eCommerce Marketing: Social Selling With User Generated Content

Now that we’ve passed the rush of the winter holidays we’re in that weird in-between place. There are a few months until the weather is warm again and people are still shaking off that winter snow.

Early spring is a hard time for online eCommerce stores as they don’t have enough sales on their Shopify stores. How can you encourage people to shop when they don’t quite feel like it?

Try the technique of social selling! Social selling is using social media to turn contacts and followers into customers! You do this by leveraging popular social channels to drive traffic to your Shopify store.

Understanding social selling

Social selling is a new concept in the digital world. Now, a business like yours is able to leverage their relationships through their social networks. All thanks to the rise of social media and social networks!

Social selling is different from both social media marketing and advertising. Rather, social selling is using social media to find and connect to sales prospects. Think of it as a sort of modern-day Rolodex of contacts that can be your potential customers.

Why is social selling so powerful?

We’re human-which means we love to connect to one another.

Take advantage of these human impulses and nurture relationships with potential customers. Social selling is able to tap into many human emotions like trust and empathy. By creating these connections, you’re building relationships and creating a positive influence on your revenue.

Part of the brilliance of social selling is the fact that you can use tools to measure its impact. LinkedIn has created a great tool for providing insight into the impact of salespeople. This tool is called the ‘Social Selling Index’.

You can also use Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems (like Hubspot!) that have some form of ‘social network’ tracking. These tools can be helpful to glean insights into customers by using a variety of different data sources.

Create a ‘we’ group

Turn the strangers in your network into a collective community group.

We, humans, love to feel like we’re a part of something – that’s why fan groups with fun little names always seem to appear. Think Taylor Swift fans being called Swifties, or Twitch Streamer smalllant welcoming his subscribers to ‘The Ant Colony’, or my favourite yet Australian Youtuber Gavin Webber always welcoming newcomers to his channel with a cheerful ‘G’day curd nerds!”.

These influential people are always leveraging their fan-base! They turn to fans to sell more and build hype around a new project. Your brand can do the same by creating a group name and being relatable.

Be relatable and understanding

We tend to trust our peers. So, you want customers to trust you. Don’t come right in with a robotic sales pitch, or jump right into your spiel.

You should be showing off your user-generated content and positive reviews. Doing this will allow your audience to see that there are a lot of happy customers already in your ‘group’.

You can create a group via Facebook groups, email, or hashtags. When you do, chat with people in a more informal way like you might with friends. This is not to say that you should ignore manners and proper greetings out of the window! Remember to build those relationships you need to be relatable.

How you can take advantage of social selling for your Shopify store

Start by telling a story

The foundation of great marketing and selling is telling stories that touch people.

Being able to evoke strong emotions and tug at heartstrings is key to selling. Often these stories are things that are relatable. Things that we can all connect to in some way – a lot of human moments are like that.

Don’t be afraid to use current social media platforms to tell stories. You can use platforms like Facebook or Instagram ads. Here are a few examples existing brands have created:

Budweiser’s don’t drink and drive messaging seriously hits home. The video is a heart wrenching ad about a dog waiting for his owner’s return.

Consider selling directly on these platforms

You’re able to connect your Facebook data and products to your Shopify store with the FB ‘pixel’ and plugin. Follow this guide to get set up.

There are also a bunch of apps in the Shopify Marketplace that will allow you to set up your marketing and advertising through Facebook. 

If your brand is more in line with the aesthetic of Instagram, you can also connect it to your Shopify store. Again Shopify’s marketplace has a ton of apps you can check out too.

Selling directly on your social platforms provides people in your social network with the ability to seamlessly shop! Many people are turning to social media to discover new brands. You want to make sure you make shopping from you as easy as possible.

Provide value in your social media posts

If you’re using social channels to sell make sure you provide value to potential customers.

You want to show them that your product is good and perhaps explain its use or features. If customers are aware of the problem your product solves, they will be more confident in buying as well.

If you are in the fashion space, make sure to add lots of lifestyle photos. If you are in the tech space, be sure to provide demos or communicate the benefits of the product. You always want to be adding value to your customer’s lives on social.

Engage with your community

Using social media doesn’t just mean posting pictures or content and moving on. You want to engage your audience and become part of, or create, an audience.

Use a Unique Hashtag

You can create specialized hashtags to achieve this goal. Encourage your customers and fans to post pictures of them using your product.

This is also great user-generated content you can post customer photos to your product page and blog (with credit of course!). It can also be helpful to ask your customers to post photo reviews. If you ask for reviews on Instagram remember to ask your fans to use specific hashtags. That way you can have these link directly to your product page(s).

Engage with customers

It also helps to reply and engage with comments or posts on your own page(s). A lot of social platforms actually look at the engagement/follower ratio to determine your ‘rank’ or popularity. Engaging with your audience can be really beneficial in boosting your presence.

Use Influencers

Try utilizing influencers as well. People who fit or represent your brand may be willing to share your product(s) or content to their own audience. It helps if the influencer is similar to your own brand.

Say you’re a coffee brand, then you might want to find a YouTuber who tests different coffees, or drinks it all the time. The viewers of that Youtuber will be more likely to try your coffee brand then. That is because your message and brand align with the YouTuber’s content as well.


We’ve gone over a bunch of different ways to use social selling. There are a hundred more ways you can use social media to sell, but we hope we covered some options that will work for you.

Happy selling!

About the author
Jameela is the owner of the Shopify store Alora Boutique and the Marketing Manager at Fera Commerce. You can find her on the interwebs on LinkedIn and Instagram.

Leave a Reply