Social networks are not going to fade away anytime soon. Even though they were not initially meant to sell products – nowadays, social media became a powerful channel of communication between brands and customers. In fact, online stores that are present on social networks happen to have 32% more sales on average (source: https://www.bigcommerce.com/blog/5-social-stats-for-online-storeowners/) than stores that don’t.
It might be because more than 40% of digital consumers use social networks to research new brands or products, and 30% of online shoppers (according to bigcommerce.com) say they would be likely to make a purchase from a social media network. Therefore, if your business is not on social media yet, it might be high time to do something about it. Here’s how to start selling on social networks and increase your sales in the long run.
What is social commerce?
As Growcode explains, “social commerce” simply means buying and selling on social networks. The way it works on different platforms can vary, but it’s worth to keep in mind that is not social media giants who sell products – they simply allow retailers to do so. But why exactly is it worth the effort?
- Social media is already a powerful tool to discover new products and services – and thanks to the shopping features, it’s now much easier for your customers to buy what catches their attention on social networks,
- Social networks reduce friction associated with online shopping – instead of going through a lengthy checkout process, users can finish the whole transaction in just a few clicks,
- Social media can be treated as an additional sales channel – you can easily reach those customers who are active on social media and prefer sticking to social networks rather than being redirected to other websites.
These benefits definitely speak for themselves. And, even though social commerce is still in its infancy, it’s already possible to sell your products on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. As a matter of fact, taking advantage of this possibility now can easily give you a competitive advantage over your competitors.
How to start selling on social media?
In order to increase sales, you need to target the right audience with the right offer, preferably at the right time. Social media platforms make such targeting much easier. Plus, they also let you keep an eye on your competitors. How to start leveraging all those benefits, then?
1. Choose the right social media platforms.
To put it simply: you should go for social networks that your potential customers use the most. This will help you reach them more effectively, without wasting your time and money on experimenting with different social networks.
Start with analyzing your current customers, as well as your target demographic. Once you understand who your audience is, it will be much easier to identify the channels they are fond of.
2. Master audience engagement.
Understanding your target audience will also help you engage your potential (and existing) customers better. Actually, boosting trust and engagement is a powerful way to increase sales – and social media makes it easier than ever.
Make sure you post consistently, always react to customer comments, and encourage user-generated content. The key is to promote your products without being too pushy. If that’s not convincing enough – keep in mind that nearly 1 in 3 Facebook users has made a purchase after “sharing, liking, or commenting” on the products. Not to mention that according to businessinsider.com consumers who come across UGC are 97% more likely to convert than those who don’t.
3. Leverage the shopping features of social media.
The reason behind the rapid growth of social commerce is that more and more social media platforms enable shopping features. Take “buy buttons”, as an example. They let users purchase directly from social networks, in a fast and secure manner.
4. Offer outstanding customers & sales support.
Interestingly, 63% of customers expect companies to offer customer service via their social media profiles, and 90% of social media users have already used social networks to communicate with a business one way or another. This should be a good enough reason to treat social media as a crucial customer care channel – especially if you want to use it to increase sales.
Increase your sales with social commerce
There’s no doubt that increasingly more consumers are making purchases without leaving social media – and that’s hardly surprising, given the benefits of social media for e-commerce. Luckily, online stores can do much more than just invest in paid campaigns on social networks nowadays. As an online retailer, you can easily add social commerce to your sales channels – even though this option is still relatively new.