In the last week or so, we’ve seen a flurry of practical recommendations for deploying social commerce from industry experts. Here’s a roundup of their tips.
David Yovanno (CEO of Gigya)
- First, remove friction – integrate social sharing with social sign-on so that items can be shared with the least amount of friction.
- Second, provide incentives – reward customers for social activity by providing incentives. Both virtual and monetary incentives help foster customer loyalty.
- Third, measure – track not only sharing volume but the resulting referral traffic and its impact on sales. With this information, retailers can then reward their largest influencers, driving more Word of Mouth (WOM) activity
Jeff Bullas (Social Media and Digital Marketing Consultant)
- Choose a shop application that is easy to set-up and you can customize your Facebook shop store
- Tell your customers where to find your store and how it works
- Import your email into your promotions app
- Actively promote your products, promotions and discounts using email, Twitter and Facebook
- Use great high definition photos and images
- Use your wall like it’s your shop window
- Reward your fans with exclusive discounts and promotions
- You stay within the Facebook ecosystem from product browsing to checkout
- You can measure with inbuilt analytics and tools but also be able to add Google analytics and Facebook Insights to your toolkit analytics tools.
- You don’t have to be computer programmer so you can make your own changes quickly and efficiently to your design and F-Commerce landing page
Jeff Bullas ((2) Social Media and Digital Marketing Consultant)
- Use Facebook contests that request “Likes” to automatically send users to the Facebook store to encourage product browsing.
- Post ads, promotions, flash sales, or product-focused press to your Facebook Wall and link to the Facebook store’s PDP pages, enabling quick purchasing ability within the social network.
- Leverage the Facebook Fans API. In doing so brands are empowered to combine “deals of the day” or product announcements with deep links to product detail and purchase pages within the Facebook store. This approach gives the user fast transaction capabilities, while also helping the brand collect the user’s data and demographic details.
- Keep an eye on Facebook’s currently testing of a “Buy With Friends” program, which allows brands to offer discount incentives to users who encourage their friends to buy the same item by publishing purchases on friends’ news feeds.
Ben Staveley (Econsultancy)
- Check your analytics: Before you start see what sort of traffic you are getting from the social web at the moment and how well this traffic converts – first step should be to improve conversion
- Understand how social your customers are: put your toes in the water by listening and engaging customers in social media to see how they react. Social is not for everyone
- Start using your Facebook page to promote products: begin marketing products on your Facebook account.
- Using the analysis goals I identified in point one, you can see how effective this is and whether it is driving sales.
- ‘Socialise’ your website: add social media sharing links to your website.
- Use a Facebook shopping app: If your customers are Facebook users, it makes sense to let them shop there too rather than leaving to go to your website
- Investigate bespoke solutions turn your Facebook account into a fully functional e-commerce platform.
- Don’t just sell: social commerce shouldn’t be all about selling – add value to their customers’ shopping experience – and give give them a reason for communicating with you and their peers.
Alisa Gould-Simon (Mashable / Pose.com)
- Empower Consumers: Let customers have a say in the business – by crowdsourcing decisions (a ;a Threadless and Modcloth), and have their say in promoting you (word of mouth initiatives)
- Use exclusivity: Make your customers feel special by giving them exclusive access, information and products
Lauren Fisher (The Next Web)
- Deploy a Social Shopping Cart: Allow people to shop and share with their social graph
- Make Personalised recommendations, based on social profile (using social sign-on)
- Open a Shop on Facebook, and add value (like Soap.com’s Shop My List app, that allows people to quickly and conveniently make repeat purchases from Facebook)
- Enable sharing with friends before buying – to allow customers to friendsource advice on whether to buy
- Consider Social Currency – explore accepting Facebook Credits for payment
- Reward social interactions – incentivise customers to share and spread the word
‘Glen‘ (TopRank (2010 article, getting re-tweeted now))
- Get Data. First things first: You need to figure out where your site visitors are sharing your products (AddThis and ShareThis analytics)
- Set up Facebook and Twitter profiles: Start with the main players
- Find unique places for sharing buttons: not just on a product page, but after a purchase, review or other interaction
- Add product videos – and host them on YouTube
- Engage customers – create a dialogue with customers who want to talk to you
- Add exclusivity – add special offers, coupons, tips, and other things that customers wouldn’t get unless they were following you on social media sites.
- Don’t stay in “sell mode” – be useful to your customers – even to the extent of sharing competitor deals with them (generates trust and loyalty)
- Integrate your customer service strategy with your social media strategy – diffuse situations by helping customers directly through social media
- Track what people click on social media sites (via URL shorteners offering analytics (like bitly)
- Give back – use social as a giving platform, giving helpful new, tips, offers, and access to you
Jason Taylor (Usablenet (Mashable))
- Use Facebook Share, Like and Reviews APIs
- Support Easy, Secure E-Commerce (without redirects to a traditional website)
- Track Your Success (Facebook Insight + Google analytics)
- Leverage Facebook E-Commerce for Social Campaigns – integrate e-commerce into Facebook marketing (flash sales, promotions,daliy deals and Facebook’s new “Buy With Friends” program)