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Product Discovery in Social Commerce: Why You Need It (+ How to Improve and Drive Conversions)

You’ve probably done it before.
A special occasion is coming up, and you don’t know exactly what to get. 

All you have is an idea. 

You haven’t yet figured out the specific product you want. 

So, how do you find something when you’re not sure what you’re looking for? 

This scenario explains why product discovery is critical for the buyer’s journey in digital commerce. 

The evolution of social media makes product discovery in social commerce different from traditional ecommerce product discovery. 

Curious?

Let’s dive in. 

What is Product Discovery?

Guiding a potential buyer to the product they’re looking for can be more complicated than it seems. 

Product discovery is the process by which your prospects and customers find and explore your products. 

This process is executed in a variety of ways. 

For example, you can use text and visual search functionalities, personalized recommendation carousels, and innovative merchandising galleries. 

The goal of product discovery is to show relevant products to each buyer at the right moment. 

Buyers are usually looking for a particular item or just browsing. 

Either way, personalization is the foundation of effective product discovery. 

Shoppers are usually dead set on finding a particular item, or they’re just browsing around. In both cases, an effective product discovery process should be unique to each of your customers.

An exciting trend is that social media platforms have become essential in driving product discovery for brands.

Let’s now explore the meaning of social commerce. 

Social Commerce—It’s Probably Not What You Think

Social commerce is a subset of ecommerce.

It involves using social networks such as Facebook, Pinterest, Snapchat, and other similar sites to facilitate ecommerce transactions.

Everything happens on social media, including product discovery, search, click-to-purchase, and post-purchase support. 

Unlike traditional ecommerce, social commerce happens all in one place.

The result?

Businesses can engage with consumers at every stage of the sales funnel. 

Moreover, social commerce can enhance the shopping experience and is essential for brands who want to increase their sales revenue.

Social Commerce Platforms-It’s more than Social Media

Social media sites have become more than a way to update followers.

Due to the impact of the global pandemic, many businesses moved online.  These businesses used their social media presence to stay connected with their audiences and continue selling their products. 

This move by many businesses prompted major social media platforms to evolve further. 

Here are some of the changes that happened:

  • Facebook launched Shops — This is an e-commerce feature that allows business owners to create a dedicated ‘shop” section on their Facebook and Instagram. Moreover, businesses can create a catalog of products and services that users can browse, share, save-for-later viewing, and even purchase on the spot.

  • Instagram Checkout This feature went mainstream, allowing users to purchase without leaving the app. The check-out feature allows people to buy products without leaving the Instagram app — creating a streamlined, 2-tap process to converting Instagram followers into loyal customers.Instagram check out improves product discoverability and conversion.
  • Pinterest introduced a Shop tab — This created a dedicated space for users to browse and shop in-stock product Pins. This means retailers and e-commerce brands can seriously boost their sales on Pinterest!
  • TikTok —Partnered with Shopify. Tik Tok shopping is now on the horizon. 

The Case For Product Discovery in Social Commerce

When it comes to product discovery, the focus has previously been on traditional ecommerce.

With the evolution of social commerce, this focus needs to shift. The global social commerce market is projected to grow in the coming years.

Social commerce needs product discovery strategies that are specifically tailored.

Why? 

The social media challenge: Social media traffic is often a mile wide and an inch deep. 

It generates easy click-throughs that are minimally likely to convert.

So how do you overcome the conversion challenge? 

It’s essential to understand what works best for the particular platform. 

Pinterest: With the shop tab’s introduction, create pins that match the highly engaged audience’s interests on this under-discussed channel. Using popular keywords or descriptions that match particular products will also help your product discovery.

Pinterest drives product discovery with shop tab and daily recommendations for better social commerce.

Facebook/Instagram: Consistently post compelling product images or lifestyle shoots. Use these elements to provide context for the product or services you’re offering to your audience. lookalike audience on social networks can be powerful for growing brand awareness.

Twitter: This social platform is great for remarketing. Post links that will enable your audience to find products they are interested in.  

TikTok: This platform is an opportunity for ecommerce brands to reach younger audiences. TikTok specializes in rich and diverse short-form video content, which is very innovative. Brands may need a creative content creator to support this channel.

 

How to Improve and Drive Conversions

1. Focus on the channels your customers use most 

A crucial step is to take a mobile-first approach. 

The majority of people will visit social media sites with their phones. When customizing shopping spaces on social platforms or uploading content such as pictures, make sure these aspects are optimized for mobile. 

Also, consider the demographics of your audience. Which platforms are they likely to use? Be where they are. 

2. Consider implementing chat experiences into social channels

The conversations your buyers have with your business are significant. 

Implementing chat experiences can be a critical part of your product discovery. Your chatbot strategy can help your business gather customer insights, generate new leads, and increase revenue. 

A positive customer experience—especially on social channels, can have a significant positive impact on your business. 

3. Move consumers from research to conversionDrive awareness to tools like digital assistants and configurators.

Digital assistants help turn up relevant results when shoppers use synonyms, unconventional or conversational phrasing, and even typos. 

Moreover, visual configurators can help buyers customize products they’d like to buy. 

The result? 

Buyers are more likely to purchase if they like the customized end product. 

Change With The Times

Social media platforms are evolving. 

There’s no going back. Social commerce will only continue to grow. 

This evolution presents an opportunity for product discovery in social commerce. 

It’s time to leverage your social media presence. 

Consider using AI-powered tools such as digital assistants and conversational chat experiences. 

Partner with Zoovu today and join the evolution. 

 

Join our community of 70,000+ marketing professionals, sales reps, business leaders, and executives.

Enda Ndungu is a certified content marketer and Direct Response Copywriter. She is passionate about creating content that moves minds and grows businesses. She is also a personal development enthusiast. Off-the-clock, Enda enjoys fiddling in the creative arts, exploring nature and on-screen dramas.