Have you leveraged the power of Facebook to sell your products and services?
Or maybe you’ve wondered if you should start a store on Facebook…
Many businesses are using Facebook to sell.
Check out these three ways your business can leverage a Facebook page to sell products and make it easier for your customers to buy from you.
By Christian Karasiewicz, www.socialmediaexaminer.com
#1: Create a Seamless Store Experience on Facebook With a Landing Page App
Before you start selling on Facebook, you’ll need to create a Facebook page and not a Facebook profile.
Using a Facebook page for business not only keeps you in compliance withFacebook’s Terms of Service, but also affords you additional benefits that aren’t available with profiles. For instance, with a page you can add a custom tab using a Facebook landing page app so you can build an online store.
The benefits of using third-party landing page apps.
Most landing page apps can be easily installed and are packed with features so you can build and manage your store in no time.
With a landing page app, you can have a store that looks slick and professional, even if you’re not a designer or coder. And it’s easy for your customers to use, whether they’re shopping on a desktop or from their mobile device.
You can customize the look and feel of your Facebook store. Change colors, add a logo and adjust the layout of your products until your Facebook store closely resembles your website.
Outside of creating the look and flow of your shopping cart, securing your transaction data with an SSL certificate is equally important.
While they can be expensive (upwards of $70 or more per year) and difficult to install on their own, most third-party landing page tools include an SSL certificate. They even install it for you, so all you have to do is create your store, add your products and associate your store with a Facebook page.
Now that we’ve gone over some of the benefits of using third-party landing page apps, let’s talk about a few you can use to sell products on Facebook.
Sync a store with Ecwid’s Ecommerce Widget.
Ecwid is a no-cost to low-cost way for business owners to add shopping functionality to their Facebook page and website.
Ecwid offers a full list of features, but here are some of the more notable ones:
- 30 payment options
- Facebook store app
- Social commerce sharing
- Sell physical products
- Sell downloadable products
- Customize the look of your Facebook store to be consistent with your website
In just a few steps, you can add an online store to your Facebook page, customize it and begin selling products on your Facebook page.
Here’s an example of a Facebook store created using Ecwid.
Ecwid offers a great time-saving feature that allows you to sync your products between your website and Facebook page. Update multiple product catalogs on your website, and your customers immediately see the same thing in your Facebook store.
Couple that with an intuitive checkout process for your customers, and you have a valuable tool for selling products with ease on Facebook.
Ecwid offers multiple versions of their online store. Depending on how many products you have and the features your business needs, there’s an option for everyone. To get started, install a basic store and when your business grows, move up to a paid plan.
Import your existing online stores to Facebook with StoreYa.
StoreYa is another alternative. It has a free plan that gives you the ability to add 50 product SKUs, whereas Ecwid’s free plan lets you add 10.
What differentiates StoreYa from ECWID is StoreYa’s data integration feature.
This feature allows you to import your products from over 23 popular store platforms such as Amazon, Shopify or WooCommerce. If you don’t have a store on any of these platforms, you can use a CSV file to manually add products. If you have hundreds of products in different colors and sizes, this is a big time-saver.
StoreYa also includes the ability for businesses to have different stores and store managers. This is helpful if you run a business that has a chain of stores, each with its own Facebook page and page admin.
Once you’ve imported your products, StoreYa has a set of marketing tools that can help you get your customers involved and sell more products on Facebook.
While you’ll need one of their paid plans to take advantage of their marketing tools, the amount of time you save by having everything you need to sell products on Facebook in one place might outweigh the cost.
Integrate complete Ecommerce with Bigcommerce.
Once you’re set up, use the Bigcommerce SocialShop to install a landing page app and add your products to your Facebook page.
While Bigcommerce can cost a little more than other ecommerce solutions, they make up for it with their excellent customer service and the fact that they don’t charge transaction fees.
Drive traffic to your retail shop with ShortStack.
While this may not seem like an optimal way to sell products on Facebook, remember, it can be a great promotional tool.
If your customers tend to visit you from phones or tablets instead of desktops, ShortStack has you covered with landing pages that display on mobile devices. Simply post a link to your landing page in a status update to drive customers back to your retail shop.
Third-party landing page apps make it easy for you to set up a storefront on Facebook.
#2: Promote Products or Campaigns With Your Timeline Cover Photo
In addition to selling products through a shopping cart on your Facebook page, you can now use your timeline cover photo to market and sell products to fans.
Remember to include a direct link to your product in the image caption so fans who are interested don’t have to hunt for it on your website.
Besides uploading a new timeline cover photo that will show up in your fans’ news feeds, you’ll also want to promote the link to your product from time to time.
To do this, simply click your Facebook page’s timeline cover photo, copy the URL in your browser’s address bar and share it with fans in a status update.
Don’t ignore this simple way of using your timeline photo to get your product in front of your Facebook audience.
#3: Share Product Links in Your Facebook Status Updates
While this may not be the most glamorous way to sell products on Facebook, it does work and you have a few options to use.
Post a link to your product.
First, you can post a link to your product as a status update.
Make it easy for customers to get to the product you’re advertising and to drop it into their cart and check out. Use a deep link that takes fans straight to your product, not just your website.
Be sure not to make the mistake of displaying a product with no link. This can lead to a high abandonment rate in your shopping cart.
In the image below, UnMarketing is using Facebook to sell their book.
Use the embedded post feature.
Second, you can use the Facebook embedded post feature to embed your public Facebook posts outside of Facebook.
Post a status update that includes a link to your store or a product and embed it on a blog or a website.
When your readers click a link included in a Facebook embedded post, they are taken directly to your product or to your Facebook store, and can check out from your store on your Facebook page.
By sharing your product links in your Facebook page updates, you’re likely to drive more traffic and make more sales.
Selling Your Products on Facebook
Regardless of whether you use just one of these methods or combine them, remember that you cannot just set up a store and expect customers to flock to it. Be sure you test it and have proper marketing ready to go.
Before you post any links to your Facebook store, create a focus group or invite some of your best customers to try out the process before you push it live to everyone.
Have product images ready to post on your Facebook page, add a new timeline cover photo to advertise your store or specific products and publish a status update to let your fans know that you’ve added a store to your Facebook page, so they can check it out.
And don’t overlook leveraging other social networks such as Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram to market your store to users on those networks.
What do you think? Have you used any of these tactics or tools to sell on Facebook? What else have you had success with? Let me know by leaving a comment below.