In our last post, we explored ways to reap the benefits of social in the pre-purchase stages of holiday shopping with social commerce apps like Social Login and Refer-a-Friend. Our focus today will be on effective strategies to continue customer engagement post-purchase and to generate valuable word-of-mouth recommendations.
84% Shoppers Trust Word-of-Mouth Recommendations Most
Nielsen’s latest “Trust in Advertising” study found that 84% of global consumers trust earned media including word-of-mouth and personal recommendations above any other form of advertising. Trust in online consumer reviews is also on the rise, with 68% of consumers around the world indicating their trust in this platform.
By encouraging customers to share their purchases (and their associated delight), social proof can be generated directly from the source, heightening social calls to action. Shoppers found reviews from real people, especially those in their close social circles, to be more authentic and hence influence their purchase decisions. This describes the new definition of social currency – trust built upon a foundation of shared information from sources deemed most credible, such as that of online consumer reviews or recommendations from friends and family.
How to Encourage Social Sharing of Purchases
Retailers are discovering that social sharing of purchases creates goodwill from existing customers through user-generated feedback and experiences, resulting in quality social traffic of potential new customers. Share-a-Purchase app serves this precise purpose. Immediately following a purchase, customers are incentivized to spread the word and love about their purchase to their social network via email, Facebook, and Twitter. Such shares are converted into product testimonials that can be displayed on a retailer’s shopping community page as social proof.
This app effectively converts shoppers into word-of-mouth brand ambassadors with the power and influence to increase friend traffic, referral sales, and repeat buying. Resulting benefits to retailers can include acquisition of new customers, word-of-mouth recommendations that can drive increased sales conversions and revenue, acquisition of rich consumer profiles that can lead to deep social insights, and heightened SEO rank arising from increases in social traffic.
Share-on-Mobile app creates social endorsements by capturing the “moment of customer delight” when a product is received. The app enables social-sharing of pictures over mobile of initial un-boxing or novel product usage. Another perk of Share-on-Mobile is the ability to run a photo popularity contest with the use of social voting. By incorporating this gamification element in social commerce, e-tailers can enhance their word-of-mouth publicity.
How to Use Social Proof For Increased Engagement on E-Commerce Sites
Social sharing of purchases as described in previous section creates valuable social proof. Showcasing them on e-commerce website results in highly influential social proof that increases user-engagement and drives higher sales conversions. Retailers can see an impactful lift in ROI and revenue, with added benefits like SEO rank uplift and social insights gains.
Embedding the Shopping Community app on an e-tailer’s website or Facebook page can not only reinforce social proof, but also enable social discovery. This app displays testimonials from friends and other shoppers and allows for customer interchange. This helps to increase visitor trust in the brand and raise onsite engagement by up to 30%. Furthermore, this app collates social testimonials generated from the Share-a-Purchase and Share-on-Mobile apps to close the social commerce loop, effectually connecting onsite and offline social commerce efforts by retailers to drive superior ROI.
The Product Stories app is also integrally linked to Share-a-Purchase and Share-on-Mobile. Social testimonials generated from these apps can be displayed as social proof on an e-tailer’s product page, which can help deliver sales conversion growth. This app also combats difficulties in acquiring product reviews by targeting shopper testimonials at the point-of-sale. Through these combined efforts, Product Stories can generate shopper testimonials at 10x the rate of traditional product reviews!
To sum up, here’s a quick recap on key takeaways from our holiday social media marketing series thus far: make it easy and rewarding for customers to engage on social networks and become brand ambassadors. The social buzz they generate can lead to social proof for products and brands, producing elevated traffic, SEO, and ROI. And the resulting social data generated can then lead to actionable insights on how to better serve and retain existing customers and target new ones. Lastly, don’t forget to reward the brand superstars and accelerators to keep the positive cycle active. Now just rinse and repeat!
Next up: In our final post of the series, we will investigate some viral effects in action.