Are You Social Enough for E-Commerce?

January 30, 2016

Digital Marketing ChannelAdvisor By ChannelAdvisor

Today’s social landscape is like a crowded party. Actually, it’s like many competing parties, all making noise and trying to attract the most people. Sometimes it’s hard to sift through that noise and find your voice.

If you’re trying to strengthen your brand and drive conversions, the most important thing to keep in mind is knowing your audience. What demographic are you trying to reach with a particular post? Young? Older? What platforms are they using? What platforms would they be most likely to share the post on? Or purchase an item? Although “knowing your customers” is a long-established rule of marketing, it’s especially important when it comes to the fast-moving, multifaceted world of social media.

When building your social media strategy, keep the following components in mind. You should aim to:

  • Understand the difference between the many social platforms
  • Develop an audience-outreach plan based on demographic differences between audiences and platforms
  • Set appropriate goals for conversion
  • Monitor responses and adjust your strategy accordingly
  • Update, engage, maintain and repeat

When promoting sales or new product lines, social media is a great way to cut through the clutter of traditional email sends. People get sick of finding hundreds of emails in their inbox. Your emails are likely to get lost, if not just deleted indiscriminately.

Social Embraces E-Commerce

Luckily for retailers, many social channels have recognized the value of e-commerce and have introduced features to make it easier to sell via social networks. Many of these innovations can help your bottom line: buy buttons, rich pins and Facebook’s dynamic product ads, just to name a few.

Buy Buttons

Surprise, surprise: Everyone wants a buy button. Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest have all thrown their hats in the ring in recent years. Even Instagram is experimenting with the idea. Social media is no longer just about sending traffic to your website. Very soon, many customers will be making transactions directly on social platforms. This means that the way you build your brand awareness on social is all the more critical, as it may be the only experience consumers have with your brand before deciding to purchase.

Rich Pins

Posts on most social platforms have a fairly short shelf life. The layout of Pinterest, however, is a little different. Content tends to last longer than, say, a tweet, because users carefully curate and save the “pins” on their boards. But sometimes product data or prices change, and rich pins allow you to keep your listings up to date. Potential customers get a notification when information about one of their pins changes. Rich pins also let users know if the product is currently in stock, creating a better customer experience and giving you better ROI for customer clicks.

Dynamic Product Ads

Ads on Facebook have been around a while. What makes dynamic products different, though, is that you can serve ads to consumers for products they have already expressed interest in. As a result, there’s a greater chance they’ll revisit the listing and ultimately make a purchase.

To learn more about how to use social media to boost sales, check out our free eBook: Bridging the E-Commerce and Social Media Gap.