The developing technologies from day to day also affect commerce closely. Along with the mobilization of shopping to online channels, different opportunities come about both for brands and customers. In order to meet the growing consumer demand, increasing product diversification is a prominent advantage of online commerce. While product diversity is rising, selling through one channel is not enough like before. This led to the emergence of different sales channels.
While shopping from marketplaces and websites grows e-commerce; m-commerce brought the opportunity to sell through mobile channels to the mobile world. The marketplaces, brands, etc who wanted to keep in step with that, focused on developing mobile infrastructure responsive applications. The highly visited applications of the mobile world begin to take their place in e-commerce. The applications which have the highest traffic among mobile applications are absolutely social media applications. Previously social media apps that are merely used for advertisement were converted into the sales channel, revealing a new online shopping term: S-Commerce. We shared the details of S-Commerce for you in this blog, if you are ready, get started!
According to Semrush’s August 2022 report, since the beginning of the year Facebook’s 13.5 billion, Instagram’s 4.25 billion, TikTok’s 1.77 billion visitors visited. Finding and buying new products ranks 7th among the main uses of social media globally. Around the world, 49.2% of social media users among 18-64 ages, in a word nearly half of the whole community utilizes social media to search for new brands.
What is the meaning to S-Commerce as a term?
By Periscope application which gained popularity fastly in 2015, we got familiar with the live stream term, afterward, this concept developed gradually with different applications. Besides, mega, macro, nano and micro-influencers appealing to a certain audience increase the sales of brands with product recommendations. When we combine these two cases the revealed term is S-Commerce. In other words, we can say selling through live streams and social media channels.
Most of us are familiar with the success of Asian countries in e-commerce. As a branch, S-Commerce is revived by selling products from live stream trend. S-Commerce term first came forward in 2005 by Yahoo! search engine. (Source) The first s-commerce sales began in Korea, in 2008, in 2011, nearly 300 brands achieved a sales turnover of approximately $300-500 million in Korea. (Source) If we think that in our days users are everywhere, we can say that the potential of s-commerce will grow with a serious acceleration.
How S-Commerce Will Affect the Sales?
The strongest power of the internet is to let the individuals to the world with one click. Visitors of there create traffic flow in different areas. All the steps that developed online commerce and brought it to this point shaped that issue. In Wearesocial – Hootsuite 2022 report, customers who shop from marketplaces and websites allowing global shopping yearly spend more than 1,000$ US on average. When it is thought of on a global level these numbers refer to millions of profits.
The biggest reason for preserving the position of marketplaces in e-commerce is the visitor volume that they provide. When you sell from your website, with the correct marketing methods, you can grow your sales and traffic. However, you can reach the volume you want after a certain process. Social media channels are stated in a significant location for advertisement activities due to offering that ready traffic. We are at the point where traffic flows everywhere and no limited space for users. For this reason selling from social media becomes a channel that is to be thought of.
Again in October 2022, according to a report that Hootsuite’s published, after chat and message applications, social networks are a side that gives the highest traffic of web world. When we gaze at the global chart between 16-64 age while 95.2% of the users are utilizing instant message, 94.9% of them utilizes social networks. Search engines and web portals that are located in 3rd line in the report, follow social media with 82.2% rate.
The improvements related to selling through instant communication applications however it is not as mature as s-commerce. Because of some limitations on these applications, brands have difficulties connecting with customers for advertisement activities. However by the flexibility social media offers on this topic, it is expected that s-commece will bear and it happened.
What to do to take place on S-Commerce?
Let’s take a look into from which platform can we sell to start s-commerce. Begin with Instagram Shop which Instagram opens for its users to shop. Instagram, social media application outstanding with visual content, increases your sales by presenting the products that users may like from Instagram Shop section. Facebook which is under the umbrella of the same company as Instagram, has a significant place in s-commerce. From visual to written, many contents are shared on Facebook, above the Store section it supports product sales. With the presented marketing tools helps you to scale your business. Besides, we want to add that both applications develop applications that provide you to sell from the live stream; “Facebook Live Shopping” and “Instagram Live Shopping” This feature merely is open to American sellers for now, however, it will be in service for different locations soon.
The different services presented to American sellers are not limited with that. Active in America, purchasings from Instagram Shop store customers can add products to cart and pay for their shops in the checkout without closing the app. On the other locations, informations like product price, visuals, etc can be displayed however in order to complete the purchase process, customers should be led to another platform.
Due to create a store on Instagram Shop, the first step is to register for an individual account, then it needs to be converted into Instagram Business account. After selecting the activity category that belongs to your professional account you can use your shop account. This feature is free for users, if you sell on Facebook, it is presented as free alike. For Facebook Store, there is a similar process for operation. After creating your account from business.facebook.com/create address, you can use Facebook’s store section as well. Of course, there are some commercial convenience demands from the sellers. Let’s sort them in this way:
- Adaption of sellers to Facebook’s principles is their responsibility, you can check these principles from link.
- Your store should represent your business and domain. The instruction link on the products you sell should be seen to be connected to one address.
- Selling on the markets where Facebook and Instagram support is a must. You can check the list of these markets here.
- You have to approach your customer with honesty and make the correct guidance. It is a need that; indicating your products and money refund principles to customers clearly and reaching them from your website or Facebook or Instagram account.
The biggest consumer population of e-commerce comes from gen Z in our days. You can operate your s-commerce activities from TikTok loved and followed closely by this generation. It is enough to update your account as a “Pro” account. TikTok, which does not only give digital marketing tools for advertising your products but also gives influencer marketing support, is among the shining stars of s-commerce. Similar to that; Livescale, Shopshops live stream platforms are also among the evaluable global platforms for s-commerce.
Except for social media applications, search engines take steps directed to e-commerce. The 2 major instances in terms of shopping channels in search engines that come at the top of the most active traffic on internet platforms shopping channels are Google Shopping and Yandex Market. Firstly, touch on how can we create a seller account on Google Shopping, by registering an account from Google Merchants you can list your products, and using this feature is free. Google says in 2022 published data that users increased 33% of their sales, and there is a 77% increase in sales comes along with advertisement expenses. To create a Google Merchant account, you can continue with this link. After replying to some fundamental questions related to your company your account is ready!
When we handle Yandex Market in our second instance, we can claim that it is a platform that especially empowers the sellers in the Russian market. By the interruption of Google services in Russia, customers in this market steer to Yandex Market for their demands. To sell on Yandex Market which consists of new potentials and opportunities for the sellers you need to create a registry from Yandex.Partner. After getting through some verification steps your account will be activated. Offers services like uploading XML, integrating your sales channels. Yandex Market which approaches sensitively about from where you pull the traffic, the list of allowed traffic channels is like that:
- Content sites, price comparison sites
- Online stores
- Groups on social channels
- Videos and video channels
- Telegram channels
We mentioned some channels above, now we want to share some of the recommendations. Brands should construct themselves according to the channels they sell. Terms like SWOT analysis, GROWTH approach provide datas that guide the sellers s strategically. With its data-based and scalable structure, digital marketing gets a significant role for a lot of sectors. S-commerce that links marketing to sales and strengthens a win-win relationship is a totally new opportunity world. Absolutely to evaluate these opportunities correctly we want to present 3 steps that need to be watched carefully.
- Trust: The topic which customers focus on the top is the trustworthiness of the products or services that they buy. From payment infrastructures to data privacy, in many topics for the brands, being transparent to customers would be beneficial. Handling the dialogue of influences who introduce your products from live stream to their follower in this context would be beneficial as well. Do not forget that social channels are also used for after-sales. According to data My Total Retail shared in 2021, 79% of online shoppings conduct their support demands from social media, in our days it is suggested that this rate increased more and more. According to data shared by McKinsey in October 2022, 40% of consumers regard the brands as more trustable who respond back within 1 hour, 79% of them regard the same for 24 hours. (Source). This is an important detail to empower your trust in relation to your brand.
- Personalization: Apart from in which product range you produce, sell, etc activities, you should know that s-commerce draws attention due to personalized products. Each user of social media desires to feel private. You either by evaluating the coming demands determine your strategies for product personalization.
- Channel selection: You may think s-commerce as the internet’s showroom. Meet your products together with the correct channels will bring you people who have the potential to buy. Besides, the target audience of streamers is also important. If you sell cosmetics products, collaborating with an influencer who mostly introduces electronics will cause a loss of budget and time.