People are getting more comfortable with the idea of online shopping. This could be attributed to various factors such as busy modern lives, longer working hours, ability to browse products from the comfort of one’s home, and wide range of options available, thanks to international shipping and so on. While all this sounds good and easy from a consumer’s perspective, the seller finds the going tough as the company faces competition from several online and bricks-and-mortar stores, targeting the same audience.
Hence, it becomes imperative for the seller to use all available media and reach out to prospective buyers. As the famous proverb goes ‘Out of sight, out of mind’, the seller’s place is lost if the company is not in the ‘sight zone’. While SEO remains top priority and – rightly so- but to beat the competition, online stores need to stay on top of the mind and this is where social media comes into the picture.
It is quite natural that a person would possibly do a search on a product he/she wishes to buy. Some people also trust online ads, and then there are those who trust the opinions of friends and community.
Connecting with target market is essential to remaining at the top of mind. Social media is effective in this regard as a happy fan is more likely to click on your link on Google when searching for products to buy. Also, when your fans/followers talk about the positive experiences they had with you, they influence a hundred or thousands more who are then more inclined to choose you over your competition.
Social media offers the ability to target people with common interests. You can easily identify the particular community of prospective buyers. Here, you are not trying hard to create interest in a person. You are easily associating with a person who has a liking for your product, and is simply looking for the best bargain. With the interest level already existing, the conversion remains a challenge. Thus, social media makes it easy for you by helping you build a community of prospective buyers.
Social Media enables a customer to reach out to the whole world. Hence, a business cannot afford to overlook the woes of a customer. Lack of service, poor quality and poor after sales service will result in a business losing not only existing customers but also prospective buyers. On an average a Facebook user has 130 friends, and Twitter virtually has no limits as it is an open platform. One bad mention on Twitter could possibly make your brand ‘trend’, affecting your online reputation, and turning potential customers against you. That’ the power of social media influence.
While some people love to be the early adopters, most prefer to go by other’s experience. Social media, quite often, works on the ‘let us wait and watch’ attitude in the buyer. When the prospective buyer finds statements from a user that substantiates the claims made by a company, the person is naturally inspired. Tweets and comments on Facebook go a long way in influencing the decision of the consumer. People tweet asking other users about their experiences regarding a particular brand.
Famous Indian ecommerce websites like Myntra, Jabong, and Snapdeal have invested heavily in social media. They effectively use social media to connect with existing and prospective customers, and promote their offers. Social Media helps them monitor customer sentiments and take appropriate actions. On Facebook they engage their fans on a daily basis which keeps them on top of the consumer’s mind.
Social Media In The Driver’s Seat
Social media plays a dominant role in online marketing as it is considered trustworthy and hence reliable. SEO and Social Media go hand in hand. Every online store strives to have a strong presence on social media for a simple reason - while avenues like SEO, Online ads and Email Marketing help you reach target audience, Social Media, along with reach, also plays a crucial part in influencing them.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Rohit likes to travel and but remain connected to his friends and family using social media platforms. He believes social media to be a modern revolution of the current time. He is currently also working for CouponLava (http://www.couponlava.com), which is an online coupon website in India.