The Business of Live Selling on Social Media
You've got a website. You've built a social following for your store. But how do you tie those two things together and turn them into revenue generators for your business?
Live selling on social media.
Sound daunting? It doesn't have to be. We're here to break it down for you, with real-world input from experienced retailers in the gift and home industry. We also talked with CommentSold, a leading platform that makes it easy for retailers like you to get set up and start selling like a pro.
"Go for it." That's the advice from Amy and Amy, co-owners of Vintage Barn Chicks in Pewaukee, Wisconsin, when it comes to deciding whether or not to try live selling. They started hosting live sales for their home décor store at the encouragement of a fellow store owner in their town. That store is a clothing boutique and was seeing success with their own live sales. The two stores had partnered for events in the past, so dovetailing their live sales to send traffic between the two was a natural next step. "We've definitely seen our sales increase with live selling. We're driving purchases during the actual live events, plus we have people stop into the store and say they've seen something on one of the live sales that they want to look at more closely," says the pair.
Live Selling Drives Business Results
Retailers across the country are adopting live selling, and for good reason. We all know that younger generations are adopting video into their daily life more than ever before - Gen Z is 2x more likely to use an online-only store or brand website than any other generation, and about 75% of Gen Z and millennials use smartphones to shop online.
These facts help set the stage for a large online audience and one that is ready to spend. Not only that, but live selling videos drive more engagement for individual social channels, thus broadening a retailers audience reach. CommentSold says its clients experience up to 10x the engagement rates of traditional videos. And those engaged customers are 6x more likely to become repeat purchasers, and have up to 3x average order value of a traditional e-commerce customer.
Live selling in 2022 generated approximately $17 billion
Those are some lofty numbers, and if you are a bit skeptical, you might wonder how they translate to a single store location. Well, all of the stores we talked to agree - it's worth the effort. And the best part is, you can scale your effort to what you have capacity to handle, and what you WANT to handle. From simply "going live" on your social channels and showcasing merchandise in your store on a regular basis like Cheryl Calvin, owner of The Store in Lake Highlands, does at noon every M-W-F, to a full-scale studio in your warehouse and regular "live sale" events on your social channels and in an app for your store like Periwinkle Marketplace and Paisley Grace Boutique, you can do what works for your store.
Beyond the direct impact of the live events themselves, "you have to focus on the ripple effect," according to Kim Yonda-Lead, owner of Wrapped with Ribbon in Gilbert Arizona. "We have people coming in the store, calling us, texting us, all after the live event is over, and asking more questions or wanting to see things in person."
Like any new selling avenue for a store, live sales take time, effort, and repetition to show value - but the results for this channel are promising for those willing to commit the resources.
Discover more details about live selling, and additional insights from store owners, in the following articles:
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Live-Sale Retailer Examples
We've gathered a few examples of retailers who do live selling today, in a handful of formats. Check them out for a first-hand perspective on what the consumer experience is like. Be warned - you just might find them addicting!
Here are links to their social channels, where you'll find information on their scheduled events:
Going Live on Social: The Store in Lake Highlands
Live Selling Natively: Wrapped with Ribbon