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User-Generated Content for Ecommerce 101

How to start user-generated content for ecommerce

User-generated content is one of the best inbound marketing methods out there. Prove us wrong?

With so many brands and stores using user-generated content, you really need to jump on the bandwagon now in order to compete.

In this blog, we’ll show you how to do user-generated content for your ecommerce marketing and reap all its glorious benefits, from increased sales to stronger customer retention.

What is user-generated content?

Before we talk a little bit about user-generated content for e-commerce let’s go back to the basics with a quick definition.

What is user-generated content? Also known as UGC for short, this is any content created by a user that engages with a brand or their products.

Anytime a customer posts a photo of themselves with your product and shares it with their networks, you’ve got user-generated content.

UGC can be images, videos, text-based post reviews, testimonials and so much more. The only limit is your customers’ imaginations!

So who counts as a “user” for UGC? This can be:

  • customers
  • influencers
  • brand ambassadors
  • employees

What are the different types of user-generated content?

While the different types of UGC are endless, let’s take a closer look at some of the best UGC for e-commerce.

Shoppable UGC

Shoppable UGC is the kind you find on social media. When someone posts a photo or video that contains links and tags to the place they bought it from, you are engaging with shoppable UGC.

Keeping in mind that most people shop on mobile rather than desktop, shoppable UGC is another way to make sure your marketing strategy is mobile-first.

E-commerce may be online and it may make use of nifty digital technology, but the principles for selling products remain the same as ever.

Customers want genuine feedback from real people to help them make a purchase decision. This used to be word-of-mouth advertising, but in the era of e-commerce it comes in the forms of user reviews, likes, shares, testimonials, and of course, user-generated content.

Instagram UGC

Like Facebook and Tiktok, Instagram gives users and brands the tools to run an ecommerce store on the app itself. This is called Instagram Shopping and makes it super easy for users who are engaging with Instagram UGC to make in-app purchases.

Web based social feeds

A lot of e-commerce stores are creating social feeds on their own websites. This allows customers who are browsing the store to quickly and easily view social media posts by other users who have bought and enjoyed your products.

Why you need UGC for ecommerce

User generated content is not just great for e-commerce, it is becoming absolutely essential. This is because users, especially millennials and Gen Zs, are becoming more sceptical than ever of content that comes directly from a brand.

You’ve probably observed this trend for yourself, but it has been backed by real research.

A 2020 study by Stackla found that 79% of people say UGC highly impacts their purchasing decisions and consumers find UGC 9.8x more impactful than influencer content and.

With figures like this, it’s no wonder why Shoppable UGC and Instagram UGC are so effective.

In this way user-generated content has the following benefits:

  • Establishing relationships with consumers
    People who buy your product are having fun while they engage with your brand regularly.
  • Generating brand trust and retention
    With users trusting other users more than businesses themselves, user-generated content inspires trust in your brand and products.
  • Building social proof
    Marketers have always sought to give social proof in one form or another, now user-generated content does the work for you.
  • Cost-effectiveness
    User-generated content offers your brand an opportunity to really cut costs, as users are doing that time consuming work of taking photos and creating posts for you.
  • On-trend
    Another great opportunity offered by UGC, is the ability to keep a finger on the pulse of what your users are into.
  • Drives traffic
    UCG also has the power to drive web traffic to your ecommerce store, boosting your profile whether you’re on Shopify, Amazon or using your own site.

How do I start user-generated content?

As one of the biggest trends to shape digital marketing in 2022, UGC should become a priority for any e-commerce store, now and into the future.

Start creating UGC campaigns for your brand by taking advantage of your social media channels and their native tools for e-commerce.

Look for ways to add social feeds to your ecommerce store so that UGC is always present where your customers find you.

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