As the trend toward the use of social commerce increases, two facts are coming into evidence:
- Rather than “brand-to-fan,” social commerce works best when customers initiate sharing with their friends on social networks.
- Sites like Pinterest, Fab.com and Rue La La have demonstrated the power of social curation to merchandise products in dynamic ways.
Recognizing the importance of these two factors, social commerce provider Sociable Labs has introduced a platform called EverShare that combines what it refers to as “frictionless sharing” and social curation to drive increases in referral traffic and on-site conversion.
Frictionless sharing can be defined as the shift from sharing on a per-transaction basis to a one-time opt-in by the user that enables them to share the entirety of their activity with friends.
According to Sociable Labs CEO and founder Nisan Gabbay, frictionless sharing is advantageous in two ways. Not only does it give customers the ability to share product information with their friends from the retailer’s site, but authorizes sharing of their entire activity, not just a ‘like’. This results in a dramatic increase in sharing of social content, which leads to an increase in inbound traffic back to the website.
“Amazon typically sees about five percent of its traffic coming from Facebook. Utilizing this frictionless sharing model, brands like Fab.com are experiencing as much as 25 percent of its traffic from Facebook,” said Gabbay.
Rather than start with Facebook, Gabbay’s philosophy is to position social commerce activity on the ecommerce site. “People are not not in a shopping mode on Facebook, but are there to socialize. They don’t trust transacting on Facebook as much as they do on an ecommerce site, and the user experience isn’t as good as on an ecommerce website,” said Gabbay. “Therefore, bringing social elements onto the ecommerce site is the best approach.”
According to the company, EverShare provides everything an online retailer needs to take full advantage of frictionless sharing on both Facebook and the ecommerce site . Features include:
- The ability to initiate and manage the perpetual flow of user content from the ecommerce site to Facebook;
- Privacy controls for the consumer;
- A social merchandising page much like Pinterest and Fab.com/feed that displays trending products based on what shoppers are saying about them;
- An activity stream that incentivizes more social sharing activities among shoppers.
One of Sociable’s first EverShare customers, Charlotte Russe, is integrating the platform’s functionality across its ecommerce site to engage its customer base. “Our customers use Facebook to manage every aspect of their lives, from announcing a new boyfriend to making plans for a girls’ night out,” said Paul Hollowell, marketing manager at Charlotte Russe. “EverShare, for the first time, allows us to seamlessly integrate Facebook conversations about Charlotte Russe into our website, enhancing the shopping experience with social elements.”
“There’s a real convergence happening in the retail space,” said Gabbay. “Facebook has widened the user sharing pipeline and social curation has captivated the interest of shoppers for discovering and sharing new products. The two together will have a profound impact on how retailers merchandise their products in the future.”