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How Entrepreneurs Can Master Social Commerce

3 Mins read

Social media has enabled a new wave of buying, allowing consumers to find and purchase products from wherever they’re scrolling. This means small business owners need to maximize their online social presence to attract new customers and make sales.

Despite the dominance of social media, there’s still a disconnect between how consumers and businesses use the channel, especially for commerce. This is largely true for younger generations, who are more likely to shop on social media. A recent survey from GoDaddy revealed that 80% of Gen Z and 75% of millennials believe it is important for small businesses to have storefronts linked to their social pages for easy shopping.

Of the small businesses surveyed, however, the majority use their social media accounts for brand awareness over sales. This discrepancy should prompt business owners to re-evaluate which strategies will drive purchases using social media.

Here are some tips for using social media to increase sales, including having the right channel distribution, making it user friendly, and sharing an authentic brand presence.

Be on the social platforms your customers use

Marketers know that promoting snow boots to people in Hawaii wouldn’t work—their target audience isn’t there. The same approach applies to social media. You need to use the social channels your target prospective and current customers are using to be able to reach them.

Keep in mind that not all social media is created equal, and each generation uses social media platforms differently. For instance, Gen Z favors TikTok more than other generations. According to GoDaddy research, millennials and Gen X prefer YouTube, while baby boomers use Facebook the most. Here’s a more detailed breakdown:

  • Gen Z – 88% use YouTube, 84% use Instagram, 78% use TikTok
  • Millennials – 87% use YouTube, 84% use Facebook, 69% use Instagram
  • Gen X – 81% use YouTube, 77% use Facebook, 49% use Instagram
  • Baby boomers – 74% use Facebook, 58% use YouTube, 33% use Instagram

It’s OK to narrow your focus and invest your time and resources into specific platforms. Remember, your business doesn’t need to be on every social media platform; it just needs to be on the ones that matter for your company and its goals.

Make checkout as seamless as possible

Your customers are posting, engaging, and scrolling on social media using their smartphones, and that’s where they are shopping too.

We already know that both Gen Z and millennials feel it is important for small businesses to have storefronts linked to their social pages for easy shopping. But what else falls into the consumer’s definition of easy? GoDaddy research shows that 85% of Gen Z and 82% of millennials feel it’s essential for small businesses to accept digital payments. Yet, 27% of small businesses do not accept digital wallet payments, including Apple and Google Wallet, both of which are possible payment options via mobile commerce. That’s a problem.

As a small business owner, you should always be looking for ways to provide your customers with an additional level of easy, frictionless shopping at every touchpoint – especially during the age of social commerce. That could look like digital wallets or accessible hyperlinks in social channels. For the social media channels that don’t support hyperlinks in images or post copy, like Instagram, consider using a tool like GoDaddy’s Link in Bio or other apps that allow consumers to buy the products showcased on your main feed quickly and efficiently.

Prioritize relationship-building

In the age of social commerce, it’s not enough to just meet the consumer where they’re scrolling and shopping. You can be on the right platforms at the right time and reach the right people, but it won’t lead to sales if your content doesn’t resonate with your audience.

Social media best practices and trends are always changing, but right now, the biggest one is authenticity. Consumers don’t want to just be sold to; they want to know who is behind the brand or product. They want to connect. Authenticity breeds trust and loyalty, which ultimately drives sales conversion rates.

From GoDaddy’s survey, the majority of consumers (65%) said they were more likely to purchase if they knew the personal story of a business. This doesn’t mean your social media feed or website needs to be solely filled with content about your business’ history and mission. However, sharing details of who you are and what you stand for could make a difference in developing a connection with your customers.

This could look like an “About Us” section in your social media bio that briefly explains your passions behind the product or service you’re offering. Or even bi-weekly or monthly social posts that share a behind-the-scenes look into the work you put into developing your business. Small business owners looking for inspiration for posts or even social media plans should consider using a tool like GoDaddy Airo™, which can create and recommend custom social media content using AI.

The integration of social media and commerce has reshaped how customers engage with brands and make purchasing decisions. If you prioritize finding the right social media channels, optimizing your mobile commerce experience and embracing authenticity, you can more effectively engage with your audience and help drive sales in a competitive marketplace.

Geoff Clawson is the Vice President of Growth at GoDaddy.

Social stock image by Inside Creative House/Shutterstock

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