The Role Of Social Media Platforms In Driving E-Commerce Sales

Have you ever wondered, “How many of us use social media?”

It's been tickling our minds as well.

Out of 8 billion people on the planet, almost 5 billion use social media platforms. Even more fascinating is that an average social media user interacts with nearly six platforms.

Given the rise of e-commerce, you can only imagine what a step up this is for brands and organizations that want to promote their products and services online.

Social media is their golden ticket.

E-commerce and social media act like two peas in a pod – they work interdependently by boosting awareness, reaching a wider audience, and showcasing their latest product or service in the best possible light.

This was scraping the surface, though. 

To get the full scoop on social media's role in e-commerce and how it helps brands ramp up their sales, you'll have to sit back, grab a cup of hot coffee, and keep reading.

Intro to Social Media E-Commerce Marketing

First, a brief intro on social media e-commerce marketing.

Simply put, this is the intended use of social media networks to promote and sell products and services online. It's leveraging the power of social media to effectively engage with potential customers, build awareness, and generate sales.

Through social media e-commerce marketing, businesses and organizations use various strategies to broaden their user base and utilize features that Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter allow. 

Businesses facilitate direct communication by experimenting with the tools of these social media platforms.

Here are some of the most common tactics:

Content Creation

The first tactic is content creation. According to marketers, this tactic requires the most time and effort/ Businesses and organizations work hard to identify a new topic that's currently “the buzz,” decide which form they want to present the content in, and finally formalize their strategy before they produce it.

Social Media Advertising

Creating content and advertising goes hand in hand.

Once the content is created, brands try to advertise their newly launched product through social media platforms. Luckily, there are many ways to promote your product: Instagram Story ads, giveaways, Reels, etc.

Influencer Marketing

Internet-aware brands know the power that influencers hold in today's market. Truth be told, we've all bought something just because an influencer we follow on social media recommended it – even if it was an impulsive purchase.

It's not a secret – influencer marketing is a game changer in the industry.

If you're looking for ways to pull off a successful campaign with influencer marketing, here's a video explaining everything:

User-Generated Content (UGC)

Next up, we have user-generated content, or UGC for short. If you're unsure about this, it's the attempt to encourage customers to share their thoughts about a product you're promoting. The closest thing to UGC is customer reviews on the brand's official website or somewhere else.

3 Ways Brands Use Social Media Platforms for E-Commerce

Let's get right into the juicy part. Here are three major ways brands use social media platforms that we all know (Tiktok, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, etc.) for e-commerce.

Building Brand Awareness

The first one is an easy guess. The days of promoting your brand through billboards and word-of-mouth are long gone. The old-school methods millennials used to stick by are in the past.

The way a brand promotes its image and products now is way more efficient and available to the target group and everyone who spends at least part of their day scrolling through social media – and we all do that.

People love social media because of its transparency. Whether it's your favourite celebrity, an influencer or a brand ready to spill the tea on something, the audience is there to see it, share it, and comment.

Check this out: 61 Fab Fashion Brands Looking For Influencers In 2023

Main Advertising Tool

The global reach on social media is incomparable to any other strategy, and that's why a handful of new emerging businesses, as well as those who have only recently become aware of social media, are hopping on the trend and advertising their products here.

Just to put things into perspective, here is the reach according to the most commonly used social media platforms:

  • Facebook: 2.17 billion
  • Instagram: 1.44 billion
  • Tiktok: 1.02 billion
  • LinkedIn: 849.6 million

In this case, numbers speak louder than words.

Customer Support

Another very effective way in which brands use social media platforms to promote and sell their products is through customer support.

We all know how difficult it was to reach someone from customer support, let alone get an answer that would help you.

Luckily, the days of listening to music while on hold are long gone. Now, you can expect an answer and open communication with someone from the brand in just a few minutes, and it doesn't have to be a call (for those who prefer texting over calling).

Many social media platforms leave enough space for satisfied and dissatisfied customers to address them with the most sincere comments, praises, and even some remarks on the product that ended up in their homes.

This powerful marketing tool enables the brand to receive direct communication and feedback from its source. Whether anonymous surveys, direct DMs, or customer reviews on their site, it's a power move.

Additional tip:

Bear in mind that feedback does not have to wait until after you have launched your product. 

A smart move would be to post pre-questions about your launch. In order to get more feedback and generate higher sales numbers, you can ask your customers questions about what they would most like to see improved, what kind of packaging they expect, what their current budget is, and what the policies are regarding possible returns.

Anything that comes to your mind is already surely in the minds of your potential customers.

You Might Also Like: What Is Being Empathetic in Customer Support?

Top 3 Social Media Tips for Driving E-Commerce Sales

It's time to spill the tea.

If you're an aspiring brand eager to leverage social media platforms to increase sales, here are three proven tips to ramp up your numbers in the nick of time.

Post Often

Social media works fast; if you're on it, you must keep up. Being on social media as a brand is different from running your own private account where you can post whenever and whatever. 

It's the business we're discussing here, and you need to align your posts with your audience. This means that you need to post often so that your followers actually see that you're there and active.

The question is, when should you post and how often?

Well, a rule of thumb would be to post between 6 and 9 PM on weekdays. That's usually when you can expect the most interaction with your target group.

Choose the Right Platform

Unless you've got a team that runs on coffee 24/7 and 6 social media platforms, there's no chance you'll be able to keep up with every platform and be as responsive as your audience expects.

So, take a minute to scroll through your brand's most used platforms and focus on the ones where you have the most followers and where they are the most active. 

If that happens to be Instagram, then Insta Stories are your Holy Grail.

If that happens to be Tiktok, then you should definitely learn how to make engaging videos and transitions.

The key is to find the one that works best for you and your audience!

Organize Giveaways

Whether you're a brand just starting or making a comeback with a product that will blow up the market, organizing a giveaway is a serious marketing tool that'll help you boost engagement and ramp up sales numbers.

You don't have to be a rocket scientist or a professional analyst to know that people LOVE free stuff online. What's more, they love taking part in contests, as it boosts their adrenalin, and it's a valid excuse for being online most of the time.

You should definitely think about hosting a giveaway. It'll do wonders for the person who wins it. And the best part? You'll see people who entered the contest buying your product just because they wanted it so much in the first place.

It's a win-win situation.

Social Media in E-Commerce FAQs

Here are some questions that might have popped up while you were casually scrolling:

What Is the Biggest Social Media Platform for E-Commerce?

The biggest social media platform for selling your products and services is Facebook, with a whopping 2.17 billion active users.

Why Is Customer Service Important in E-Commerce?

Customer service is crucial for e-commerce simply because it inspires customers to come forward and share their experience about the product or service they're using. They can ask for help through customer service and receive it within minutes.

How Many Influencers Does One Brand Need?

It's important to note that there's no such thing as an ideal number of influencers when it comes to marketing. Before hiring someone to promote your product or service, you must sit back and determine your budget, goals, and growth stage.

What is social media e-commerce marketing?
Social media e-commerce marketing is the process of promoting and selling products or services online via social media platforms. It involves engaging with potential customers, raising awareness, and driving sales.

What are the primary tactics used in social media e-commerce marketing?
The main tactics include content creation, social media advertising, influencer marketing, and user-generated content. These strategies are used to engage the audience, enhance visibility, and drive traffic to e-commerce websites.

What are the ways brands use social media platforms for e-commerce?
Brands use social media for e-commerce by building brand awareness, using it as a main advertising tool, and offering customer support. These platforms help in reaching a global audience, offering instant customer service, and fostering direct communication with consumers.

How does content creation work in social media marketing for e-commerce?
Content creation in social media marketing involves identifying trending topics, deciding on the format to present the content, and crafting a strategy for content production and distribution. It requires significant time and effort but can yield excellent engagement and visibility for brands.

What is the role of influencer marketing in social media e-commerce?
Influencer marketing involves collaborating with popular individuals on social media to promote products or services. Influencers, having built substantial trust with their followers, can effectively sway consumer behavior leading to increased sales and brand awareness.

How effective is user-generated content (UGC) in social media e-commerce marketing?
UGC is highly effective in social media e-commerce marketing. It fosters community engagement and provides potential customers with authentic, first-hand experiences of the products or services, thereby boosting credibility and fostering trust.

What does building brand awareness via social media platforms entail?
Building brand awareness on social media involves consistently creating and sharing relevant, valuable content that resonates with the target audience. This increases the brand's visibility, establishes its identity, and helps attract potential customers.

Why are social media platforms important for customer support in e-commerce?
Social media platforms have made customer support more accessible and efficient. Customers can now easily reach out to brands with their queries or concerns, expect timely responses, and share their feedback, enhancing the overall customer experience.

What are the top tips for driving e-commerce sales through social media?
Key tips for driving e-commerce sales through social media include posting content frequently and at optimal times, choosing the right platform based on your audience's preferences, and organizing giveaways to boost engagement and increase brand visibility.

How important are giveaways in social media marketing for e-commerce?
Giveaways are highly effective in social media marketing as they attract a lot of user engagement. They generate excitement among users, enhance brand visibility, and can lead to increased product sales, as people who enter the contest may end up purchasing the product.

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