For countless millions of people, social media has become a way of life. And now, social media is playing a dominant role with online shopping. In fact, social media shopping, sometimes called “social commerce” has become so popular that online stores dare not ignore it!
According to a recent study conducted by Gartner, 75% of shoppers rely on social media to influence their shopping patterns. How is that for taking shopping to the next level!
Let’s take a closer look at the benefits you can see from using social media sites as part of your marketing plan.
1. Your customers are already there
Traditionally online marketers had to search for their customers. With social marketing, you’ve already found them.
Take Facebook as an example. With some simple linking, you can now embed your shopping cart directly onto your Fan page – VendingBox is an example. For your customers, that means they can browse and purchase your offerings directly on your page without ever having to leave Facebook. No question, the fewer steps they have to take to purchase your product, the more likely you are to make the sale.
2. Reap the benefits of a social experience
Shopping has long been associated with socializing. Yet with the advent of online shopping, at-home purchasing took over. Online shopping was becoming an isolated experience, which was not particularly a good thing for sales.
Enter social media sites. Suddenly shopping has become a social experience once again. Online stores need to benefit from this shopping explosion.
Here’s how Facebook works.
By installing some basic links into your Facebook shopping cart, you can enable people to share their purchases on their individual profile pages. In turn, these links are displayed on friends’ newsfeeds where others are free to offer their own comments and recommendations.
Make things even better by offering special Facebook-only deals. With these deals your customers can share those deals among their friends, and on and on. Talk about bringing social commerce to a whole new level!
3. Encourage your customers to buy more
Facebook’s powerful “like” feature allows customers to endorse or recommend products they like. These endorsements allow an online marketer to take advantage of particular popular products by offering similar products.
A “like” is a serious vote because it is directly shared with friends. After all, what better endorsement is there than a vote from a friend? In fact, a “like” can direct a related customer to a product they didn’t even know existed.
Kirsty LaVier is editor for Shopping Cart Reviews, the leading shopping cart information website.