Want to make your e-commerce site more social? Here's one way

ShopSocially lets small retailers embed social apps within an existing Web site, adding another layer of potential interaction.
Written by Heather Clancy, Contributor

There's been a lot of buzz lately about the concept of "social commerce" and how it affects e-commerce sales. One great example of a site dedicated to this idea is Wanelo, which features all sorts of product recommendations, often from within your personal social sphere. 

But if your company would rather add more social features directly to its own e-commerce or Web site, it might want to consider a cloud service called ShopSocially to do that.

The site offers a series of predesigned modules and widgets that add a social layer to your existing Web presence. Examples include "Get-a-Fan," which adds Facebook fan acquisition capabilities; "Share-a-Purchase," which lets someone tout the fact they just bought one of your awesome products; or "Social Connect," which gathers detailed social profile information about Web site visitors. You can add viral offer sharing campaign or even set up viral flash sales to unload inventory among specific customer circles.

As you would expect, the platform includes analytics and reporting, and plenty of management features. And I'm not surprised that ShopSocially is pretty good at sharing the success stories of small and midsize retailers that have seen real results from using its service. (The best word of mouth comes from existing customers, right?)

I've received two very compelling references in the past month.

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The first involves a site called LinenTablecloth, which sells exactly what you would expect, given its name. The company, which has been around since 2005, reports a much higher sales conversion rate for users that interact with the ShopSocially apps (up to 4X higher), and it figures the annual sales increase related to the platform at around $1.8 million. "Engagement" is also up 78 percent, according to the case study offered by Shop Socially.

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The second is from Carol's Daughter, a beauty products company. Its results are likewise impressive and include a 2.58X higher conversion rate for socially engaged visitors and a 15 percent increase in its Facebook fanbase. 

"ShopSocially's strategy of on-site social commerce has helped us unravel the considerable, but undeveloped power of word-of-mouth recommendations," said Jessica Klein, director of e-commerce at Carol's Daughter, in a statement. "ShopSocially has provided the tools for our customers to spread their love of our products to their social circle helping us acquire new customers, and eventually driving incremental revenue."

ShopSocially pricing is based on average site traffic and the specific apps that your company decides to use. It starts around $1,000 per month.

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