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Is Social Commerce the New E-Commerce?

Is Social Commerce the New E-Commerce?

Shopping has gone social! Say goodbye to the days of needing five different tabs open just to complete a purchase. Thanks to the adoption of shoppable posts and stories on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and now TikTok, consumers can discover and purchase products without having to open additional apps or browser tabs. The engaging, visual nature of social media is already a dream for marketers, meaning shoppable posts are an added bonus for both brands and their followers.  

What is Social Commerce? 

HubSpot defines shoppable content as “visual commerce in which marketers use compelling imagery (often formulated in a storytelling format) with actionable purchase points or product recommendations, streamlining the conversion path from browsing to purchase.” 

Once an Instagram Business profile has created at least nine shoppable posts, it has the option to activate the “shop” tab on its Instagram profile page. This browsable storefront groups every shoppable post underneath one central location on your profile to provide consumers with a simplified way to discover and shop for products. In addition, each product listing features a commenting function that provides users with the ability to leave product reviews, ask and answer other user questions, and interact with the brand – all providing customers with an ample amount of information to aid them in the decision-making process. 

When using Instagram’s social commerce features, posts can have product tags that highlight items from your catalog directly in images and videos, allowing customers to easily tap and learn more about your product. Plus, it’s easy to reach new users with boosted posts and ad campaigns that utilize product tags.  

Furthering Your Brand’s Story 

Social commerce provides a unique storytelling opportunity for your brand by showcasing content relevant to your brand’s personality featuring your products or services. When users post photos that feature shoppable items, brands can be tagged using shoppable functions through your shop, customizable collections, or product detail pages. These candid posts not only provide brands with User Generated Content (UGC) but also provides brands with organic publicity that demonstrates the product being used in its natural state. This helps customers visualize and interpret the fit and functionality of products – especially within the fashion industry. 

Adding Convenience to the Customer Journey  

The integration of social media and e-commerce on social media provides users with a seamless all-in-one social shopping experience. The simplicity of shoppable Instagram posts alone is enough to convert brand-curious followers into customers. By shortening the sales funnel, brands can utilize features like Instagram Checkout to aid in reducing the number of abandoned carts they experience.  

Rala, a local “shoppery” and fellow W. Jackson Ave neighbor, has implemented a social storefront onto their Instagram page. Here, users can easily browse their inventory of curated art and gifts and even make a purchase – all with the click of a button. We’ve got our eyes on the Dolly Parton candles, what about you?  

According to Hootsuite, 75% of Instagram users take an action after viewing an advertisement on Instagram, including shoppable posts. Historically, consumers are already turning to social media for research and approval before committing to a purchase. It’s safe to say social media networks will continue to integrate shoppable features into their platforms for the foreseeable future. So, what’re you waiting for?