Livestream Shopping: Critical to Pawnshops

The evolution of shopping from the couch, “livestream” is considered today’s version of “shoptainment,” where hosts showcase products dynamically, interact with their audiences and build urgency with short-term offers, giveaways, and limited-edition items.  

Now, with livestream commerce, hosts can form deeper customer connections and answer questions in real-time. It’s a new standard of communication that holds a longstanding truth: People are more likely to buy when they feel connected with a salesperson.  


What is Livestream Selling?  

Livestream shopping is the future of eCommerce. Therefore, livestream selling should be an essential consideration for your business. Livestream selling is when a host demonstrates a product in a live online video either through a social media platform, direct video call with a customer, or another avenue. The retailer can introduce themselves, their store, and the sale before describing each item and its price while holding it up so followers can clearly see the product.  


The important difference between true livestream shopping and the more familiar model of live video with text-to-pay is that followers can make purchases directly without leaving the stream.  


Other features of livestream shopping include opportunities for the audience:  

  • Watch the feed from wherever they want 
  • Interact through comments in real-time 
  • Ask questions that get answered right then and there 


For Square’s “Future of Retail” report, 35% of retail managers surveyed say they plan to implement livestream shopping in 2022. Retailers have made the online shopping experience a higher priority since the pandemic, as consumers state an average of 43% of their monthly purchases are now made online.  

Livestream shopping is the future of ecommerce.

Additionally, 34% of Millennial and Gen Z consumers surveyed say they are interested in livestream shopping. According to Forbes, about 30% of China’s population viewed eCommerce livestreams in 2020, which is a precursor to expected growth in the U.S.  


Investing in the Right Tech  

As always, pawnshops have unique challenges when it comes to eCommerce. Unlike a traditional retailer with a large number of a particular SKU number items, most of the items sold in pawnshops are one-off goods. Years ago, we learned the importance of having point-of-sale software that syncs with sales on online platforms like eBay.  


Now, with livestream shopping, there’s an added challenge of processing payment for an item in real-time as customers express interest. That’s why it’s important to be able to process payments in real-time and disallow multiple sales of the same item.  


Why Pawnshops Should Get Involved in Livestream Shopping  

Live shopping in the U.S. is estimated to become a $6 billion market this year, and $25 billion by 2023. Popularized initially in Asia, this method of eCommerce is like a modern QVC show meets Instagram live.  


Livestream selling offers a new and potentially lucrative revenue stream for pawnbrokers, but the benefits don’t end there. By tapping into the power of livestream selling, pawnbrokers are also working to help consumers better understand the types of items they sell and buy. When used as part of a larger branding strategy, it is an intelligent communications tool that helps consumers feel like they connect with the pawnbroker. Since over 90% of consumers have never done business with a pawnshop, this is a new way for an audience to interact with a pawnbroker personally.  


Anish Desai President and CEO, Textmechat