Strategies for E-Commerce Accounts on Social Media
Social media has played a humongous role in the evolution of online shopping, and you’re probably well aware of it if you own an eCommerce business. If you want your business to compete online, then ruling out social media is not an option. As per a report, over 93% of consumers turn to social media to make a buying decision, whereas 90% of users turn to reviews and recommendations to make a decision.
In the Content-riddled world of social media, standing out as a successful ecommerce brand is a hard nut to crack. There are hundreds of proven strategies to help you cut through the heavily crowded online marketplaces. Fully embracing social media will give you results you never thought of achieving. As per a report, companies that engage with customers via social media gain more revenue per customer in contrast to companies that do not. From advertising to live video to partnering with internet influencers, the benefit social media has in store for your business is uncountable.
Social media is vital for e-commerce businesses to succeed. To reach the specialized pool of consumers, social media has grown to gigantic proportions over the years. Brands, no longer rely on traditional modes of advertising to further their base. Now they have taken to optimizing their brand to fit into niches on social media. With targeted consumer collectives, Ecommerce brands can target consumers with a range of purchasing capacities through planned social media strategies. We have come up with a tried and tested list of social media strategies which should aid in developing healthy patterns of online interactions:
A. Set Predefined Goals
Setting defined goals is the first thing that you want to do when you start to think about your company’s social media presence. Monitoring your social media content is a critical step as it defines the current position of the brand in the social media world. Without monitoring your social media campaigns, you would not know if it is really worth the time and effort. For your guidance and comparison, Hubspot’s 2015 Social Media Benchmark Report insinuates that retailers in the eCommerce space had an average of 350,000 followers, 6 to 7 posts per week, and 11.4 interactions per post.
Following benchmarks are responsible for the monitoring and strategizing:
• Desired amount of traffic you want to bring to your platform.
• Number of fans and followers you wish to achieve.
• Amount of engagement you want to receive from your audience.
• Ratio of your posts to the amount of engagement, including interaction and comments.
• Ratio of visitors to successful conversions.
• Ratio of audience growth to your engagement.
B. Provide Value Everywhere
The most important key point of a social media strategy is to reach the customers where they are and providing them value in the confines of their place. Don’t expect people to like you just because you are on social media that is too much expectation for doing the bare minimum. People want value out of your presence on social media instead of a sale pitch. Provide them valuable information from your niche, which will prove beneficial in some way.
This does not mean that your posts can’t be promotional. Definitely, you will promote your brand and service but in a balanced manner which does not scream “Buy me.” Sharing varied posts like stories, news, tips, and helpful articles regarding your service are good to post ideas you can utilize. The information which will educate, entertain, or inform your customer base of your service is the best way to win hearts on social media as an E-commerce business. When you are promoting your brand, make sure that you are highlighting accurate and believable information which focuses on unique parts of your company. Give them facts, give them figures accompanied with illustrations, and tell them something they didn’t already know about your industry which might interest them.
As an example, we can take the B2B entity BeauteTrade’s LinkedIn account, which is regularly sharing interesting facts with compelling images.
C. Optimize Your Posts
Optimizing your posts will help your campaign perform better on social media. This can be explained with the help of Search Engine Optimization methods, where you use keywords that are guaranteed to increase your visibility. Performing keyword research and using them in your posts will increase your overall conversions. Optimizing your posts will help you in reaching an even larger audience than the current followers you have.
Each social media platform has different features and functions which are optimized in different ways. All of them have one fundamental goal, to optimize your posts to get better results. Adding visual elements like infographics, art, and pictorial information will surely grab viewers’ attention.
D. Share Reviews
Whoever came up with reviews is the biggest genius! You let your existing customers do the marketing for you, in free. All you got to do is satisfy your customer, provide him an experience of a lifetime and he will do the rest. As nothing sells a product, service, or business better than a happy and satisfied customer. New customers are likely to believe the reviews on your products rather than your self-acclaimed promotional posts. Third-party reviews are bound to develop the trust of your website visitors on your product. As per a report, 88%of consumers believe in online reviews as much as personal recommendations. You can use the following techniques to get reviews:
Ask them directly: You can ask your customers to review you if you are confident in your quality and service. However, you can’t offer any incentives for reviews as per Google’s guidelines.
Point Of Purchase: Create a POP, or point of purchase. These are basically displays that ask them to leave a review for you. Make sure you first identify the places where your customers come in contact with your product to place a POP there.
Email Review Form: You can use your email marketing techniques to help you gain reviews. You can email your customers and ask them to leave a review for you with a link at the bottom of your email body. Make sure not to spam them as you might end up doing the opposite of what you intended.
Frequent Buyers: Your frequent customers are more likely to leave you a good review. Ask those for reviews which are repeat customers. If they keep coming back to your brand, the chances are that they like you and will be glad to leave you a review.
Social Media Reviews: This should be obvious, considering our topic here. You can ask your social media followers to review you. However, you want to make sure that your service is impeccable so that you don’t get negative reviews.
E. Share Relevant and Interesting Images
Most of the customers are going to be more visually driven when it comes to social media; a pretty picture captures our attention quickly. Images and videos are more likely to catch our attention than a bunch of text full of information. Keeping in mind an average human beings arttention span, which is smaller than a goldfish. Do whatever you can to grab the attention, then with information in text form deliver a little promotional message.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise, but studies have found that images and videos are more engaging on social media than posts having text only. Therefore, whenever you post, make sure you add a visual element, whether it’s a picture or a cartoon. This is especially important for businesses who are active on Instagram and Pinterest—these are visual platforms where appealing content gets interacted with. Make your posts laced with high-quality pictures, shareable, and creative with information.
It does not matter if you aren’t a cosmetic business or a clothing retailer with thousands of images from shoots – all you need is a few original images with creative text. Businesses of the service industry can also use social media to promote their brand by using their creative side. You can show some BTS pictures of your company and workers, or feature your customers who appreciate your service. How you use images to your advantage depends on your brand and how you want to market it.
F. Interact with Your Customers
Social media is the best place to directly interact with your customers and get connected with them in a personal manner. This not only improves Human to Human interaction among business and customers but also tells your followers that behind this account is also a human. Nobody wants to be treated as a potential customer, so when you make a customer feel like they are being heard, they feel emotionally connected to the brand. They want to know the brand personally and want to be assured that their stance is relevant and meaningful to you. You can assure this by monitoring your social media posts that people are making about your company and engaging with them on a regular basis.
Respond to the people who comment or share your content, ask them questions regarding their experience, participate in trending topics which will take you to more people, and you will reach new followers. The more followers you have, the lesser you will be able to respond to everyone, but you have to do everything in your hands to be as available as you can. You do have to be careful with what type of content and people you interact with. Refrain from political or religious remarks which might paint your brand under a bad light.
G. Interact with social media Influencers
Social media is the best platform to build mutually profitable relationships with prominent leaders of industry and influencers in your niche. There are certain people with a lot of appeal and importance in different areas of business. Reaching out to such persons is easy as they are professionally seeking out to businesses for sponsorships as well. With your social media platform, start working on building relationships with the influencers in your field. It’s good to have influential people in your support; these relationships are going to be profitable for you.
You can meet influencers by joining groups and discussions on social media that are related to your industry or niche. Post relevant content there that you think will help out other members of your industry. It’s all about adding value to their lives. The key is to pass on expert insights that will make others think of you as a leader.
H. Be Brief
Always remember that your audience is having an attention span of a few seconds. They can’t digest long paragraphs of content. Surveys have shown shorter messages get more engagement as compared to longer content. Followers are more likely to pick information from short visual messages because visual stimuli help the brain to remember images. Therefore, be as gripping and concise as possible when you are posting on social media.
I. Be Constant
You can’t just post one time in a month and expect a brilliant result. To get anything remarkable out of your social media networks, you need to be posting at least 5 to 7 times a week. Posting more than this may cause spam on your followers’ timeline and they will end up muting you.
You need to be posting on a regular basis if you want to advance your exposure and reach. It shows that you are devoted to sharing information with your followers. It can be hard to remember to post a social media post daily in the midst of running a business so you can use a marketing automation tool like HootSuite or Buffer to post an update daily. With these apps, you can schedule a week or two in advance so that you have a continuous line-up of posts being updated.
J. Start Blogging on the side
If you don’t have much content to share on your social media accounts, you can start a blog where you can pass along your information to your audience. This gives you an outlet to showcase your company’s unique content, and this can also help to set you as a thought leader in the industry niche. Hashtags can be a very helpful tool for businesses who are using blogging. These tags help your content to be discovered by more people frequently, and your blog will get more viewers.
Hashtags are used differently on different platforms. It might be okay to include 7 or 8 hashtags on an Instagram post, whereas it might be frowned upon on Facebook. Do research into different hashtags which are relevant in your industry and see how the competitors are using them.
K. Paid Advertising
Paid advertising is one of the best benefits of social media. It can take your social media engagement and follow to new heights. Most of the social media sites have their own advertising module— i.e., Facebook Ads, Promoted Tweets, LinkedIn ads but, Facebook and Instagram have the most advanced and resulting advertising of any of the social media platforms. The days of organic marketing is numbered as more and more companies are using paid advertising as a means of getting interactions and conversions. While you can still post something without paying and have it reach some of your audience, although you can pay in order to reach a lot more of them.
Facebook ads are a very effective way to reach your existing and potential customers. You can select the audience for your ads by applying age, location, interest, gender, job title, and more filters.
L. Sharing, Not Selling:
Although most customers begin their buying journey on social media, they don’t visit social media platforms with the intent of shopping. Social media marketing depends on building relationships with the consumer first; selling is a distant second. This means that your first and foremost thought should be focusing on escalating helpful knowledge and maintaining trust before trying to go for a sale. In the process of B2B sales, decision-makers interact with different content on social media before they talk to a sales representative. The same principle is followed in B2C eCommerce marketing.
You have to know what your consumers need before you can start posting relevant content that meets those requirements. Get essential insights by asking your customers what they want to know about and keep an eye on your target audience’s exchanges on social media sites.
While most e-commerce brands have established some kind of a social media presence already, there are still several who are missing out on the break of a lifetime. We do not want to overvalue social media, but it actually is that great of a tool. Besides being great communication starters, social media platforms are also becoming an increasingly important part of a customer's daily lives. Is there a place better than social media platforms to learn the likes of your customers?
Integrating social media into your marketing spell is important to get the upper hand in the E-Commerce industry. If you come up with the right strategy and social media marketing campaigns in place, you can increase brand awareness, drive more traffic and conversions, increase customer engagement and constancy, and ultimately grow your brand.