Are websites on their way out as selling via social commerce is gathering momentum?
Social media use has shifted dramatically for both consumers and business in the last few years, with commerce becoming an integral part of the user experience. Social media platforms like Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram are no longer just a way to post updates and share pictures. Now, they are a way to interact with brands to purchase products and services quickly and conveniently.
Social commerce is a sub heading of ecommerce, in which online merchants sell products directly to consumers via social media platforms. It’s a hard to ignore sales channel that’s forecasted to double its revenues in the US between 2021 and 2025, with the average user spending more and more with each purchase. Economic giants like China saw $351 billion in sales via social media last year, making it the leading country by far for social commerce.
Let us take a deeper look at social commerce and how it can be incorporated into your business strategy, helping to increase sales and offer a superior customer experience:
What is social commerce?
As opposed to social media marketing, which redirects a user to a store’s webpage, social commerce allows shoppers to make purchases directly through the social media platform or via a link that brings them to a product page where they can purchase directly without leaving the Social media site.
It differs from traditional ecommerce in how consumers access products. Instead of browsing a store’s product catalogue on a website, social commerce uses social media advertising channels to target users for a specific product, which they can purchase directly on the platform.
Bringing social commerce to your business strategy
There are a lot of benefits to bringing social commerce into your business strategy. Since this trend is growing, getting on the social commerce bandwagon now can help you grow your business well into the future.
Here are just a few of the benefits in incorporating social commerce into your business strategy:
- Opens up side selling and peripheral sales.
- Utilising influencer marketing and brand partnerships
- Quicker and easier purchasing process
- Personalised shopping experience for brand growth
- New ways to grow your email subscription list
- Using recognized payment methods and brand trust via the big sites.
Want to incorporate social commerce into your business strategy? There are several steps you can take to do it right:
Research your customer
You need to know what your targeted customer looks like and what they need. What channels are they using? Where and how are they finding you? What apps or other shopping experiences are they using? What products are they searching for? You can gain a better understanding of these answers by analising past sales and social media marketing you’ve done or even by surveying your customers.
Think AMAZON: ‘Other customers who bought this product also bought this…’
Identify the relevant social media platforms
Identifying which social media platforms are used by your customers can give you a better understanding as to which platforms would work best for your social commerce strategy. While Facebook is currently the largest social commerce platform and currently a mainstay with boomers.
Instagram: Being the arty and fashion paradise, it was found that 17.9 percent of global active Instagram users were men between the ages of 18 and 24 years. More than half of the global Instagram population worldwide is aged 34 years or younger.
Snapchat: Gen Z and Millennials are loving Snapchat, both worldwide and in the US. 78% of US internet users aged under 35 are also Snapchat users. Snapchat is also the most popular platform with US teenagers, now favored over TikTok
Tik Tok : 25% of TikTok’s active user’s accounts in the U.S. are people aged 10-19. 22.4% of TikTok’s accounts in the U.S. are 20-29 and 21.7% of TikTok’s accounts in the U.S. are 30-39. Take advantage of available data.
LinkedIn and Quora are ideal for Business to business.
Find out how much is sold through the social media platforms and what payment gateways and the shopping experience of each platform, and does this fit in with your business model.
Research and use the available consumer data from social media platforms, including the number of likes, shares, session duration, clicks and more, which will help inform your social commerce strategy.
Boost engagement on your social media pages
You want to make sure your social commerce posts are being seen, so you first need to boost your social media pages to engage more consumers with your business. Encourage your followers to become more involved with your brand via surveys, exclusive discounts to those who like, share or comment, tagging followers or brands you partner with, and more. The average Facebook spend for business is $5,000 a month!
Influencer marketing is a hybrid of old and new marketing tools. It takes the idea of celebrity endorsement and places it into a modern-day content-driven marketing campaign. The main differentiator in the case of influencer marketing is that the results of the campaign are collaborations between brands and influencers.
But influencer marketing doesn’t just involve celebrities. Instead, it revolves around influencers, many of whom would never consider themselves famous in an offline setting. Many can be in a traditional business and be B2B Influncers
Social Influencers have the power to affect the purchasing decisions of others because of his or her authority, knowledge, position, or relationship with his or her audience with a following in a distinct niche, with whom he or she actively engages. The size of the following depends on the size of his/her topic of the niche
Last but not least:
Tell a story On social media no one wants to be sold to, so either be full of great helpful facts or tell a story, and if your product or service is literally quite boring; tell a story anyway, it can be the most tenuous link, but if the story is engaging the people will still associate your brand with the message