In this article, we discuss social media for eCommerce. It is not an exaggeration to say that everybody is in social media. There are many social media platforms, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Snapchat, etc., and everybody uses at least one. If you are a business owner, you must capitalize on social media marketing. It is the easiest way to find people who can be converted into customers. You see, social media is not just for socializing with friends and family via content, it is also where people buy goods and services. In fact, according to a 2019 study, ~30% of the people online ages 18 to 34 reported that they have purchased something off social media.
So, How Do You Sell In Social Media?
Facebook has nearly 2.5 billion active users monthly. There is a high probability that your target customers are on Facebook. It’s a good thing then that retailers have several sales options. You can create a “shop” tab on a business page where you can put your products and customers can buy directly without leaving Facebook. This is just one feature that sellers should take advantage of, and it’s free. There are other eCommerce features that sellers can use to reach customers.
Instagram is a sales powerhouse especially for the Gen Z crowd. A lot of Gen Z users have left Facebook for Instagram and other picture- or video-centric platforms. Instagram is primarily a picture-sharing platform. Products that appear in the newsfeed can be tagged with the seller’s handle. The tags can easily lead the viewers to the seller’s page to see and buy his products. A lot of online buyers have bought something off Instagram because aside from seeing the product, he can also see the feedback of actual buyers.
LinkedIn is social media for professionals. Users do not go here to shop. Sellers can run ads on LinkedIn, but the more effective use is to provide the users with information about products and services. This can be through webinars, advice, or events where they can sample your products or services.
Twitter is primarily used to air opinions on current events. It may not be where people go to buy products, but because there are a lot of Twitter users (~40% of US adults), it is a good platform to post ads. There is less marketing competition on Twitter; therefore, ads are not as expensive.
Pinterest is a picture-based platform. It has more than 300 million monthly users and what’s interesting about this is, almost half of these users reportedly earn an annual household income of $100,000. This means that there is more return for every dollar spent on advertising. Pinterest is eCommerce-friendly. It has a new feature called “complete the look” where the platform recommends products that are related to a search. As a brand, this means exposure when you get recommended.
Snapchat is a popular platform for young audiences aged 12 to 17 years old. If this is your market, you can take advantage of the several ad options on the platform.
Here are the strategies you need to leverage social media for your eCommerce needs:
Lay down your targets
Before you think of your content, identify what your goals are. This will help you determine what type of content to produce and what kind of engagement to invest time in. Your targets should be measurable so you can monitor if your efforts are successful or not. Examples of measurable targets are:
- The number of followers you want to gain
- The amount of traffic you want to generate
- The number of engagements you get with your posts
- Conversion rate, or how much of the followers convert into buyers
Write a Blog
Blogging may no longer be as popular as it was then, but it is still a good way to inform, educate, inspire, and convert followers. Add to that the fact that blogs can make your brand a thought leader and this is always beneficial to your goal.
In social media, optimisation is not going to push you up a feed, but it can help you earn exposure. You can optimise by using keywords, hashtags, images and videos that will help you gain new followers.
Be consistent and succinct
Competition in social media is stiff. If you want to establish your presence, be consistent in your posts lest people forget about you. Create a social content calendar to plan your appearance. Related to this, do not write long posts. Not everybody can commit to reading everything you say. Keep your messages short and direct to the point.
Tone down your sales pitch
While your goal is to make sales, flooding your feed with sales pitches is going to turn off your followers. Social media users want value. Figure out the issues they care about, their interests and problems and create content that addresses those. Of course, you can still promote your products with your other posts but temper it by offering variety.
Engage with your followers
You need to be sociable in social media. Engage with your followers. Talk to them when they reply to your comment. The comment may not be sales-related but engaging them will make them feel included.
Customer testimonials are important in building your reputation and making sales. Ask your customers to write a post on how they find your product; it would be better if they include a photo. By tagging you and using your hashtag, this testimonial can be seen by other potential customers.
In social media, visual contents are the boss. Learn how to build video campaigns because these are found to be effective in making sales. According to a study, 85% of the millennial users have bought a product after watching a video about it.
Hashtags are staples in social media. It helps retailers’ visibility when users search for their product. There are different hashtag etiquettes though across social media platforms. Take time to learn how to use hashtags for each platform.
This is the only strategy that has a price tag, but it is important for retailers to use paid advertising or PPC advertising. This is still the main method used to drive traffic to your website and there are several ad types retailers can use. There are several targeting options that you can master. These will help you generate an audience that is most likely to convert.
Most consumers, if not all, are in social media. These platforms have become a central hub. It will be to your detriment if you don’t use social media for advertising and selling. Establish your presence and use the strategies mentioned to grow your business.
If you want to learn more about social media, check out these Marketing.com.au articles:
- How User Generated Content Improves SEO, Traffic and Sales
- The Definitive Guide to Marketing Your Restaurant During COVID-19
- Social Media’s Role During COVID-19
- 8 Powerful Social Media Marketing Strategies for Your Small Business
- 10 Great Examples of Social Media Reputation Management
- How To Use Social Media To Reach Your Target Audience