This article is a summary of the speech by Emilie Benoit-Vernay, Head of Southern Europe de Shopify at the Paris retail week 2022.
Shopify is the leading multi-channel commerce solution. For every euro earned by the SaaS platform, 38€ are earned by merchants: Shopifyhelps merchants make their store profitable in a decade characterized by upheaval.
Indeed, the smartphone has changed the habits of consumers, as well as social networks, TikTok in the lead. The web 3 also symbolizes one of the great upheavals of the fundamentals of the internet with the D2C"direct to consumer".
Shopify allows merchants to adapt: this was notably the caseduring the pandemic where merchants experienced the equivalent of 10 years ofgrowth in the space of 15 months. Brands were able to reinvent their business model by turning to B2C.
Connect to Consumer (C2C)is the only viable long-term strategy for merchants
60% of consumers buy directly from brands. Structural changes are affecting the economy, the Internet and privacy, but the strategy of e-retailers as well.
At the economic level, 73% of consumers have changed their purchasing habits in the last six months. Moreover, the e-commerce model based on both online stores and marketplaces is outdated. Commerce is now exploding on social networks and Web3 is shaking up online commerce data. Brands are starting to embrace Direct to Consumer in reaction to these shifts.
Another major factor is the end of low-cost advertising. The legislation that has changed the privacy settings of the internet and cookies have driven up acquisition costs. By allowingusers to opt out of tracking, Apple has changed the way brands can attract new customers, and the budget they have to spend to do so.
In this situation, self-indulgence is the enemy of every business, and it is necessary to nurture and retain audiences by connecting to the consumer: this is what is known as C2C or Connect to Consumers.
How to do C2C?
C2C is based on connection, and these three basic principles must be placed at the heart of every interaction:
The brand must nurture these values through a unique story, it must grow its community to attract more buyers.
To connect with the consumer, it is essential to pamper its customer relationship, to fully integrate the logic of social networks into transactions and to think about WEB3.
1 - Customer relations: ahigher level of demand
Customers are more demanding in their relationship with brands.
To meet this demand, CRM tools must be optimized. Companies such as Gorgias offer all-in-one assistance to be as close as possible to consumer demands. Klaviyo also allows you to leverage purchase patterns to engage with the customer. A CRM with accurate data that helps you capture the customer to send the right message and take care of your customer support is the strategy that will help you meet customer demands.
The customer relationship is therefore based on the CRM but also on the fact of going to find the customer where he is. A useful tool to do so: Shopify POS, which connects to 1,000 locations to build a seamless synergy between a brand's in-store and online locations. By managing not only online but also in-store sales, merchants have seen a 47% increase of in-store physical sales.
Another tool highlighted by Shopify: Google local inventory ads used to highlight products made in France (Made in France attracts 2/3 of consumers in the French market): customers can find local product retailers by geographic area.
To connect with the consumer, you have to invest in a different way in the social link forged with him.
2 - The social link with the customer: investing in social media and live shopping
Orders via social media integrations for Shopify have increased fivefold between Q1 and Q2 2021.
Globally, 64% of users have already completed a purchase via social platforms. The social network allows to get inclose contact with the audience and to provide a unique storytelling tailored for the brand.
And that's where live shopping comes in: there are 24% more live shopping app installations between Q1 and Q2 2022. Brands are simply responding to customer demand: customers want to interact with the brand. They want the brand to talk to them and show them products.
To keep riding this trend, Shopify has invested in YouTube shopping to allow a total immersion in YouTube through the products presented in the shopping path. The move is then to find influencers to build a partnership with to boost its live shopping platform.
To reach these influencers, Shopify also has an answer: thanks to Shopify Collabs, an app that connects brands and content creators in order to stimulate common synergies, through the growth of merchants at the same time as the fair compensation of influencers.
Also to simplify the customer journey and proximity, Shopify linkpop is an app that allows to insert a link to the store in the bio of the social network and thus link the store.
All these modules and tools make it possible to meet the consumer where he can be found, which responds to the problem of acquisition and the changes in e-commerce.
But not only that.
3 - The Web3 or token gated commerce
Starbucks or Decathlon have already implemented these devices: the customer connects his wallet to a Shopify store, and his tokens (NFT) unlock exclusivity at the merchant, whether it is exclusive products, a collection or an event.
The consumer who owns the wallet will then pay for the exclusive content in tokens. The benefit of Web3 is that it reverses the transactional approach: it is the store that connects to the buyer and not the other way around. This implies that even in a store where a buyer would never have shopped before, interaction will occur and this is the rise of a collaborative and community commerce.
Why collaborative? Because two brands will now be able to create partnerships on the Web3 without having to exchange customer data, and this is a way to offer customers a new brand without having to share all their data. So it's a sustainable way to build growth while respecting data.
And it is also a device that helps create new ways of acquisition.
In France, the Eleven Paris brand has implemented aninnovative strategy using Web2 to Web3 synergy to develop its own range oftokens that unlock all its features to attract a new audience.
The future of acquisition
Today's customers are harder to reach and more dispersed. We must work harder to nurture audiences and reach out to them.
You have to tell your story on all channels: business is no longer just transactional, it is relational. In this context, you need the right tool, an innovative tool that meets this connect to consumer issue to allow your brand to focus on your strategy.
Brands must therefore take the C2C turn to embody the change.
Crédit image : Shopify
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