Our research has shown that, while many try, few online stores manage to bring any result from social media. A crowded space where competition for attention is fierce, social media is a difficult but not impossible challenge for ecommerce entrepreneurs.
For this guest post we asked Eldar Galiev, from SocialShopWave, to show us a few easy to implement ideas that they have seen work for online stores.
SocialShopWave makes social apps for online stores that improve a customer experience, increase conversions, and boost sales. The company has been on the market since 2013 and has a solid experience in building effective tools to help merchants grow their businesses.
Social media channels allow you to market products and connect with your customers, but the reality is that it’s hard to implement social tactics that bring good ROI (or any sale at all).
My goal is to share 5 simple social sharing tactics that can be easily applied to any store without a high investment and have proven to bring results. Each tactic is backed by psychological principles of social sharing and by examples from real stores.
1. Ask customers to share positive reviews
Displaying customer reviews is one of the most important elements of social proof in online shops. If customers leave reviews that means they are passionate about your store and products. Customers who spend their valuable time to provide you with feedback are usually very loyal.
You can make them your ambassadors by encouraging them to share their reviews with their Twitter followers or Facebook friends. Simply ask them to share their review on social media and get rewarded for it.
This simple idea allows you to kill two birds with one stone:
- It encourages current customers to make the next purchase and keep them coming back: Those who share are more likely to come back because they’ve put their reputation on the line for your store.
- It drives free traffic to your site: Let your satisfied customers do your social media marketing for you by sharing their reviews of your products.
Mishibox is a Virginia-based startup that sells Korean beauty products. As soon as customers leave a review, they ask them to share their experience:
2. Give customers incentives to share your products
Putting sharing icons on the site is very common, as you can see on many product pages. This is intended to have their products shared more frequently, bringing more traffic, but in reality, very few people, if any, ever click on these icons. You need to encourage customers to share your products, not only have your website with social buttons.
To fix that, you can attach a discount to your social sharing icons, giving a real incentive for sharing. Check out how Claudia G has done it.
3. Displaying user-generated images via Instagram hashtags
User-generated content is one of the most efficient tactics in social media. It involves asking customers to share their experiences with your product on social sites such as Instagram.
Izzy & Div asks their happy customers to share photos wearing recently purchased items on their Instagram accounts, then display those images on their own product pages with an inviting title:
4. Ask customers to share your offers (Give X to Get X)
Adding social sharing icons on strategic places is a good idea, but the reality is that a very few people click on these icons and even fewer people click on the posts generated by them.
Instead, try one the most straightforward strategies in ecommerce today, used by giants such as Amazon, Airbnb, Asos, and many others. It’s called “Give X to Get X”.
This campaign is shared more often than others because customers know that friends on social media will get value from their posts.
When you motivate your customers to share and redeem the offer, you get more. Groceries Apparel uses this great tactic efficiently. The brand managed to turn this tool to a new funnel.
5) Share valuable information
Many companies trying to leverage social media start by posting their products and promotional posts, instead of understanding that social media is about building relationships first. So focus more on what the customers needs and build relationships instead of posting random things.
Unlike many other ecommerce sites, SporthorseRX does it on a totally new level. They record videos and educate their clients. Their engagement on social media is amazingly high.
You can also support your clients by giving comprehensive replies to their questions about your products. By doing so, you can demonstrate that you care about your customers’ needs and are open to constructive criticism. You can do that not only on the main social media platforms but also on own site as Plant Delights Nursery does it.
These sharing tactics can boost your “word of mouth” marketing and give a value to your customers. It will help you convince current customers to keep coming back as well as to sell more to your prospective customers. And you don’t have to be a huge online store to start using these simple, but effective tactics. They work just as well (or better) for small and medium-sized online stores too.