Social commerce is one aspect which the retailers have gotten it right by acknowledging the value of social media in their e-commerce strategies. Look at the social posts on Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat or Pinterest to get a perspective into how they push for big commercial sales through the buy buttons, shoppable content and other e-commerce features. Now, it’s not just browsing through the posts, but directly selling to the customers.
Giving direct competition to big shots like Amazon, Facebook’s shoppable pages, Instagram’s buy now button, or Pinterest’s buyable pins are just the beginning of what retail e-commerce looks like. Even brands like Marvel are using AI tools like jumper.ai to automate the checkout process for selling tickets directly from organic and social media posts. By implement a social commerce solution that engages users where they are, it turns their social media engagement directly into sales. The end goal is efficient social spending through social commerce.
Social marketing v/s social shopping
What’s the difference is what most of the e-commerce site owners ask. The savvy e-commerce customers now expects the best social experience and is likely to shift brand loyalty in the absence of online customer support from their preferred websites. Bridging a balance between these two integral parts of the social strategies is important if they don’t want to risk losing customers.
Social marketing is all about increasing your brand presence in the digital world through direct engagement with your customers. If done effectively, your social content aimed towards sharing on the social media platforms like Pinterest & YouTube, will be the boost needed for your e-retail business.
Social shopping on the other hand is taking social marketing to the next level. Why should you stop at just promoting your brands? Why not help the customers move to buying the products right from the websites. That’s exactly what Facebook and Pinterest have done with their online shopping carts and buy buttons. Considering the amount of time spent on the social media, it’s logical that retailers adapt to social e-commerce transactions.
- There are 2.8 billion active users on Facebook alone as of 2021.
- 70% of shoppers looking to Instagram for their next purchase
- Nearly 35% of online shoppers say they would be likely to make a purchase from a social media network like Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter or Snapchat
Understanding the various factors that influence direct social selling is a big advantage for retailers trying to heighten the customer experiences.
Impulse buying among the millennial
The current millennial is all for instant gratification and impulse buying. They are more into exploring and not buying expensive products costing say $100 on an impulse. Instead if retailers shift focus to low-priced products, the chances of buying increases significantly. On an average the value of almost all the products on the social media platform are less than $100.
Rise of social influencers on branding sales
Social media influencers are all over the internet with their ever increasing followers. Retailers can script a success story by teaming up with them to co-create exclusive collections. That partnership can be fruitful for both of them as the influencers can improve their reach and brand recognition by being associated with a retail brand, while retailers can leverage the numbers to increase the sales.
Influencers can leverage the social media tools like live video, polls, surveys and feedbacks to determine and collaborate with the retailers to decide what the next product promotion could be.
Scope for personalization based on social feeds
We discover and shop based on recommendations from family and friends. Most of the social platforms and online websites are evolving with their search engines and allow customers to filter their search criteria’s. There are even apps that allow them to post and share shoppable content. Every brand that appears on their social feeds offer personalized product recommendations based on the user’s activities.
In terms of product discovery, customers trust them only if it comes from family and friends. Social commerce works only if brands can build on the trust factor otherwise it will be just a marketing tactic.
Progressive Web Apps (PWA’s) are the future of retail
Customers are tired of clunky mobile shopping experience that lead to poor conversion rates. Instead of downloading native apps that are most likely to be used once, shoppers now want a smooth experience that’s fast, engaging and reliable from their web browsers.
PWA’s takes advantage and best practices of the native applications and delivers a seamless web experience using the capabilities of a web browser. Since there is no download required on an app store, they are much easier to maintain than the traditional apps.
The USP for retailers is to deliver an app like better experience on mobile, quicker load time, drive engagements and conversion rates.
Stay ahead of the game
Videos of influencers peddling their products, influencer marketing, personalization, localization and every trick in the book is used by retailers to succeed at social commerce. While the social media infrastructure for social commerce is still growing, it’s time for retailers to take advantage of the new frontier of retail sales.