How to use Youtube Shorts to drive merch sales

In Creator success by Danielle Pederson October 10, 2023

Whether you’re a YouTube expert or complete novice, we’re here to cover the ins and outs of YouTube shorts. Because if you aren’t using them, you’re missing out on a great opportunity. So let’s dive in. 

First, what are YouTube Shorts? 

YouTube Shorts are 60-second or less vertical videos that you shoot and upload from your phone. Yep, it’s that easy. There’s no limit to what you can create and no fancy equipment required. Your phone goes with you everywhere, right? So why not use it to make some money! Plus, YouTube has a special Shorts tab on the homepage where users can binge on Shorts. 

What’s really great about Shorts, though, is your ability to tag products in your video. But before we get into tagging, a couple things to cover…

How can I best use Shorts to market my Store?

The best method is to use Shorts is in addition to your main YT channel. Adding Shorts will offer your audience different content in an exciting, new format. This can be a change of brand positioning, tone, or fresh types of content you haven’t done before. Here are some suggestions on using YouTube shorts in the most effective way:

  • BTS (Behind the scenes) clips: Post Shorts that show your viewers your process. Show them how things happen when cameras aren’t rolling (even though they are lol). 
  • Design instruction. YT Shorts is the perfect medium for giving tutorials. Give quick, informational tidbits on how you create designs.
  • Product promotion. YT Shorts are the perfect channel for organic product promotion and a great way to introduce new products to your viewers.
  • News updates. Keep your audience up to date on promotions, news, or big things happening with your brand or on your channel!
  • Highlight reels. A great way, with very little work, to recycle your content and drive engagement. 
  • Viral clips. Take your most awkward, funniest, and catchiest clips or bloopers and give them a chance to go viral in a viewer-friendly format.

3 Tips for Filming YouTube Shorts

Ok, you’ve got some ideas on how to use Shorts. Great! But now what do you do? There’s no wrong path, but whatever direction you decide to go, here are 3 quick tips for maximizing engagement: 

  1. Keep it simple. To the point, informal, and informative——YouTube recommends 15 seconds. You only have your audience’s attention for a limited time, so why not make the most of it! Then you can string together up to 4 15-second Shorts into one longer Short.
  2. Start strong. Your videos must begin with an attention-grabbing opening sequence or line of dialogue. The competition for attention out there is fierce, so grab the audience from the get-go if you want their eyeballs.
  3. High production-value thumbnails. Thumbnails are what the audience sees first. Marketers spend hours or even days researching and crafting headlines because they know that’s the one chance to grab someone’s attention. Put some serious thought and effort into your thumbnails and make the most of them.

Follow these tips and make sure you’re maximizing the return on your efforts. You get back what you put in – audience engagement, channel growth, and merch sales await! And now to reward your patience, let’s get into tagging. 

What is YouTube Merch Tagging, and what are the benefits & eligibility requirements? 

Let’s say you have a couple products that you’d like to promote. You can select them from your store when you upload your video. Viewers will see a “View Products” label show up in the bottom-left corner of the screen. This process is called “tagging.” 

We’ll get to how you do that below, but first: What are the benefits of doing this? Tagging products allows fans to shop merch while they watch. Also, you can select which products will appear on your merch shelf just below the video, thus boosting visibility.

Not everyone is eligible for monetization. If you have questions on who is eligible for monetization, click on the link. Now, finally…the how.

How to set up YouTube Merch Tagging

If you’re eligible, follow these steps to tag products to a video:

  1. Go to Youtube Studio
  2. Click on Content
  3. Select the video you want to edit
  4. Go to “Products”
  5. Click “All Stores”
  6. Select your Spring store under “Connected Stores”
  7. Tag products in your video

If you’d like a little more info, click here.

And there it is. YouTube Shorts + Merch tagging = $$. Happy Selling!