eBay released a report earlier this week highlighting that Interactive TV services will have an increasingly positive influence on retailers’ sales. eBay predicts that by 2014, new technologies will boost revenues by a huge £235m. Interactive TV will have the most influence with a quarter of people set to use it regularly to shop by the end of 2014.
But the impact of interactive TV on online shopping sales isn’t a given. Instead, it will be dependent on whether consumers become more comfortable with the concept of connected TVs in their living rooms. On the one hand, there is the potential to open up new revenue opportunities, whereas on the other hand, consumers need their eyes opening to the new role that television can play in the home.
For retailers to cash in on the £750m worth of potential direct sales, they need to avoid getting caught-up in the chicken and egg situation. Consumers won’t rush to shop through their television; they need to be shown how it works and the benefit of shopping via that medium.
We’ve seen slow adoption of the new functionality available in connected TVs, largely due to the poor education around how plugging the internet into the back of your television can enhance the viewing experience. New technology adoption doesn’t just happen, technology is embraced when people are educated and excited by it.
By Simon Woodward, CEO of digital TV specialist ANT Software