Top 4 Social Commerce Trends You Need to Know
In today’s world of immediacy, the term “Buy Now” takes on an entirely new meaning. Consumers of 2016 are all about the “right now.” Many people simply won’t take the extra time to go to a brick and mortar store – or even just a company’s own website.
It’s time to ring in the age of social commerce.
Social commerce refers to eCommerce traffic that connects shoppers to buy directly through a social media avenue. Social media giants like Facebook and Pinterest are leading the way with their integrated product sales and related features directly on their platforms.
Now more than ever, the goal is all about meeting your targeted customers and prospects right where they are. And as the trends continue to indicate, more and more businesses are finding those prospects through social commerce.
Have a look at 4 of the most important social commerce trends that have continued to solidify in the second half of 2016. You’ll quickly see the value of this marketing avenue – both for your revenue potential as well as your brand presence.
1. User Generated Content Is Pivotal
Social media represents the true online space where people talk about, research, share, and eventually buy your products. At the heart of this social culture is authentic, user generated content.
Many businesses have already embraced this enduring social media trend by inviting their supporters to share and interact in a variety of ways. When you combine your official brand content with organic, user generated discussion, you can expect your level of brand engagement (and conversions) to rise considerably.
2. Yes, Reviews Still Matter
In the same breath as the emphasis on user generated content, reviews are still just as important now as they ever have been. People continue to rely on user-based reviews as a beacon to guide their product research and buying choices. And as you probably already know, poor reviews will directly impact your selling potential.
Social media carries a direct effect on influencing a customer’s decision to buy. When you integrate reviews and ratings into your social commerce marketing, you give prospective buyers the community-based validation they need to choose your product and to “Buy Now.”
3. Incorporate Other Media – Especially Video
Social media platforms across the board make it easy for entrepreneurs to highlight their products using much more than text. Social media videos are one of the most important trends for connecting with your customers. In fact, many recent innovations have made the “Buy Now” direct response incentive as easy as a clickthrough from a video.
For instance, YouTube has rolled out pre-roll ads on their platform which allow viewers to immediately buy products. Taking advantage of these types of innovations will be pivotal for brands to remain competitive with their eCommerce presence.
4. Instagram Is the Place to Be for Social Commerce
Instagram surged in its popularity throughout 2015, and this trend has continued signaling growth in this social media giant. Part of Instagram’s success comes thanks to an easy-to-access platform with a native mobile experience. As more people choose to research and buy products on their mobile devices, this native experience makes Instagram a preferred choice for many shoppers.
From an entrepreneur standpoint, Instagram is also an easy way to connect shoppers to your brand. Currently, the site gives you four call-to-action options built in:
1. Sign Up
2. Shop Now
3. Install Now
4. Learn More
You can use these CTAs to direct people to a landing page, and then to an email subscription list, or even add a quick link to an app installation. Smart brands should jump into this social commerce space as more people choose it to research, talk about products, and shop.