Are your online and offline stores separate? Does your Facebook Page feel disconnected from your e-commerce store? Here’s how you can change that.
If you’re like most online retailers, you’ve probably at least dabbled in Facebook marketing. Maybe you even maintain a blog that you post to periodically. After all, if those in the know are to be believed, both are essential for success in the modern online world.
What if I told you that whatever you’re doing here, it isn’t enough? What if I told you that by treating your blog, social sites, online store, and offline store as separate, distinct entities, you’re actually reducing sales? Bear with me here – this isn’t as absurd an idea as it sounds.
“We might be living in the age of eCommerce, but the High Street still sees a roaring trade and a good proportion of your web browsers will go on to convert in a bricks-and-mortar store,” explains BluBolt’s Aaron May. “It’s therefore important to unify your real-life and virtual presences with the inclusion of information that will influence buying decisions in the real world.”
Ideally, the reason you’re maintaining your Facebook page and blog are to generate more leads for your storefronts. You want to get the word out about your brand and bring in customers. And to some extent, I’m certain you’re already doing that.
But you could be doing more.
These distinct platforms are more interconnected than you’d expect. And by tying them more closely together, you’ll create a more positive overall experience for customers. For example, are you doing any of the following?
- Including social sharing buttons on your blog, and encouraging people to “like” your page on your storefront – or simply indicating that they exist in your online store. For example, Shopify offers strong social integration on its own, and apps like ShopConnection further strengthen that integration, increasing social traffic and creating a unified platform that persists between every social network you’re on.
- Posting QR codes in your brick-and-mortar outlet that link to your social accounts, or simply encouraging customers to like you on Facebook or follow you on Instagram.
- Including a map of your physical locations on your digital storefront.
- Creating a listing for your store on Google Places, which includes information such as your address, phone, hours of operation, online reviews, and website.
- Sharing promotions, special offers, and new blog posts on your social accounts.
- Ensuring your branding is consistent and your brand story is the same regardless of which platform a user looks at.
- Ensuring that your contact details are readily available regardless of where a user happens to be.
- Making use of a customer relationship management platform that lets you track sales, protect personal details, and connect all the nodes of your online presence – eCommerce platforms such as Magento offer this.
- Encouraging users to connect with your various services through a single login- ie. their Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
Whatever tools and platforms you use to drive online sales and manage your customers, one thing should be clear – if you aren’t treating them as a unified front, you need to start doing so.