The barriers to start a store are basically nothing. As such store owners are skipping over vital steps in the ownership process. These stores 99 times out of 100 will fail. Online store ownership is not easy, and while dropshipping removes some of that difficulty, getting consistent sales that provide a decent return on investment will always be the largest challenge. Early adopters invest in “why” someone does something. Whereas a lot of dropshipping stores seem to just want to make money. Then the Law of Diffusion of Innovation tells us that the early majority will not purchase unless someone else has (early adopters). The early majority should always be the demographic businesses work towards as they ensure real growth occurs. This is where social proof comes in. As a store owner, you will need to constantly engage with some of your early customers to create your own group of social marketers. Approach influencers, ask for reviews, do everything you can to prove to other potential customers that people love your products. You can also leverage a number of applications that will present this data in an attractive way to your customers.
Why Social Proof is Important for Dropshippers
- Emulates a REAL store - a lot of the dropshipping catalogues can be found on so many different sites. Meaning that usually, products are not unique to that store. Shopify has made it easy to start an online store using one of their free templates. I see so many dropshipping sites with similar products on the same template. Resulting in essentially carbon copies of the same store. How do you differentiate? Brick and mortar stores are very rarely the same. Adding social proof related data to your site creates the feeling of being in a real store. People are viewing certain products, adding products to their cart, and purchasing all in real-time, much like a brick and mortar brand.
- Off-brand marketing is hard! - generally, when someone is searching for something online they search for a product. Often times they will associate a brand with a product and search for that. An example is - you don’t search for tissue paper, you search for Kleenex. This is harder to do in the case of drop shipping. Unless you have a white label partnership a lot of your catalogue’s brands will not be recognizable to most western consumers. As such, your brand is in your store - a purveyor of fine products. Social proof creates instant recognition for your store. As mentioned previously, consumers trust other consumers more than brands.
- Let your customers do the marketing for you - Save yourself some time while your customers become your best marketing specialists. Social proof reduces barriers to success with social media as well as onsite marketing.
- The information is valuable to your customers - In a lot of cases, customers actually want to see this type of information. They want to see reviews that aren’t just “Amazing product great job!”, but actually constructive information. How many people have purchased or viewed a certain product for example. Fera.ai specifically offers a Get It By Timer - while it doesn’t create social proof it does give customers a sense of urgency to buy while being comfortable about when they’re going to get their product. This reduces customer support requests regarding delivery, saving you time, while ultimately converting a customer.
3 Examples of Dropshippers Doing Social Proof Right
PSA - A/B Test as much as possible!There is an old saying “Find a way to make a dollar and do it a million times”. I made a slight change to it, “Find the easiest way to make a dollar and do it a million times”. Without A/B testing you never fully know if you’re working as smart as you should be working. Dropshipping customers can be difficult to predict, use A/B testing to be able to accurately forecast ROI for marketing experiments.
In ConclusionDropshipping and social proof/urgency tools should be the best of friends. Much like how dropshippers want to automate their manufacturing and delivery methods by partnering with companies like Dropwow, they should also leverage technologies that automate validation around their catalogue.
From a growth perspective, there is really no other way to go from zero to a hundred. As we know, 60%~ of online stores make less than $1,000/month. We also know that 60%~ of online stores fail within their first year, a lot of those being dropshippers looking to get rich quickly. It takes real work to have a semi-successful online store. Turn your customers into marketers and work a little smarter. Combine Fera.ai with Shopify and a dropshipping solution like Dropwow and you’ve got a winning solution. Just add a little water and watch your store grow. And by water, I mean business development. Checkout the Dropwow blog for more tips on how to be successful dropshipping and increase sales.