The Next Stage Of Social Commerce
Philip Ellison 28 November, 2014 at 11:11
Following fruitful trials on Shopify and BigCommerce, Seattle-based company Zantler has rolled out its social commerce platform to retailers on Amazon Webstore this week, ahead of the busiest shopping month of the year.
Zantler’s Shoppost enables merchants to post shoppable content to a variety of online channels, including Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and blogs.
Merchants will now have the capability to import product information, including colour and size options, directly from Amazon Webstore to social media. There is also video functionality – something that Amazon Webstore currently doesn’t support on-site. Each post mirrors an online storefront, and comes complete with a buy button which transports customers directly to a branded shopping cart, essentially providing a seamless social shopping experience.
“The ability for a consumer to buy it where they see it, be that Twitter or Pinterest or a blog, sounds fun to do, but in reality it’s incredibly difficult to pull off that seamless activity across the board,” says President and COO James Lively. “Shoppost is a culmination of lessons learned,” he adds, referring to the linear, distraction-free customer journey which differentiates Shoppost from traditional Amazon ads, where users are led to landing pages where they are inundated by similar products. “We’re targeting a single product and targeting an interest level. Once that person clicks through, they have a clear and easy path to checkout.”
The platform also comprises an analytics tool which offers merchants insight into their best performing content and products. “At first brands want to push out their entire store,” says spokesperson Leslie Grandy, “but the data the dashboard provides refines the behaviour of broadcasting content over time, as it shows them where they’re getting the most ROI.” This means sellers can see at a glance exactly how many shoes or t-shirts they’ve sold against their spend on a single post; “In one single location, you aggregate all the activity that’s going on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest,” says Lively.
The fully sharable, shoppable posts also mean it is possible for brands to achieve conversions on a site where they haven’t paid, as Shoppost’s ‘Share’ function retains and transports all meta data, images and videos, displaying the content in a fashion best suited to its new surroundings, be that Facebook on mobile, or Twitter on tablet. “You might pay for that first share,” says Grandy, “but that second and third share are earned. All of that downstream media is free.”
Shoppost is a clear bridge between social commerce and content marketing, giving brands the opportunity to forge meaningful affiliate relationships. For instance, Shefit have partnered with “mommy bloggers” to promote their products within a specific context. In their case, that consists of a product review written by the blogger, with a Shoppost embedded, and full disclosure that it is a sponsored post. “Fashion is huge on Tumblr,” says Grandy, “and there are so many people looking to monetise their fashion blogs… This changes content marketing from CPM to CPC, which content marketing hasn’t been traditionally.”
Zantler originated as DIY Music in 2010. Back then, it was conceived of a digital platform that anyone could use to upload music, from garage bands to big labels, with a “buy it where you find it” model that seemed ideal for social media. The company swiftly pivoted into digital media sales and custom online campaigns for leading brands such as AT&T and Microsoft, with growing emphasis on physical fulfilment. This year, DIY officially rebranded as Zantler, with special product focus on Shoppost.
Shoppost has already garnered positive feedback from a diverse range of brands in various geographies, including Harley Davidson Military Sales, fair trade fashion retailer Fair Indigo, and catalogue giant Spiegel. “As the global leader in first-to-market innovations, we are always looking for the next great gateway for our customers to shop, and Shoppost delivers,” says Richard Lowe, International Creative Director at Spiegel. “By bringing Shoppost to our social audience just in time for the holidays, we are giving them new and more convenient ways to share and shop what they love, with the people they love.”
“Merchants needn’t worry that they’re handing over the customer journey to Twitter or Facebook,” says Grandy. “Shoppost steps out of that equation, which is comforting to both the consumer and the brand… We’re not handling credit card data. The merchant and the customer know they’re doing business together. That’s our sweet spot.”