Once setup of your e-commerce website is complete, the next logical step would be to publicize and select the right social media marketing for your online store. Today, there are lot of social media marketing platforms. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and many more. Read on to select social media marketing platform that is right for you.
Social media is a great way of reaching the target audience. This is a place where you can quickly share and instantly spread the word. Online presence is a necessary necessity now. Let me provide you few points on why it is becoming more and more important.
So, how do you select social media marketing platform that is right for you
Before, we dive into that, let’s discuss few reasons you can’t avoid social media are-
- Social media can help you build brand awareness
- You can generate leads and sales using the content that you post on social media
- Social media also acts as an effective advertising medium
- You get a social presence for your business
- Instantly you can get feedback and understand consumer reactions
- Can easily spread the benefits of the product by sharing
- Easily add updates about the product
- New feature enhancements
- You can target almost all categories of audience
While there are several benefits of using social media as a marketing platform for your e-commerce website, there are few questions you need to answer before selecting any specific social media platforms.
- What is the product that you are selling?
- Who is your target audience?
- Which geographical region are you focusing?
- Does using a specific social media platform, provide you enough exposure?
- Are there any restrictions the social media platform defines for building brand awareness?
Through this post, we will be mainly focusing on Facebook, Pinterest,and Instagram.All of these are equally powerful social media platform. Let’s check a few stats before we get into more details about these platforms.
- Online adults almost 95% aged 18 to 34 are most likely to follow a brand via social networking.
- 71% of consumers who have had a good social media service experience with a brand are likely to recommend it to others
- 56 billion global mobile social media users, equaling 34% penetration; globally with 1 million new active mobile social users added every day
- Visual content is more than 40 times more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content
- In 2015 Facebook influenced 52 percent of consumers’ online and offline purchases, up from 36 percent in 2014
- There are now more than 50 million small businesses using Facebook Pages to connect with their customers
- There were over 4.4 million videos uploaded directly to Facebook in February 2016, generating over 199 billion views
- Top brands on Instagram are seeing a per-follower engagement rate of 4.21% which is 58 times higher than on Facebook and 120 times higher than on Twitter
- Media brands are the most active whereas business services, financial services, and fast moving consumer goods have the lowest percentage of brands represented on Instagram
- 90% of Instagram users are younger than 35
- The average e-commerce site’s Facebook community is growing by 8% each month
- Online stores that have a social presence have 32% more sales on average than stores that don’t
The above stats clearly represent the importance of using a social media platform for marketing your e-commerce website. The tedious job is to understand the advantages and features available in a social media platform. Along with this one also should be aware of monetizing through these social media platforms effectively.
Let us check each of these social media platforms one by one and understand when to use which one. We will first have a look at Facebook.
Facebook happens to be one of the biggest social media platforms. To its credit, Facebook has 2 billion monthly active users. In most cases, having Facebook as one of your marketing platforms is a must, owing to its popularity. In case people want to find out more about your business, then its most likely that they will first search for it on Facebook.
Few Demographics about Facebook
- Age-based, the largest user demographic is those aged 25–34
- Facebook users are 53% female and 47% male
- 56% of online seniors aged 65+ are on Facebook and 63% are between age 50–60
- 5 billion registered users from all over the world: many of those users happy to share information about themselves
- Over 699 million people logging in every day
- Average users spending over 15 hours on Facebook every month
- Over 2.5 million websites integrated with Facebook
Benefits of using Facebook
- Facebook connects people, business,and brands
- It is one of the most targeted digital advertising platforms in the world
- Facebook is where you set up your social media ‘home base’, just as your website is your digital ‘home base’
- It has the ability to connect with a vast number of people and prospects
- Facebook has excellent live streaming capabilities
- Provides seamless e-commerce integrations
There is no specific recipe to market your product on Facebook. However, what works best for Facebook is long-form written content in posts in the news feed. Along with these other techniques include Facebook-hosted video and live streaming.
The power of Facebook means that you shouldn’t miss out on the opportunities it provides for your online sales. Facebook is the leader when it comes to sales conversion rates among social networking sites. A good way to start is to provide sign up via Facebook feature. One such example is as shown below-
Another way is to use smart calls to action and engaging product descriptions in your Facebook advertisements. Additionally, you can attract more buyers by including social media buttons on your website. Allow users to like, share and comment.
Few Tips to create the right kind of advertisement is-
- Use emoticons. This increases comments by 33%
- Using quotes can help you get 26% more likes and 19% more share.
- Posts with less than 80 characters attract 23% more engagement
- Image-based contents are more appealing and can attract 40% more buyers
- Phrase your post as a question. This has the more likely hood of getting maximum comments
- Provide attractive, appealing and eye-catching deals, discounts and special offers
- You can use image, text, videos in combination while creating posts
- To simply e-commerce buying process from the Facebook page you can directly transfer to check-out or create a Facebook app which can accept payments.
A typical ROI using Facebook ads is about 152%. Facebook Business enables easy ad creation.
Few innovative apps which can help you use Facebook for your e-commerce are-
- Agorapulse: This has the potential to do almost everything required for a Facebook app. It schedules Facebook updates, monitors share and mentions, shares analytics reports, and creates quizzes and contests. It can also be used as a CRM so that you can identify your most engaged fans and gather additional data like email addresses. This is a paid tool.
- Heyo: Heyo provides an easy-to-use template that gives you the power to create contests, promotions, or deals that can drive traffic, leads, and sales for your business by simply dragging, dropping, and customizing your content. Heyo also works great with mobile devices so that you can reach your Facebook fans across multiple devices. This is a paid tool.
- Pagemodo: Pagemodo offers a variety of tools that allow you to customize your Facebook page in order to attract new leads. With Pagemodo you can create a welcome page, cover photo, and run contests, sweepstakes, or giveaways. If you have a physical storefront, then you can optimize maps and location. And, if you have the skills, you can customize your Facebook tabs by editing or creating your own HTML tabs. This can be tested for free on its trial version.
- Shortstack: Shortstack is yet another app that generates contests, sweepstakes, polls, and surveys. However, it can also be used to create landing pages and signup forms. You can also highlight products through its gallery-building feature and promote your Facebook page across multiple social media channels.
- Ecwid:Ecwidis considered to be the number one Facebook e-commerce app where you can openup a Facebook store that even keeps customers on your page during checkout. You can also sell your products simultaneously on other social networks, your website, and Amazon. And, because Ecwid is a global community, you have the ability to sell your goods in over 175 countries and use 40 different payment options.
There are several other tools and apps available readily in the market. Below are few content strategies for Facebook.
- State your goals in quantities and have a detailed goal
- Find out the ideal buyer profile you would like to target
- Keep your Facebook activities synced up and in line with changes in your e-commerce business
- Have a strategy for your content and maintain a content calendar
- Create content that is useful, valuable and can engage maximum customers
An example of such appealing marketing is as shown below.
Similarly, the below Ad focuses on the key points. It is concise but makes the right impact.
Next, let us check Instagram and how it can be used for marketing your products.
Instagram’s known for engagement. Mobile conversion rates are even higher. Instagram has a huge potential to effectively market your product. With Instagram, it has always been about beautiful images. Now it also includes video, stories and direct messaging.
Since Instagram is entirely image- and video-based, it’s important to use eye-grabbing visuals to compel customers to buy. Unlike other social media sites, you’re limited by not being able to insert clickable links into your photo captions, so make sure you have your site hyperlinked in your page bio and include links in captions that customers can copy and paste.
Overlay the simple version of your store with each photo you post to make it easy for customers to simply enter the site name to check out your store. Host a contest that rewards customers who share photos of themselves using your products to extend your reach on the platform.
So what kind of business do better with Instagram? Any business with a strong visual brand or that sells tangible goods should take advantage of Instagram. Use colors, products, fonts, and other visuals to help your customers develop associations with your brand.
You can use it to-
- Build your brand with strong and breathtaking visuals
- Articulate the story of your brand to customers
Few Instagram Demographics are-
- Instagram users are 49% female and 51% male
- 55% of all online 18 to 29-year-olds in the U.S. are using Instagram
- The next largest Instagram age demographic is 30 to 49 years old at 28% usage
Best features of Instagram which can be used for your marketing advantage are-
- The ability to showcase your products or story tell in a visually appealing way
- Document and take people behind the scenes with the Stories feature
- Communicate with people on a deeper level via direct messaging
What works best on Instagram are-
- High-quality images which can draw peoples eye and their attention
- Quote and motivational images generally see high levels of engagement
- Using hashtags with your posts is vital for their searchability and high engagement levels
- Giving people a more immersive experience by posting images & using Instagram stories
Below are few tips on using Instagram-
- Focus on targeting audience:Instagram ads feature the same interest-based targeting you’d use on Facebook to reach new audiences who’ve never been to your website or even engaged with your profile before.
To start with you can have a newsletter and create an audience. Based on this, the first step would be to install an app.
With such an approach you can create interest and awareness amongst your buyers.
- Experiment with Creativity: Understanding your audience will take a while. However, before that, it is a great idea to experiment with creativity and understand the reaction of customers.
A feed which is also shoppable eases the shopping experience.
- Increase your influencers: You can try this by increasing your influencers. People can find your products through social media, paid search, organic search, referrals, email. Ads in social media are the biggest influencer. BrandSnobis a DIY tool to search from over 2,000 influencers that can expose you to 350,000,000 Instagram followers.
Also available is an influencer chain called as “Tribe Group”, which has a process where brands can submit information that influencers decide if you are their type or not.Whalar provides access to the cream of the influencer crop.
- Understand your audience: Most products will have multiple audiences. There is multiple categories of customers choosing different products for different reasons. So you need to have multiple ads to focus on the specific category of users.
For instance, in the below example the products showcased are completely different.
This is an example of funnel segmentation where you divide your customers into different categories and target.Instagram users spend the most per order of any social network. And they convert higher on mobile devices than any as well.
Next, we will check Pinterest which is also another popular social media platform.
Pinterest in itself is a bit different from other social media platforms. It is a popular and valuable platform for e-commerce business. This requires first setting up your profile. Next is to optimize your pins followed by advertising on the platform. The last step is to measure the results.
Pinterest is a social media platform that lets users (“pinners”) save pins that contain links, descriptions, and images onto different boards for later use. These boards can be secret (hidden) or public. Pinterest is designed to store ideas and inspiration in a way other social media sites aren’t. Users are encouraged to organize what they find into different boards for easy navigation, and most pinners are primarily on Pinterest seeking and saving what they want to see; they generally don’t care if other people see what they’ve tagged or archived, because it’s just not about generating discussion or exchanging information.
Pinterest can be a marketing powerhouse for online stores. Users buy products they stumble across on Pinterest organically at a much higher rate than the average social platform, and that’s partial because Pinterest users are proactively searching for things rather than just reactively scrolling through a feed.
Few Demographics about Pinterest
- Pinterest has more than 200 million active users
- 90% say Pinterest helps them decide what to purchase
- 78% people say it is useful to see content from brands on Pinterest
- 66% buy something after seeing a brand’s pins
- 98% of people report trying new things they discover on Pinterest, compared to 71% on other platforms
- Pinners are 39% more likely to be active shoppers than non-pinners; when they shop, they spend approximately 29% more than those who don’t use the platform
- 93% of pinners have used Pinterest to plan for, research, or make purchases
- 80% of Pinterest’s traffic comes from mobile users, and thanks to features like Buyable Pins, it’s easier for them to convert and complete a purchase
- 40% of users have a household income of more than $100k per year, giving them substantial spending power
- 61% of users say they’ve discovered new brands or products through ads on Pinterest
- 70% of Pinterest users are women
- 66% of women between the ages of 25-54 are signed up on Pinterest
Many businesses have the potential to get meaningful results from Pinterest, especially online stores selling physical goods that can be photographed.Business-to-consumer (B2C) companies, in general, have a much easier time on Pinterest than business-to-business (B2B) companies, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible for the latter to get traction on the platform. Ultimately, whether or not Pinterest is a good fit for your business will depend heavily on whether or not your target audience overlaps with their existing user base.
The simplest way to start is by adding the Pinterest button. The code to add the button is readily available.
Pinterest Account Setup
As a next step create an account for you and your business. Being an individual user and a business user on Pinterest will double your chances for marketing. You’ll quickly find the limitations of both and surely will want to take advantage of both account types.
Create Smart boards
When you pin an image on Pinterest, you can assign it to a “board.” It’s better to create boards that focus on a specific theme. It turns out that when you assign themes to your boards, you tend to attract more interest.
This is the simplest term is a categorization. For instance, if you own a restaurant, you would like to dedicate each board for the different variety of cuisine such as Mexican, Italian, Thai which is available. Once you get popular customers can also contribute to your boards.
Displaying price on pinned images
For certain items that are always in stock, you might want to add a price to your pin of that image. To add a price simply add the price with a “$” sign and the corresponding value in the description.
Add prices to pinned products that are readily available in stock. The last thing you would want is to disappoint a customer saying that the product is out of stock.
Inspire and Motivate
The power of Pinterest lies in its ability to get people to discover amazing images, videos,and products. Instead of just plastering your Pinterest boards with product images, your goal should be to inspire potential customers with the products you sell. Similar to the below image which focuses on fashion ideas.
Create a Testimonial Board:If you receive handwritten testimonials from customers, snap a photo of them and pin them to a dedicated board for testimonials.
Hashtags:Just like Twitter, Pinterest allows hashtags. For specific subjects, you can use hashtags. For example, if you run an online store specializing in women’s dresses you might use hashtags like #formalwear, #casuals.
Host a content:You can promote a contest where your fans and followers can create boards about your brand or about the products you sell. This is a great way to generate interest in your brand and get other Pinterest users involved.
We have seen over here three major social media platforms- Facebook, Instagram,and Pinterest. Which of this is the best one, is a challenging question to answer. Now you know the different techniques in which you can use each of these platforms for your e-commerce business.
The right choice of social media platform grossly depends on your online business. However, the best trick that would work is using each of these platforms to your benefit.
Each of this has a unique proposition and differ from others. The customer base is also different in most cases with few overlaps. Understanding and moving at a fast pace with the trends is what can keep your e-commerce business skyrocketing.