The business world’s rapid shift to the digital space has provided a new level of convenience for brands and consumers alike. And it shows.
The Department of Commerce reports that e-commerce sales for 2020 were estimated at $791.7 billion. That’s a 32.4% increase from the previous year. But the switch to e-commerce didn’t just boost sales. It also opened opportunities for brands to further increase their sales. One shining example of this is social selling.
What Are The Benefits Of Social Selling?
Social selling is the use of social media, Instagram and Facebook to name a few, to find and interact with potential clients. It’s a relatively new method of lead generation that’s simple in concept, but extremely beneficial for businesses.
Leveraging social media to build networks and scout sales prospects lets you build a personal relationship with your target market. This is especially useful if your product is geared towards younger generations. According to Later’s article on social commerce, 60% of Gen Z Americans use Instagram to find new brands and products. And 48% of Americans between the ages 18 and 34 have already made a purchase through social media. Interacting with them, whether on forums or through private messaging, engages them to your brand. And that makes them more likely to purchase something from your business.
Apart from building relationships, social selling is also a great avenue for gathering consumer data. Social media is arguably the best place to collect customer feedback, which isn’t surprising, given that over 3.6 billion people around the world use it. A post on Business2Community highlights the many uses of customer feedback in business. For one, it provides valuable insights that help you build better products and services to suit the customers’ needs. This boosts customer satisfaction and keeps them loyal to your brand. So, social selling doesn’t just help businesses build communities. It also allows them to gather pertinent information that they can use to improve customer experience.
How Can Brands Get Started?
So, given that social selling is such a useful practice, how exactly should businesses go about it? Each platform has its own social commerce feature, even LinkedIn, and you need to learn the step-by-step process.
What’s more important though is for brands to highlight their authenticity, and this can be done by employing dedicated customer service representatives rather than leaving it all to AI chatbots. The Sitel Group’s report on customer service preferences indicates that around 70% of consumers prefer interacting with a human rather than a chatbot. Some 61% also noted that receiving personalized emails and social media messages was important to them.
In addition to this, your messaging campaigns shouldn’t be too sales-driven. Consumers are looking for value, so instead of pitching your products and services all the time, your goal should be to contribute valuable information. Answer people’s questions or offer your advice on online forums. This establishes you as an authority in your industry, and makes people more likely to buy from you — all without you having mentioned your offerings!
Social selling is an exciting prospect. It opens plenty of opportunities for your brand and can potentially boost sales. Additionally, it provides a direct link from your business to your target market, allowing for seamless communication and feedback acquisition. However, one must remember that social selling is only one aspect of marketing. And to boost overall performance, your business must implement a holistic marketing strategy. To learn more, check out this feature covering ‘12 Marketing Tips for E-Commerce’. It talks about multiple aspects of digital marketing, including SEO and website navigation.
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