Social media has become ubiquitous in everyday life. There are well over four billion active users on social networks, especially in first-world countries.
Social media is a powerful tool that can open a world of possibilities for your eCommerce business. It allows you to maintain a constant presence in your customers’ lives and to reach new potential audiences that would’ve been unimaginable a few decades ago.
Some of the world's most popular brands have experienced explosive growth because of their social media efforts and you don't have to be an eCommerce agency to replicate their success.
In this guide, we highlight the benefits of using social media in your marketing strategy and tell you about 11 hot social media trends to jump on this year to boost your eCommerce sales.
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Social media is essential for every eCommerce Brand
Building a community of active users has become very important in today’s business landscape. Many businesses compete for the same market, and staying in your customers’ minds should be a priority if you don’t want to be overtaken by the competition.
That’s where social media can play an important role.
Social networks allow you to:
- Engage with your user base and help them build a lasting connection with your brand.
- Sell your products directly on social media platforms. Ecommerce platforms like Facebook Shops and Instagram Shops are excellent for product discovery and social selling.
- Get customer feedback in real time. Social media lets you see your audience’s reactions to your new products. This enables you to make changes quickly and successfully optimize your social media eCommerce strategy to meet the market’s demands.
If you run an eCommerce brand, your social presence is your bread and butter. Your social media campaigns and your online presence can make or break your business.
Benefits of using social media to advertise your eCommerce business
Let’s examine the main benefits of social media for eCommerce in detail.
Post content where your customers are
If you want potential customers to see you, you have to position your business where they spend a lot of their free time. Today, that means appearing in their social media feeds, where they are more likely to notice you.
You should have a solid social media presence on all the relevant social platforms for your business. Highlight your product catalog and promotional offers where customers are most likely to see them.
But it’s not all about the hard sell. You should utilize different types of content to engage your audience. Organic content such as stories, news, and video content can all help you to keep in touch with your audience.
Social media allows you to stay in touch with your audience by communicating with them directly. It will help you build trust, grow an online community, and keep your customers loyal to your products.
Tell your brand story
If you want a close relationship with your follower base you need them to understand who your brand is and what it stands for. That’s why it’s so important to tell your brand story.
You could tell your brand story by writing a carefully crafted blog post detailing your beginnings, mission, and vision. But a more effective way is to use social media to share nugget-sized pieces of information about your brand. Short-form content will resonate much more with your followers and make them more receptive to your story.
Remember to make all your content engaging and on-brand to have the biggest impact.
It's extremely cost-effective
Social media has a high return on investment, which makes it extremely cost-effective. While you have to pay for the ad spend if you're doing paid advertising, sharing stories, posting pictures and videos, and chatting with your customers, are all free. Everything you do organically on social media is free advertising, so you can achieve a lot with a minimal investment.
It’s important to note that your social media efforts won’t boil down to exclusively running ads. Your strategy should consist of organic content and social media advertising to be well-rounded.
In the beginning, you might be able to do most of the work yourself. But as you grow you might want to hire a social media manager to take the reigns.
Customer service becomes easier
Customer service is an extremely important factor in eCommerce. If your customers feel they can approach you for support, or easily return a product if they’re unsatisfied, they’re more likely to make a repeat purchase.
Social media platforms allow you to provide round-the-clock support to your customers. Features like instant messaging and comment sections mean you can answer their questions quickly, which benefits everyone.
Your customers can get the information they need via their mobile devices, while you can provide answers no matter where you are. This is particularly important if you’re a new business that lacks a customer service team.
You can invest in paid ads
To unlock the full potential of social platforms you must use paid ads. It’s a great way to build a customer base. With a relatively low investment, you can target potential customers who are most likely to purchase your products.
There are many different types of ads you can use to promote offers, new products, or raise brand awareness. Collection ads are a great option to showcase your product catalogs. These visual ads use multiple images on a carousel to grab the customer’s attention.
How to leverage social media for eCommerce
Now that we’ve gone over the benefits of using social media to grow your eCommerce business, let's take a look at how you should do it. Here are some pro tips on how to maximize your social media efforts.
Set up your social media channels
First, take some time to carefully set up and optimize your social media channels. This is the foundation on which you’ll build your social media marketing plan.
Optimize your about section
The about section tells social media users who you are and what you do. Don’t greet potential buyers with a wall of text detailing everything. Instead, use a simple but catchy description that sums up your business. And use some humor!
You should also include important links in the about section such as your product pages or include a link that leads to more details about what you do.
Make your link shoppable
Shoppable links are a powerful way to increase your online sales and optimize your customer experience. They are URLs that you can place into your posts that lead customers directly to your product pages.
Launch a social media shop
Social commerce hit an estimated $992 billion in 2022. Facebook and Instagram allow you to set up shop and sell your products directly on the platform.
Facebook shops have proved to be a useful tool for eCommerce as they allow users to access the products they want without leaving the platform.
Instagram Shops are highly visual. Use high-quality product imagery in your social shop to grab your customers’ attention. The more eye-catching your content is the higher your chance of converting ‘likes’ into sales.
Both platforms have millions of monthly users, so there's a lot of potential there for business owners.
Use WhatsApp links for conversations with customers
WhatsApp links are a quick and easy way to start conversations with customers who prefer text messages or have complex questions that are easier to answer over the phone.
WhatsApp links are shareable URLs that open video or voice calls without the need to exchange telephone numbers. Each WhatsApp link you create is a unique, 22-digit code that uses end-to-end encryption. This means only those who join the call can listen in.
Be aware that everyone with the link can join the conversation, so you should be careful when sharing them.
Use both organic and paid strategies
Paid advertising allows you to get a quick, targeted boost in engagement and conversions but balance is key. Customers won’t trust ads from an inactive page. When you create and share organic content alongside your paid strategy, you create a trustworthy presence on social media.
Use shoppable social media posts
Shoppable posts supercharge your visual content. They allow you to link the images you share directly to your product pages. Shoppable posts simplify the pathway to conversion which increases purchase rates.
Instagram is a powerful platform for shoppable posts. Grid images, reels, and Instagram stories can all be made shoppable. When you use different formats to share your shoppable content, you increase the likelihood of new audiences discovering your products and becoming customers.
Use social proof
Social proof is a key component of social media marketing. It refers to the consumers’ ability to influence each other's purchasing behavior.
Incorporate social proof into your social media strategy by using user-generated content. Share positive reviews and feedback from loyal customers on your channels.
Partner with influencers
Influencer marketing is one of the key strategies in social commerce. People are more likely to listen to recommendations from influencers they trust, and you should use that to your advantage.
When you partner with an influencer, you should discuss the different types of content they can create to promote your sales and special offers. You can even provide them with a discount to share with their fans.
From unboxing videos and product reviews to product recommendations, influencer content can be highly effective in opening your brand up to new audiences.
If you partner with the right influencers for your target audience, you can expect a rise in your conversions.
A huge part of your social commerce success is how you interact with the public and how prospects perceive you.
You should carefully craft your business’s online image to appeal to your ideal audience. Outline your brand values and tone of voice, and always ensure you stick to these guidelines when communicating with the public.
Use social listening
Social listening is the practice of tracking your audience’s opinions of your brand, products, and services. It is important to monitor what your customers are saying about your brand and manage any negative interactions that may damage your brand in the long run.
If your customers have positive social commerce experiences, they will be more likely to recommend you. So how you interact with your customers publically, for example in social media comments sections, will speak volumes about how you treat customers privately.
If potential customers feel like they’ll be treated with care and respect, they’ll be more likely to buy from you.
Investing in a social media management tool can help you to carry out comprehensive social listening and have a complete view of your brand’s reputation.
Measure the success of your social media activity by monitoring analytics. Outline your brand KPIs for factors including engagement rate and conversions. Insights from your analytics will let you know if you should double down on what you’re doing or change your approach.
Check out our guide to the top marketing analytics tools to use.
Ready to launch your own social media campaign?
If you're an eCommerce brands you need to use social media effectively. It will help you maximize your brand’s potential, improve customer loyalty, increase conversion rates, and improve your customer service. Time to start planning your campaign!
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