The true power of social commerce is in adding social elements in the commerce flow and not the other way around. Data shows that e-commerce sites can gain significantly by embedding social engagement modules on their website. These modules can turn a e-commerce site into a word-of-mouth powerhouse.
E-commerce sites track visitor data and purchase data. By incorporating social profiles into the mix they can significantly enhance the richness of the data. Social profile data brings a component of personalization and virality to user data.
The convergence of visit data, purchase data and social data can be hugely rewarding for e-commerce sites. They can build targeted social engagements on their website to increase word-of-mouth virality and to maximize revenues. This is “social targeting”, a new strategy for e-commerce.
Here are 5 scenarios that can be achieved on a retailer’s website through social targeting:
- Birthday Targeting
If David visits your website and has a birthday within 3 days, he can get a special ‘Treat yourself’ offer just for his birthday. He may also receive a similar offer in the email. David feels special and not only makes a purchase, but also becomes a loyal customer.
- Social Influencer Targeting
If Sheila has 1120 facebook friends and Amanda has 320 facebook friends, clearly, Sheila has a larger social influence. Right? Not quite. Being a social influencer is about whether your friends care about you opinion, and not just about how many friends you have! Finding true influencers and then rolling out the red carpet for them can really boost word-of-mouth referrals. E.g. using social targeting, when an influencer finishes making a purchase, she could be given a very strong incentive to share her purchase with friends.
- Geo- targeting
If Richard is identified as a New York resident from his social profile, he can be shown a New York Yankees T-shirt that is on sale. Showing Richard relevant T-shirt is likely to significantly increase his conversion to a sale.
- Interest-based Targeting
Jane is visiting a pet foods site. If the site knows that Jane is interested in cat related products, it can show her a special offer related to cats. This subtle personalization (“Wow! I needed cat products and there happens to be a special offer for just that!”) can make a big difference in conversion compared to showing her a generic site-wide offer.
- Friend Graph Targeting
If Mary’s friend Rachel’s birthday is coming up and we know that Rachel likes the Beatles, a 30% OFF offer on a Beatles CD can be presented to Mary suggesting that as a gift for Rachel. Mary will know that she has made the right choice and Rachel will receive a gift that she really likes.
In this post, we have covered only a few scenarios. Social Targeting can get much more pin-pointed by combining visit data + purchase data + social profile data and using it effectively to target visitors on retailers’ websites. Clearly, this is the way of the future.