its kind in the UK) appears well-positioned for commercial success, with Love Island already lucrative for advertisers that have previously trialled integrated e-commerce. When UK womenswear retailer Missguided advertised on a previous season, sales spiked by 40% when the show aired (MarketingWeek, 2018), with viewers able to shop contestants’ outfits within the Love Island app.
Love Island reaches 5.9 million viewers per episode, many of whom are aged 18-34 – a demographic likely to be familiar with CTV tech. Additionally, the television has reaffirmed its place as a focal point (and thus potential shopping destination) in the home during the pandemic, a shift set to continue.
For more, see The Business of TV.