December 9, 2016
“Sellers who’ve embraced social media are creating new opportunities that totally bypass traditional sales channels… It’s about good selling – using all the tools that are available to you today.”
– Jill Konrath, sales keynote speaker
Social media is a beast when it comes to making sales. As it currently stands, Pinterest has more than 10 million items up for grabs on its site. In September, Instagram declared that one out of three of its 500 million users purchased an item of clothing that was found searching the platform. But despite these astronomical numbers, 85 percent of all social media orders are placed on Facebook.
We know the masses love social media, and folks equally appreciate the ease of shopping from home. When these two forces meet, magic can happen for businesses.
In an effort to boost your holiday cash flow, here are several tools for three of the most prominent social selling platforms around.
Facebook is the largest social network in existence and has implemented a variety of tools that help businesses rake in sales. Outside of the platform’s own in-house services, there are a variety of tools that can increase purchase orders.
Facebook Timeline Contests from Agora Pulse is one such service. This tool allows business owners to run Facebook photo contests, sweepstakes, or quizzes directly on their timelines. The easy-to-use tool picks winners at random for you from a pool of individuals who have liked or commented on the update. Best of all is that Facebook Timeline Contests is free to use.
The Facebook Marketing Tool from Real Geeks is a game-changer at any time of the year. The software, originally developed for real estate agents, pulls data from a business’s website to harvest information needed for creating targeted Facebook ads. This tool saves an abundance of time that would normally be spent manually crafting adverts.
A service that pairs with the Facebook Marketing tool perfectly is the Facebook Ads Compass by AdEspresso. By generating one of the tool’s free reports, business owners gain a much clearer picture about their ad’s performance. Additionally, Facebook user information such as age, gender, location, device, and more can all be compared side-by-side to establish how to effectively optimize ads.
Facebook Live is a business’ best friend; especially during the holidays. Since Facebook has been heavily investing in video content as of late, these uploads are prioritized on people’s timelines and have a better chance of gaining attention. This tool can be utilized to hold exclusive giveaways, flash sales and other awesome discounts to get people shopping on your site.
Instagram is all about images, and brands that do not have a cohesive visual story to tell are typically not taken too seriously. For that reason, the A Color Story app is just what the doctor ordered. The application fine-tunes images for a more experienced and professional look. There are five free filters for companies to choose from, which is more than enough for a definitive look.
Once you have incredible photos to show off, it is best to embed the eye candy on your website to highlight your offerings even further. This can be easily accomplished with SnapWidget. This tool offers users different layouts to choose from and automatically updates with the latest postings.
Constantly uploading during such a busy season is quite difficult. To help maintain your presence, tools like ScheduGram are a life-saver. ScheduGram helps to create a posting schedule so that you don’t have to worry about not engaging followers.
All of this can then be tied together with Yotpo Social Curation, a tool for creating shop-able on Instagram. This service provides users a way to search Instagram photos by keyword and leverages user-generated content by contacting posters to obtain permission to repost their photo; essentially providing social proof for their offerings. When shared, the posts will then feature an “Add to Cart” CTA for easy shopping.
Pinterest is associated with shopping more than most other social websites. And since this platform revolves around images as well, creating visually appealing product pins is a necessity. That’s where Pablo comes into play. This image creation tool from Buffer allows users to easily edit images to make them more captivating. Apply filters, text, sharing options and more to gain increased sales from Pinterest.
To make image creation even easier, there’s Pinvolve. This tool provides free and paid options for converting Facebook images into Pinterest pins quickly and easily. You can even turn the tables and post pins to Facebook via the tool.
But all of this will be for naught if you don’t have a decent Pinterest following. Pingroupie can help build the viewer base your pins need by connecting users to relevant niche groups that would be beneficial for a business to interact with. Simply select a category and Pingroupie will turn back information about various groups, such as their follower count.
With a substantial following now on board, loop88 can help brands create the content that their followers want to see by helping them partner with influencers in the space. Companies like The Home Depot and Verizon have leveraged the services loop88 provides, included promoted pin management, content creation, and campaign analyzation.
Social selling is a big deal these days and with these budgets excepted to increase at least 15 percent over the next five years, it is a wise investment to make. Leverage these tools to help your business gain more attention, and sales, this holiday season.
Which social platform do you gain the most sales through? Which of these tools do you plan to implement first?
Conscious online marketer, web executive, and multi-faceted writer Tina Courtney has been creating and fostering online innovations since 1996. Tina has assisted many clients in maximizing online production and marketing efforts, and is a staff writer for SiteProNews, one of the Web’s foremost webmaster and tech news blogs. She’s produced and marketed innovative content for major players like Disney and JDate, as well as boutique startups galore, with fortes including social media, SEO, influencer marketing, community management, lead generation, and project management. Tina is also a certified Reiki practitioner, herbalist, and accomplished life coach. Learn more on LinkedIn, Facebook and Google+.