Think about a sales pipeline. At the top of the pipeline you have prospects, somewhere in the middle you have a sales pitch, and at the end of the pipeline you have actual sales.
Where does Twitter fall in the pipeline?
Social networks, like Twitter, are at the top of the pipeline. They are used to generate awareness about your product with the end goal of sending a potential client to your website where the actual sales pitch takes place. The sales pitch doesn’t take place on Twitter.
I’ve included 5 Twitter tricks for increasing ecommerce sales below. These tricks are focused on getting people to leave Twitter, and land on your website where the actual sale can take place.
Optimize Your Twitter Header for Sales
Twitter implemented a design overhaul on April 22, 2014. One key change in its new design is the addition of a Twitter header photo that spans the entire length of the screen at 1500×500 pixels.
Located at the top of every Twitter profile, the new Twitter header serves as a digital billboard allowing ecommerce companies to highlight products or services.
As an ecommerce site, use your Twitter header to drive sales by creating awareness about new products or deals you’re currently offering.
At RedbirdMetrics, we found that using a Twitter header as an advertisement resulted in a ~.07 increase in website traffic.
Here’s an example of how we use our Twitter header as an advertisement:
Here’s a couple of tips for crafting your Twitter header:
- Don’t forget to check out what your Twitter header looks like on a mobile device. When your Twitter header is condensed for a mobile device some of your images or text may not appear to users.
- The link placed in your Twitter bio should take users to a landing page your Twitter header is promoting. Be sure to include a strong call to action in your Twitter header that encourages visitors to click on the link in your Twitter bio.
Use Twitter to Test Ads
One of the challenges of crafting digital advertisements is figuring out the perfect choice of words that will increase click-through-rate.
Sadly, many companies burn through mountains of cash trying to figure this out before they start to see an ROI.
Here’s a not so well known secret: you can use Twitter to test your ads before you make a significant investment.
Here’s how to do it:
- Use bit.ly to create a custom link for the ad you’d like to test. Let’s say your landing page is www.landingpage.com. To make this link into a custom link simply add “?src=sometext” to the end of the link. I use the “sometext” portion to describe where the link is coming from. For example, www.landingpage.com?src=advertisementone could be used for the first ad and www.landingpage.com?src=advertisementtwo could be used for the second ad. Both of these links take you to the same page, but by making them customized you are able to track how much traffic is coming from each link. Shorten your customized link, and paste it in your Twitter bio.
- Change your Twitter header into an advertisement. Focus on one value proposition for the product or service you’re trying to increase sales for.
- Type a keyword or phrase you’re planning on targeting for ads into Twitter’s search bar in quotes. This will pull up tweets that contain that keyword or phrase specifically. Follow 50 people per day using that keyword or phrase for one week.
- At the end of the week, check to see how many clicks your custom link received by looking up that link on your Bit.ly account. Record this number in an Excel spreadsheet.
- Change your Twitter header to focus on an alternative value proposition for the same product or service, and repeat the above steps.
- Compare the clicks you receive for each custom link to determine which advertisement gets more clicks.
Create an Online Catalog with Hashtags
Trendy restaurants, like Comodo, will crowdsource pictures of their food on Instagram around a specific hashtag. Comodo does this by including the hashtag #ComodoMenu at the bottom of their real-life menu. This helps their customers make decisions when ordering food. It also helps bring in additional clients because each picture shared serves as a word of mouth endorsement for the restaurant.
Ecommerce companies can adopt a similar strategy on Twitter. Create a hashtag for your company that helps customers see your products in action. For example, if you sell clothing you could encourage your buyers to post a picture of themselves wearing your clothes on Twitter.
Add your company hashtag at the end of each product description on your website. Enjoy the increase in visibility and sales.
Do a Giveaway
Giveaways are a powerful tool for increasing brand awareness. iFit, a fitness tracker, often utilizes giveaways on Twitter. Check out this recent giveaway they did:
A couple tips for launching a giveaway:
- Include at least one hashtag to increase the visibility of your giveaway. iFit used the #Giveaway hashtag.
- Ask your followers to retweet, favorite, and follow to qualify for your giveaway. iFit did a great job of this by giving additional entries for a retweet, and a follow.
- Use a picture in your giveaway tweet. Tweets using pictures are 94% more likely to be retweeted.
Following people on Twitter is one of the best ways to increase brand awareness. Here are a few tactics that you should look into implementing:
- Follow your competitor’s Twitter followers. Many of your competitors have likely spent years building a Twitter following. Harvest this low hanging fruit by following their followers. Tweepi, a free social media management tool, is perfect for doing this.
- Follow people based on what they tweet. You can type anything into Twitter’s search bar in quotes. This will pull up people using that exact phrase or keyword. For example, if you type “I need new shoes” it will pull up people who need new shoes. Consider following people based on what they tweet.
- Follow influencers. Every niche has it’s influencers. Identify the influencers in your industry and follow them on Twitter.
Do not aggressively follow people on Twitter. If you follow too many people per day then Twitter may suspend your account. Here’s some advice on following:
- If you have less than 100 followers then you should only follow 10 people per day.
- If you have more than 100 followers then you can follow up to 100 people per day.
- When you have less than 1,800 followers you can only follow 2,000 people total. Once you get over 1,800 followers you can follow 110% of your following.
These are just a few tips and tricks for using Twitter to increase ecommerce sales. Remember, Twitter is for the top of your sales pipeline. The goal of Twitter is to drive people to your website where they can make a purchase. Don’t try to close on Twitter.
Can you think of any additional Twitter tips or tricks? Comment below.
Josh Light is the co-founder and CEO of RedbirdQ, the most intelligent way to share to Twitter and Facebook. Josh writes about social media tips and tricks on the Redbird blog. Contact Josh on Twitter @JoshuaJLight; he loves people.