Back in 2015 consumer research has shown us that over 70% of consumers are likely to purchase an item based on social media influences. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers nearly half (45%) of digital buyers worldwide said that reading reviews, comments and feedback on social media influenced their digital shopping behavior. And lastly, EMarketer Retail stated 7 in 10 US internet users will use social media regularly in 2017. Gen Xer’s alone are 67% likely to purchase a product from a brand they follow on social media!
What does this mean to small businesses and store sales around the United States? If you haven’t engaged in the social media arena yet, or if you aren’t taking it seriously, you should be. These numbers have consistently risen over the past 5 -10 years. Consumers are used to looking things up on all devices. Now they are asking Siri, google assistant or Alexa the latest information and it’s becoming the latest “hot” trend. There were around 2 million Echos sold in the first nine months of 2016.
Now, incorporate the latest AI (Artificial Intelligence) in Ecommerce at this point isn’t vital. Especially for small businesses that have specific target market strategies. What is important is that a business has a strong understanding of their on-line marketing initiatives. Specifically – social media outlets that have a track record of engagement prior to purchase. This key branding practice is smart marketing. It’s so smart that if you aren’t doing it, it may actually be harming your business today. There’s no need to get on every social media platform out there. Actually, that’s a waste of resources. What is important it focusing on the ones that engage your market segments the most and target your markets. Identifying which channels are most effective. With nearly a third of the global population connected to social media sites, it’s imperative for brands and businesses to engage in effective, creative digital marketing.
Lastly, with so much information out there, if you are trying to engage a potential buyer via online marketing – use a visual! Show them a simple picture. Humans retain more information longer when an image is attached to the information. Hence, why we love what we do. BECAUSE. Great design matters.
By the way, if you are interested in AI, here’s a good read from Q Manning – a contributor for Entrepreneur.