The Google-owned YouTube has taken its first steps into the world of eCommerce, with games one of the first product lines to be offered.
The move will see links to relevant products placed beneath certain videos, enabling users to click through to either Amazon or iTunes, depending on the type of product. If a product is bought via the link, YouTube will take a share of the profit.
As well as games, music will feature initially. YouTube plans to roll out the scheme to include other products such as films, TV shows, books and concert tickets, however. It will also build its list of retail partners as the scheme progresses. The first game to get the treatment will be Electronic Arts' Spore
To start with, only American users will be able to use the feature, but YouTube plans to roll it out other regions at a later date.
YouTube got a whopping 330 million visitors in August 2008 alone, according to comScore, which measures Internet audiences. That kind of user base will more than likely make YouTube a pretty formidable retail force.
"YouTube content partners now have the ability to promote and monetize their content in a new and exciting way and create a deeper distribution channel for their content online", uttered Chad Hurley, co-founder and CEO of YouTube. "Our goal is to improve the overall YouTube experience by connecting consumers with relevant information and entertaining content. The addition of retail links will enhance the viewing experience and allow people to engage more deeply with the content they want to consume."
SPOnG suspects that really the company wants to make more money, but maybe we're just being cynical...Sources: