Social Commerce: Why Business Needs to Sell on Social Media
What started as a temporary substitute for physical visits to stores during the pandemic turned into one of the strongest trends on the market — brands all over the world adopt social commerce to improve their sales and reach new audiences. Social commerce means purchasing and selling products or services directly through social media and messaging platforms. This way, the whole purchase cycle, from the discovery phase to checkout, happens within the apps that customers use daily.
Social selling opens up new, dynamic, and immersive experiences for customers, allowing brands to achieve a stronger bond with them. Less obviously commercial and more authentic ways of promotion via Facebook, Instagram, Snap, and TikTok can effectively highlight distinct product features and explain to customers why they need them. In the article, we will go over social commerce in detail: reasons to try it and how a business can take advantage of this new revenue opportunity in an efficient manner.
5 Reasons for Your Business to Try Social Commerce
Many companies in various industries, both small and large-sized, are already actively setting up shops on social media and receiving orders through instant messengers. The main reason why? Because it works! Here are five other reasons for a business to adopt social commerce as a part of its digital strategy as soon as possible.
Customer journey gets shorter
Social shopping makes internet shopping as simple as scrolling through a social feed. Even those customers who have second thoughts about or no time for registering on a company’s website can still purchase something they like or take advantage of a good deal via an intuitive checkout experience in a familiar social media. Such streamlined shopping via social apps is likely to bring in new loyal customers and result in long-term sales growth.
Every day, billions of people connect via social media and messengers. These channels present multiple chances for companies to advertise and sell their products and services in novel and original ways, which are more two-way conversations than one-way directed promotions (which is the case with traditional advertising). Posts by customers, brand mentions in stories, and content created by a brand itself merge into a rich experience for both parties that outperform traditional marketing and advertising.
Brand awareness increases
People enjoy communicating via social media and discovering new stuff. A brand using their favorite platform to show its products and share news is just more good news for them. And having the ability to shop these products right on this social media is even better! Many of the brand followers are likely to share their latest experience with a purchase with friends, which can lead to higher engagement and increased brand awareness among potential customers.
Customer satisfaction improves
The benefits of social commerce don’t end when a customer buys something. On the contrary, social platforms can serve as great communication channels to stay in touch with customers for post-purchase support, personalized discounts, and shopping advice. Why switch to phone or email to contact a company’s rep when everything can be done within a particular social media app preferred by a customer? Such practice is likely to improve customer satisfaction — one of the key performance indicators for virtually any business.
Company gets priceless insights
Instagram, Facebook, and other platforms with shopping features also offer extensive analytics that help a company to discover who its customers are, and what are the most interesting topics and most enjoyable content formats for them. If properly utilized, this valuable data on preferences, demographics, and hobbies can provide enormous help in improving marketing strategy, brand positioning on the market, and product offerings.
However, the sheer number of social media and messenger platforms can become a challenge for a company to manage effectively. Here, such solutions as a social CRM system can help. Let’s take a closer look at what they offer.
How to use social CRM
Social CRM is a customer relationship management system that includes extended features and support for connecting with customers via social media and messengers. Such a system enables businesses to effectively communicate with customers via multiple channels, providing shopping guidance, personalized promotions, and post-purchase support. Let’s see what are the primary tactics of Social CRM usage to grow and enhance your business.
Arguably, social media is the best source to learn public sentiment toward a subject. People buy items, test them out, and share their experiences with friends on Instagram, Facebook, and other platforms. Social CRM systems allow monitoring of brand mentions in posts and stories, which makes it easier to react quickly to such references and maintain a plausible public image of the brand. For instance, if a customer shares a negative experience of using a product or service, a company’s rep can quickly answer their questions or provide necessary service to prevent an increase in negative sentiment towards the whole brand.
Social marketing tactics powered by a social CRM differ from blog posts, advertising, and YouTube videos, which are fundamentally one-sided forms of communication. A Facebook conversation feels more personal than an email and adds value to a customer’s perception of the company. Companies can also use Social CRM to boost customer engagement and motivate them to participate in two-way interactions. Social CRM makes it easier to manage comments and react to mentions in multiple channels, which in turn boosts its visibility on platforms that customers actively use daily.
Of course, Social CRM is an essential tool for effective social commerce. Personalized communication through social media and messengers increases the likelihood of building a genuine relationship with potential clients and leads to a higher conversion rate. A sales rep can use a social CRM to start a chat in one channel (such as WhatsApp) and then resume it in another (if, for example, a customer decides Telegram is more convenient). The main advantage is that the whole conversation will be available in the Social CRM system later, allowing every team member (who has access) to get a complete picture of the customer’s preferences, budget, and needs.
Helpdesk & Customer Support
Whether a customer is unsure about a product or requires assistance after making a purchase, Social CRM features help shopping assistants and support agents deliver personalized help through the channels that are most convenient for clients. For example, an assistant in a clothing e-store can use the details provided by a client in a previous chat (size, brand preferences) to help pick a suitable product without having to ask repetitive questions. Also, an inquiry distribution feature available in many social CRMs helps to reroute a customer’s question to a relevant specialist as quickly as possible.
Social commerce is likely to increase its share and importance in sales and marketing in the near future. Brands that are more prepared to adapt these practices and expand their social media presence are more likely to succeed in growing an audience and improving sales than their less agile competitors.
Since customer communication via numerous channels of social media and instant messenger requires a different approach than more traditional marketing, it is important to remember that there is always “the right tool for the right job”. A rightly picked social CRM system can provide immense benefits to the optimization of sales and support. For example, Umnico omnichannel messaging system is a robust platform that allows the integration of more than 25 social media and messenger channels and communication with customers via a single easy-to-use interface. The platform has all essential social CRM features, such as sales funnel, task manager, and analytics. A free trial period available to all new clients makes it easy to try out Umnico’s capabilities with no commitment.