Many brands use social media for marketing and promoting brand engagement. But what if I told you that it’s possible to also sell your products or services on social media?
We can all agree that social media is the best thing that has ever happened to brands and digital marketers. However, as consumer patterns keep evolving, businesses must catch up with new trends such as social commerce.
In this guide, I will introduce you to this billion-dollar platform and how you can leverage it to generate more revenue.
What is Social Commerce?
It’s defined as selling products or services directly through social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook. Social commerce is a combination of both social media and eCommerce. Unlike the traditional approach where people see a product ad on social media and they have to navigate to your website to buy it. With social commerce, clients can complete purchases without exiting the platform.
The main thing that stands out about social commerce is how it makes shopping convenient and effortless for customers. Social commerce works by using various platforms as virtual shops. It’s prevalent amongst millennials and Gen Zs. Marketers predict that social commerce will grow into a 100-billion-dollar industry by 2025. Therefore, you need to hop onto this trend as soon as possible.
Social Commerce vs E-Commerce
E-commerce refers to using websites or applications to sell products or services. Good examples include Shopify stores. With eCommerce, a customer has to leave social media, access the website and then buy the product.
On the other hand, social commerce is a sub-branch of eCommerce, which entails buying products or services directly from social media. In social commerce, research, marketing, and purchasing all occur on social media platforms.
Crucial Stats about Social Commerce
- The average social media enthusiast spends about 15% of their life browsing through social media.
- More than 8% of the world’s population is addicted to at least one social media application.
- At least 30% of internet users have bought products or services directly from social media.
- Digital marketers prefer to use video content for social media ads.
- 60% of modern consumers prefer a seamless shopping experience.
- Social media commerce works better with influencer marketing.
The 4 Best Social Commerce Platforms
Nearly all social media platforms today have incorporated tools that allow brands to sell directly on their platforms. However, as you may have guessed, not all platforms are ideal for social commerce. From research and experience, here are the top 4 social commerce platforms.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Facebook is on this list. After all, it’s the only platform with the largest number of active users. Facebook allows brands to set up virtual shops where customers can buy directly from the platform. What I love about Facebook shops is that they are customizable. Therefore, you can integrate your branding.
Facebook shop also makes it easier for shoppers to interact with your products and services. Interested clients can use Facebook Messenger to make inquiries. And the best part is that by integrating Facebook with Shopify, all your products will be automatically imported. This platform also enables you to gauge customer experience.
Instagram social commerce was introduced more recently, but it’s thriving. The visual nature of Instagram makes it an amazing place for anyone to sell their products or services. You can display items using pictures or videos. If you are creative enough, you can easily convince potential clients to make purchases.
Similar to Facebook, Instagram will give you a virtual storefront. You can customize it, add products, descriptions, and pricing. If you are using influencer marketing, your celebrity can use your shopping tags which allow customers to buy directly from Instagram.
If you are a big fan of my podcast, you know how much I love talking about TikTok marketing. Though it’s a new platform, TikTok’s popularity keeps growing daily. And they also facilitate social commerce.
TikTok partnered with Shopify in 2021. Ever since, brands can use this platform to show ads and allow customers to buy directly without visiting their websites.
Most people use Pinterest to research products or find ideas, making it a suitable platform for your virtual storefront. With millions of active users, you can make lots of sales on Pinterest. You are also free to use a wide range of media for advertising your products or services.
What are the Benefits of Social Commerce?
Social commerce doesn’t just bring you more sales. It also comes with plenty of benefits. If you still have doubts about selling your products or services directly on social media, here are some benefits you are missing out on.
It Gives You Access to a Larger Audience
Social media platforms are packed with millions of users. When you engage in social commerce, you get access to all these people, especially the younger generation. With such a vast network, you are guaranteed to make lots of sales.
It Streamlines the Shopping Experience
Every day, business owners try to find innovative ways to better their customer’s shopping experience. Social commerce enables shoppers to buy products or services directly without leaving the platform. This simplifies the shopping experience and makes it more convenient. As a result, you will notice fewer abandoned carts.
It Gives You More Insight into Your Audience
Unlike eCommerce, social commerce gives you insight into your audience demographics. This information comes in handy in product development and formulation of marketing plans. Social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram can provide you with audience data such as age and location.
It Gives Your Business Social Proof
The modern consumer relies heavily on reviews before buying from a particular business. One of the perks of social commerce is that it gives your business social proof. Still using the same platform, customers can read comments, check likes or shares and assess your credibility. Obviously, the more engagements your brand receives, the easier it will be for potential clients to trust your brand.
Immediate Access to Feedback
When you sell your products or services on social media, it’s much easier for your brand to gain feedback. You can then use this information to better your product or shopping experience.
How to Get the Most Out of Social Commerce?
So far, you know what social commerce is, its key statistics, benefits, and suitable platforms. If you are interested in getting started with social commerce, here are a couple of tips on how to get the most from this venture.
- Offer unrivaled customer service – You will get lots of inquiries when selling products on social media. To ensure you don’t lose any leads, you must invest in a robust customer support.
- Keep engaging with your followers – If you want to make good money from social commerce, you must actively engage your followers. It’s through engagements that people will discover your brand.
- Listen keenly to customer feedback – To ensure you are offering your clients the best product or service. You need to pay attention to their feedback. Always keep your ears open.
- Encourage your customers to leave reviews – Reviews are a sign of social proof and build your brand’s trust. After buying from your platform, ask your customers to post an honest review.
- Use social media metrics to target your audience – Social media gives you access to lots of valuable tools that can help with targeting your customers.
- Offer competitive prices – It’s advisable to price your products or services moderately. It would be best if you also offered discounts and offers on the regular.
Let Me Help You Get Started with Social Commerce
Just like eCommerce, you need a robust strategy to excel in social commerce. As an experienced digital marketer, I can help you set up and establish a successful social commerce platform. By integrating such a platform, you are guaranteed of increasing sales and staying miles ahead of competitors.