Two online sales strategies for the U.S.: e-commerce and Social Commerce
Updated July 28, 2022
Instagram and YouTube want to improve their social commerce service in the U.S.
The opportunities for selling online in the United States are growing. In July, both Instagram and YouTube unveiled new tools to enable U.S. consumers to make in-app purchases without leaving the social media platforms. The focus is on check-out: offering smoother check-out options via mobile places fewer limits on purchases and will lead to higher sales rates.
On Instagram, U.S. consumers can place and track orders in the messaging section, and sellers can receive chat payments through Meta Pay (Facebook's payment service). Before this shopping feature update on Instagram, companies operating in the United States could sell on social by opening an online store. Still, customers could not place orders via direct messages.
YouTube will instead allow links to purchase products directly from videos. This is a game changer for YouTube, which, let's remember, is the preferred platform for Gen Z in the United States and the ideal place to start a marketing and branding strategy for the US. YouTube's Social Commerce service for the U.S. market was made possible through a partnership with Shopify.
Update March 21, 2022
What is Social Commerce? Here are the benefits of selling on social media in the U.S.
In America, Social Commerce is worth $475 billion: by 2028 it will reach $3.4 trillion with a growth rate of 28% per year
Social commerce refers to when a company sells directly on Instagram, Facebook, or TikTok -- a rapidly growing trend in the United States. In fact, over the past two years, these platforms have developed tools that allow people to buy products without leaving the social network. They have proven successful: each additional step that separates the U.S. consumer from the checkout page moves the company away from the sale while buying from a social profile is almost as easy as putting a "Like" or starting to follow an influencer.
Here are the main advantages of social commerce for selling in the U.S.:
- It involves all stages of the consumer's purchase journey;
- It is a massive market with large profit margins;
- Virality and word of mouth among consumers incentivize purchase;
- The payment process is much faster than that of e-commerce sites.
How to sell in the United States using social commerce
- Choosing the right channel for your product and target audience increases your chances of success. For example, brands that sell to Gen Z American consumers can start selling on TikTok, while Instagram is better suited for selling to Millennials.
- It is critical to keep open communication with customers on social commerce channels. It is through private messages that brands cultivate the best relationships with customers, both before and after purchase: responding late or not responding at all can severely affect sales volumes via social commerce.
- Influencer marketing is a valuable way to create a loyal following willing to buy from the company.
Having a social commerce strategy to sell in the U.S. market can be the prime route to success
Compared to selling through e-commerce, selling through your social profile requires commitment and original ideas. The payoff is worth it, and it is an incredible opportunity: social commerce is the new frontier of retail in the United States, especially for small businesses that want to compete with the big players in online retail.
Article originally published July 2, 2021
The advantages of selling online in the USA
Anyone with a company in the U.S. must take into account the growing number of U.S. consumers shopping by smartphone
By now, mobile is an established sales channel for businesses in the U.S. market. Here are some data confirming this:
- A person touches their cellphone on average once every 10 minutes daily [for a total of about 3 hours and 15 minutes of use].
- Rather than take a break from their phone, one in 5 people would rather be shoeless for a week.
- People experience withdrawal symptoms when they are separated from their cell phones, including increased blood pressure and heart rate.
With these assumptions, it is only natural that selling on digital channels located directly on companies' social media profiles has become widespread. The exciting thing is that this sales strategy in the United States is also incredibly profitable. At the same time, mobile commerce can be a frustrating experience for both consumers and businesses because websites are often not optimized for mobile devices; likewise, mobile optimization is not always sufficient to intercept sales.
Traditional e-commerce is outdated: out with computers, in America people shop on their smartphones
There are many forms of mobile commerce. There is PayPal and Venmo, through which people can send money to their loved ones or pay for goods and services. Then there are online shopping apps, which have the advantage of being able to incentivize purchasing through push notifications. But the most popular shopping method consumers use, mainly Gen Z and Millennials, is through social media (Facebook, Instagram, TikTok). Social media has a global audience of billions of people, and TikTok alone drives users to spend $50.4 million each year.
If you have a company in the United States or if you sell online, an excellent mobile commerce strategy can bring numerous benefits: it is Covid-proof, it improves the shopping experience, and it intercepts omnichannel shoppers
For a company that wants to expand its business in the U.S., selling online through social media offers a huge competitive advantage: 57% of U.S. consumers promote businesses who provide a good online shopping experience by word of mouth, and at the same time there is a 15% of people who shop only on mobile. Remember that running an online business saves a lot of money.
In addition, having a mobile commerce strategy supports shoppers who are becoming omnichannel. A Google study found that 82% of consumers use their phones to look up more information about their purchase before paying in-store and often change their minds. As a result, mobile has the power to intercept and convert more customers if designed for them.
What are the trends in mobile commerce in the United States?
- Prioritize the optimization of the website rather than its design.
- Invest in social commerce because it is expanding.
- Facilitate click-to-mortar [the integration of offline and online].
- Offer one-click payment to increase conversions.
- Use push notifications to increase engagement.
- Create personalized shopping experiences on mobile devices.
- Use chatbots to provide consumers with a point of reference.
- Prioritize site loading speed.
- Create a loyalty program.
- Use augmented reality.
- Mobile commerce is changing the way consumers shop in America. Both e-commerce and physical retailers can harness the power of mobile shopping, offering mobile payments to visitors regardless of where they shop and what they buy.
The success of mobile commerce lives and dies at checkout. Enhancing existing mobile experiences by offering various types of mobile payments, including in-app checkouts, mobile wallets, and e-commerce platforms, is essential to seeing growth in visitors and sales from smartphones.