Out of all the places where someone can get a product recommendation…
People trust their friends and family more than anything.
But surprisingly, research indicates that 84% trust online reviews just as much.
Whether someone got a recommendation from a friend, or whether they read a review online, the bottom line is that online shopping is, in many ways, a social activity.
It doesn't happen in a vacuum.
To really get the engagement you need, you need to focus on building a community around your brand.
It's an atmosphere where your customers can feel connected — not just to your brand, but to one another as well.
After all, people are intrinsically social.
If you can transform your ecommerce brand into the center of a thriving online community with a sense of solidarity, your engagement could go up exponentially.
In a recent article from Entrepreneur, the author explains why community building is so integral to an ecommerce store's success.
Create a Community
Perhaps it’s a trust thing, but most of us are more likely to buy something because a friend or family member recommends it to us.
In this case, 83% of us are more likely to trust these recommendations, according to a Nielsen study.
But we also trust the recommendations of others we don't know personally: A 2016 survey revealed that 84% of us trust online reviews and recommendations just as much as personal recommendations.
So what does that all mean? It means that buying online is not a solitary activity.
To engage and drive purchases, businesses need to create a community around their brand or products.
Warby Parker, for example, has taken the concept of community and recommendations to a new level.
Who would have thought you could buy eyeglasses online? It's hard enough to do in person, but now online?
And what about posting a photo of you in those glasses to get the community's input on which look best on you?
That's exactly what Warby Parker created — the ability for consumers to shop for something we never used to do online with input from their social community.
If you aren’t building a community and getting people talking about your brand online, you risk losing out on potential business.
You can read more about the future of ecommerce over at Entrepreneur.