By Brian Zeng

Go to YouTube and search for “unboxing.” You’ll be flooded with videos showcasing people unpacking boxes of products they’ve bought recently. There are more than 58 million search results currently.

Remember the iPhone unboxing videos? With every launch of a new iPhone, the fans record themselves opening the boxes and reveal every step of the process. They show the condition of the packaging, provide details about the accessories provided, and even explain how to get started with your brand new iPhone. You experience the feeling of owning an iPhone without owning it.

So what makes these unboxing videos so popular? It basically relates to our (consumers’) interest as well as the trust we put into these online reviews. And considering its popularity, eCommerce businesses can (read: should) surely take advantage of this form of user-generated content in order to boost their sales.

The question that arises at this juncture is: how does a video of an unboxing experience boost business? That’s exactly what we are going to address in this post.

Provide Positive Brand Associations

Unboxing videos work in the interest of the client by helping them make decisions and feel more confident about their purchase. The rising popularity of unboxing videos is due to the fact that consumers see the product for exactly what it is, without any distractions. In simple words, unboxing videos have an element of authenticity, which helps consumers make better decisions.

As a business owner, you can encourage your customers to post unboxing videos on your YouTube channel to help potential buyers with their research process. Brands such as Dollar Shave Club and Birchbox have used unboxing videos to their full potential and benefitted immensely.

Encourage Your Customers to Make a Purchase

Out of sight, out of mind! This phrase is apt to define the interest and attention levels of millennials. According to a recent study by Microsoft, the average person’s attention span is just eight seconds. Therefore, you only have a few seconds to persuade your customers, especially Millennials who are less likely to spend a lot of time on one particular site and constitute 15 percent of U.S. consumers, when it comes to buying a product. And trends also suggests that millennials and baby boomers are likely to become the biggest purchasers in the major categories like houseware, food, and apparel through eCommerce and mCommerce portals by 2020.

You can engage your audience by creating amazing unboxing videos, but how would you use it to your advantage? Integrate “shoppable ads” into the YouTube unboxing videos and persuade your customers to make the purchase instantly. The idea is that if the people watching the videos are impressed by the products, they can buy them instantly. They just need to click on the ad and they will be redirected to the shopping page. No need to remember or search for products, allow your customers to buy instantly.

Turn Customers into Brand Advocates

According to Neilsen, “The most credible form of advertising comes straight from the people we know and trust.” The Nielsen Global Trust in Advertising Report reveals 83 percent online respondents agreed they trust recommendations from friends and family. By encouraging customers to post unboxing videos, eCommerce businesses can turn customers into brand advocates. UGC (user-generated content) is 20 percent more influential, so you can attract more consumers and turn them into potential customers.

Loot Crate built a thriving community of customers who create and post videos. Loot Crate offers its customers with an assortment of products for a monthly fee. Customers don’t get to know about the products until they unbox the package, which makes things even more interesting. Customers receiving the highest number of views receive special coupon codes, which can be placed on their video. These coupons increase the number of followers and new subscribers for Loot Crate.

You can ask not only customers, but your employees as well to post videos, since they are the best brand advocates for your business. By tapping into real emotions, you can encourage people to associate with your brand.

Grow through Word-of-Mouth

It is no secret that creating positive word-of-mouth is one of the best ways to market your brand. When it comes to purchasing products/services, people have relied on recommendations from friends and family for as long as anyone can remember. Unboxing experiences can help you achieve positive word-of-mouth mentions with ease.

By showing real people opening real boxes and unveiling real products, you not only gain brand mentions and recommendations, but also instantly gain trust and increase the credibility of your business.

In the age of Facebook, Instagram and YouTube, photo sharing is the norm. Therefore, online retailers must provide something extra to make their brands a worthy topic of customer conversation on social media by motivating customers to share their positive purchase experiences on various social sites. By doing this, you can extend your market reach and gain new customers in no time.