How insight from social listening will boost your social commerce
One of the biggest trends in ecommerce since its explosion in 2020 has been the surge in platforms offering social shopping. Even more customers are expected to make purchases through them this year, and it is not too late to hop on the train and open this lane to your clients, too. Social listening can give you a hand in building up your strategy.
Social commerce or social shopping occurs when customers purchase something directly on a social media platform, though it can also include clicking links on them that lead to a retailer’s product page with an immediate purchase option. Either way, the main benefit is that it greatly reduces friction in the buyer journey and can increase buyers’ trust when used with the right strategy.
Online retailers should not be afraid of incorporating it, as by now it has become a standard part of the ecommerce toolkit and the omnichannel approach. It’s also important for personalization, which is a main keyword if you want to stay on top of your CX in 2022. If you’re marketing directly to consumers, a solid social commerce strategy is a must.
However, it might be confusing at first which platform to use and why. Options by now are numerous: 2020 marked the beginning of Facebook Shops, Instagram’s shop tab and TikTok’s partnership with Shopify, too. Pinterest and Snapchat have since become important players in social commerce as well.
Growth is far from over
Even with so many players on the field, we urge you to start if you’re not in the social shopping game yet: according to Accenture’s research, the $492 billion global social commerce industry is expected to grow to $1.2 trillion by 2025. That growth rate is three times as fast as traditional ecommerce’s! Millennials and Generation Z will be at the forefront of this growth, loving the user generated and more spontaneous content on Instagram, TikTok and Snapchat, but Generation X and Baby Boomers are also taking part through Facebook Shops and being inspired by Pinterest.
China and the United States are the largest markets for social shopping, but it’s growing everywhere, especially in the areas of accessories and apparel, consumer electronics, home décor and cosmetics.
Discover ideal content through social listening
Social shoppers often use social media platforms to discover products (instead of searching for something specific in a browser) and they also rely a lot on social media to make purchasing decisions. So as a retailer, you should turn to the same place for insights. Be inspired by successful content and discover what (and which platform) is going to work for your customers through a social listening tool. Using a tool equipped with artificial intelligence and machine learning like Neticle Media Intelligence, retail brands can gather real-time data on consumer behavior and turn it into practical and actionable steps.
Missing out on leveraging the social proof from user-generated content is a big mistake. You need to find these posts, react to them, and share them, which will also make your clients feel a more personal connection to your brand. You can even directly encourage customers to post more of this kind of content and tag you in it.
Another way to encourage social shopping is through working with influencers. Social listening makes it super easy to discover authentic content creators in your field, based directly on the level of engagement they receive. Appeal to them for a mutually beneficial cooperation: your customers will appreciate the informal approach their posts represent instead of hard sales.
There are many other ways you can make the social shopping experience even more seamless to your clients: for example, make sure your checkout bots are optimized so that they can help with checkouts 24/7 (AI can lend a hand with this as well), and don’t forget to add CTAs to your content, such as clickable links in your Instagram stories, “link in bio” hints and “buy now” buttons. These might seem like small things, but they will make it much more likely for your customers to complete the purchasing process.