How Your Small Business Can Use Social Media to Boost Sales

blog-1-1

In 2014, consumer shopping behavior evolved rapidly. Shopping online and through mobile devices is the new norm, and the experience has become increasingly more social with platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. These platforms, in turn, have launched new commerce capabilities like the “buy” button.

Related: 12 Ways to Increase Online Sales

These new buying habits provide small business “etailers” opportunities to immediately grow their revenues.

According to Invesp, social commerce is expected to grow and will represent 5 percent of online retail revenue this year, resulting in an estimated $14 billion in sales by the end of 2015. Given those numbers, it’s no surprise that many large retailers are making significant investments in social media marketing, to offer millions of potential customers a seamless, flexible and more personalized shopping experience.

While these large businesses may have significant budgets to spend on social commerce and marketing, smaller-size companies too can leverage the new social trends to drive increased revenue. Consider these five strategies to boost sales in 2015:

1. Get personal.

Social media is a place for genuine engagements with consumers and often these dialogues result in loyal, long-term customers. In addition to promoting product deals, you can use platforms like Facebook and Twitter to share nonproduct-related stories and visuals that will evoke positive emotions and lead to “sharing.” You might also ask consumers to share their stories and insights on topics related to your industry. In doing so, consumers will feel more connected to you and your brand, and be more inspired to purchase from you.

2. Prioritize customer service.

For many consumers, a company Facebook page or Twitter handle is their first customer-service resource and the last thing you want is for unhappy customers to share negative experiences with other followers. To prevent any negative impact on your brand, stay on top of customer issues by responding to all queries within 12 hours and then providing a rapid resolution. If you do not have enough staff to provide this level of service, consider investing in social media monitoring tools. Additionally, when a customer shares a favorable experience, consider re-sharing it across company social channels.