E-commerce beauty retailer Feelunique is trying to strengthen customer loyalty by bringing back digital masterclasses.

Feelunique began its latest series on Jan. 21, with live skin-care videos featuring Elemis, Dermalogica and Q+A. Customers were encouraged to join the classes through their mobile or desktop devices and submit questions. Feelunique plans to run three masterclasses every month. In February, it will focus on makeup and the Murad skin-care brand. The retailer had previously run a version of masterclasses between 2014 and 2018 but stopped, thinking the videos were not a key sales driver at the time, said Carla Martini, Feelunique head of content planning and publishing.

Thus far, the three masterclasses have had more than 1,000 views, each with a majority of participants coming through mobile, according to Martini, However, the percentage of viewers who then went to a brand’s product page afterward was higher on desktop than on mobile, with an average of 46% and 31%, respectively. Key performance indicators for the series include bounce rate and how people interact with pages.

“These masterclasses are not overtly commercial, but we treat them as a layer of engagement,” said Martini. “We can’t necessarily connect whether someone goes on to purchase a product after asking a question, but there’s more to [e-commerce] in terms of brand loyalty and education.”

“Beauty is a business that still heavily relies on a brick-and-mortar presence for consumers to test and interact with products. Digitally native retailers need to be innovative to enhance customer experience, and creating digestible content is a great way to educate and communicate with shoppers,” said Kayla Marci, market analyst for retail technology company Edited.

Martini said that the budget for the series is minimal, as the company is relying on existing technology to run the live classes and there is no paid social advertising for the series. To communicate the new series, Feelunique promoted the classes on its homepage two weeks before they began, sent two emails to its email database of 568,000 customers and posted five times on its Instagram feed, which includes 290,000 followers.

Martini said there are benefits to the series beyond loyalty. There is also a ripe opportunity to enhance Feelunique’s SEO strategy, as references to experts on the website improve its search engine performance, said Martini. Martini is now working with the company’s SEO team to reformat pages and increase both paid and unpaid website traffic.