Convince Your Customers with Social Proof to Increase Sales
Humans are social creatures. All our life we strive to achieve social acceptance and comply with the social norms that are in effect for a long time. Our continuous desire to fit within the boundaries set by society influences our decision-making. That’s where social proof comes into the scene in the eCommerce business. People get motivated by recommendations made by their friends, peers, colleagues, and family members to a great extent. Think of yourself. Who would you believe more- a marketer or one of your acquaintances? Of course, the latter one is more trustworthy in any given situation. Social proof like reviews, recommendations, and referrals induce us to see, believe and buy something, empowering the business to sell more.
What Is Social Proof & Why It Matters?
Social proof is the concept that deals with the influence of other people’s actions among us. When a person isn’t completely sure about what to do, he seeks reference of other peoples’ behaviors in the same situation. In eCommerce, social proof refers to user-generated content, word of mouth, suggestions, and promotions of a business, product, or service, etc. all that comes from customers’ end. And, their fellow visitors make decisions based on these social proofs. They decide to buy a product getting convinced by positive reviews and refrain from buying due to negative reviews.
You may have already realized why social proof is important. Let me show you some data, stating the significance of social proof in the eCommerce industry. Over 60% of buyers look for online reviews before selecting a product to buy from online shops. Almost 90% of customers believe online recommendations as much as they trust their acquaintances. 62% of online customers are more prone to buy from an eCommerce website that has a dedicated section for product reviews and ratings. All these facts and figures speak of the far-reaching importance of social proof.
How to Use Social Proof to Sell More
Online buyers can’t feel or touch a product before it reaches their hands after making a purchase. Therefore, they need someone else who already knows the worth of the products they intend to buy online. If a verified purchaser vouch for the quality of the products, it greatly influences prospective buyers to buy those products. Thus, social proof helps business owners generate more sales. Written and visual forms of social proof are most popular among both buyers and sellers. You can feature social proof across your marketing channels to turn visitors into customers. Keep reading to know different uses of social proof in increasing sales.
Positive Reviews & Testimonials
Product reviews and ratings are two major forms of social proof that can affect the buying intent of customers. Positive reviews from happy customers speak of the legitimacy of your business and the quality of your products or services. If you specialize in only solution-providing services, flaunt your website with testimonials from the clients. For this reason, you need to maintain recommendable quality in your products to get positive reviews from customers. Once you get them, leverage this social proof to let your customers know about the excellence of your products.
Blogging has always been an integral part of content marketing. Create informative and insightful blogs to help readers understand what they are looking for. If they find credible information throughout your blog section, they’ll build a relationship with your company and you can build on their trust to convert the visitors to conversions. Moreover, blogs are also important to increase traffic to your website.
Influencers have the ability to motivate people around them, specifically their fans and followers. People tend to accept their words as valid. You can partner with an influencer who is relevant to your niche. Usually, influencer marketing comes in two forms- paid marketing and affiliate marketing. Make use of the social acceptance of these influencers and adopt the right strategy capable of generating the most sales for your business.
Customers may share their positive experiences with your brand across their social media accounts if you can make them really happy. Happy customers are usually vocal about their love for their favorite online stores. Encourage them to mention your website and social media handles when talking about you across online platforms. This type of social proof works like magic to increase sales. At the same time, unhappy customers can cause great harm to your business if you provide them with bad experiences. So, be careful to address the needs of each individual customer.
Humanization of products plays a pivotal role in shaping the perspective of customers about particular products. People want to see how a product complements humans when they use it. Moreover, like influencers, brand ambassadors also have a social influence on people who know them. When a renowned person talks about a product that naturally adds value to that product in question.
User-generated content (UGC) refers to the content that is produced entirely by users devoid of active participation of the company. Images and videos are the most effective forms of UGC. These pieces of content have the potential to encourage a large audience to buy from you. Since UGC tells about the hands-on experience customers have with a brand, they are free from biased promotional activities. No matter what platform you use- an enterprise eCommerce platform or a typical eCommerce platform, add a review section to publish UGC. This form of social proof helps users see, believe, and buy a product.
Subscriber, Like & Follower Count
People like to join more people. For example, if you see two shops running business side by side, one full of customers and another almost empty, which shop will you enter? Obviously the first one. Likewise, if you leverage the number of your page likes, profile followers, and channel subscribers, more people will join the crowd and make your connections even bigger. It’s better to flaunt these counts once you have a notable amount of followers and subscribers. Otherwise, they’ll demotivate people to join you since you have fewer people associated with your brand.
Social Media Engagement
Keep your social media accounts up and running, maintaining brand consistency and conforming to standard marketing practices. Keep all your posts as engaging as possible. The number of likes, comments, and shares really matters a lot. When people see huge engagement across all your marketing channels, they start to think that this large number of people wouldn’t interact with a brand if they’re not competent in what they do. Thus, they believe in your authenticity.
Awards & Certificates
People easily trust institutional recognition such as awards and certificates. Awards mean that you’re approved by a third party because of your outstanding performance in a particular field. The level of trustworthiness reaches a whole new height if those awards and certificates come from reputed and internationally recognized quality assurance agencies like ISO. Moreover, every region has some trustworthy awarding agencies. Try to grab a few of these regional awards and certificates to gain the trust of your target audience. If you provide quality products or services and maintain a strong liaison with these agencies, you’ll be awarded what you deserve in no time.
Print media, TV media, radio media, and web media are the major forms of media in recent years. All these have a strong impact on peoples’ thought processes. For example, if a newspaper covers news about your products and services, maintaining a critical tone without sounding promotional, people will believe it without a second thought. Try to maintain good relationships with media agencies so that they publish news about your events, product introduction, social works, promotional offers, and more. Make sure you’re doing well enough to get featured across different media.
Social proof can do wonders for your business by increasing sales to a substantial amount. But we are talking about only positive aspects of social proof. What if you get bad reviews and a negative vibe from customers? Well, you have nobody to blame except yourself. If you emphasize providing good products and customer service, you’re likely to get positive feedback from happy customers. And this social proof will ultimately help you generate more sales and revenues.
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