How To Use Social Media To Grow Sales

Social media offers the right kind of tools to increase e-commerce sales, according to Tim Sae Koo, CEO at TINT, a social media aggregation platform.

E-commerce is indisputably the battlefield upon which retail companies are duking it out to become the brands of the next decade. Social media is a critical tool in every online brand’s arsenal in this battle, but can fall short if not utilised properly.

Although e-commerce websites can get a lot of traffic and attention on social media, many fail to capture this audience effectively and convert them into new customers. The audience would either leave the website to go to their social media page and never come back or get misled in the website itself.

After working with various e-commerce brands, we have researched several ways to increase your inbound customers while decreasing checkout abandonment rates.

Start by integrating social media into your website through the use of social hubs. A social hub is a platform that allows your brand to connect various social feeds into one place through user-generated content.

With a social hub, you can leverage content being shared about your brand into one place on your website. Keeping track of visitors’ online buying pattern could also help in driving e-commerce sales.

E-commerce websites are essentially targeting two types of customers: first-time visitors and visitors ready to buy.

With the former, your main goal is to give them an easy way to buy. As for visitors that are ready to buy, your goal is to seamlessly illustrate value to convert and close the sale. Both targets share one thing in common: Social media influences them.

According to a recent study done word of mouth (WOM) interactions trump any other outreach method out there. In the digital world, WOM influence takes place on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube (among other social channels).

With this in mind, here are the three ways integrating social hubs and ecommerce increases conversions while lowering bounce rates.

RUN A HASHTAG CONTEST

To increase lead generation, find a common use of your brand. For example, for a brand like Converse, a simple hashtag campaign (like #allstar below) can direct your new leads to a centralised page with photos of how existing customers are wearing your Converse shoes, and attach a incentive to drive social user interaction.

With such a strategy, you are targeting First Time Visitors who will want to join in on the social conversations and ultimately get excited to explore your brand to make a purchase.

CALL TO ACTION HUB

From email messages to websites and shopping carts, calls to action direct the customer to complete an action, whether “SIGN UP TODAY,” “SHOP THIS LOOK,” or “I WANT ONE.”

Even Facebook has recently announced a new feature for the ad posts: Call-to-action (CTA) buttons. By adding a CTA, every social post becomes an opportunity to sell.

CTA buttons utilise social feeds to display new ideas and uses for your products, straight from your existing customers. For example, fashion brands like J. Crew could use social hubs to promote the various combinations of their clothing and accessories, from the real people wearing them.

Most purchase decisions online are based on social curation and the CTA button. You encourage the user to click through and buy based on indirect recommendations generated directly from your other customers.

PLACE SOCIAL TESTIMONIALS

By far the most crucial step in the purchasing process is the checkout page where customers commit to purchasing.

Even if you have amazing products, customers may still need an extra push to buy. By adding a social hub to individual product pages, your customers can clearly see how they can use your product based on your existing customer’s social posts.

Social hubs on checkout pages could very well be the future of product page reviews. They promote positive feedback, multiple uses, best sellers and more. Who wants to read through comments when they can simply scroll through happy customers social recommendations?