As a retailer, you understand the importance of engaging with customers on social media. Sharing valuable content across social channels lets you interact with customers in a more organic way. If you haven’t optimized your platforms to capture sales, however, you’re missing out on a growing revenue stream. Thirty-four percent of online shoppers said that social media influences their purchases, and 23 percent of online shoppers purchased products on a social media network, according to research done by UPS.
Once considered a trend, social media is here to stay, with 81 percent of Americans having at least one profile, according to Statistica. These platforms will only become a more important to your store, as you can now generate sales directly from them. Social media sites have embedded tools you can use to sell products, and there are plugins available that make it easier by doing the work for you.
It’s time to start posting and pinning. Here are five ways you can turn social media accounts into virtual sales associates:
Facebook offers merchants a free Shop page, where you can load products. You can also tag up to 30 products in your posts that will direct the customer to your Shop page when clicked. Product description and price information is pulled from your website. Facebook offers retailers two options: customers can checkout out directly on Facebook (this requires having an account with an approved third-party partner, such as Shopify, that handles the transaction) or you can direct them to your website to complete the purchase.
Instagram offers a free shoppable post feature for retailers that sell products in certain categories. Add a clickable product tag to photos that will display product information from your online store. One more click brings the shopper to the product page on your website, allowing them to complete the transaction on your site.
Loading your products onto Pinterest lets customers click through to your website, but you can also use the site’s free Buyable Pins feature, which allows customers to checkout right on Pinterest. The site sends you order data, and the transaction is processed on your site. Eighty-seven percent of Pinterest users say they have purchased something they discovered while Pinning, according to Shopify.
Selling on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest requires that you upload your products, but if you prefer a hands-off approach, Shopial can help. The platform populates your Facebook shop and Pinterest pages with products from your website, all with a simple click. Users can make purchases directly from the social media sites. If you advertise on Facebook, Shopial can handle that, too.
Beetailer is another platform handles selling your products on Facebook. It integrates with your website, curating your products on social media and managing sales. It’s a “set it and forget it” tool that does the work for you. Beetailer can also run promotions and integrate Facebook onto your site to help you engage with customers.
As technology evolves, more digital streams of revenue will unfold. Social media platforms aren’t just the place to interact with customers; they’re an important channel for marketing and sales. An investment of your time could likely pay off with an increase in transactions.
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