Opinion: Why social media ads need to be more ‘Shoppable’?

Social media Shoppable

Shuchi Sethi, AnyTag talks about how social media ads intend to occupy a place in the user’s mind and stimulate their interest to purchase the product making it more shoppable.

Social media has heightened the degree of customer engagement with brands, leading the users of said media to have a more immersive experience with the brand and its products. Today, for every 4 customers of a brand, at least one of them has used social media to purchase their products or services. DTC (Direct To Consumer) brands rely on customer-centric technology such as social media, which is why innovative strategies such as shoppable ads, influencer posts, etc, occupy a profitable component in these brands’ marketing mix. (Source: Sprout Social)

Influencer marketing in particular has been revolutionizing the success of social media ads, as the content creators commissioned by brands leverage their own reputation to recommend and promote your products, thereby adding authenticity and unparalleled value to your brand.

Social commerce and shoppable content

Social media ads are those that a user can spot while surfing through their preferred media. These ads intend to occupy a place for the brand in the user’s mind and stimulate their interest to purchase their product. Influencer posts A.K.A, User-Generated Content (UGC) also come under the above category, except that they are 76% more trustworthy than branded ads.

Mere placement, however, is not enough in today’s saturated influx of ads on social media. While influencer posts stimulate interest in the users toward the brand being promoted, the statistics regarding actual conversion of this desire to purchasing the product is low. The average Cart Abandonment Rate is 69.57% over multiple industries. This leads to the need for influencer posts and ads to be more “shoppable”. (Source: Baymard Institute)

Shoppable Ads are encompassed under the concept of social commerce, which is the buying and selling of products directly within the social media platform on which the Ad was spotted. These ads are a step toward optimizing the path to purchase for users, which was previously disjointed from the advertisements for the desired product.

Puma introduced a new brand platform with the tagline “Forever Faster.” It designed a shoppable video ad that enables customers to instantly purchase products by clicking on the red Puma logo, which links to another page with further product details. It collaborated with several well-known athletes, including Usain Bolt, Sergio Aguero, Ferrari’s Formula One team, and many others.

The shoppable video ad had a conversion rate of 6.9%, earning 24x more per click than is average in the e-commerce space. Walmart took a step further by featuring its top Christmas fashion pieces in a shoppable TikTok live stream. Viewers could add products to their shopping cart to purchase by simply clicking on them. Similarly, Ariel released the ‘Share the Load’ shoppable video ad campaign, which highlighted the unequal distribution of household work.

Reshaping the Influencer Course

Influencers cure the core issue regarding the social media advertising frenzy, that is, ‘Out of Sight, Out of Mind’. It takes approximately 5 to 7 impressions of a traditional ad for people to remember a brand. Influencer marketing significantly reduces this number, but still faces an issue with improving brand recall value. Shoppable ads solve this problem by negating the need for recall by customers; the domain on which the ads are spotted itself leads to an immediate, seamless pathway to the point of purchase, i.e, the brand website. (Source – Pam Moore, smallbizgenius )

Influencers in the arena of Lifestyle, Gaming, Makeup, etc, are greatly employed for this pioneering movement of more accessible and efficient ads. They stimulate unmatched appetite to buy in users, as they act as promoters and reviewers of the product in question. Followers see people of similar build adorning merchandise and this evokes more trust and certainty in how that product will look on themselves too.

Also read: Opinion: Why gaming audience matters to brands?

Apps that came, saw, and conquered

Pinterest’s ‘Shop The Look’ Pins emerged from the understanding that this app is often used for outfit inspirations and lifestyle ideals. Pinterest boards represent a user’s desires for real life. Pins are tags on Pinterest posts that are hyperlinks to the brand’s website that sells this desired merchandise.

Instagram’s new feature Instagram ‘Shops’ are digital storefronts that are in-app product pages for users to browse and purchase. Influencers are allowed to use up to 5 ‘Product Tags’ on their promotional posts, clicking on which the user is led to either the brand’s shop on Instagram or its official website. ‘Products like this’, ‘Recommended for you’ etc are other features that show up on perusal of an influencer’s Shop, making it more shoppable and enabling more sales.

The Bottom Line

The average attention span of social media has been depleting over the years. The ‘shoppability’ of ads is continuously refined to avoid loss of revenue solely due to the process of purchase being too long and time-consuming. Immersive ads increase brand engagement while ensuring that a user’s desire is converted to actual sales. Smart influencer marketing is the primary tool to increase loyalty while warranting heightened revenue for brands.

The article is authored by Shuchi Sethi, Business Head – AnyTag, POKKT