Starting your online business with social media

Starting your online business with social media

How can you kick start your online business with social media?

When starting up a new online shop, finding the right products to sell to the right customers is a big part of the process. So is choosing the right shopping cart software system and deciding how you will manage your stock. But how will you get your business going once all the products are loaded and your online shop website is set up? How can you get your initial online sales?
The long term success of your business will be determined by being able to build a base of returning customers who know and trust the quality of your products and will refer you to others. This means getting your first sales through the door quickly to get your new business turning over new customers. One way to get initial sales ticking over quickly is through taking advantage of social media like Facebook and Twitter.

The power of social media

Websites like Facebook and Twitter have revolutionised the way people interact with each other and with businesses. What makes social media so appealing is that it’s easy to use and highly interactive. With over 9 million daily Facebook users in Australia alone, the potential for making connections with your potential audience through Facebook is huge. Social media is highly interactive and fast, so you can almost immediately get a sense of the popularity or otherwise of a thought, comment, idea or direction. You can use it to experiment, interact and refine your overall business’ marketing strategy.
Specifically, social media tools like Facebook can do all of the following for a business:
  • Generate instant traffic to your website – as a click through from your Facebook page to your website
  • Build your brand reputation in the eyes of your target customers
  • Communicate and interact with your target audience directly. It’s like having your own radio station and community meeting all in one
  • Push news and product information out to the marketplace faster and cheaper than through offline methods
  • Help you effectively build leads by using interactive content such as quizzes. Facebook can serve as an incredibly powerful lead generation tool.
Best of all, for an online shop, social media can have a snowballing effect. The more you grow, the more customers interact and the more you grow again. For any Australian online business, social media should definitely be considered as an important part of the marketing mix.

Facebook

Facebook is the largest social media network on the Internet today. Social Media News has recently reported that there are over 12 million Australian Facebook users, and there are 9 million daily Facebook users in Australia. That is a huge potential audience for any business no matter how big or small you are.

Business pages on Facebook for your shopping cart website

Businesses are treated differently from personal users on Facebook, and there are different types of pages you can choose. For businesses the two most common choices for a business account are a brand page or a company page. Which is best for you depends on what type of business you are. If you have an online shop only, you are best with a brand page. If you have a physical shop, operate in a defined local area, are already well known in your market, and are adding your web store as a new marketing channel, then a company page might suit you best.

How can a business use a Facebook page?

To sign up for a business Facebook account, go to the home page of Facebook and click the “Create page” button at the bottom of the page.
create page
For an online shop, the two options to look for are Company and Brand. If you have a physical shop as well as your online store, then you may want to go for the company choice, but for a new or online only store, product or brand might be more appropriate. When you click on the option you want, you get the choice of category that you want to be in, and then can complete the sign up process for your Facebook page.
brand or company page - Facebook

How can you use a Business Facebook page to promote your online shop?

Here are some ideas for how you could use your business Facebook page to promote your website with shopping cart:
  • Post product information like new arrivals, specials and featured products
  • Post information about products coming soon
  • Link to, comment or post industry news – like a mini news blog
  • Interact with your customers – gauge your customer’s reactions, comments, their favourites and potential demand. Or to get quick reviews
  • Posting coupons and other promotions that you are running on your website
  • Post information about events that you are attending or running
  • Sharing links and resources relevant and interesting to your customers
  • Posting links to information that your customers might want to share (the more interesting and unique the better). But make sure it’s relevant and interesting to your customers or it will be seen as a cheap attempt to get interest which could hurt you more than it helps
If you are posting your own content, think about things that others will want to share with their Facebook lists. Videos are a prime example, but if you don’t have manufacturer’s videos and don’t have time to make your own, think about other things that you can post that are relevant to your products and customers that they would find interesting.
What content should you share? It might be a You Tube posting showing an interesting use of your products, an image, diagram, or testimonial that your users might like. Don’t be superficial, put yourself in your customer’s shoes and think about what it would take to get you to interact with your own content. If you wouldn’t share it with your friends, why would they? This is the ultimate test in deciding what to post. Don’t forget that your competitors (who may be selling identical products to you) might be doing the same. So how can you be unique and different from what they are posting? Add your own personality to it!

Other Social Media: Twitter and Pinterest

Facebook is a big part of Australia’s social media landscape, but not the only popular social media tool. Pinterest and Twitter are two other important social media tools for an online shop. Twitter has over 2 million active Australian users, and Pinterest over 500,000 so these are important potential avenues for you to use in getting your product messages out.
How can you use Twitter and Pinterest for your business?
  • Pinterest is all about making pin board galleries of photos that interest you, so it’s a very visual tool. If you have outstanding photographs of your products, or catalogue photos you can use your social media to build interest in your products. For example, show additional images on Pinterest – your products in actual usage, higher resolution shots, or other shots you have of your products that you don’t necessarily show in your online shop. Think of Pinterest as a graphic magazine advertisement for the products in your shop. It’s particularly useful if you make your own products or sell craft and scrapbooking products.
  • You can also gather interaction through Pinterest by encouraging your customers to post pictures of your products in use or repinning your pictures on their own boards, so your images can snowball in popularity.
  • Twitter can help you gain more visitors to your site by posting hot news, trending information and links relevant to your target audience. Twitter uses hash tags which are like “a quick reference subject guide” for the content of the tweet. You only get a small number of characters to do the work, so you need to write a great headline with the right tagline if you want to succeed. You can use Twitter to drive traffic to your Facebook page, or website.

How Ozcart Facebook and social media integration can help

Ozcart is a shopping cart for Australians, but the website gives you the world wide power of Facebook at your fingertips. Here are just some of the ways you can use Ozcart’s social media capabilities to drive your business:
  • You can add a “Like” button to your product pages. Other people coming to your page can see how many other people Liked it, which gives your products more credibility. Over 50% of Facebook shares are product-related so if you make your product appealing enough, you can gain likes to it
  • You can let customers login and join your store using their Facebook accounts instead of having to go through the process of signing up manually. By authenticating with Facebook, they can have an account in your store, getting them through the registration process and back to shopping (or checking out) faster!
  • Ozcart allows you to enable reviews and comments on products via customer’s Facebook accounts – which helps you encourage your customers to review you on Facebook. This is an invaluable way of building social credibility for your products.
  • You can show your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest feeds directly in a fly out tab on your website, giving customers quick access to social proof of the credibility of your online shop. A large number of likes can help overcome a first-time customer’s initial concerns about the legitimacy of your company, and access to your Facebook page just a click away can give customers a connection to you that they know that they can contact you in some way if they need to if something goes wrong with their order or items.
Using social media with other more traditional methods of online marketing for online shops (e.g., on-page Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), submitting to industry directories, etc.), online advertising, data feed outputs to shopping price comparison engines, etc., can help you get your business going and encourage repeat purchasers through your online store.
Ozcart Ecommerce

Ozcart has been in business since 2006 and is an online, hosted shopping cart that you can use for your current or new online store. We offer so many features for the same low price. In fact, we are addicted to adding new ones to ensure that we remain one of the best choices for a shopping cart. https://ozcart.com

1 Comment
  • Data Entry Services
    Posted at 07:00h, 21 August Reply

    Yes agreed your point. Nowadays social medial sharing is necessary to the online business.

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