Leveraging User Generated Content from social media to improve your online store

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Leveraging User Generated Content from social media to improve your online store

In our digital world, social media is everywhere and all demographics are involved. The majority of people follow brands on social networks in one way or another, and given the fact that 75% of people have bought a product because they saw it on a social media site, there is a huge market to tap into. Within the clothing and apparel sector alone, worldwide eCommerce revenue is expected to soar from $317 billion in 2018 to $475 billion in 2022Given these statistics, it seems like a no-brainer that companies will want to get involved. So how can it be done? Many think that integrating User Generated Content from social media into an eCommerce site and using it as a productive marketing tool can seem like a confusing, difficult process.

In reality, however, it’s quite simple and the benefits of using UGC far outweigh its initial set-up time. Read on below to find out how you can use User Generated Content from social media to create an online community and boost your site’s conversions.

Why do I need User Generated Content from social media?

Although common wisdom states that likes and followers are the key performance measurements to chase on social media platforms – these are really just vanity metrics. The real aim of your social media should be to convert customers and increase revenue. But this link between social media and eCommerce isn’t always so clear. 

Creating a sense of community, where your brand engages with followers through meaningful and useful content, can go a long way in terms of conversions. When your posts resonate with your audience and create a personality for your brand through the use of humour, puns and even a little attitude, you build positive associations between your brand and the product in the mind of a consumer. Hello sales!

And one of the best ways to achieve this is through User Generated Content taken from social media. Check out this post on how to integrate social media into your website to increase eCommerce sales.

UGC is a form of promotion that doesn’t even seem like promotion. Customers hate being pressured and harassed with overt marketing campaigns. UGC instead offers the subtle suggestion from peers, showing them loving a product and encouraging others to try it. 

user generated content social media

This method of marketing over social media is clearly working, as millennials trust UGC advertising 50% more than traditional techniques. And companies are catching on, with over 86% of businesses using some form of UGC strategy to promote their products.

User Generated Content on social media can offer a wide range of benefits to your site. It can help to both increase engagement with your followers and increase conversion rates on your site. Plus, it provides the social proof and customer confidence that creates a compelling shopping experience.

Let’s talk through how you can achieve all of this, starting with engagement. 

Increasing engagement with your followers with User Generated Content from Social Media

Through an active and positive social media presence, a brand can create a welcoming online community for its consumers. UGC is key to this strategy as it demonstrates direct engagement through reposting pictures that consumers have posted, either on the brand’s social media or on its website. 

Let’s look at Ternua, a sustainable outdoor clothing brand. They collect images created by customers and use them across their site in attractive galleries featuring happy moments in nature. This social activation had a clear knock-on effect on engagement, as interaction rates grew 6.16%, and conversions jumped 17.9%.

user generated content social media

This not only rewards customers for posting material that can then be used for a brand’s marketing campaign, but it further incentivises more users to post similar photos, as they will also want to be featured by their favorite brand. 

user generated content social media

This personal connection to a brand also leads to greater engagement, like Shopify have noted, as UGC advertising receives a four times higher click-through rate than any other type of marketing. This is clear to see in the way that Muroexe, a premium accessories brand, used UGC’s dynamic visuals and increased the number of visitors interacting with UGC to 25.38%.

user generated content social media

Brands can use lots of different methods to encourage customers to share more User Generated Content on social media, but some of the most popular and effective ways are through influencers and giveaways. 

If a famous influencer begins posting with a certain hashtag or tags a certain brand, other users will do the same, attempting to share in the popularity and participate in the trend. Giveaways are always effective as consumers are interested in winning free products and experiences. If all they have to do to enter is share a picture with a product or certain hashtag, many will participate. 

For more information on how consumer generated marketing can increase your engagement by encouraging customers to post UGC of your brand.

Converting more customers on your website with User Generated Content from social media

UGC on social media not only improves the perception and visibility of your brand through increased engagement, it also has the tangible benefits of increasing conversions once customers reach your site. This style of content allows customers to visualise how products will look in their own home, or as if they themselves were wearing it. And this shows, as using UGC is five times more likely to lead to a purchase when compared to non-UGC material. And the examples of this success across multiple industries is clear to see. 

Salsa Jeans, a Potuguese jeans brand, used UGC to stay connected to customers throughout lockdown when everyone was stuck at home, and as a result increased their conversion rate by 17.27%, even at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

user generated content social media

But it’s not just fashion! We can also look to furniture brands, like VOX, who increased their conversion rate by 18.76% by curating and showcasing UGC that was already being produced by many of their customers.

user generated content social media

The beauty of these galleries is that when customers click on an image, they’re brought directly to the product that appears in it. This integration allows customers to complete the online journey: from social shopping to converting. 

user generated content social media

Pretty exciting right? Well there’s even more to it then just conversions!

Knocking their socks off with eye-catching social proof

Often the instrumental factor in driving up conversion rates is the social proof that UGC on social media provides. The fact that happy customers are freely posting pictures of themselves using a brand’s products is a resounding endorsement and adds to a brand’s authenticity. 

These reviews seem more genuine as they are visual, rather than written, and as 70% of customers check product reviews prior to purchase, harnessing UGC is an easy way of encouraging people to convert.

As well as UGC providing the benefit of positive reviews for your brand, it can also boost conversions through spurring customer inspiration. 

KARL LAGERFELD has curated a lookbook of UGC, with customers wearing their products, offering outfit ideas and tips on how to style products to potential buyers. 

user generated content social media

This kind of integration helps the brand catch the eyes of customers across the online shopping journey, particularly on product pages where customers are shown images of real people wearing the exact product that they’re interested in purchasing. This is important because it not only provides an engaging level of social proof, it’s also an opportunity for customers to get a better idea of what the product looks and how it works in different scenarios. Learn more about KARL LAGERFELD case study KARL LAGERFELD case study

All of this comes together to create a stand-out shopping journey that cannot be resisted!

Creating a compelling shopping experience that is simply irresistible 

The addition of social proof to your website not only provides the fuel to drive up conversions, but it also creates a more welcoming and enjoyable experience for customers on your website, guaranteeing they’ll return again. Visual reviews by means of UGC provide a fun glimpse of your brand’s social media presence and show real people enjoying your quality products. All of these things are far more aesthetically pleasing than blocks of written text.

Maquillalia, for example, has a UGC integration showing the latest trends on their website homepage. If customers click on a customer image, they are directed straight to the page of the product on show, offering a smooth and efficient experience. 

user generated content social media

To create a widget like this, Maquillalia partnered with Flowbox, Europe’s leading UGC platform, which enables quick and easy UGC integration.

Using Flowbox’s User Generated Content platform, they also gain insightful analytics on how each piece of UGC is performing, allowing them to further shape their strategy. They, and other brands using the service, can move products that are generating more conversions to the front of their widget, and even understand which types of products are generating more UGC.

The Takeaway

With 80 million photos uploaded to Instagram daily, and 30 billion pieces of content published on Facebook monthly, it is clear that content is already available for businesses to utilise. So it’s all the more essential that brands harness the power of UGC from social media as soon as possible.

Curating content generated by customers enhances your brand’s image, increases conversions and creates a far more pleasurable shopping experience for customers. This makes it a valuable addition to your brand’s marketing arsenal.

With the benefits of leveraging UGC from social media clear to see, brands shouldn’t waste time integrating it into their stores. Reach out to us here at Flowbox if you’d like to increase your conversion rates by 15% on average.