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Roku and Walmart want to turn your TV into a virtual shopping mall

Published Jun 21st, 2022 5:03PM EDT
Roku and Walmart's shoppable ads.
Image: Roku/Walmart

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As effective as TV ads can be, they do require some work on the part of the viewer. If you see an ad for a product you want to buy, you have to search for it on your phone or head out to a store. But what if you could buy a product straight from the ad on TV? That’s what Roku and Walmart want to find out with their new “shoppable ads.”

In a press release last week, Roku and Walmart announced a new partnership to make your TV the next online shopping hub. As the companies explain, viewers will be able to purchase products fulfilled by Walmart directly on Roku while streaming.

Roku and Walmart debut “shoppable ads”

According to the press release, Walmart and Roku want to move beyond the QR code. If you see a product you want to purchase, just click through and buy it.

When a shoppable ad appears on your TV, you can press “OK” with your remote to proceed to checkout. This page will be pre-populated with your payment information from Roku Pay. If you click “OK” again, you will checkout through Walmart. You should receive a purchase confirmation in your email with shipping, return, and support information.

Roku and Walmart will let you buy products from ads on your TV.
Roku and Walmart will let you buy products from ads on your TV. Image source: Roku/Walmart

“We’re making shopping on TV as easy as it is on social,” said Peter Hamilton, the Head of TV Commerce for Roku. “For years, streamers have purchased new Roku devices and signed up for millions of subscriptions with their Roku remote. Streaming commerce brings that same ease and convenience to marketers and shoppers.”

The press release also explains that Roku’s OneView ad-buying platform will “will have the exclusive capability to activate and measure these shoppable ads.” Furthermore, marketers can use the Roku Brand Studio to design custom content for TV shopping.

More Roku news

Roku has been making plenty of headlines lately, but not because of Walmart shoppable ads. Insider reported earlier this month that Netflix might be gearing up to buy Roku.

With Netflix planning to bring ads to its service in the near future, that would certainly be an effective way to kickstart the process. Even if we don’t see the Roku-Walmart shoppable ads while streaming Stranger Things, Roku does know how to sell ads.

One of the reasons Roku has become one of the biggest streaming platforms in the world is because of the volume of free content it offers. The crown jewel is The Roku Channel, which has thousands of on-demand shows and movies as well as live channels.

Here are some of the movies that The Roku Channel added this month for free:

  • Bridesmaids
  • Cast Away
  • Fifty Shades of Grey
  • Independence Day
  • Juno
  • Napoleon Dynamite
  • Pretty Woman
  • Signs
  • Taken
  • The Expendables

If you want to see the rest of the movies The Roku Channel added in June, click here.

More Roku coverage:

 For even more Roku news, visit our Roku guide.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.