A study of 50 clothing, footwear and accessories retailers with Facebook pages found that few were fully “maximising the potential” of their social media presence.
‘Facebook Benchmarking for Retailers 2016 Report‘, from strategic multichannel consultancy Practicology, noted that, of the 50 retailers, 28 failed to provide visitors with customer service information. After receiving a customer query from Practicology, 18 pages failed to deliver a response.
Alarmingly, 11 of the pages visited did not include a basic Call to Action button, such as a ‘Shop Now‘ or ‘Contact Us‘ link. Although many in the study, such as Zara, in fact include links to their websites on their pages, by missing out on the use of the ‘Call to Action‘ format they are losing out on a chance to draw customers in. Posts for specific clothes also lack links to pages where they can be bought quickly, again failing to make sure the pages are as convenient as possible.
“Fashion retailers and brands understand that if a consumer sees an outfit in their store window they expect to be able to walk into the store and buy it,” said Amada Haxton, Social Media Consultant at Practicology. “Yet when it comes to Facebook pages, too many retailers don‘t take the same approach. And even worse, a significant number allowed customers to message them through Facebook and then didn‘t respond. This is akin to a staff member refusing a question from a customer in a store.
Social media should be viewed as a crucial aspect of a retailer‘s customer engagement and customer service strategy.”
The report offered advice for retailers wishing to maximise their social media presence, such as answering queries within 24 hours and ensuring that a page‘s cover images updates to suit changing promotions and seasons.