के सभी प्रकाशन Shreyosi Sarkar . कोलकाता , भारत

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How Social Commerce Can Help Your eCommerce Store Grow

As usual, there were the normal announcements of platform changes, interviews with partner developers, and spotlights on brands who have achieved impressive growth through or with Facebook.


But there was something this year that was a little out of the ordinary.


There was a strong focus on a marketing tactic that’s currently growing from strength to strength and generating thousands for brands across the globe.


Social commerce.


We saw Facebook-led talks about how to grow your brand through Messenger and panels featuring brand partners from social commerce brands.


Conversational commerce, social marketing, and social commerce are now jumping to the mainstream. They’re deemed important enough by Facebook to make up a huge part of their developer conference.


Facebook, the largest social network in the world, thinks social commerce is important enough that all of their partners need to know about it. And thus, we think you should know more about them too.


But here’s the thing.


Even in its brief lifetime, conversational marketing has exploded. It’s become a potential revenue generator for brands of every different size and has branched out into several different disciplines.


There’s a ton of different conversational methods of marketing out there.


Drift is a B2B conversational marketing platform helping large brands close other large brands as clients.

Intercom offers a slew of live chat solutions ideal for software business that need to offer round the clock help.

ManyChat and MobileMonkey are great tools for automated chatbots that keep your users engaged by minimizing response time.

These are all great methods of engaging users. But they’re not specifically focused on eCommerce sales.


Sure, you can bend some of them to help out, but without that native functionality, you’re going to waste more time figuring it out. And as a busy store owner, you don’t have that time.


You need results and you need them ASAP.


So today, I’m going to run you through the only conversational marketing method that’s specifically focused on making ecommerce sales.


I’m going to run you through the awesome power of social commerce.


What is Social Commerce?

Quite simply, it’s the sales of products directly through social media. It differs from regular social media marketing because you don’t need to redirect users to your store or product page.


They’re able to purchase directly from your social post or even Instagram stories.


You’ll have seen this in action already. Facebook Marketplace is a good example. And then you’ve got the recent (limited rollout) introduction of Instagram Checkouts that take this to the next level.


These solutions are great, but they’re limited in a number of ways:


Facebook Marketplaceisn’t really great for brands operating a professional business. It’s geared more towards individuals selling single items.

Instagram checkout is currently only available to select brands and influencers

All similar solutions are available only on their parent network

In short, they might help make a couple more sales, but they’re not great for brands wanting to roll out an integrated, omnichannel approach


Fortunately, there are a few services out there that will help you achieve thi


But first, let’s look at why you should care beyond the hyp


Why You Should Care About Social Commer

Picture this. You’re out at the mall with friends.


You stumble across a small store. In the window is a pair of shoes you’d love to buy so you go in and ask for a little more detail. The assistant runs you through the shoes’ features and really highlights those benefit


You’re ready to bu


But, as you reach for your wallet, the assistant stops you and says “if you want to buy these, head to our store”. This is only a display model. To buy them you’ve got to drive 15 minutes away to their primary storefron


Would you g


No, righ


It sounds stupid, but this is the purchase journey most brands offer with their social marketing. They’re engaging consumers on social, but to actually buy something, you'd have to switch to a browser window and search again for the shoes, or navigate their webpage. Consumers who aren’t on the platform to shop, but to connect with friends. And yet they still try and force a lengthy purchase journey on people who aren’t actively looking to buy.

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Everyone running an online store should form a long-term strategy for growth and it’s important to recognize the difference between strategy and tactics. You should define objectives, strategy and tactics in that order - for example, say I run a store for pet clothes:

  • Objective: Reach 1000 pet owners in the database
  • Strategy: Doggy Got Style!
  • Tactics: Summer Doggy Swimsuit Sale, Stylish Dogs of Instagram series of blog posts, World’s Most Stylish Dogs weekly newsletter, nominate-your-dog Stylish Dog Award (with prize), Dress-Your-Dog mobile app.

Tactics are actions you take to execute a strategy. But what are some common tactics you can use as part of a “big picture” strategy? Here’s 10 tactics on getting more customers for your online store.

Hold a Sale

Discounting is not a long-term strategy but it can be highly effective in driving new customers to your store. Figure out your customer acquisition cost and from that, how much of a discount (on a limited amount of quantity/product) you can afford to offer in order to acquire new customers - then announce to the world via Twitter and your blog! Just be careful of attracting deal-hunters, since these customers may not be of long-term value to your business.

Run a Competition

Competitions can be a fun way to spread the word about your store but remember to keep the competition purposeful to your brand. Don’t run a “cute pets” competition if you’re selling womens lingerie! You can extract maximum exposure from competitions by building in a voting mechanic - in order to win or be shortlisted, participants have to get their friends to vote.

Give Free Samples

The more you can do to lower the barrier for a customer to experience your products, the better. This might not make economic sense depending on your product, but it’s worth trying if the cost to offer a free sample is low.

Partner Up

Partnering with a non-competitive but audience-complementary partner can be a highly effective way of acquiring new customers. This can be something as simple as a traffic exchange - partnering with a highly-trafficked site in your customer’s domain, putting up a banner to drive traffic to your shop, and paying the partner either a cut of the cart revenue or a flat fee for every customer acquired via the partner banner.

Write Targeted Blog Content

It’s no quick-fix, but writing authoritative, interesting content in your online shop’s contextual domain will pay huge dividends over the long term. Targeted content will help boost your site’s SEO bringing in new customers organically, and will also encourage your existing visitors to share your content more. Every online shop should have blog content as part of its marketing strategy!


Offer a New Product / Service

It sounds obvious, but a super effective way to capture a whole new customer segment is to offer a whole new product or service! This doesn’t even need to be complicated, it could simply be a repositioning, repackaging or even repricing of an existing product. On that last point, here’s one of my favourite examples of casual price discrimination...


Advertise

It’s one of the most basic forms of driving people to a product or service, but don’t forget about it! Experiment with Google Ads since you can fine-tune your targeting and choose how much you want to spend.


Participate in Social Media

In the age of social media, effective marketing is not just about getting people to come to you - it’s about participating in the channels that your customers are participating in whether that’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or any of the other dozens of popular services. Pick the channels that are right for your business and participate authentically - remember that social media is not there to simply drive people to your store, it’s also there to help you create stories about your business that people can share with others.


Incentivise First Purchase

Sweeten the deal for first-time purchasers and you’ll increase the amount of conversion from visitor to customer. Some online stores offer a small discount for first time purchases, the key is to make it tangible and obvious what the customer will get if they purchase right now.


Referrals

The best and arguably most valuable method of customer acquisition is when existing customers refer a friend. When this method works really well, all the marketing is done by your existing customers meaning you can focus on running your online store instead of spending time bringing people to it. Referrals can happen organically via Word of Mouth marketing (focus on great products, great prices and excellent customer service - these alone will get you very far) but you can also implement a referral marketingprogram.

The simplest way to do this if you’re already running an online store is with referral marketing software - this will help to automate the process by which existing customers are encouraged and rewarded to tell their friends about your online store. ReferralCandy is a fully-automated, plug and play solution for referral marketing and at the time of writing works seamlessly with over 16 different e-commerce platforms including Amazon, Bigcommerce, Etsy, Magento, Shopify and Volusion.

Hey there! There's another awesome way to drive more customers to your online store.

How?

By writing attention-grabbing product descriptions. Check out how you can do this here in our 8 Easy Rules to Write Product Descriptions That Sell article.

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