Social Selling: The Future Of Online Businesses

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"Social Selling" is the buzzword that refers to selling directly through social media networks, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. By selling through social media, you can build better trust and rapport with your customers. 

You can use the idea of social selling to meet your customers where they're already spending time online, and by tapping into their networks, you can help gain trust through customer referrals and recommendations to their friends. 

This area of ecommerce is rapidly growing and changing, so here's a taste of what's going on in the ecommerce world these days. 


The majority of merchants on Shopify are already using social selling to facilitate sales. 78% of these merchants outsell peers who aren't using social media. That number is hard to argue with, and it's likely only going to go up as more people get used to buying through their social media. 

There are a couple of big advantages to selling socially.

1. You can put your products where your customers actually spend their time online.

2. You can build a bit more of a human relationship with your customers. It can feel more like someone is walking into a brick and mortar shop and you talk to them one on one, finding out what they're actually interested in. This helps your customer build trust in your brand and come back to your store for repeat sales.

3. Social selling is the best way to tap into referral marketing -- where your customers come to your store because they heard about it through someone they actually know in real life. This type of marketing builds trust to a degree way above other types. 


Conversational Commerce Through Chatting Apps

Conversational Commerce is the closest we get to talking to your customers directly -- before they buy anything. There are many apps which allow your customers to connect with you directly through chat platforms. The big one is Facebook Messenger, but other texting apps like WeChat and Whatsapp are letting you sell directly as well. 

Figure Out Your Market With Twitter

Because a lot of Twitter users organise the people they follow using lists, you can dig through the Twittersphere and find out what other brands your company is associated with, what your users are looking for and more. An active Twitter account can let you sponsor products with targeted ads and interact publicly with your potential customers. Plus it's a great way to build up some buzz or make announcement for new launches. 

Establish a Presence With Facebook

Having a Facebook business page is almost as expected as having a normal website much of the time. Your business page on Facebook is a great way to set up targeted ads, have a place to post photos, invite people to share their experiences or host giveaway contests, and of course keep up with the 1.28 billion active Facebook users. Careful -- people get a bit skeeved by friend requests from businesses so keep your private facebook page and your business one separate. 

Sell Directly With Instagram and Pinterest

You can put products directly onto Instagram and Pinterest using Shopify's Buy Button. Find out more about selling through Instagram here.


There's sometimes a fine line between engaging with customers online and spamming them. A big Don't-Do is sending strangers unsolicited Facebook, Twitter or Instagram messages from a non-business account. Even with your business account, you want to use tact and common sense, and not to overwhelm someone with messages they're not interested in. Chances are, this will turn them off from your business altogether. 

The idea is to find the people who are looking for your kind of product or service anyway, and contact them when they've shown some sort of interest. This feels more like a friend jumping in to help, rather than a salesperson pitching to deaf ears. Make sure your website and social media channels look credible and professional, and that when you contact people you seem like a human, not a salesbot. You're building up your brand through social selling, and so every interaction can work to build or harm your reputation. 

Quick Tip: Try Kit. 

Kit is a tool you can use to set up your social media and put in the hours a person would do for social selling -- with less hassle and more responsiveness. Check out what Kit is here.


Elkfox is here to help you take your ecommerce store to the next level. Get in touch with us to learn more about how you can use social selling and other marketing tools to boost sales and grow your business.