Social commerce or social e-commerce refers to using social media platforms for creating a tailored and targeted in-app shopping experience for users. In other words, social commerce enables the functionality of an ecommerce platform on social media platforms. When users are happy with your product offerings, your presence on social media enables them to spread positive word of mouth in the market, and can even make your brand go “viral”.
Following are some interesting statistics regarding social commerce –
- Nearly 30% of users say they are interested to make a purchase through a social media platform such as Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, etc.
- Nearly 1.80 billion active users browse on Facebook on a daily basis.
- More than 55% of users have found new and unique merchandise on Instagram.
- More than 85% of online shoppers believe social media sites enable them to make a purchase decision.
- 1 out of every 4 business owners is doing business on Facebook.
- More than 40% of sellers make sales through social media.
Why Social Commerce?
There are many social commerce platforms around, such as Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, just to name a few. For all those who wonder what social commerce has to offer to their business, Orvador can show you that there are countless opportunities and benefits offered by social commerce.
Let’s see some of the benefits of social commerce
- Stable Growth in the Number of Visitors
According to a report by a leading e-commerce company called Statista (https://www.statista.com/statistics/304827/number-of-facebook-users-in-india/), the number of active users on Facebook is expected to grow to nearly 445 billion by the end of 2023. It is like new users are getting added every minute. These new users, coupled with the existing users are an excellent base for any seller. Even if one part of the visitors gets converted into actual sales, it could be serious revenue generation.
2. Better Interaction with the Users
One of the most noteworthy benefits of social commerce is the opportunity it provides the users to interact with the business, and the prospective publicity that can happen through the word of mouth. By appearing in updates and news feeds of a follower on a regular basis, a social commerce site is virtually creating an excellent brand building exercise. Also, social commerce encourages people to connect with a business in case of problems and glitches – which is yet another opportunity for brand building.
3. Better Chances of Referral Traffic
It is a proven fact that social commerce drives more traffic to your e-store, which sooner or later impacts your ranking on search engine result pages. Sharing external and internal web-links to the content on your ecommerce store through social media is the best way to divert traffic from social media sites to yours.
4. Stronger Customer Allegiance and Retention
By using social media for promotion and selling of your products, you are not only aiming at getting better business but also aiming at capitalizing the relationship with your customer. Positive word of mouth is the strongest mode of promoting a brand. Coupled with other marketing and retention strategies, an ecommerce store can increase the traffic as well as conversions at their store. Orvador can help you with tips and tricks to get new customers, as well as retain the existing ones.
Points to be noted…
Social media commerce, just like other sales and marketing platforms, demands a mix and match of different strategies and waits for the results to show up. We at Orvador have listed some of the key strategies for leveraging social media for successful business, these are –
- Accentuating pictures and other graphic content that catches the attention of the users, including your followers.
- Answering their need of “what is in it for me”, by offering them some sort of benefit if they participate in an interaction, such as sharing your content, answering surveys, providing feedback, etc.
- Address the specific needs of customers by creating personalized content and offering customized shopping experience, rather than posting generic content.
The Rising Potential of Social Commerce in India
According to a report by Economic Times (https://retail.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/industry/indian-e-commerce-market-to-touch-200-bn-gmv-by-2025-bofa-ml/49735275), India’s e-commerce market is expected to reach 220 billion USD by 2025. Social commerce is also expected to grow up to 100 billion USD. With an exponentially growing number of internet users, the potential customer base is also expanding. Unarguably, social commerce is the next most trending thing that the Indian e-commerce industry will witness.
Let’s also give some credit to the start-ups that are leveraging the huge potential in tier II and III cities. There are nearly 125 social commerce companies currently operating in the Indian market, with buyers and sellers spread across the geographical landscape. With strategic planning, and effective SEO strategies, there is a huge potential for social commerce in India.
The Success Stories Around Us….
Even though the face of the market has changed, the emotions associated with shopping remain the same. Browsing for a few minutes on an apparel website gives you the same pleasure as that of window shopping in a mall. In the digital world, social commerce is the catalyst for the e-commerce entities, which speeds up the process of reaching the customers and increases the score of sales for an e-store.
Let’s get to know some of the most popular social commerce sites that are carving their own path of success –
Facebook is probably the most popular name in the world of social commerce. Featuring the “Shop Now” businesses, the platform has taken sales to an altogether different level. The Messenger app by Facebook is an excellent way of connecting to the customers, both before and after-sale. Here is a shortlist of things that you can do with a Facebook store –
a) Create and post advertisements on Facebook for promoting your products or brand.
b) Feed in the information of the products and offerings.
c) Create and customize a catalogue for your products.
d) Conduct direct sales from your page.
e) Manage orders, process payments, and confirm orders.
f) Get feedback about your offerings.
Instagram has recently launched a feature called Instagram Shopping, which allows people to click on the images and videos to see the details of the advertised products. Instagram requires businesses to act in accordance with Instagram’s business agreement and policies. Instagram Shopping, which is accessible to people in more than 70 countries, offers the following features –
a) Sell products
b) Manage a business account on Instagram, which would be linked to their Facebook page.
c) Opt for in-app purchase options, which is currently available for a very less number of sellers such as Nike, Kylie Cosmetics, Adidas, Zara, to name a few.
Pinterest is a treat for those looking for ideas related to art and crafts, recipes, home décor, style, and a lot more. With millions of Pins on Pinterest, one can organize ideas and choices on their boards. Launched in 2015, there were roughly 30 million pins initially on the website, which has now grown multi-fold. As stated by Shopify, the average value of an order on Pinterest is 50 USD, which is more than the other social media platforms. Here are the special features of Pinterest
a) Pinterest is more of a virtual bulletin board that enables users to find and organize pictures and videos.
b) Pinning or “re-pinning” the images or videos are like sharing the posts on Facebook or Instagram.
c) Businesses can use the images to create a virtual catalogue of their products.
It is time to acknowledge the relatively new players in the social commerce sector. Launched in 2018 based on the model of Chinese social commerce giant Pinduoduo, the start-up claims to be growing at a superlative pace of 50% MOM with more than 4 lakh downloads in many local languages. Founders Vineet Rao and Sourjyendu Medda, are proud to announce that DealShare is currently processing more than 15,000 orders per day. Its app has recorded 400,000 installs, and is available in several local languages.
And to conclude…
We would love to know about your plans on starting up your own social commerce site; or if you already have one how you are managing it. Feel free to comment below with your experiences and expectations. Orvador will be happy to assist you with any queries that you come across. Until then, stay safe!