Social media continues to evolve, and the explosive growth in e-commerce will create more opportunities for brands to create social commerce experiences. Social commerce allows brands to create frictionless shopping experiences and reach consumers in the places that matter. But to succeed in social commerce, marketers must have a clear strategy and utilise the right channels to connect with their target audience.
Established channels, including Facebook and Instagram, are good places to start if you’re new to social commerce. And for brands looking to take the next step should test and learn with innovations, such as chatbots, to help save time, money and build trust with consumers. Social commerce puts both your promotion and user-generated content in the form of comments, likes, and shares into one place which will continue to grow the effectiveness of your campaigns as time goes by. Mentions & shares from consumers on social media platforms are similar to word of mouth marketing.
Not only are retailers seeing some incredible results through social commerce, but the customers are also telling that this is what they want to see more of.
- Most shoppers are influenced by social media recommendations – so why not sell straight from that recommendation.
- Millennials are likely to make a purchase over social media – which will soon be the major buying market.
- Maximum no. of shoppers review at least one social media site before purchasing – so it makes sense to sell where they’re going to research.
It might be young, but as the tools become more sophisticated more people are turning to social media to not only research, but also purchase their products.
Modes Of Social Commerce
Many e-commerce platforms and DTC brands are understanding the importance of social commerce and have begun to include integrations between the two. For example, Pinterest and Shopify have partnered to make it easy for businesses to sell their products on Pinterest using Buyable Pins. Shopify also lets you link to both Instagram and Facebook and make sales to both those channels. The integration helps you bring the look and feel of your Shopify store to your Facebook Shop. Additionally, Shopify brings commerce to TikTok. What may be marginalized as a Gen Z-only platform has a surprising audience that marketers can (and should) leverage to grow their brand. Merchants can now deploy in-feed, shoppable video ads on TikTok, directly within their Shopify store.
What’s in for brands ?
- Connect to consumers on the platforms that matter
Social media continues to adapt and evolve to changing consumer trends. It’s been interesting to see how some of these trends have converged to drive innovation in social media beyond communicating with friends and family. The impact and growth of social media have meant that brands now play an even bigger part of what we see across all channels. Many channels, including Facebook & Instagram, act as discovery engines for brands. Meet your customers where they prefer to be contacted; whether through SMS, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, voice messaging, or a classic email, pursuing an omnichannel customer experience expands your reach and customer engagement.
- Create seamless shopping experiences
With the number of brands totally killing social media for retail, encouraging purchases directly from social media is more than possible. Creating a seamless experience for shoppers by reducing friction points and offering direct and one-click purchasing options will boost consumer’s confidence and increase social media conversion rates. Note that social platforms are constantly rolling out new shopping and advertising features tailored for social media for retail. For example, the roll-out of Instagram checkout signals how networks are trying to make it easier for brands to encourage purchases.
- Take advantage of e-commerce growth
The pandemic has led to massive leaps away from physical retail toward online shopping and the time has come for many brands to take on the oft-mentioned digital transformation. A larger proportion of consumers are becoming accustomed to buying online, giving marketers an opportunity to test and learn across different channels.
- Low- cost products sell better
Social commerce offers a great opportunity for lots of different kinds of products – clothing, toys, home goods, etc but luxury products typically aren’t successful here. Social media users are likely to be in a distracted frame of mind and not looking to make big purchase decisions. Social commerce is still new, it appears risky to some people. You’re more likely to make the sale if you focus on low-cost products and impulse buys as it’s more in keeping with their state of mind.
- Try using chatbots
Consumers are likely to make purchases and spend more time & money when their shopping experience is personalized. You can get an automated chatbot running and take full advantage of AI capabilities. Chatbots can do much more than just provide answers to common questions. They can speak to people and carry on natural conversations – increasing engagement & higher time value. You can also integrate new tools that come with a pre-built automated checkout chatbot.
- Curate user-generated content
One of the biggest needs when it comes to social media for retail, brands need to be on the hunt for user-generated content (UGC). Your customers want to talk about their latest purchases, granted you give them a chance to do so. Social commerce generates user-generated content. Each and every view, comment, and like is an additional positive mention of your brand.
User-Generated Content has proved highly beneficial to brands in recent years, and this will become even more so in the years to come. Brands should innovate by incorporating Bewgle which helps to analyze reviews from social media platforms.
Bewgle provides deep actionable insights from user-generated content like reviews, social, videos, images, etc using AI and NLP enabling brands to build new products faster, market persuasively, and engage deeply with their customers. Bewgle enables easy access to insights in minutes which would have taken days in the past to mine.
There’s no better time than now to get started. Social Commerce is moving from strength to strength – now is the time to start your Social Selling. Your consumers are spending more time on their phones, expecting quick and easy solutions to every problem, and sharing everything they do on social media. The only logical action for brands is to take advantage of these behaviors and start selling through the channels they’re most engaged in with the kind of checkout they’re looking for.
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