3 Effective Ways to Boost Ecommerce Conversions with Influencer Marketing
Ecommerce is life.
While brick-and-mortar stores are in most part still the main sales drivers, customers are more and more comfortable with online purchases. Everything from diamonds to customized luxury cars are being ordered online, without qualms.
Mobile plays a big part in that: According to Adweek, Google has previously released data showing 40% of online transactions were made via mobile, and Forrester predicted smartphones would be used in the sales conversion process of over one-third of US retail sales last year.
With Generation Z, who grew up with smartphones, now having the means to shop, ecommerce shows no signs of fading anytime soon. In BigCommerce’s annual survey on retail trends, Gen Z consumers responded they prefer buying online. Only 9.6% of these respondents reported buying items in a physical store, and they also spend 8% more of their income on online purchases than other generations. Ecommerce marketing managers would do well to tap into this demographic to round out total conversion rates—and digital marketing, especially through influencers, is key.
Here are three ways to increase ecommerce conversions by applying influencer content to different key points in your marketing campaigns.
FORMULATE A MARKETING PLAN WITH THE JUICE TO LAST
1. Integrate Influencer Content into a Long-Term Campaign
It’s common for brands to contact several influencers at once for partnerships when campaigns are being planned, but there’s an alternative to just having them post once at a certain time. If you choose your influencers wisely, their role doesn’t need to be limited to one-off advertisements. Having them act as brand ambassadors can improve conversion rates for a longer period of time.
One way to do this is to collaborate on a content calendar and have them post teasers or content tailored to hype up their audience for the products they’re endorsing.
Since you’ll be working with them for a while, it means you should choose influencers wisely. Find those who fit your brand’s mission, vision, and lifestyle image, and those who are a pleasure to work with, and a proven track record of getting things done.
SCRATCH THE BACKS (PARTNER FOR INFLUENCER CONTENT)
1. Provide Resources for Shopping Hauls
Instead of sending your chosen influencers products, why not sponsor a shopping haul and give them the freedom to choose the items they buy?
Shopping hauls are great for ecommerce marketing because they hit several ‘genres’ at once. They don’t just showcase the products, but also make it an experience. Similar to popular unboxing videos, a haul can keep viewers engaged with the anticipation of the reveal of the next item. Unlike a simple review, the haul hits several ‘genres’ at once: they not only showcase a mini-review of each individual item they buy, but can explain the entire shopping process on your website, as well as give their audience any call to action you’ve instructed them to share at the end. This can either be a link to your website, links to the products they’ve chosen, or an affiliate link or discount code (if you’ve provided them one). Ecommerce marketing can be even more powerful when used in conjunction with data analytics and web scraping. That’s because it will show different points of the funnel, which can be optimized in order to increase store conversions.
2. Run a Social Media Contest
Have influencers host a social media contest or giveaway to get word of your products out there. Time this well—some of the most successful ecommerce contests tie in with seasonal promotion. For example, Travel Online put together a $49 flight to Fiji that sold out within minutes, another example of social media can be a powerful tool to gain instant exposure to your brand.
Why should you let an influencer host it instead of yourself? It’s a more personal way to connect with their audience, who are most probably your target audience as well. Doing this through an influencer means they perceive a more personal connection to someone they admire and whose opinions they value. Joining a contest hosted by them is a way for both creator and fan to feel more connected. You can have your influencer partners be the one to choose the winners as well—just provide engaging product photography to share alongside their posts for promotion.
RETHINK YOUR WEBSITE DESIGN
1. Host Influencer Content on Relevant Product Pages
In a study by Olapic, respondents felt photos were the most effective form of user-generated content. Plus, 56% of consumers surveyed also said they were more likely to buy a product that was endorsed by a real person. So repurpose the content your influencer partners post to their own channels by attaching the most aesthetically pleasing ones to the product pages of what they talk about. These act as powerful bits of social proof at a glance, whether the content is a video, an Instagram post, a product review on a blog, and more.
This small change in your product page’s web design not only improves conversion but also acts as a handy catalog for the influencers you’ve been mentioned by in the past. Social media feeds move quickly, especially for influencers, so keeping a reminder to your customers that this content exists extends their lifespan.
2. Showcase Influencer Collaborations on Their Own Website Section
Another way to showcase influencer collaborations on your website is to create new subsections dedicated to their work. This is especially effective to improve conversions on product collaborations with them. Interested consumers can easily access what they want to find, and if they aren’t generally interested in your other products supporting their favorite creator can get them started.
If you don’t create brand-new products alongside an influencer, though, you can still create a separate section featuring all the times your products have been seen in the wild. One common way is to embed a feed of content handpicked from a branded hashtag on Instagram.
Marketing is rarely more powerful than when done with the word of a trusted individual. Influencers have turned word-of-mouth digital, and it works. The influencer marketing stats attest to it: 22% of users aged 18-34 year olds have made a large purchase after seeing an influencer endorse it, and the industry itself is slated to be worth billions by 2020. Many influencers work with ecommerce websites and improve conversion rates through giving product reviews, tutorials and discount codes. Don’t feel caged. Change it up every once in a while and your marketing activities won’t grow too stale.