The use of social media channels is currently one of the most popular activities of Internet users. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that about 48% of the world’s population actively uses Facebook, Instagram or Tik Tok.
Social Media in eCommerce
According to the Digital 2021* report, there are currently as many as 4.2 billion social media users worldwide. It is no wonder that social media ceases to be only a place to share life news or an area to make new acquaintances, increasingly proving to be a sales platform. Is social media a significant sales channel in eCommerce?
What is social media ecommerce marketing?
Ecommerce social media is defined as the practice of using social media to market an ecommerce store. Ecommerce stores use social media to build brand awareness, attract online followers and generate online sales. Businesses can also leverage social media to help have their brand, profile and products shared online.
An enormous number of internet users are active on social media networks, it is no longer just a place to observe friends’ activities or communicate with them but also a place where consumers look for information about brands or specific products. For this reason, social media in eCommerce is of great importance. SM platforms are not indifferent to this, offering more business options to not only boost brand awareness and website traffic, but also profits. The blog features complete information on how SM affects eCommerce growth and proven tips on how to prepare your social media strategy to deliver the desired results.
Popular social media ecommerce tactics include:
- Promoting and driving traffic to an ecommerce website or branded app
- Selling products directly on social media
- Engaging with customers and prospects directly on social channels
- Providing pre- and post-sale support to customers
- Collecting insights about your industry and market
- Building an online social media community around your brand
Many brands use all of the above tactics to create a thriving social media ecommerce marketing strategy.
Social Media in eCommerce – does it support sales?
Social media is an essential component of online marketing. They allow us to engage audiences in a simple and attractive way, reaching potential customers with specific information. It is both an excellent channel for PR activities and for creating a community around a business and communicating with audiences, gaining new customers, and nurturing those who have already benefited from our offer. How does social media work in eCommerce? This is a superb space for marketing and analysing our audience group. These features directly affect the option of leveraging SM channels to support sales operations. Which eCommerce social media feeds work best? It all depends, of course, on the industry and the characteristics of a brand, but Facebook, Instagram and YouTube are the most recommendable, although the ever-growing popularity of TikTok means that those running a thriving business should not ignore it. The blog features, among other things, information on social selling, i.e., a sales strategy aimed at acquiring customers via social media.
Why is this strategy effective?
- Shortens the customer journey – people who make purchasing decisions via SM feeds act spontaneously, guided by emotions. Shopping via social media sites is quicker, an enormous plus for shoppers, while for on-line store owners there is less risk of a person interested in a product his/her mind.
- Provides a precise definition of the target group – regular posting of content and building a relationship with audience helps to better understand their demands.
- Ensures comfort for shoppers – appropriate targeting of messages in SM reduces the risk that the message about a product or offered person will reach someone outside our target group. Not only does this reduce the risk of overspending the budget, but it also protects audiences from a barrage of unwanted ads and traffic that does not relate to their needs or interests. Social media in eCommerce helps building trust-based relationships, making it easier to reach customers. This is directly related to social buying, i.e., making purchasing decisions based on what we find on social media.
Social Media in eCommerce – which actions to employ?
Social Media in eCommerce plays an ever-growing part, hence social networking services are being developed and adapted continuously to meet the needs of those wishing to sell using them. The blog will tell you what options Facebook, Instagram and TikTok have to offer. The most relevant and most effective activities, of course, are regular postings, interaction with potential customers, but also the use of specific forms of activity. What kind?
- CTAs in Facebook posts – i.e., Call to Action posts. Their effectiveness depends not only on eye-catching graphics but also on the content on the bar underneath. The message should be clear and simple – by clicking on the graphic, a viewer should know what to expect and benefit from. What is the social media potential for eCommerce in this case? Facebook provides the option to schedule a visit, book a reservation, communicate via email, phone, or Messenger, download an app, check out other related merchandise or learn more about a particular topic.
- Shopping feature on Instagram – if you want to use social media for eCommerce, Instagram should be on your list of feeds to use. It is one of the most engaging social networking services. The platform, besides allowing the addition of product tags in posts or testimonials, also offers a ‘Shop’ tab, where users can see the price, further product information, or browse the full brand range. The important thing is that this option enables the customer to access a store website with a single click – thus shortening the customer journey.
- TikTok gathers steam, something you will also find information about on the blog. If your brand has products or services on offer that match the interests and needs of Generation Z consumers, this platform allows to boost in-store conversions. Admittedly, ads, discussed more extensively in the blog, are relatively expensive on this platform, but they are extremely attractive and therefore effective.
Social Media in eCommerce – how to prepare a strategy?
The information available in the blog shows that social media in eCommerce is not only about posting content on a regular basis in your chosen feeds, but, above all, the relevant strategy that should be well planned and elaborated in detail. The articles share knowledge on where to start when preparing a social media strategy for eCommerce, what to consider when choosing specific communication channels, how to determine the main content of your posts. Furthermore, you will learn that the most crucial aspect is a thorough analysis, including not only a competitor review, but also a SWOT analysis, i.e., the strengths and weaknesses of your brand and the products or services you offer. Social media in eCommerce is the perfect ground for understanding your audience, refining your messages, and fine-tuning your strategy.
The blog also answers the question of how to use social media in eCommerce to boost conversions. In this case, defining objectives is key. Sales is the bottom line. Social media, as we highlight in the articles, is a great breeding ground for brand awareness and trust. We suggest how to replace a pushy ‘buy’ message with a more appealing message from the consumer’s point of view, one that will trigger the urge to buy in the recipient’s mind. What about identifying the audience and matching SM feeds? These issues are also addressed in the articles. When determining a target audience, you need to remember that you cannot respond to everyone’s needs, or at least if you are going to apply one form of communication to all audiences. Creating a persona will be invaluable here – from this you will be able to understand your customers better and their needs. Time to choose the channels. Remember that social media in eCommerce can be a doorway to success, provided you skilfully use the options they offer and know their specific features before you take any action. Learn about how to tailor the SM feed to your industry and product characteristics on the blog too.
Social media in eCommerce – practical tips
Knowing that social media in eCommerce works well, keep a few key points in mind:
- Have a plan – a social media strategy for eCommerce is a must. Be smart in choosing the SM feeds you want to develop. More is not always better – the specificity of some feeds may not suit your industry. In this case, it is not worth struggling to be present anywhere, it is better to use these efforts to better develop specific activities on platforms that are ideally suited to the characteristics of your products and audience.
- Use social media in eCommerce to its full – remember regularity, consistency in communications, linking. Use the options that the platform offers. Tag products in posts, publish graphics in CTAs
- Be distinctive – provide a variety of content, combine standard posts with videos – not only the audience likes this, but also the algorithms – and you will be more visible in the organic results. Spark interest, provide value, engage, and encourage your audience to take action
- Be moderate – we have also blogged about the effectiveness of PPC ads, as well as the potential of other paid forms. Remember, however, the growing awareness among consumers – what is it due to? Read about it on the blog too! Avoid excessive advertising and pushy persuasion to buy. Instead, use the potential of social media in eCommerce to inform about special offers, discount campaigns, competitions.
Social media represent booming platforms that are changing dynamically, just like SM trends. If you want social media for eCommerce to help you increase website traffic, build brand awareness, affecting conversions, you need to regularly track changes and monitor your own activities. Do you need substantive support, proven guidance, and expert opinions? The blog features valuable articles that explain in a clear and transparent way how social media works in eCommerce, how to set up activities and what to look for when using the options of a particular platform.
The best social media for ecommerce
Launching social media marketing is effortless, and it is completely free to set up accounts for your business.
Having said that, initially you will want to determine how each platform fits into your marketing strategy and plan accordingly.
So, the following will help you start with the top four social media platforms for ecommerce:
Being the world’s most popular social network, Facebook is a natural start for an ecommerce merchant.
With almost 1.5 billion active users, you can pretty confident that at least a few of your potential customers spend time there. Added to that, on average, these users spend 40 minutes on Facebook each day, indicating that they are not just checking their personal notifications and leaving.
In case you have not yet set up a business page for your ecommerce site, this should be your first step. After that, you can begin to share images of your products, sales announcements, links to interesting content on your site and pretty much anything else you want your followers to see.
Note that visual content tends to outperform text posts on Facebook, so your best interest is to incorporate images into as many posts as possible. As an ecommerce business, this is a great opportunity to display product images from your library or donated by customers.
Similarly, you could use Facebook to run highly targeted advertising campaigns and reach users based on their age, gender, location, interests, and behaviour. So, while you do not need to spend money to reach new customers, it is an option to get your brand in front of your perfect customer.
Twitter is yet another excellent platform for ecommerce businesses. It boasts 800 million users and 52% of its users say they have bought a product they first viewed on Twitter. Plus, 81% say Twitter affects their purchasing decisions more than TV ads.
By sharing sales info and links to product pages, Twitter is a great way to start discussions about your brand and funnel traffic to your website. Also, now that many users are tweeting directly to brands to express their opinions and ask questions, Twitter is helpful for customer support.
In fact, when you respond to users promptly and in a professional manner, you demonstrate how much you care about your customers. Doing so is great for developing an online reputation, establishing relationships, and making potential customers comfortable purchasing from you.
Likewise, you can launch Twitter ad campaigns and target audiences based on other users you follow and the words they tweet. Thus, if you are seeking to expand your paid ad options, Twitter may very well be the next logical step for your business.
Instagram revolves around photo sharing, thus rendering it a perfect platform for any marketer who wants to highlight their products. Additionally, the chances of your potential customers being on this platform are extremely high now that it boasts 500 million monthly users.
On top of sharing product images, you can use Instagram to provide users with a backstage view of your business. Consumers today want to learn more about their favourite companies, and images of your team reveal the faces behind your brand.
Even though this is new to marketers, Snapchat is yet another excellent option to provide people with a behind-the-scenes glimpse of your business. Boasting 150 million daily active users, it is safe to assume that at least some of your potential customers use it.
It is especially handy when your target audience is young as 71% of Snapchat users are under the age of 25. However, considering that only 1% of marketers say they use the platform, launching now can help you get ahead of the curve and reach your audience before your competitors grab hold.
Should you decide to add Snapchat to your marketing strategy, remember to announce that you use it on your other social media accounts, so customers know how to find you. Then share photos, videos, and any interesting events on Snapchat to give your followers access to information about your business.