You probably know that retail is the sale of goods to users, not for resale, but for consumption by the purchaser.
But do you know why this industry is so important for marketers?
Retail businesses are important because they are the final link between manufactures and consumers. These businesses have the vital job of making the purchase of goods easy for consumers. There are several ways to do this, but one of the most important in this day in age is the use of social media – specifically social listening. This can happen in two important ways.
1. Listen to Questions and Concerns.
Social networks give retail brands the opportunity to form a relationship with the customers. They can do this through engagement and customer service. With every new product, service, store or sale, a company is likely being discussed on social media. Social media users value immediacy and expect quick responses. When they have a problem or a question, they want an answer – and fast. Retailers can help consumers have a positive experience and lead them toward a sale (and another sale) by answering their questions and helping them when they have a problem. They can make consumers’ shopping experience much easier by telling them what they want to know before making the purchase.
If customers are left in the dark and have unanswered questions, it is likely that you won’t make the sale. You know what they say, “Make a friend first and a sale second.” Retailers can begin doing this by monitoring social mentions across all networks.
2. Listen to What People Want
Along with listening to customers’ questions or concerns, retail companies also have the opportunity of listening to what they like and delivering more of a similar product/service. Social media tools give retailers the opportunity to personalize the consumer-seller experience. This is becoming especially important in the use of social ads.
Last year during the Christmas season, I was searching for a watch to buy for my dad. I had Googled “watches,” looked on Amazon, looked on websites, everything. All of a sudden, I started seeing ads on social media for watches. It made my shopping so much easier! I was much more likely to click on the ad because it was something I was actually looking for. Plus, I found a watch I liked and ended up buying form from one of the ads.
Retail companies can benefit from this greatly. As they personalize their content and make shopping easier for consumers, they are more likely to get a sale.
Social media and social listening are great ways to interact with your customers and learn what they really want. You can make your customers’ shopping experience much easier – but only if you’re listening.