Summertime! The summer season is nearly upon us here in the U.S.
Summer time = Sales time!
For many retailers, this is PRIME TIME and the months of June, July, and August can generate 50-70% or more of the total yearly sales for their business. People are out and about, traveling, stopping in, and they’re ready to shop!
Now is the time to plan ways you can use Facebook as a valuable asset in boosting sales.
3 ways local shops and retailers can use Facebook this summer to increase Traffic and Sales:
1. Encourage Facebook Check-ins
Facebook offers the “Check In” tool within the iOS and Android mobile apps, as well as on the Facebook mobile site. At the most basic level, local shops and retailers can post a sign near the entrance to the shop encouraging fans to Check In on Facebook. The value of a Check In is that the user can add images and tag friends in the Check In. All of this helps the Check In exposure go farther on Facebook to friends of the person checking in.
As well Check Ins, based on privacy settings, are included in Graph Search indexing so if a friend of a person that checked in is searching for a local shop and your location is in results, the friend can see that their friend checked in at your shop. This is a simple and basic form of building trust equity as users are more likely to trust a company that a friend has used.
Facebook Check In Deals
Check In Deals are a more advanced form of a Facebook Check In that can offer a specific reward for those checking in.
A Facebook Check-in Deal is a way to offer an incentive to customers to check-in to your business with their mobile devices. There are multiple types of deals that can be setup including:
Individual: Offer a discount to an individual for simply checking in.
Loyalty: Offer a discount or freebie for checking in a certain number of times.
Friend: Offer a Deal to groups of friends who check-in together.
Charity: A check-in results in a donation to the specified charity.
There is a process of setup in Facebook to create one of these deals and it must be submitted to Facebook for approval. Currently only one type of Check In Deal can be offered so there is not the option to run a Individual and a Loyalty at the same time for example. Facebook Check In Deals are free to setup and they are different than Facebook Offers. Facebook deals are available in the U.S., Japan, and some additional nations. View more on Check In Deals Setup on Facebook.
Here’s the value proposition straight from Facebook:
- Check-in Deals can help you engage with your customers and grow your business.
- Check-in Deals allow you to reward loyal customers with discounts and other special offers, so you can build valuable relationships with this influential audience.
- Facebook users have 130 friends on average, which means that if someone checks in to your business and you’re offering a deal, their friends have the opportunity to hear about it through word of mouth marketing that is generated naturally on Facebook.
Facebook Check In Deals, Images via Omnibeat
2. Facebook Deals on Tabs for Use in Store
This type of offer is one that a company shares on their Facebook page to encourage and entice fans and visitors to come into the store.
Different from Check In Deals, the attempt here is to connect with customers and potential customers on Facebook, and then draw them into your store with an offer. Deals on a Facebook Page need to utilize a tool like TabSite to host the deal on a tab app. Facebook has Promotion Guidelines that pages need to follow and third-party tools like TabSite are built to comply.
Then when fans visit the tab and share with a friend (boosts reach of the promotion, more reach=more potential shoppers!), they are then given a message with details about the offer. Simply have them download, print, and bring in the offer to your store (deal download app) or have them come into your store and show you the deal on their phone.
The tab can be set for a certain time period and a Like Gate can be added so that visitors must “Like” the fan page in order to be able to access the deal. Like Gating allows your company to grow your fan page community while offering the in-store deal incentive.
Some stores are finding success by offering a deal on one specific product and then knowing that while the customer is in the store there is a greater chance of them also purchasing additional items.
Pages can use Facebook’s Promoted Posts and Facebook Ads as ways on Facebook to get the word out about the deal. This helps reach a target audience that may not be fans of the page.
3. Host In-Store Facebook Photo Contests
Facebook Contests can be another “in-store” fun way to offer to increase traffic, buzz, and awareness of your company.
Using a Facebook app tool like the TabSite Instagram Contest for Facebook Pages, a company can run a photo contest on a tab within the Facebook page where entries are voted on by fans. Retailers can create a spot in the store with a theme (beach theme, cowboy theme, dress up, whatever makes sense and shows off your products and store branding!).
To enter, visitors must:
1. Come into the store
2. Have their photo taken of them “in the theme” in the store
The images for that hashtag are pulled into the Facebook Page contest where fans and friends can view and vote for the top picture. This could be done weekly with the theme changing and awards going to the top 2 vote getters.
The value is drawing fans into the store for a chance to enter. Then make sure you make it worth their while to shop while present! Plus, the voting enables more people to see, be made aware of the contest and the store, and want to participate themselves.
Be creative! A lot of fun can be had with this type of in-store theme contest! Yeehaw!
The goal is increased traffic and increased sales. The means to this is using the viral sharing power of Facebook to boost curiosity, interest, and awareness.
Look at creative ways to use Facebook to 1. Get the word out, 2. Reach your target audience, 3, Boost Traffic to your shop.
The more an incentive is valuable, fun, easy to access, and “shareable”, the better you can reach these goals!
Have fun and go for it this summer!