How Community-Driven Apps Can Fast-Track your E-commerce Site's Growth

Business.com / Sales / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

With the help of community-driven apps, you can fast-track the growth of your E-commerce business.

“That’s it, I’m hanging up my gloves.”, you whisper to yourself.

You spent blood, sweat and tears to grow your E-commerce site, but the results you’ve been getting from it were always quite lacking.

With the way things are, the amount you’re earning from your E-commerce business won’t be enough to pay for your monthly dues.

When you factor in little Johnny’s up and coming enrollment fees, you’ll never be able to put together enough money even if you work double shifts.

Look. I know it’s frustrating. And the truth is, not many people are able to run a successful E-commerce site even if they give it their full commitment.

However, even after having said that, I would argue that there is a way for you to succeed. As a matter of fact, there are several routes that you can take to achieve the level of success that you’ve been wanting from your E-commerce site.

One of which is using community driven apps. Just recently, I’ve been experimenting on several community driven platforms to figure out what kind of impact they could bring to my client’s E-commerce business.

Allow me to share with you the five ways that these platforms have helped me in growing my client’s E-commerce sites.

Related Article:Tap for Growth: 21 Business Apps to Help Small Businesses in 2016

1. It’s a Treasure-Trove for Getting Feedback From Your Audience

Think about the kind of value that hotels and resorts have been getting from sites like Tripadvisor.com. A quick gander on TripAdvisor’s “Reviews” section would give them invaluable insight about what their customers think about them.

They’ll have a clearer idea of what their customers liked about their service and the areas where they need to improve. In short, it’s one of the best places to mine for customer feedback. When your brand is visible in communities like these, you won’t have a hard time figuring out which areas of your products you need to improve, since you’ll hear directly from your audience.

2. It’s the Perfect Place to Market Your Brand Through Word-of-Mouth

What I like the most about community driven apps is they are just that, “community driven”. Because everyone is practically talking to everyone, it becomes the perfect place for you to jump-start your word-of-mouth marketing.

One of the things I did was message our email list, telling them that if they would share with the community their positive experience from using our products, we will give them a discount on their next purchase. All they needed to do was to take a screenshot of the message that they posted on the app.

The result? We saw several comments where other users thanked the people in our email list for posting their experience. Others were asking them questions, while there are those who gave comments such as, “Awesome! I’ll give them a try!”

Pretty awesome huh? As you can probably imagine, there are several other incentives that you can give to your customers to compel them to share their positive experience about your E-commerce business. If you can’t think of any, however, then you can use these:

  • Discount offers
  • One month free subscription
  • Gift certificates
  • Feature them in your website
  • Give them free publicity (this is ideal if you’re in the B2B setting)

3. Give Your Discount Offers (Or Coupons) More Traction

Make no mistake, while using discount coupons to grow your E-commerce sales is undoubtedly a good strategy, there are also those who fail miserably at using it. They get very little to no sales even though their discount coupons are plastered all over their website. If you’re getting the same results as them, then why not do this instead.

Why not post your discount coupons on high-traffic discount-coupon community-driven apps like Dealspotr? If you check out the platform, you’ll notice that they have nifty features where the users can up-vote the coupons, or leave comments (among others). These elements make your discount coupons socially validated, let alone increase its virality, making it easier for others to make the decision to use them.

Instead of hoping that the users of the platform would just up-vote your discount coupons, however, I strongly suggest that you try to bump up the votes, shares, and comments by telling your existing followers about you adding the coupon on the app. That way, you’ll be able to get the initial engagements on your discount coupons.

Related Article: 14 Apps That Help You Manage Your Business On the Go

4. It Gives You Laser-Focused Leads

Whether you’re running a personal blog, a business site, or an E-commerce site, it always pays to have targeted traffic. After all, there’s no point in getting thousands of website visitors to your automotive E-commerce site, if your visitors are looking to buy skin care products, right?

That being said, whether you’re running a comment marketing campaign, use paid ads, or perhaps do an outreach-based marketing, you’ll get laser-focused leads if you run your marketing efforts on community-driven platforms since they’re usually niche specific.

5. Safeguard Your Brand’s Reputation

Regardless of what platform you’ll use to market your brand, I promise you that it’s not going to be all butterflies and daisies. There will always be those who will talk trash about you.

While others are just sharing their negative (yet honest) experience, there are those who are paid by your competitors to talk trash about you just to destroy your credibility. Of course, the sooner you reply to these damaging comments about your brand, the better. And so the question becomes, “Where do I even start?”

That’s where the community-driven platforms come in. Because the community in these platforms are laser-focused and are passionate about their niche, you will often see them being vocal about their experience with the brands that they bought the products from.

Note: you don’t always have to be on the defensive. You don’t always have to look for the negative things that others are sharing about your brand. Whenever you see anything written about your brand, you ought to chime in your thoughts, nurture the conversation in a caring and personal way. With that, others will view your brand as personable and relatable.

Related Article:Mobile Apps vs. Mobile Web: Do You Have to Choose?

What’s Next?

Have you been using community driven platforms to grow your E-commerce business? What kind of drawbacks have you been getting, and what are some of the best practices that you can share with the community about it?

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