Facebook Ecommerce: The 5 Step Selling Guide

The first step to successfully selling and promoting your products on Facebook is to setup a Facebook store. Once this has been setup you can use the functions within Facebook to drive customers to your shop. Follow these 5 social selling steps to success:

1.       Choose Your Brand Personality

When determining your social personality you should consider whether your posts are going to be lighthearted and humorous, inspiring, thought provoking, or informative. TO determine what time of brand personality is the most effective for you, look to your current brand’s image and the way you interact with customers. This will point you in the right direction of why your social personality should say about your brand. Once you have decided which posting will engage the best with your audience be sure to stay consistent with that personality.

2.       Interesting and Engaging Posts

This area can sometimes be a bit more complicated as it can be difficult to always come up with the right material to post for your business while still remaining true to your personality. One thing to always keep in matter no matter which brand personality type you are using is to always try to include an image or a video with your post. These are more interactive for users and create more opportunities for them to like or share your post which will then be visible to an even wider audience. Studies have shown that images with human interaction are particularly successful; keep that in mind when you are developing your posts.

Another way you can create interesting posts are by using questions to encourage your customers to engage with you on your Facebook page. You get more engagement from your fans while also finding out with products they prefer. When your fans are commenting on questions or even just giving general feedback be sure to respond to them so they know you value their opinion.

3.       Promote Your Shop

When you are posting images and comments about your products always post a link back to your shop. This makes the product easy for customers who are interested to find and purchase. To find the quick link for your products within your Facebook shop you can go into the admin panel and click on the My Products tab and from there you will see Facebook and Twitter icons that will allow you to promote specific products on either of these social channels.

Promote your store by linking back to your Facebook shop in general by going to the Settings tab in the admin panel and then selecting the Promote My Store feature.

4.       Create Special Offers and Discounts

Fans and customers can be very loyal to a brand when they feel that the loyalty is reciprocated. Make them feel appreciated by offering them special offers and discounts on products. This can be easily promoted directly on your Facebook fan page. There are also Facebook daily deal apps available for your fan page that will offer discounts for a limited time only to your fans. This app creates an exclusive offer for your friends and shows them that you value them as fans and customers.

5.       Track Your Success

Facebook has an analytics system built in that allows you to track your successes. This system is known as Facebook insights and it is located at the top of the admin panel of your Facebook fan page. Facebook insights track your likes, reach, and social engagement.

In the Facebook insights panel you can spend time evaluating your posts to see which types of posts received the most comments, likes, or shares. You can also use this area to determine which types of special offers or discounts drives the most sales. In this section you will also be able to see how many page visits you received during the time period and what types of people are interacting with your store.

Are you already selling on Facebook and using other methods to promote your products? Let us know what works for you!

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Creating Successful Facebook Ads

xfacebook-shop.png.pagespeed.ic.E-s4KD6bmOFacebook can be an effective tool in reaching your audience if you know how to maximize Facebook ads and use them correctly. You can drive this traffic to multiple locations such as your Facebook page, your website, or your Facebook store.

It is important to note that you have news feed ads and the right column ads available to you. The right column ads are paid ads that show up on the far right side of the page. When you distinguish your target demographics, Facebook uses this information to target Facebook users that would be the most interested in your products or services.

News feed ads are more visible to your consumers because they are showing up in their news feed. This can make them more valuable to your business as they are more likely to get seen by the consumer than the right column ads.

Whether you decide to create a news feed ad or a right column ad you will still need to have a Facebook page that promotes your business. Once you create the business Facebook page you are then eligible to create either type of ad. Make sure that you don’t neglect the business page you created especially if you are driving traffic back to your Facebook page.

Facebook-Like-Button-150x150There are some benefits of the newsfeed ad:

  • As mentioned above more visibility
  • Larger ad for more content
  • You can include a larger image with your ad

When creating your ads be sure to have the text and images well prepared before implementing the ad. Be sure that the main points of your message are in the top of the content. If you have any special offers or discounts on products or services the top area of the ad is the best place to showcase this deal. Any time you are offering a discount there is a high incentive for consumers to click on your ad.

Facebook ads are an effective way to drives sales and they can be directed to any landing page. You can direct them to your website, your Facebook shop or any other ecommerce site. If you are looking to direct them to your Facebook store you can use the smart links in the app to promote your products. You can pull these links from the “promote” feature in the app that is located under the product listing or under the settings tab in the mobile settings area. You can see this area pictured below.

ST_link

Both types of Facebook ads are highly targeted and you can use this to reach the audience with the highest potential to convert. These ads offer a variety of demographics, make sure that before you develop your ad you are well versed in the demographics that make up your best target audience.

When developing your Facebook ads be sure to use several types of ads with different ad copy and images to determine which ones are the most effective. There are no set guidelines to determining what types of ads are the most effective for your business, try out a few and see what is the most effective for you.

Already using Facebook ads? Let us know what works for you!

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Add e-Commerce to your WordPress™ site with ShopTab

wordpressWith almost 20 million downloads worldwide, WordPress is a favorite of bloggers, website creators and developers.  Many of these online sites start with a small audience and then grow into hugely successful sites.  A desire for many of these users is to sell products or services within these sites.  At ShopTab, we hope to offer a distinct and valuable solution compared to a simple plug-in or the complexity of integrating a complex e-commerce cart software.  Our unique idea – how about the ability to add a store to your WordPress site from your Facebook Fan Page – two stores for the price of one!

Benefits of using ShopTab with WordPress

  • Proven commerce offering since 2009 operating in over 70 countries
  • Simple to deploy in both Facebook and on your blog or website
  • Single location to manage all of your e-commerce options
  • Use of the world’s largest and most secure payments platform
  • The unique ability to sell via a website AND in the world’s largest social platform

While you could create a store for your WordPress site within ShopTab and not place it in Facebook, that would be crazy since it was originally built for creative social selling!  Leveraging your website audience in conjunction with your social presence in Facebook is an extremely powerful marketing option and ShopTab provides the best tools to help you do this.

With ShopTab’s Expanded or Ultimate Facebook Store packages you have the ability to create a store in our admin interface and immediately place it on your WordPress site.  Just follow these simple steps to activate your WordPress commerce solution:

  1. Once your products are created, grab the code from ShopTab: Just pick the code from your admin interface under the Settings tab.wordpress 1
  2. Select the code (HTML or iframe) that will work best for your site – WordPress requires a plug-in to support i-frame code.wordpress 2
  3. Create a new page for your store within your WordPress site. The plug-in to support iframes should create a way to add the iframe code at the bottom of the new page you are creating. Place the code and update the page.wordpress 3
  4. Your store should be ready to go. The standard ShopTab Facebook Store template layouts are 815 pixels wide, so make sure you have a page that will support this width.  We’ve shown how a store would look in the ShopTab WordPress blog seen below or at this link – http://www.shoptab.net/blog/shoptab-store/ .  In the case of this placement, we modified the width and length to make it fit into a custom page.wordpress 4

The magic to selling online is a great marketing plan. Now that you have the product in your stores and your stores set-up in your Facebook Fan Page and blog, it is time to develop the marketing strategy and tactics for your products and services.  Good selling!

You can find more information in the Add your Facebook Store to a webpage FAQ.  Or look for more general information on adding a Facebook Store to any website.

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Google Product Search Changes Approach for Retailers

 

We want to provide an important notice to our Facebook shop retailers that have an online shopping website.  A few weeks ago, Google announced that they will be moving to a paid inclusion model of the current Google Product Search which will now become Google Shopping. So in English what does this mean for you? Simply stated you will now have to pay, for what has been free in the past, to have your products appear in the dedicated shopping search engine and Google Shopping boxes. Many merchants submit their product feed through Google Merchant Center in order for their products to be eligible for inclusion in Google Product Search. This can result in higher search rankings and sales.

According to a blog post released by Google, Sameer Samat states that this change will result in a better shopping experience for the shopper by providing these buyers the highest quality data that in turn will create quality traffic for the merchants. Well that just sounds dandy, especially for Google now that they are charging for the service, but is it worth a retailer paying for it is the big question.

“If your keyword search traffic on a particular product or type of products convert at a good ROI, then you can expect similar patterns in Google Shopping,” as stated by Kurt Krake president of Search-Werks. In order to understand the traffic that you currently get from the Google Product Search you will need to take a look at your analytics. Do you see any traffic coming from this area of Google, are they paying customers or just browsing? When you can answer those questions then you will know if it’s worth taking money out of your marketing budget to showcase your products in Google Shopping.

The transition won’t be complete until this fall so you have some time to figure out how you want to approach this situation. Google is also offering incentives:

          Merchants that create product listings by August 15th, 2012 will receive a monthly 10% credit for their total Product Listing Ads through 2012

          Existing Google Product Search Merchants will get $100 AdWords credit if they fill out a form before August 15th, 2012.

The good news is that this won’t impact your product listings in your Facebook store or overall selling in Facebook. Continued promotion of your products, increased engagement tactics and use of social sharing will help to improve your overall search engine rankings through increases in your social authority, potentially off-setting some of this impact.

Successful online retailers need to manage all elements of their traffic to drive sales and obtain a quality ROI on marketing activities for their website and Facebook shop. At ShopTab, we value your overall online success and don’t want to see our clients hit by an unexpected drop in quality referrals from Google. Many of us will see just how reliant we are on Google Shopping for traffic later this fall when they make the change.  Have you taken a look at your analytics to see if this will impact you?

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Effects of Mobile on eCommerce and Social Shopping

Last month we discussed a Social Shopping Study on eCommerce, Social Media, and Customer Reviews from the e-tailing group. Today we would like to take a look at the same study’s insight into the mobile impact on social shopping.

It is undeniable that social shopping and mobile are two of the largest and fastest growing segments of eCommerce and digital engagement today. It only makes sense that the two would find a way to converge and leverage the strengths of one another. So far we have only seen the tip of the iceberg, but we anxiously anticipate what innovative developments are soon to be at our fingertips.

Their recent study surveyed 1,004 adults, with the majority falling between 35-44 years old with a nearly even split of men to women.

The survey found that 92% of users purchase products online at least once a month and that nearly 75% spend over $500 a year online. These figures indicate a strong rise in eCommerce over the last few years, but where does mobile come into the picture?

While the mobile commerce is still looking to define itself, the idea of purchasing products from a mobile device is becoming less foreign to smartphone users as the mobile web becomes heavily integrated into their everyday lives. In fact, Forrester predicts mobile commerce to grow to $31 Billion by 2016.

Currently consumers most frequently use their mobile devices for product research/reviews as well as interacting with in-store marketing such as QR codes. The overwhelming majority of mobile use relative to shopping in centered on competitive pricing through search and third party applications. Smartphone users love to use their phones to check prices on the go to quickly ensure they are getting the best deal. This could mean good news for your eCommerce store as the mobile industry continues to grow.

When asked about the ways consumers are using their mobile phones for researching products and businesses online, surveyors responded as follows. Roughly one third of consumers use their phones for checking sales & specials, store information (hours, locations, map, etc), product ratings and reviews, and price comparison through Amazon.com. 31% of consumers used their phone to browse online stores looking for products of interest while 24% did so with the intent of purchasing a product.

These figures tell us that currently the majority of mobile devices are being used by consumers to research a product or store rather than to make purchases. However, with 25% of consumers willing to purchase online we can definitely mark a major leap for mobile commerce. As the mobile web continues to develop and more stores expand their mobile presence, eTailers can expect to see a big rise in mobile visitors and sales.

Surveyors were also asked how they use their mobile phones for research while in a brick and mortar store. The results showed that the majority of consumers are using phones to access promotions, compare prices, read reviews, and interact with in-store marketing such as QR codes. This indicated the growing importance of social engagement on your website through customer reviews and interactive marketing.


Today’s shoppers are smarter than ever. They are knowledgeable about the products they want to buy and have the resources to ensure they get the best deal and the best service. In order to win the sale and the customer your business must be an integrated part of their online experience from start to finish. Social engagement has never been so important to eCommerce success, and the future shows no sign of that slowing down.

Ensure that your businesses is doing everything it can to connect with users by expanding your web presence, incorporating reviews into your site, leveraging promotions, and increasing social engagement through mobile and social selling on Facebook. It is important for consumers to see your  products/services and  from a variety of channels and to connect with them through reviews before they are fully comfortable making a purchase. This is where the value in a social and mobile presence for your business lies.

Let us know how your business is using mobile to interact with customers. Comment below or join the conversation on Facebook.

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Social Shopping 2011 Study – eCommerce, Social Media, and Customer Reviews

New studies from the e-tailing group, with sponsorship from PowerReviews, have produced some interesting insight into how users are leveraging social shopping, social media, and review sites to shop smarter. As the eCommerce market continues to change and adapt to its surroundings it is important to stay current to best reach your customers in the most effective ways.

In this recent study 1,004 adults were surveyed, with the majority falling between 35-44 years old with a nearly even split of men to women.

Social Shopping Demographics - Age of Surveyers - ShopTab

Those surveyed were asked about their online shopping habits in great detail. It was found that 92% of users shop online for a product at least once a month. This indicated that eCommerce is on the rise as more and more people become more familiar and more comfortable with buying products online. In fact, online shopping has grown quite substantially from 2010.

Social Shopping Demographics - Online spending Habbits - ShopTab

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ShopTab eCommerce Cart Review – InstanteStore

There are so many online shopping cart options for today’s entrepreneurs and business owners to choose from. ShopTab features reviews of popular and recommended online shopping carts, interviewing the featured cart’s developer, to provide an opportunity to learn about why their cart may be right for your business.

The InstanteStore shopping cart software is owned by eSolved MSC Sdn. Bhd., a company based in Penang, Malaysia. InstanteStore was started up by Charles Tang way back in September, 2001. Charles’ first foray into online selling was his “online store” selling mobile phones in 1999 which was basically a very simple sales website with “Add To Cart” buttons to let people buy. That simple store became a great success within a span of several months and was sold off to a larger competitor. He hasn’t looked back since and started several highly successful online stores before launching the InstanteStore shopping cart software in 2001.

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ShopTab eCommerce Cart of the Week – Miva Merchant

There are so many online shopping cart options for today’s entrepreneurs and business owners to choose from. Each week ShopTab features one online shopping cart, interviewing the featured cart’s developer to provide an opportunity to learn about why their cart may be right for your business.

This week ShopTab sat down with Rick Wilson, the President and COO of Miva Merchant. He has been with Miva Merchant for over 10 years. Wilson started out as Director of North American sales back in 1999, and moved up to VP of Sales and Business Development in 2002. They sold the company to FindWhat, now MIVA, back in 2004 and then Wilson and a small team re-purchased the company from FindWhat/MIVA in 2007. The company is now based out of San Diego, California and is a privately held company. Wilson along with CTO and intellectual father Jon Burchmore and mutli decade technologist and CEO Russ Carroll have helped grow Mive Mercant to great success. (more…)

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ShopTab eCommerce Cart of the Week – VevoCart

There are so many online shopping cart options for today’s entrepreneurs and business owners to choose from. Each week ShopTab features one online shopping cart, interviewing the featured cart’s developer to provide an opportunity to learn about why their cart may be right for your business.

Most recently, ShopTab was able to speak with Vince Pichpongsa, a director of Vevo Systems Co., Ltd based in Bangkok, Thailand. Pichpongsa has been involved in software development and IT business for more than 10 years. His recent works have helped contributed to the development of VevoCart, the main product of Vevo Systems Co., Ltd that was first launched in 2006.

VevoCart is a complete ecommerce solution with intuitive and user-friendly interface. The software is written in C# with ASP.NET 2.0 and 3.5. It is easy to use and understand by the merchants. Its software architecture is designed to be easily customized and understood by even the most novice of internet users. (more…)

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ShopTab eCommerce Cart of the Week – Squirrelcart

There are so many online shopping cart options for today’s entrepreneurs and business owners to choose from. Each week ShopTab features one online shopping cart, interviewing the featured cart’s developer to provide an opportunity to learn about why their cart may be right for your business.

ShopTab recently had the priviledge to interview Jamie Whitney of Squirrelcart. Squirrelcart was launched in 2002 as a self proprietorship. Whitney functions as the owner, developer, support tech, sales manger, marketing manager, and janitor all in one. He has developed a cart that is very customizable and easy to use. Squirrelcart will even generate the HTML for all of your store’s pages based on the built in templates provided or allow you to fully design the layout with HTML yourself. The  (more…)

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