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How to Win at Social Commerce

Jun 7, 2023 | 7m


What is Social Commerce?

Social commerce is a whole suite of actions that a brand can take to engage with their customers on a social platform. This could be in a variety of formats – posts, Instagram stories, TikTok videos, or livestream shopping. Beyond content, though, how do you put the commerce in social commerce? Essentially, by using the content as a jump-off point, enabling someone to buy a product easily.

Social commerce is becoming increasingly important for retailers or any brand that’s selling directly to customers. Social commerce sales are forecasted to explode to $1.2 trillion by 2025, according to a 2022 Accenture study ‘Why Shopping’s Set for a Social Revolution’.

Brands like Shopify are enabling brands to easily leverage social commerce in their business. Here’s an interesting statistic that came out towards the end of 2022: Shopify research shows that 49% of brands planned to increase their investment in social commerce. The opportunity is ripe and enormous and brands are jumping on board to increase their investment in this burgeoning channel.

Common Mistakes

Great social commerce strategy is centered around knowing your customers well. Think about a simple Who-Where-Why–What framework. Who are your customers, really? Which platforms are they most engaged in? Why are they engaging? What type of content are they engaging with? Most businesses that stumble with social commerce likely haven’t answered one or few of these questions with clarity. Let me give you an example.

A lot of times, brands think more is better. So they’ll take a creative and post it across every platform out there – Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and so on. The issue with this is that the demographic on each of those platforms is very different. They might even be engaging with your brand for different reasons on each of these platforms. This approach may yield high reach, but with social commerce, conversion is what you’re aiming for. The content blast may have got the brand in front of lots of people, but since not everyone will resonate, conversion rate suffers.

With social commerce, reach is never as knowing which platforms to focus on, why your audiences are engaging with you, and what type of content is resonating with them. Anchor your strategy on engagement. Engagement eventually will lead to conversion.

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