As a general rule, marketers need to follow the flow of consumer behavior, and for those working in ecommerce, there’s no better time than the present to increase your marketing spends. Current events have rapidly accelerated the shift from brick-and-mortar to ecommerce, with experts predicting a 60% drop in department store sales and an increase in eCommerce sales by as much as 20% by the end of this year.

Social media has always been a great partner to ecommerce, and users are now spending more time on it as well. Are you currently doing enough to tap into this massive audience? If not, here’s some ideas that we think can help your business out.

1. Tailor Visual Content for Social Media

Appealing visual content is essential to catching the attention of individuals browsing social media channels due to the influx of information present on all sides. Remember that you’re competing with posts from their family, friends, and other brands, so favorable split-second impressions are the first step to carving out your identity and building a trustworthy reputation. This is where a good photo editing app like Instasize comes in handy –you’ll need one with a solid repertoire of features to get the look you want.

Product Photos

For posts highlighting the products themselves, you need to balance a clear image with brand presentation. Don’t cover essential elements of the product and create photo sets that showcase it from different angles. Add graphical touches for branded elements (borders are common) or to lead the eye.

Lifestyle Photos

These build a narrative around your items. Who would use this? When would they decide to buy? Where would they use the product? By mirroring your target audience in the photos by showing real people interacting with what you sell, you build familiarity and desire.

Tip: Remember to turn on shoppable posts and other marketplace tools on the social media platforms you utilize. Here’s how to do so for Instagram.

2. Interact with Your Community

In this case, social media interaction doesn’t begin and end at responding to comments and private messages for customer service concerns. While those are essential to successful social media monitoring, for the purpose of a wider campaign with the aim to increase direct sales, you need to give your community the chance to handle your products directly.

Social Media Contests

Give prospective customers hands-on experience with your products and build engagement for your social channels at the same time with a contest or giveaway. They’re a simple way to increase visibility for your page, and by raffling off products as prizes you can also obtain testimonials and potential reach from word-of-mouth. You can also use tools like Instagram automation tools for best results on Instagram marketing.

Influencer Marketing

While other industries may have challenges keeping up with influencer marketing activities due to the pandemic, ecommerce can still tap into a solid pool. By partnering with influencers in your brand’s niche, you can market to multiple communities outside your own following, expanding your audience.

3. Run Targeted Ad Campaigns

Often, organic reach isn’t enough to get the results you want with sales. Social media channels make it easy for marketers to directly connect sales with ad results, using features that directly connect product pages with the ads that are running.

You’ll need to know your audience well before you run an ad to get a good return on investment. Establish the timeframe of your ad, your targets’ age range, gender, and interests, as where you think they’re most likely to look (whether on the feed, in the sidebars, or in Stories).

One tip: make your ad as authentic and organic-looking as possible to lessen the change of users swiping away. Leaning more towards lifestyle over product imagery is one way to do this.

4. Analyze What Works

Social media platforms already have their own built-in analytics systems you can use to judge whether activities earn sufficient reach and engagement. Create regular reports to find out which posts were more popular, when your audience is online, and more—then use them to tweak your strategies month-to-month to drive growth. Be especially mindful of clicks to product pages—some items may be more naturally attractive to social media users than others.

The most important part? Compare your budget. How much did you spend for ads and partnerships, and how much sales did they bring in? Decide whether these efforts proved successful and after taking a closer look at each stretch, choose to keep them or leave them behind for the next one. Evaluate the time you take creating content for each as well to optimize and monitor where you allocate your resources.

Earning better revenue for your ecommerce brand through direct sales on social media entails knowing your platforms and understanding why people flock to them the way they do. Play around with activities, tweak them as you see fit, and social could become a cornerstone of your ecommerce marketing strategy.

Denise Langenegger is part of the team at Instasize – a content creating tool kit for anyone editing photos and online content on mobile.