Roku Introduces Click-to-Buy Ads Via Shopify

Tim Cross 12 July, 2023 

Roku, a streaming hardware and CTV platform provider, has announced a new integration with ecommerce business Shopify which will enable viewers to purchase items sold on Shopify directly through Roku ads.

The new ad format, sold through Roku Action Ads, enables businesses which sell items on Shopify to build direct shoppable integrations into their Roku ads. Viewers who see the ads are prompted to press the ‘OK’ button on their remotes if they’re interested in purchasing the product. They are then taken to a page with more information about the product, and are able to complete a purchase using their remote via Roku Pay, Roku’s payments platform. Their viewing then resumes as normal once the purchase is complete.

This isn’t Roku’s first venture into shoppable ads. The company last year announced a similar integration with US retail giant Walmart. But the new integration will open up shoppable capabilities to a wider range of brands which sell via Shopify. Men’s apparel brand True Classic, game-based connected rower Ergatta, and wellness brand Olly have signed on as initial partners.

“Roku democratises access to TV advertising, and now, we’re collapsing the funnel for Shopify’s merchants,” said Peter Hamilton, senior director of ad innovation at Roku. “This is a great example of Roku’s unique platform position to make advertisers unmissable across the streamer’s journey, from power on to purchase complete.”

Betting on retail media

The product announcement comes at a time when CTV providers are increasingly looking to integrate retail media capabilities and data into their offerings, attempting to capitalise on the rapid growth of retail media.

In many cases, CTV platforms and services are exploring ways to layer in retail data into CTV buys. This data can be used for a number of purposes, from targeting through to measurement and attribution. And it can be surfaced in a number of different ways. Some integrations allow buyers to target pre-defined audience segments – which are created using retail media – within a buying platform. In other cases, brands can create their own audiences using a mix of their own data and retail data, often via a data clean room integration.

Roku has signed a few deals which take this approach, for example with grocery chain Kroger.

Shoppable ad integrations take things a step further, allowing purchasing within a CTV platform. This has a few advantages around attribution and measurement (since brands can see exactly when a consumer has seen an ad and then gone on to directly purchase that product).

But making these integrations smooth and easy has been tricky. Many shoppable formats use QR codes, asking consumers to complete purchases via their phones. But Roku sees potential in remote-based purchases. As clunky as TV remotes may be, if a lot of the legwork (for example inputting payment details and a delivery address) can be pre-set within a user’s account, transactions can be completed with just a few button presses.

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About the Author:

Tim Cross is Assistant Editor at VideoWeek.
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