In almost every area of our lives, in 2020 we saw a behavioral change that normally takes a decade, especially when we look at our online behavior. For many companies, the change in recent times has mainly been in the rapid shift to online interaction with customers. Whatever sector you are active in as a company and whoever your customers are, it is important that you look differently at the way you deal with your target group. You may find those people in completely different places than before.
During the corona pandemic, people generally felt more relaxed when shopping online from home. Many turned to online platforms to find inspiration and to discover new products and brands.
Like e-commerce as a whole, this discovery mindset is not entirely new. But the lockdowns in various countries have accelerated this. Instagram, for example, has long been a place to find new products and services: 83 percent of users worldwide have already done so via the platform ( Ipsos, ‘Project Instagram’, Facebook-commissioned survey of 21,000 people aged 13-64 in AR , AU, BR, CA, DE, FR, IN, IT, KR, TR, UK, US and aged 18-64 in Japan, November 2018). More than 90 percent of users on Instagram follow at least one of their interests, and two in three say it’s a place to interact with brands. In addition, 87 percent took an action after seeing product information on Instagram, such as following a brand, visiting a website or making an online purchase.
With so many people using digital platforms this way, it’s important to leverage digital tools to help customers discover new products or brands. And this must be ingrained in your marketing strategy (Ipsos, ‘Project Instagram’) .
From bottom funnel to full funnel
Introducing people who are already fans to your (new) product or service is important, but it is also important to think about how to attract new people who are interested. We strongly see that brands need to look further when it comes to their options in online commerce. They should not just focus on that opportunity to turn intentions into conversions, but rather think about how to find new fans or people with a certain level of interest.
What kind of things are involved here? For example, offering an experience in which the customer is fully included in the brand experience. Because what was previously only possible in a physical store (think of testing a new color lipstick) is now virtually reality.
Allow people to discover they didn’t know they needed
During the corona pandemic, it is increasingly important to ensure that consumers keep the retail experience they previously had in-store. Help people not only find what they were looking for, but also discover what they didn’t know they needed. I believe that moving from e-commerce to discovery commerce is the future of online shopping.
Discovery commerce in the funnel
So brands need to provide new ways for consumers to find, experience and buy the right products – wherever they are in the marketing funnel. For customers at the top of the funnel, it’s all about creating demand and inspiring new customers. In the middle, companies should help customers find out if a product is right for them. In the final phase of the funnel, brands must ensure that people can buy products when and where it suits them best. All products must be available for shopping immediately after discovery. To achieve this, consumers must be able to purchase directly from the platform. Or through collaborations that create a seamless link with the shopping cart on the website of the relevant retailer.
A discovery mindset
Important to remember: Demand creation is not just about having the right framework and tools, you also need to have the right mindset for using it. At Facebook, we know firsthand how powerful discovery can be. Ten years ago, no one was used to relevant content coming to you by itself. Now that is precisely the expectation.
Ten years ago, no one was used to relevant content coming to you by itself. Now that is precisely the expectation
And in the fourteen years we’ve spent working on the Facebook News Feed, for example, it has become one of the most advanced discovery engines in the world. 2.7 billion people around the world visit Facebook at least once a month and 1.73 billion every day. And each feed is unique to each user. This is discovery on a very large scale ( Facebook data Q2 2020 ).
The future holds a lot more in store for marketers – what top industry experts expect can be found in the free eBook Build Brilliant Brands . Companies have realized that with today’s technology, they don’t have to wait for people to find their products. It’s more important than ever to focus on your business. So don’t waste time waiting for customers – let your products find them for you.