AWS for Industries

Livestream Shopping: How to Deliver Ecommerce with Personality

Recently, more than 37 million shoppers logged on to watch Viya, an online sales sensation, sell everything from cosmetics, appliances, and clothing to cars and houses. That’s more people than watched the Game of Thrones finale. If you’ve never heard of Viya, the 34-year-old host of her own livestream show, then you likely don’t live in China.

The Spectacle of Live Stream Shopping

Product sales livestream shows are very popular in China with millions of shoppers tuning in to snap up a bounty of bargains. The underlying software makes it incredibly easy for shoppers to purchase items from mobile phones, tablets, and laptops. These shows include live chats, discounts, countdowns, giveaways, and other points of engagement to keep people involved and returning again and again. Livestream shopping is estimated to be a booming $60 billion industry in China, and its popularity is quickly spreading to other countries—especially with people spending more time at home during the pandemic.

The livestream phenomenon can be a great opportunity for innovative retailers, brands, and influencers. However, operating a livestreaming service at scale can be very difficult without the right technologies. Perfecting the over-the-top broadcast takes time, and latency lurks around every corner of the internet. But those livestreamers who provide a great customer experience can build a lasting following.

Get in on the Livestream Action

Thanks to Amazon’s acquisition of Twitch, US audiences can watch livestreamers just like Viya at At this link, you can see live and previously recorded livestream content on fashion, homewares, technology, cosmetics, fitness—the list is long—and you can easily purchase the highlighted products from Amazon while you watch livestream shows. It’s entertainment and shopping combined with the convenience of your couch.

New Livestream Service from AWS

If you’re a retailer and you want to add livestream to your storefront, you can with Amazon Interactive Video Service (Amazon IVS). Send a livestream to Amazon IVS and let the technology broadcast the stream worldwide with latency as low as three seconds. Then, add a parallel metadata stream with featured product information, polling, and other audience engagement tactics. Your retail website will come alive as viewers tune in and purchase products.

However, not all audience interactions are equal. Analytic Partners found that video impressions had three times more impact than static images. As bandwidth availability grows, shoppers are looking for richer, more engaging experiences. Why look at a picture of a meal when you can watch a video of someone preparing the meal, with commentary along the way so you get to know the chef and learn more about the food? Then with a few clicks, you can buy the cookbook and the ingredients so you can make the same meal. Instead of a “lean backward,” passive viewing experience, Amazon IVS provides a “lean forward” interactive experience to engage an audience that’s much more likely to purchase.

Start Livestreaming Today

If a livestream web show makes sense for your brand, the Amazon IVS player is easy to integrate into an existing website. And, since global distribution is built into the infrastructure, you can quickly generate a worldwide following. By leveraging learnings built into Amazon IVS, you can ramp up fast to deliver the most engaging experiences to the widest audience. Contact us today to get started.

David Dorf

David Dorf

David Dorf is a Worldwide Retail Specialist at AWS where he focuses on providing solutions for retailers. David previously held positions at Infor Retail, Oracle Retail, 360Commerce, Circuit City, AMF Bowling, and Schlumberger’s Retail & Banking division developing retail systems using various technologies. David spent several years working with NRF-ARTS on technology standards and continues to support the Retail Orphan Initiative charity. He holds degrees from Virginia Tech and Penn State.