Customer acquisition is essential to a business’s success. But converting existing customers into advocates and repeat buyers can lower acquisition costs. The secret is community. Even if your brand hasn’t previously invested in building community, chances are that your customers are willing and able to align more closely with your brand if given the opportunity. These three actionable tips will set your ecommerce brand apart from competitors in 2022 with the help of community.
1. Create a Tailored Shopping Experience On-Site
The demand for customized products is on the rise with 1 in 5 customers willing to pay more for a customized product. But if mass-customization isn’t in your brand or retailer’s business plan, creating a shopping experience that feels tailored to your target buyer can be just as effective.
Creating a tailored shopping experience on-site with the right user-generated content is a great way to provide a custom feel to customer experience. 80% of consumers claimed to be more inclined to purchase a product online when they are able to visualize how a product looks and feels on real people through real customer photos. Additionally, 70% of consumers agree that brands should provide a personalized shopping experience.
Alo Yoga has personalized its on-site displays with style inspiration featuring user-generated content. These displays achieve a customized experience by allowing customers to not only see how the product looks on their peers, but also give them ideas on how to wear it and what clothing items to pair it with.
Many well-known brands as well as smaller brands have already adopted UGC onto their site to enhance customer acquisition, and we can expect this trend to continue as customers increasingly prefer personalized experiences. Customized personalization can enhance brand loyalty and make the shopping experience more interactive.
2. Employ Augmented Reality (AR) to Provide a Richer Shopping Experience
The population of smartphone augmented reality users is anticipated to surpass 3.5 billion by 2022. And it is also estimated that 95.1 million people in the U.S. will use AR on a device at least once monthly by 2022.
A considerable challenge of online shopping is that shoppers are not able to have a full sensory product experience. When you shop offline, you can try on clothes or sit in a chair to determine whether or not you want to buy them.
This is where Augmented Reality comes in. This can help marketers provide their customers with more profound and complete information about their products without them having to leave their homes. It can also serve as a critical engagement point for tech-savvy consumers.
AR is increasingly being adopted by brands across a variety of industries. Jones Soda Company uses Augmented Reality on its bottle labels to feature influencer and consumer content. Customers can download the Jones Soda app, scan the bottle label with their phone camera, and then watch the “Reel Label” come to life with AR video. Jones Soda collected and permissioned user-generated content for its Reel Labels’ augmented reality experience, enabling the brand to display content for consumers in a unique and interactive way. Employing AR provided a way for Jones Soda to engage existing customers and attract new ones.
AR, if used correctly, can increase customer engagement, reach new customers, and reduce returns.
3. Leverage your Brand Community for Product Q&A
Consumers typically conduct thorough research on products before deciding whether or not to make a purchase. In fact, 93.4% of consumers look for social proof through online reviews before buying from a brand they have not previously purchased from.
As an ecommerce business, your brand can maximize customer acquisition by improving ratings and reviews on-site. One way to effectively provide social answers is to adopt community Q&A, where shoppers can ask questions about a product followed by a prompt response from peers who already purchased said product.
Worried you won’t get enough responses? Don’t be. Over 90% of questions directed to past customers receive responses. And, once their answers are received, they can be displayed on PDPs to instantly provide social answers for the next potential customer with a similar question.
Newegg has employed TurnTo’s community Q&A capabilities to provide a community knowledge base and to help inform other customers’ decisions, and has seen an 8x increase in conversion as a result.
Community Q&A can also produce considerable SEO benefits with its search-friendly content, which in turn will help brands maximize web traffic and acquire new customers.