How To Integrate Social Media Into Your Ecommerce Site: A Complete Guide
The importance of social media in ecommerce cannot be overstated.
Almost three quarters of people in the US use social media, most of whom check their accounts daily. In addition, many users browse social media with buying intent in mind. Here are some of the most striking benefits of incorporating a strong social media strategy into your site:
- Your visitors will get social proof, which is one of the most powerful forces for ecommerce
- Your website will constantly be updated with fresh and dynamic content
- Your customers can become your brand advocates, promoting your brand on your behalf
So, how do you apply social media to your site? Here is a guide on how to do so, along with best practices and top tips.
Add Social Media Buttons To Your Site
This is the most important way to link your website to your social media channels, and vice versa. Potential customers will easily be able to visit your Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest accounts if you have a button on your website inviting visitors to check out your social media pages.
Here are the golden rules:
- Include a button for each and every channel you are active on, and do not include accounts that are not meticulously maintained.
- Add the buttons to your header and footer, and make sure they appear statically on every page.
- Choose buttons that are just the right size. If they are too big, they are a distraction and if too small, they could be missed.
Every ecommerce builder on the market will have an add-on or app for social media buttons, and you can find one through a simple search on any app store - Zotabox is a great example. Its Social Sharing Buttons app is available on WordPress, Shopify, and others in order to provide a store owner with a complete toolkit for social buttons and sharing options.
Use Social Sharing Buttons
It is one thing to place your Facebook profile button on your site, it is another to make it shareable. Everyone knows that word of mouth is the strongest method of marketing, and sharing buttons are the online version of that concept, enabling people to instantly share websites they like with their friends.
If you do not apply social sharing mechanisms on your site, a user will have to copy and paste your link. Eliminate this extra step by enabling them to share with one click, quickly and with no hesitation.
In the world of ecommerce, it is highly recommended to add social share icons to product pages as well. However, pay attention to these points:
- Make sure the buttons are not too big, so as to not distract the customer from completing the purchase.
- Be sure to use the correct social media channel; for example, if you are selling handbags, Instagram might be a better choice than Linkedin.
- Make a test to see how the product is shared, and tweak your plugin or app if needed. Your product name and image should appear clearly when shared, along with all other relevant information and a link leading back to the product.
Add A Social Feed To Your Homepage
This is a great way to bridge your website over to your social media framework, in order to offer visitors a glimpse of what it would be like to follow you.
There are several other reasons why this is such a powerful feature:
- It livens up your website by showing a dynamic and instantly refreshed feed.
- It gives your visitors social proof, while they are still on your site. For ecommerce sites, this feed can be even more important as it can push someone to make a purchase.
- It saves users one step, by allowing them to get an idea of your social presence without having to login to their social media accounts.
There are many plugins and apps you can use to embed your social media account into your website such as Juicer, EmbedSocial and Taggbox.
Use Branded Hashtags And Leverage The Power Of User-Generated Content
For potential customers, there is nothing quite like seeing an authentic review from a real person. This kind of validation alone can make an ecommerce store a success. One way to get your happy customers to share their experiences is by creating a branded hashtag. Using it, customers will be able to share photos and feedback that will appear on your site.
The beauty of this method is that you are encouraging two important aspects of your marketing efforts:
- Social Proof for your potential customers
- Engagement for your existing customers
Use a catchy, short hashtag (ideally up to 11 characters) that you can see yourself using long term, and stick to it in order to build your online presence.
Apply Social Logins
Have you ever visited a site and had the option to login with your Google or Facebook accounts? This is called “social login” and it enables users to use existing information from a social media account, instead of creating a brand new set of credentials.
This can be extremely helpful for ecommerce store owners for several reasons:
- Quick and easy registration for your customers
- Less cart abandonment as login is carried out upfront
- Less bounce rate as a result of being faced with a sign up form
- Social logins provide you with more customer data for targeted marketing
- The emails you will capture are real and validated
Embedding your social media accounts into your ecommerce site creates a wealth of important benefits including social proof, engagement, and better conversion rates. Every website builder you can think of offers a variety of plugins and extensions in order to help you embed your social media into your site using the methods above - check out the app store of your choice to find the best ones for the job.