When you first create an ecommerce store, it’s challenging to build clout surrounding your brand. How do you convince consumers that your business is credible and worth every penny? Social proof makes it easier to grow your customer base, generate sales, and build recognition.
Social proof is a way to influence the opinions people have about your brand. Without it, it’s challenging to demonstrate your business’s worth and why consumers should invest in you rather than your competition. It’s a way to prove that others who have paid for your products and services are happy with their purchase and convinces new visitors to do the same.
There are many different sources of social proof:
- Friends and family – Opinions of loved ones
- Influence – Celebrities or social media influencers
- Expertise – Thought leaders and industry experts
- Research – Data, statistics, and research
- Customers – Opinions of customers
- Qualifications – Certifications, licenses, awards, etc.
Why use social proof?
With so much existing competition, a new business has to work extra hard to build its credibility and nurture prospects down the sales funnel. Today’s consumers want to invest in brands they trust who make them feel like more than a number.
Social proof uses FOMO, or the fear of missing out, to convince consumers not to miss out on products and services. Psychologically, people want to feel included in joyful experiences, and social proof shows them why they should engage with your brand. Social proof uses the opinions and experiences that customers have with a brand to convince others that they should invest in it too.
Now that it’s clear how beneficial social proof is to grow your brand, here are six ways to implement it into your marketing strategy.
1. Case studies
Without data to back up your claims, how will you convince your audience to invest in your brand? People need proof of why they should engage with your business over another, and providing data and research solidifies your statements.
If you have clients who use your products and services to reach success, you can create powerful case studies using them as examples. It’s important to include numbers and statistics that highlight how a brand or customer succeeded. Include a variety of case studies so that, when potential customers scan them, they can find one that resembles their situation the most.
OptinMonster has an entire page on its website dedicated to case studies so users can see how its products have benefitted businesses.
2. Ratings and reviews
Too many ecommerce websites make the mistake of not letting users leave reviews and feedback about their products, and this does nothing to improve their conversions. Customer feedback is essential for fellow consumers to make informed buying decisions, and without it on your website, you’re losing out on sales.
Make it easy for customers to leave feedback about your products, starting with the contact form. Did you know that 67 percent of site visitors will abandon a form that gives them complications? That’s why it’s crucial for customers to leave ratings and reviews on your website easily. Otherwise, you miss out on honest feedback that could improve your future conversions.
Formidable Forms provides optimized, responsive forms that simplify the process of collecting user information. It helps you use data-driven solutions to refine your marketing strategy and cater to your audience better.
Testimonials from your clients that go into detail about how your brand helped them succeed is a great way to convince new visitors to give you a chance. When you collect enough testimonials, it strengthens your credibility and outlines the reasons why others should invest in you.
You can create a separate page on your website to showcase client testimonials or sprinkle them throughout your homepage. The more reputable your sources are, the more it’ll persuade visitors to turn into paying customers. People are more likely to trust the opinions and claims of businesses they already know, so this is an effective way to use social proof.
Ask people you’ve worked with to write a simple summary detailing how your brand or products benefitted their business.
It’s also essential to consider where to place your testimonials in a way that gives you the best results. Where do people spend a lot of time on your website? What webpages do they visit before buying a product?
If your visitors typically opt into your lead magnet before making a purchase, consider placing testimonials next to it. It gives users more reason to hand over their information and continue engaging with your content. For example, if your lead magnet is an ebook, you can track your file downloads in Google Analytics and compare it to your sales to see how this affects your conversion rate.
4. Real-time activity
It’s easier to persuade customers to take action on your website when they know others are doing the same.
TrustPulse creates popup notifications on your website based on real-time customer activity, such as signing up for your newsletter or buying a product. Whether you want to promote a giveaway or boost registration sign-ups for a webinar, the notifications do the work for you.
When installed, the notifications pop up on your website so that browsing visitors can customers engaging with your content and products in real-time.
Showing real-time activity is effective because it shows visitors browsing your website and landing pages that people invest in your products and services. Social proof works by emphasizing the benefits others have gained by doing business with you, and a constant reminder of this pushes consumers down the sales funnel.
It’s common for ecommerce businesses to display brand logos on their website to increase credibility. Logos are effective because people know and recognize big brands. When they see that those same brands endorse your products and services, it convinces them that you’re the real deal. Displaying logos can increase conversions up to 400 percent, so it’s a form of social proof well worth executing.
Having a well-known brand’s logo on your website does wonders for building trust between your business and its audience. New visitors who might not know much about your business previously will feel intrigued when they see brands they know using your services. If your business helps the big guys, then it can certainly help small businesses too.
6. Influencer endorsements
As social media marketing gains more traction and popularity, influencer marketing has become a new, exciting way for brands to market to their target audiences. Brands pay influencers to endorse their products on their social media accounts. As a result, those brands drive traffic to their website, generate sales, and build brand awareness.
A recent study found that non-celebrity influencers are 10 times more likely to drive in-store purchases for businesses than traditional celebrities. If the influence of social media influencers is that massive, imagine what sponsoring them could do for your campaigns.
For people still not convinced your brand is for them or who previously haven’t heard of you, influencer marketing is great. It puts your content in front of thousands of new people in the same target market.
It’s crucial to choose the right influencer to endorse your brand who shares the same audience. Otherwise, you won’t collect leads or spark enough interest. They should be active on their social media, engage with users, have a friendly attitude, and work with you to achieve your campaign’s goals.
Over to you
If you have yet to implement social proof into your conversion optimization strategy, you need to get on it as soon as possible. It’s your job as a business to provide prospects with reasons why they should give your business a chance and why they should trust you over your competition. As such, posting social proof on your website, social media, emails, and other channels is essential to achieving success and increasing conversions. How will you use social proof to boost your marketing efforts?