Last week, I wrote about an emerging trend- retailers who are creating unique social experiences on their websites that engage shoppers, increase dwell time and return visits, provide new layers of social proof, and ultimately drive sales and conversion. Amazon has been leading the charge with their new “Spark” program a social experience built on top of their ecommerce site. Other retailers have integrated social aspects to their ecommerce experiences utilizing customer-generated tags, ‘likes’ and other social inputs.
Last Friday, just after last week’s post, Sephora announced that they would be building a members-only social platform on top of their existing loyalty program. The “Beauty Insider Community” will allow loyalty members to design a personal makeup profile, join groups relevant to their interests, engage in Q+A sessions with other Insiders, browse photos from other users, and find expert-level advice. It’s a movement that Sephora expects will deepen connection to the brand through enhanced and seamless positive experiences.
In a recent interview with WWD, Mary Beth Laughton SVP of Digital at Sephora said:
"Our clients want to be next to people they feel are like them and share their passion for beauty," she explained. "We know they’re increasingly looking to their peers and people like them and this just plays into that."
There will be many more joining the likes of Sephora and Amazon. I expect retailers will double down on these socialized commerce experiences during the holiday season and into 2018, especially to engage their millennial and Gen Z segments. The opportunity to drive experiences that cause: 1) Customers to spend more time on the ecommerce site 2) Customers make more repeat visits to the site to see what is happening. Both of which drive conversion, AOV, and LTV.
There is tremendous opportunity in anchoring social experiences around hyperlocal behavior to make your ecommerce experience more essential. If you’d like to learn how Radius8 can enable local-social experiences across your digital presence let me know and we’ll schedule a demo to show you how.
Top image credit: BusinessWire; Sephora