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  • Tanushree Vaish

Social Commerce Strategy

Updated: Dec 23, 2021


Retail purchases are majorly made in stores globally but online sales are seeing an upward trend. According to estimates, social commerce will see a 22% rise by the year 2023. Although E-commerce had begun overtaking physical stores way back as compared to social commerce, social commerce began setting new trends in the world of E-commerce.

Brands are venturing into new social spaces to gain a wider reach to audiences. Social media has provided a great platform to reduce multiple stages of purchasing online. Besides simplifying buying and selling, social media is the favorite place of millennials for shopping. The growing popularity of social commerce has made social commerce strategy extremely critical for all businesses on social media.


What is Social Commerce?

Social Commerce is nothing but utilizing social networking platforms like Instagram and Facebook to drive E-commerce activities and strategies. In social commerce, all the stages of shopping from product discovery to check out, everything takes place on social media platforms.

Currently, the social media platforms that allow social commerce activities include Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram. While Instagram facilitates the ‘shop now’ option right on the platform, you could find a well-priced bracelet right in your Facebook feed.

With the advent of social commerce, these platforms have been continuously rolling out new features to facilitate e-commerce activities. Both consumers and businesses are increasingly taking advantage of these new digital shopping opportunities. Even small and medium scale businesses are exploiting the opportunity to gain wider reach across the globe.

Benefits of social commerce



Removes friction

Social commerce removes a lot of stages involved in the discovery phase to purchase phase. For example, a potential customer explores the product. They will have to visit your website, add the particular product to their cart, fill in the purchase details, and go to check out. That is a lot of processes involved. But on social media platforms, customers see the product, click on it, and buy it. It is as easy as a single click. Hence, it simplifies and improves customer experience.

All the steps involved in the former e-commerce process may be distracting for the potential customer at one or the other point in time. But, social commerce eliminates all these probabilities of losing a potential customer.

Conversion at the same place

There is no need to mention how the modern human is spending most of his time of social media. A majority of the target audience can be found on social media. The usage of social media has increased over the last couple of years and is expected to see a tremendous rise in the next five years. Hence, Social commerce is the right strategy to meet your prospective customers where they already are without having to navigate them from multiple sites on your page to mailboxes.

It aims at a higher engagement rate, which is, in turn, beneficial for lead generation and to increase the conversion rate. Reducing different stages eliminates a lot of unnecessary activity around the purchasing process of your prospective customers. It creates a frictionless purchasing path and increases revenue that might have been lost due to different distractions faced by the customers throughout these stages.

Improved shopping experience


Social media shopping experience is much easier and more interactive as compared to typical e-commerce website shopping. Customers can share, scroll through the feedback, and seek customer service in the comments section all on one single section or page without having to navigate between multiple sections or pages. This ease of shopping is drawing in more and more shopping-lovers each day.

Although the social aspect of shopping misses in the case of social commerce, these social media platforms facilitate high-resolution pictures to get a peek into crystal clear images of the products.

Perfect strategy for millennials and Gen Z

No matter what your product is, social commerce is the right strategy to target the millennial and Gen Z target demographic. According to statistics, 48% of internet users in the U.S in 2019 made an online purchase. This population was in the age group of 18 to 34 years. Further reading into the trends, 27% of online consumers expressed their wish to try social media shopping.

What is Social Commerce Strategy?

Social commerce strategy is a well thought out plan to increase sales by using the right tools and targeting the right prospects in a visually and psychologically targeted manner. As social commerce has been booming especially with the pandemic restricted physical shopping activities, the right social commerce strategy helps you increase your brand visibility to increase sales and scale your business.

Top social commerce strategies

The basic steps

There are certain essential steps for all digital marketing and advertising like optimizing social media profiles, employing SEO tactics, and creating informative and valuable content. But, when it comes to social commerce strategies, there are a lot of additional technicalities involved to trigger the target audience to take immediate action.

The basic steps of social commerce strategy involve investing in the right social channels, understanding the pain points (specific problems of the target audience) of the target customers, and optimizing all the social media content.

Creating seamless shopping paths

To modern shoppers, convenience is the first priority. Crafting a frictionless and seamless shopping path, can instantly grab any customer’s attention. They are more likely to revisit your social store in future too. By creating seamless and easy shopping procedures, you are not only simplifying the shopping process rather retaining the already built customer base.

Creating a seamless shopping path includes enhancing social shop checkout features, shoppable social feeds, and integrating in-store experiences. With data-backed customer insights, it becomes easier to create a multi-channel social commerce strategy.

Social proof

In addition to integrated shopping features, including visual social proof in your social commerce approach is an effective way to build trust, credibility, and sales. According to statistics, customers are 6 times more likely to buy the product, if the social commerce approach includes social media images.

Social proof doesn’t have to be in the form of typical consumer feedback. Unboxing videos, influencer marketing, Feedbacks in the comments section, and word of mouth marketing, triggers the customers to take instant action.

Customized shopping experiences

With enormous amounts of data at one’s disposal, it is not difficult to craft a customized social commerce strategy. For example, both Facebook and Instagram shops can be customized. It is easier than ever to attract the target audience with customized content, brand colors, fonts, and images with visually appealing effects. Also, Facebook allows brands and businesses to connect with their target audience or prospective customers across all their associated products like Instagram and Whatsapp.

Chatbot commerce

Research shows that customers stick to the brand if their customer service is personalized. But, it is difficult to implement at scale especially on social media platforms where you don’t have much control over the platform’s infrastructure. Yet, one way to implement the personalization game is to employ chatbots. Chatbots do have their own set of limitations but they are simple, straightforward, and quick. They also save a lot of money and time besides providing prompt customer service.

Top social commerce examples



SAAKI

Saaki is the latest fashion brand, e-commerce, and social commerce business, which is just a year old. Although the brand belongs to the beauty queen of the Telugu film industry, Samantha, it has employed the right tactics at the right times to stand as a potential competitor to some of the top rival fashion brands within just a year.

Saaki specializes in apparel, statement jewellery, and other accessories for modern women, as it defines itself. It uses Instagram shop features to create visually appealing, simple, and attractive product catalogues and posts to intrigue the target audience. Each product post of Saaki is entirely customized with interesting captions and easy to navigate shopping features added on top of everything else.

Lova

Most of the apparel and boutique brands on Instagram thrive without their own website. Boutique brands like Lova build their brand presence on social media on the pillars of quality products, target audience, and aesthetic looks to grab the immediate attention of their prospective customers. Lova fares pretty well in this factor. Although Lova is a boutique brand especially for children, it has built a profitable niche and social media presence within no time with its perfectly executed social commerce strategies.

It is no wonder, thus, that with an ideal and clever social commerce strategy, it takes minimal time to build the digital empire any brand envies. From optimizing social media profiles to creating visually appealing looks, Lova has done it all to reach the place where it is today.

Manu Vaktur

There is always something to learn from every creator profile on social media platforms. No matter if it has a million followers or just beginning its digital journey. Manu Vaktur falls in the latter category. Despite starting with humble beginnings, Manu Vaktur never neglected a single aspect of proven social commerce strategies. It doesn’t have a great following today. But, it sure does have what it takes to reach there.

A profitable niche, ability to capture the interests and tastes of their target audience, visually appealing content, social proofs, optimized profile, and intriguing content. All these are essentials to start branding and Manu Vaktur has done it with grace.

Urban Market

Besides creating content and building a perfect social commerce strategy, brands need to know how to lure the target audience into buying their products. Some brands like Urban Market are providing practical examples about how to do it with deft and ease despite not having a huge community. There are innumerable grocery stores in the physical world. But, Urban Market knows how to increase the reach, maximize visibility, and convey their offers, discounts, and giveaways in a better and efficient way.

Urban Market believed in leveraging the social media space to grab the maximum eye balls. From showcasing their products to keeping their prospects informed about all the activities, Urban Market leaves no stone unturned in converting their prospects into customers.

Conclusion

Social media has evolved in a fascinating way from a mere socializing platform to now social commerce. It has grown tremendously over the years to adapt to altering consumer trends. Over the past two decades, social media space has seen some progressive shift from mere simple and text-based updates to now visual and graphical content. Social commerce began flourishing at the same time especially with the pandemic induced restrictions around.

While relatively newer competitors like TikTok have created new trends, there have also been innumerable innovations in various aspects of the already existing social channels. To the extent that even messenger apps like Whatsapp, Facebook messenger, and Wechat are being used for social commerce purposes.

Social commerce is beginning to take over the social media space. Businesses cannot be ignorant and averse to change at a time when rivals are adapting to change at a rapid pace. Now is the right time to adapt to change and stay ahead of the challenges to not get knocked over by the increasing competition.



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