Social Commerce | What is it?

Social

In this blog we will define social commerce, look at the features and benefits and explain why social commerce needs to be on digital strategy radar.

Social Commerce: Is it here to stay?

Ever post an item for sell on Facebook? Ever clicked a link from Instagram to purchase a product from a website? A similar experience becoming a new channel for companies to highlight their products and sell them through a social media platform.

What Is Social Commerce?

The term “social commerce” refers to the activity of buying and selling on social media sites.

Social Commerce Platforms

The social media platform doesn’t do the actual selling though it does provide the environment for reaching millions of users and generating interest with a clear path for purchasing. Thought Each platform has its own take on how this is accomplished and we describe how they differ below.

Instagram

Instagram’s process involves linking your business profile to your catalog, after which you will have the option to create shopping posts and stories. When clicked, “tags” that price and discount information take users to another mobile page with a CTA that links to an ecommerce site.

Pinterest

Pinterest uses product and shopping pins to highlight products. Shop the Look pins, showcase multiple products on a single image. Pinterest allows linking to product catalogs that can display images with price and stock levels. A CTA can be added to the bottom of the image that allows user to link to your e-commerce site.

Facebook

Facebook relies on stores that are accessed through business and fan pages. Common practices include tagging photos or videos that enables users to click through to your store to make a purchase. Stores are meant to showcase a selection of products rather than your entire catalog. Organizational features like collections make navigating Facebook stores easier for customers, but they are not designed to handle extensive catalogs. The best way to use this platform is to highlight products on a main website and then mirror these products on a FaceBook store.

Best ways to drive conversions

Location, Location, Location is the golden rule of brick and mortar retail and the same thing holds true with social commerce. Most social media users will spend 30% of their day on social media platforms. Making it easy for a customer to purchase based on their likes and social media habits makes sense. Below are reasons why social commerce is a good bet for increasing conversions.

  1. Meets users where they are.

    As social media use increases and more time is spent on social platforms, it makes sense that online retailers will want to be where the customers are. Streamlining the e-commerce process by adding social commerce to the mix makes it easy to be where the customers are.

  2. Creates customer engagement

    Social media is all about the experiential and connecting your products to user’s shared experiences can drive increases in revenue. By tagging product videos and images social provides unique perspectives that help to reinforce product perceptions.

  3. Builds trust and loyalty.

    The updated version of word of mouth , social media’s organic product postings and unsolicited recommendations create experiences that develop trust and grow brand loyalty.

  4. Streamlines the purchase process.

    E-commerce platforms like Big Commerce provide native check out for social commerce making it easier to set up a simple and efficient process for checkout without having to move from a social platform.

Social Commerce Trends to Watch

  1. Influencer marketing will continue to drive value.

    As social media audiences look to others for inspiration the growth of paid influencers will increase. Being able to provide concise and timely messaging to influencer audiences will increase the value of products and brands.

  2. More social channels will experiment with native checkout.

    As social media looks for other ways to monetize their platforms beyond digital advertising and paid postings, they will look to integrate further into e-commerce. In addition as e-commerce platforms like Big Commerce continue to develop tools for social commerce, social platforms will expand the option for native checkout.

  3. Rich multimedia content will grow more important.

    Podcasts, GiFs, Infographics, Video, Instagram stories are all examples of Rich Media Content and by including these items in your product posts helps to build experience and engagement. As these sources of content prove successful in conversions their use will continue to expand.

Final Thoughts

A good e-commerce strategy includes several key tactics for achieving goals and social commerce needs to be considered for in the future it will have a role in defining the e-commerce landscape.

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