Big brands such as J.C, Penney, Gap and Gamestop setup facebook stores and shut them down within a year’s time. Social commerce is clearly not everyone’s cup of tea, especially if you aren’t willing to think out-of-the-box. There are a growing number of businesses that are choosing to start their enterprise and base it on f-commerce. These entrepreneurs realize and accept the tremendous potential of social commerce. They understand that the social media sites can be used for more than just connecting with customers and engaging them. Here is a look at a few brands that have used facebook auctions to improve sales and growth.
In September of 2010 Amy Laws and Nicole Metzger Brewer set up Smocked Auctions’. The brand sells smocked and monogrammed clothing for children. They chose not to sell through an e-commerce store or a brick and mortar store. Instead, they brought down the basic cost of setting up shop by selling their products through facebook. By 2013 the online bidding boutique had generated sales worth $4 million. The brand holds weekly auctions on Tuesday and Thursday. Every minute for half an hour, products are posted on the brand’s facebook page. Customers need to quickly post their comment with the word ‘sold’ and the size they wish to buy. The winners of the auction are informed by e-mail and can then complete the process of purchasing the clothes. The brand has over 38 million fans.
Accessory Concierge also offers a similar approach to business. They hold auctions on Monday and Wednesday. Customers have to type ‘Sold’ with the quantity that they desire. Business owners Amt Claro and Amy Coffey find that the sense of urgency that is created by the auction helps boost sales. The brands regularly posts photographs of products that it offers, so customers will get a feel of products they can hope to buy at the auction.
Some other facebook auctions businesses include Jewelry Nut Auctions and Southern Tots. Clothing, accessories and jewelry brands seem to favor facebook auctions. Many of these businesses have chosen not to open a conventional online store. They find that facebook gives them an excellent platform to showcase their business on and promote sales.
The fact that they hold auctions only on a few days in the week gives customers something to look forward to. Facebook stores could also create a similar sense of urgency by offering great deals only on certain days at a particular time period. Having a facebook storefront makes it easier for customers to shop for products that they want.
Running a facebook auction
- To hold a facebook auction a brand needs a facebook business page.
- The auction should be supported by photographs that are posted on the timeline or in a photo album.
- The most important part of running an auction is to ensure that customers understand the rules of bidding and participation. These can be posted in the Notes section, or you could have a separate tab for them.
- To promote an auction, it is a good idea to pin a reminder on the timeline. E-mails should also be sent out to customers and the auction could be promoted through the brand’s website and blog.
- Also remember to set up the auction as an event on the facebook page.
Many businesses choose to move their inventory before adding new stock by holding facebook auctions. Ideally such an auction would have a minimum amount that the auction would begin with. The auction could be run on the timeline or through a by invite-only event. The winners are informed and payment process is usually completed in the next 24 to 48 hours.
Charities can also consider holding facebook auctions to raise funds and increase awareness about the cause. Facebook apps such as that for Charity Bids helps charities setup their auction.
It’s not just small businesses that are trying their hand at facebook commerce and succeeding, but bigger brands as well. Tory Burch offers customers the opportunity to shop on the facebook store. It is important for businesses to realize that the number of people accessing facebook is always on the rise. Folks use the network to stay connected with their friends, share thoughts and experiences. They are also quite open to interactions with their favorite brands and shopping on the social media site.