Being Authentic On Social Media

KIEV, UKRAINE - AUGUST 26, 2013: Collection of well-known social media brands printed on paper and placed on plastic signs. Include Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Google Plus, Instagram and Tumblr logo.

Here is a question to ponder: how many times have you gone on to Facebook or Twitter and been frustrated with a brand or company that you follow because the message comes off as disingenuous or impersonal? This kind of thing happens all the time, and we here at Shoppost came up with what we call the “ABA” rule: Always Be Authentic.

At first glance, appearing to be genuine may seem cut-and-dried, but it’s more complicated in our very suspicious world. Sure, it may be straightforward with with your personal profile to a population who knows you, but for brands and businesses, it can be a bit trickier. First of all, being transparent is important. People sense when they are being led or lied to by a company. Maybe not all the time, but you only get one strike before your image is irreversibly tarnished, so don’t take the chance! It’s the quickest way to lose customers, revenue, and ultimately trust, which social media is built upon. People don’t want to connect with other people or brands if they feel there is a lack of integrity. To assist you in, to use a phrase from the 60’s, ‘keep it real,’ we figured it would be a good idea to write out a few guidelines for merchants and brands to follow. We hope this is will help create a better social and customer experience for your brand.


Engage Your Social Audience


The number one way to engage your audience is to be a positive source for information. And for fun, you can layer in some entertainment. A great example of this would be the use of memes in your social postings. What is a meme you may ask? According to Wikipedia, a meme is “an idea behavior, or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.” Some of the most well known brands use memes as an effective way to reach their audience. If you want to make one for you own campaign, head on over to Meme Generator and get started. They are super easy to make and it’s easy to let your creativity run wild. Also, remember that when you are reaching out to you followers, leave actual comments and engage with them, not just liking posts.

Use Real Images

We recommend that you not limit your account to graphic and stock photos. Instead, use photos of real people – you, co-workers, happy customers. You don’t need to filter everything through photoshop; just use undoctored (albeit good ones!) to convey who you and the company are. Every picture doesn’t need to be perfect, it just needs to tell something and connect with your followers.

Provide Guidance

This is your business and your opportunity to demonstrate your command of the industry. Social media is the best chance you have to really convey that type of authority and set the tone for your brand. This can be done by sharing industry relevant information in addition to promoting your company.

Be Human

Last but not least, remember to be human. Give your social media accounts a human voice and personality. It is all too easy for a brand to create a social bot and interact with their customers passively, but this can lead to some disastrous effects. It’s ok to automate some aspects of your social media accounts, but by all means, do not do this when actually starting a conversation with a customer.


Here is a quick recap of the main points:

  • Engage your audience and be a positive source for information
  • Use your genuine images
  • Provide guidance to your customers by being the authority that you are
  • Sound like a  human by using your voice.

The first bullet point is by far the most important because without an audience, you will have no one to promote your brand and ideas to. And without engaging your audience, most folks may assume your account is nothing more than spam.

So what approach to social media has worked for your business? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Debunking social commerce

Air tickets or boarding pass, passports, touchscreen smartphone with online airline tickets booking or reservation internet application, magnetic compass, credit cards and pen on world geographic map atlas

Social commerce has had several false starts in the past. So when United Airlines VP of eCommerce Scott Willson recently said that “social commerce, for the airline industry, is bunk,” we took notice.

We wanted to clarify that yes, adapting social commerce to some industries can have its regulatory challenges. But with a little imagination, social commerce can fly the friendly skies and be used even for highly regulated industries. I probably don’t need to remind Mr. Wilson that it was some forty years after Orville and Wilbur took their first flight that commercial aviation was a significant and economically viable form of transportation. I think social commerce having a meaningful impact on the airline industry will be an appreciably shorter span.

Securing online purchases

In regulated industries such as pharmaceuticals, travel or financial services, the need of protecting personal identifiable information is one of the key challenges to social commerce. But the beauty of what we’re doing at Shoppost is that by providing a platform that is fully integrated with your back-end, you can sell directly through social media while ensuring that your customer’s data is secure.

Targeting your customers

We’ve talked a lot about using Facebook or Twitter’s built-in advertising and targeting systems. It is quite a straightforward process to use Shoppost to target potential shoppers. For example, if you’re an airline that wants to sell a SEA ✈️ LAS route, simply create a shoppost that is tied to that route on your inventory management system and make it function as a disposable URL. Once you have “sold out” of that fare, the link is no longer valid, which makes it so only a limited number of people can buy the route.

Additionally, because Shoppost is tied directly to your inventory management system, order fulfillment is streamlined and payment processing is tied directly to the purchaser’s identity. A customer can simply click purchase right from Twitter and is taken directly to your checkout page.

Accurately represent your products

With our ability to present full images in Twitter and functioning as an image in Facebook as well as a full detailed description on the embedded version, shopposts are able to provide in-depth information about the product or service being offered for sale. This eliminates the risk of misrepresentation as well as provides a platform for any disclosures that need to be made prior to a sale. Consider financial advisors, for example. They are able to utilize social media to solicit new clients through shopposts while also fulfilling the SEC disclosure requirements.

With the oversight on regulated industries and the emphasis on security, making sure that your ecommerce systems are not only easy to use, but also protecting your customer is crucial. We are certain that with the proper configuration, social commerce can quickly move beyond bunk and into material results. If you’re ready to put social commerce to work, try Shoppost now.

Give us a call, Scott. Let’s see if we can fill up some middle seats for you!


Schedule and Share Shopposts from Hootsuite

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Today we’re excited to announce Shoppost for Hootsuite. If you are already using Hootsuite to manage your social media presence, this means you can now share or schedule shopposts directly from your Hootsuite Dashboard. Hootsuite is the world’s most widely used social media relationship platform. More than 10 million users, including 744 of the Fortune 1000 companies, trust Hootsuite to manage their social media programs across multiple social networks from one integrated dashboard.

Whether you’re using Shoppost for Shopify, Etsy, Bigcommerce or Amazon Webstore, you can use our Hootsuite app to plug into your inventory and share content across your social networks from a streamlined interface.

Streamlined Management 

Being able to generate dynamic content, pull in a Shoppost and share with your followers on demand is a key factor in real-time marketing. You can quickly respond to inquiries or capitalize on social media trends to spotlight a specific product or line as the opportunities arise.

Sharing a Shoppost from Hootsuite is extremely easy. By simply adding the Shoppost App to your Hootsuite Dashboard and connecting to your Shoppost account, you’ll see all your existing Shopposts within a designated stream. Once you’re done, you’re only a click away from scheduling shareable, shoppable posts of your products to the social networks you’ve already connected to Hootsuite – like Facebook, Twitter or Google+. You can also always post to Pinterest or Tumblr directly from the Shoppost itself.


A Flexible Solution

Our users have told us that Hootsuite is a great way to manage their social content and we wanted to build a solution that delivered the tools Hootsuite offers with the ability to share your products where your customers are. Being able to engage directly with your customers while also supporting your marketing goals and initiatives is one of the core benefits of social commerce. By integrating with Hootsuite, Shoppost is delivering a flexible social commerce tool for online retailers.

Don’t wait! Get started with Shoppost for Hootsuite at

Customer Spotlight: Schmucktruhe Fine Jewelry

Our recent Etsy integration has us over the moon. We are thrilled with the quickly growing number of new Etsy users. The pure beauty and the quality of the products we are seeing being sold using our Shoppost app is truly remarkable. One of the recent pieces of art that is selling extremely well through Shoppost is the work of Martina Willms, artist and small business owner. Each piece of handmade jewelry and accessory is so intricately beautiful and unique it is shocking that she had anytime left to speak with us. We were somehow able to convince our new user all the way from Germany to take the time and share what she loved about Shoppost and using Social Media to promote her business, Schmucktruhe.

Q: What type of products do you sell?
A:  I sell handcrafted and designed jewelry like necklaces, earrings, rings bracelets, hair combs and barrettes and handmade jewelry boxes.

Q: What is your most successful Shoppost?
A:Big Hair Cob in bronze with birds

Q: How does social commerce fit into your overall strategy?
A: Social commerce is very important to reach many people who are interested in my products. I use social commerce daily and regularly on many different platforms and have so also a direct contact with my customers. It’s not just about selling products, it’s important that people can respond directly to the posts and ask questions about, for example, a certain style or what materials I used for my jewelry pieces. This enables customers to get an idea of what is behind the brand.

Q: What is your number one tip for successful social commerce?
A: It is very important to take the time each day and deal with the issue. It does not help only from time to time visit a platform, you must do something regularly and always seek contact with potential customers. In this way you create authenticity, but also strengthens its brand by creating trust. It is also important not only to advertise their own products, because that could be boring for the people. Also important is the quality of the posts. It is not the quantity that leads to success, but the quality of the content that provide added value.

Q: How has Shoppost helped your success?
A: I have found that many more people click, ask questions and Pin the products that I’ve Shopposted.

Q: What results did you see from using Shoppost?
A: Since I’ve used Shoppost my sales have increased, as well as the conversion rate and the number of customers who look at my products and notice the products has multiplied. Shoppost is the ideal solution for me and also saves a lot of time.

Welcome to Shoppost for Etsy

Unique products deserve unique social media and ecommerce content. Being able to interact with customers and provide a true sense of identity and self is part of the Etsy seller’s ethos. That is why a social commerce solution that supports the ability to embrace your brand while optimizing the ability to sell directly in a social stream is so vital.

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Etsy sellers can add product posts directly into social media with Shoppost.

Until now, we have offered Amazon Webstore, Shopify and BigCommerce users the ability to use their brand to sell directly in social media. Starting today, the Shoppost platform for social commerce is now available for Etsy sellers as well. You can go use Shoppost for Etsy now.

By using Shoppost, Etsy retailers can merchandise and sell their products in-stream on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and blogs in a post that mimics an e-commerce storefront and connects purchasers directly to their branded checkout process. Shoppost even provides analytics and reporting for your storefront.

Boost Engagement with Social Commerce

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Etsy sellers keep their store branding and presence throughout the checkout process.

Shopposts were designed to drive better engagement and conversion for merchants on all of the major social media platforms and equally as functional whether on a PC, tablet or mobile device. We haven’t been around very long, but we’re already successfully delivering on that promise. We’re seeing a 22% engagement rate with shopposts on Facebook.42% of all engagement with shopposts are happening on mobile. Now, Etsy merchants have that same ability to engage with and sell to consumers where they live on social media.

Shoppost enables customers to quickly move from consideration to purchase when viewing product promotions in their news feeds on social media sites or on blogs; shopposts use product details including images, availability, sizing, colors and pricing brought forth directly from an Etsy retailer’s merchant page. Once a customer clicks the buy button in a shoppost, they are taken directly to the merchant’s Etsy branded shopping cart, providing a seamless, trusted checkout experience. The Shoppost web app also provides a robust analytics tool that delivers valuable data about customers’ engagement and which products convert best on which sites. Merchants get quick feedback on what’s working and what’s not and can react accordingly.

Share where your customers are

Shop King Dude Pinterest Screen Shot

Etsy seller Shop King dude has been deploying Shoppost across its Pinterest profile.

Etsy seller Shop King Dude specializes in one-of-a-kind vintage finds. Being able to showcase the visual element of these items is a crucial way to reach potential buyers, which makes Pinterest a natural fit for this boutique. Using Shoppost, Shop King Dude can quickly bring these unique items to social media with a simple share. If that item sells, the shoppost will automatically update, showing the item is no longer available.

In addition to the real-time sharing, Etsy sellers get access to their Etsy shopping cart directly through social media. By simply posting a shoppost, people are able to purchase with minimal clicks, which as Trendy Babywearing recently shared, can boost conversions significantly.

If you’re ready to make your Etsy store social, you can learn more on our Shoppost for Etsy page.

Welcome to Shoppost for Amazon Webstore

Being able to reach your customers with interactive, dynamic and effective content is an ideal way to increase conversions for your ecommerce store. For retailers, this takes the form of posting a link on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. But there’s a lot more that can be done.

We have offered Shopify and BigCommerce users the ability to do more. And, starting today, the Shoppost platform for social commerce is now available for merchants using Amazon Webstore, Amazon’s hosted e-commerce platform. You can go use Shoppost for Amazon Webstore now.

By using Shoppost, Amazon Webstore’s retailers can merchandise and sell their products in-stream on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and blogs in a post that mimics an e-commerce storefront and connects purchasers directly to their branded checkout process. Shoppost even provides analytics and reporting for your storefront.

Quick setup, quick results

We’ve been working with some of Amazon’s great retailers These early adopters have already begun seeing results as part of an early tester system, which you can join now, as well!

Online catalogue company Spiegel has been innovating in the commerce space for more than 150 years. Spiegel has a great history of “firsts.” It introduced the teddy bear to America in 1908/1909, invented the credit card, launched Barbie, invented a super computer in the 50s, launched Gloria Vanderbilt & DKNY and it was the first major online retailer in 1995. Integrating Shoppost into its social commerce strategy was a natural fit.

Spiegel Screen Shot

One of the world’s oldest catalogue companies, Spiegel, has begun using Shoppost to reach its customers.

HD Military Sales has been using the system to reach its customers with unique Harley Davidson merchandise. The team there has been able to utilize the detailed postings quickly and says that it is “already seeing results.”

Harley-Davidson AMZN Webstore on FB

H-D Military Sales reaches its Facebook Audience with its Harley-Davidson branded clothes.

Additionally, Fair Indigo, which bills itself as providing style with a conscience has been using Shoppost to promote its brand of stylish clothes that puts the eco in economical. The highly engaging content from Shoppost has been able to seamlessly connect to the Amazon shopping cart and processing system.

Fair Indigo utilizes Shoppost to reach customers with its unique styles.

Fair Indigo utilizes Shoppost to reach customers with its unique styles.

Seamless integrations boost sales

Customers quickly move from consideration to purchase when viewing product promotions in their news feeds on social media sites. Shoppost pulls product details including images, availability, sizing, colors and pricing directly from the Amazon platform. Any purchase from a Shoppost takes customers straight to the merchant’s branded shopping cart, providing a seamless, trusted checkout experience.

The Shoppost web app also provides a robust analytics tool that delivers valuable data about customers’ engagement, and which products convert best on which sites.

The ability to quickly integrate with Amazon’s backend management is a great asset for retailers.

Are you ready to realize the benefits? Read more on Shoppost for Amazon Web Store and engage with your customers today!

5 Ways Small Businesses Can Boost Their Online Sales

Woman Working At Flower Shop Smiling

Sure, ecommerce platforms work fine for the large retailers who already have a built-in customer base and following. But what about the small business or new startup? How can you establish an online foothold in an increasingly more complex and difficult sales environment?

We’ve got you covered. Here are our five tips to jumpstart your online sales.

Set Up a Website

If you haven’t done that yet, stop reading and get one set up!
Okay, that wasn’t much of a first tip. Let’s call that one a freebie.

Get Mobile

Mobile is the wave of the future, and it’s either time to ride that wave or get out of the way. According to, mobile web usage is at approximately 30 percent, up from just 3 percent in 2010. If your online presence only caters to desktop users, you’re missing a huge—and growing—part of your audience.
Always optimize your site for mobile users, and consider launching your own app. Engage this growing section of your customer base.

Be Social

Recently, we talked about how you could use Facebook to drive sales. This just underscores the need for your business to have a social media presence. It doesn’t have to be every single social media network, but you should know which networks your target audience is using and make sure you’re active and engaged there.

Focus on the Customer

Companies like Zappos have become legendary for their devotion to customer service. And in a world where everyone has a story about being routed to a call center halfway around the world, only to wait on hold for what seems like hours, this Business 101 staple should not be overlooked.
No matter your platform, you should have clear means for the customer to contact you with any issues, and a plan in place to satisfy customer returns, complains and questions as quickly and effectively as possible. Buying from an online store is one thing – knowing what to do when that item is returned is another. A lot of companies spend all their time on the buying part of the equation, and not the post-sale customer service aspect. Don’t be like a lot of companies.

Identify Trends, then Jump on Them

You should always have an ear to the ground for “the next big thing.” The Internet is a fast-changing place, and new ideas, memes and methods are popping up every day. The now overly-clichéd Wayne Gretzky quote is nonetheless apt here: “Go to where the puck is going, not where it’s been.”
What are some of the trends that might affect your small business? Digital couponing, for one – this sales tactic jumped 141 percent in 2013 to 66 million digital coupons redeemed. Retailers with a strong digital coupon strategy are the ones reaping the rewards. Another is video, which is projected to generate more than two thirds of all Internet traffic by 2018. While not all businesses need to utilize video, those that do are opening themselves up to a much larger potential audience.

Use Shoppost

Come on, you didn’t think we wouldn’t put this in, did you?

What are your online selling strategies? Has your small business had success selling online? We invite you to share your stories with us in the comments below.