Growing your eCommerce business with Social Media
How to make the most of your digital storefront.
Social Media has become a huge part of our daily lives and usage has grown during Covid-19 as people are spending more time indoors. Some people check their smartphones and start scrolling through social media 1st thing when they wake up!
No longer just a social tool, social media is evolving it’s now a product discovery platform, a customer service channel AND a retail platform in itself. The competition is high but its an extremely cost-effective tool that has the power to reach unlimited audiences.
This blog focuses on getting the basics right with social media in order to grow your eCommerce business.
1. Create awareness for your Brand on social media.
Consumers are extremely unlikely to buy from a brand they’re unfamiliar with; brand awareness establishes a certain amount of trust in the mind of your target audience. Using social media is a powerful, fast and cost-effective method to do that.
Traditional retail strategies are being disrupted by the use of Social Media as a digital window shopping channel but also as a place to purchase from directly, for example, the likes of Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat and more recently TikTok.
2. Be truly engaging.
To cut through the noise on Social Media it’s prudent to consider what your audience wants to see. Ask yourself what type of content would be beneficial to your audience, be purposeful and go for quality over quantity.
Give your followers a reason to engage, perhaps by teaming up with an expert or influencer to offer tips and advice that is relevant to them or their wellbeing. Take advantage of the free tools available like Instagram live or Facebook live or groups for real-time and meaningful interaction.
Using social networks to build a community of like-minded people works brilliantly for niche marketing. Using multiple niche influencers is effective for higher engagement and costs less than a celebrity.
3. Video killed the TV star.
All social media apps support video and it’s proven that this is one of the most engaging forms of content so embracing video is a must. Whether it’s short-form videos like those popular on TikTok or Insta Stories or long-form content on YouTube the good news is that it doesn’t need to be high end and expensive. Live Q&A sessions can be a great opportunity to convert shoppers who can learn and ask questions about your products on People respond to videos shot at home on smartphones by vloggers, influencers or even other shoppers as these feel authentic.
The real gold lies in inspiring user-generated content, this is completely free and extremely influential, get creative with presenting reasons for your audience to contribute their own content. Shoppers trust other shoppers, UGC builds credibility for your brand and did I mention already that it’s free!?
4. Use in-app features to your advantage.
Social media was traditionally a gateway and shoppers would need to follow a link to your website. Now having built awareness and trust with your audience you can then start utilising in-app features like shoppable posts, Instagram checkout you can make it quick and easy for people to buy directly on the platform. Create the most seamless way for your audience to purchase with the least amount of clicks.
Other trends to pay attention to are:
- Using verified badges on Instagram TV and on the social media platforms adds another layer of credibility.
- Hyper targeting and geo-tagging. filter your audience with paid advertising.
- Dynamic Product Ads in Snapchat which are free to use, some brands have seen 52% growth in return on advertising spend here.
- Create an online store on Facebook and Instagram for free with Facebook Shops.
- Joining Tik Tok if you haven’t already, more than 500 million people now use TikTok each month across the globe.
- Run an AR filter campaign on Instagram.
5. Keep brand messaging consistent across all platforms.
It’s important for your brand to have consistent messaging across all social media platforms. Take into account that this is a strange time and may be difficult for many. People gravitate towards brands who hold and display similar values to their own.
Consider how best to communicate your brand messaging in a way that speaks to your audience, and recognise that different segments of your audience use different forms of social media, for example, Snapchat and TikTok are used primarily by younger shoppers.
6. Be responsive to all feedback.
Shoppers rely on research and the feedback of other customers when it comes to their perception of a brand and ultimately this feeds into whether they decide to purchase or not.
Seeing positive comments and user-generated content boosts trust but social media is now a significant customer service channel and should be recognised as such. Responding to negative feedback, acknowledging and rectifying the issue with the customer shows that you care about your customers.
Not responding or handling a customer badly in front of other users has major repercussions on brand perception. Respond respectfully to all comments, customers will respect that.
7. Build a customer-centric mindset.
As the adoption of smartphones is at an all time high and consumers become increasingly comfortable with social shopping, a customer-centric mindset is required in order to target the right customers with the right messages.
Focus on the customer experience and engage with your audience at every step of the customer journey. Stay tuned to trends and pay attention to the brands who are nailing it on social media for inspiration.
Social media will continue to evolve and social commerce will continue to grow, make sure you go grow with it.
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