Over the past two years, small businesses, especially those involved in eCommerce, have faced unpredictable challenges, and it’s taken a lot of resourcefulness for most companies to continue to operate at the same high levels as they once did before.
Delivering on promises to customers has been one of the biggest challenges. Supply chain constraints, production restrictions, shipping delays, and many other factors have made it difficult to manufacture and deliver products on time.
Customers get frustrated when their new sofa won’t arrive for another eight months, or their favorite tea is always out of stock.
Many eCommerce companies do a poor job communicating with their customers and prospects. These companies push for a quick sale but are stuck trying to convince their customers not to cancel delayed orders.
Think about the core guarantees you make on your website, marketing materials, and even on social media. Do you promise innovation, honesty, brand loyalty, or all three?
Nearly all companies would benefit from improving their communications with customers and prospects. Social media offers unique opportunities that can help you keep customers informed, engaged, and happy.
Here’s how you can leverage social media to help grow your business faster:
Company updates on social media can increase transparency
Uncertain times come with unpredictable events. In the past few years, businesses have been turned upside down. From port congestion to product shortages, delays were abundant.
While you can’t use social media to fix delays or shortages, you can use your social channels to keep your customers informed. For example, your eCommerce brand might experience shipping delays. By posting about shipping delays on social media via posts or stories, you have the opportunity to get your update across to your followers in real-time.
Your updates don’t have to be focused on the negatives your businesses might be facing. With 86% of Americans believing transparency from businesses is more critical than ever before, your eCommerce business can utilize company updates as a way to be more transparent. You can use social platforms to inform your followers of new partnerships, new hires, and even new system updates to increase brand confidence and brand awareness.
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Opportunity to easily communicate with customers
As mentioned above, social media lets you communicate with your customers in real-time.
Being active on social media allows you to answer questions, respond to comments, and even actively communicate with your target audience via direct messages (DMs). This is important because customers and prospects are often frustrated by brands that don’t listen to customer feedback.
You can show customers that you value their comments and feedback by staying active. For example, you might have a new product launching soon, and your followers are anxiously awaiting its arrival. You can field questions or comments and take control of the narrative.
Offer a new level of customer service
You can also use social media as another form of customer support. An estimated 67% of consumers now use social media networks to seek resolutions to problems.
You can respond to questions and negative comments and continue to deliver on the expectations you set when the customer purchased a product or service from you.
By providing quality support, you can increase customer lifetime value or CLV by reassuring your customers that they are heard.
Provide a more effortless shopping experience
Do your customers want an easier and quicker digital shopping experience? Creating a storefront on social media can deliver on those promises made to your customers.
Social platforms like Instagram and TikTok give businesses the ability to create storefronts or sell products directly from their platforms. Your followers can now access your store within the platform or purchase products directly from your video rather than redirecting them to your website.
Utilizing this feature creates a seamless buying experience for your customers. With nearly two-thirds of shoppers using social media to shop, you can have your products at your customers’ fingertips. Thus, delivering the promise of a fast and efficient shopping experience.
But remember to keep your company’s brand identity consistent across social channels. You want people to recognize and identify your brand across social networks quickly. Otherwise, you can easily confuse your customers and prospects.
Share product updates
Social media can be the perfect way to inform your customers of product news. Simple photo posts, stories, or behind-the-scenes videos can entice your customers to view your website or social storefront.
If you’re starting a business, especially an eCommerce business, you would be making a critical mistake if you ignore social media. Nearly all of your competitors will be present and active on at least some social networks. It will be challenging to reach your target audience if you don’t leverage social channels.
Offer product or service advice to your followers
Posting your products and company updates can help your customers learn more about your business, but you can also offer product or service advice to your customers. You can post workout advice or tutorial videos if you sell workout equipment. By sharing advice, you can create stronger customer loyalty with your followers and build a connected customer journey.
Share user-generated content to your social media accounts
Your customers are the lifeline of your business. Why not show them how much they mean for your eCommerce brand?
For social media, this is simple to do. Share your customer’s content. For example, Nike’s mission statement or promise to their customer is to “bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world.” When you go to Nike’s social media accounts, you see photos of real people and athletes. By sharing their follower’s content, it shows that Nike delivers on their mission of inspiration.
Use polls to gain customer insights
Asking questions can help you get an insider’s perspective on how your customers and prospects think or feel. For example, you can create a poll on a potential new product or service to test the water on how enthusiastic your customers and prospects might be if it were to come to fruition.
Polling your audience increases engagement on your sites and makes your followers feel involved with your company. Consider poll questions like these to help you understand your audience more:
- What type of content would you like to see on your feed?
- What do you value the most about our business?
- Which product is your favorite?
- If you had to pick, which product would you love to see next?
- What makes you want to purchase a product?
Gain trust through influencer marketing
These people might be influential because they are well respected in their field, or because they have a popular fashion blog – whatever the reason, what’s important is that they have the eyes and ears of a super-targeted niche audience primed to be interested in your business’ service or product.
By promoting products they trust, influencers also help build trust and brand equity for your brand.
Give your customers a sense of relief through discount codes
During these uncertain times, your business can deliver the promise of reassurance. Businesses can use their social platforms to add extra comfort to customers by offering discount codes or promotions.
By offering discount codes or deals, you can add extra incentives for your followers to visit your eCommerce site and even purchase your products. Discounts promoted on social media can reach a wider audience and encourage more sales.
Social media can increase customer engagement and website traffic, and it can also help strengthen your customers’ brand loyalty. If you’ve been ignoring or under-investing in social media, now is the perfect time to rethink your strategy.