6 tips to convert Facebook fans into sales

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Helen Fang has been working in social media and e-commerce space for the past six years and is Vendio’s marketing manager. Vendio offers e-commerce software solutions including a free online store, free shopping cart software and the tools for selling on Facebook through an integrated store.

Today Helen has shared six tips for converting your Facebook fans into sales:

Using Facebook to Increase Sales: A Little Can Go a Long Way

So you created a Facebook page for your business—congrats! But now what? How can you get fans? And more importantly: how can you convert those fans into sales? There are plenty of creative ways to grow your fan count, but lets start with the basics, shall we?

1) Add widgets to your website

Seems simple enough, but you’d be surprised to learn how many companies forget to promote their Facebook page at the most basic level. You can choose from many different widgets, so pick one that works well for your business.

2)Send out an email blast

Have a weekly or monthly newsletter? Great! Add “Like us on Facebook!” to your next issue, helping you gain fans who are, well, already fans.

3) Just tell people about it!

When a customer checks out on your site, ask if they know you’re on Facebook. Add it to your invoices and business cards. Heck, got a company vehicle? Put a “Like us on Facebook!” decal on the back of it. If people already love what you do, a little promotion can go a long way.

Now that you’ve got a decent fan base, how do you turn those fans into sales? You could always try the age-old method of spamming them with “buy our products!” but we recommend the following tactics:

4) Post, and post often

Remember the phrase “If you build it, they will come”? Well, it may have worked swimmingly for brick and mortar stores in the past, but in the world of social networks, it’s simply not an option.

Make posts daily. They don’t have to relate to your business completely. In fact, they typically shouldn’t; nobody likes a spammy, self-promoting business. Post about local happenings, related topics and ask fans questions.

5) Engage, engage, engage

We can’t stress this enough: A Facebook community is a two way street. If a fan asks a question on your wall, answer them. If you ask a question in a post and fans answer, respond.

And make sure to let your personality shine though. A huge part of a successful community is showing fans the voice behind the business. They want to feel closer to you, so let them in.

Have fun with it, and your fans will have fun too. Show your fans you care about what they have to say: this is where the bonds of brand loyalty can be sealed.

6) Run contests

A long time ago I had some mugs made up with my eBay ID on them and gave a couple to eBay employees. Everyone on the UK PowerSeller board wanted one of my mugs.... I sold a lot of printers that month.
-Chris Dawson
People love free things. Whether it’s a t-shirt, a dinner or even a sticker, it’s a fact of life. Try some quick, frequent and on-the-fly contests.

Asking fans to post their thoughts or favorites of something and picking a favorite as a winner, awarding them with something small (and branded!) can do wonders for not only inducing brand loyalty, but also growing your fan base.

I just won a t-shirt. Of course I’m going to brag to my friends! Now they want to win one too, and how can they? Become a fan of your page, of course.

Follow the tips

Following these six tips will have you well on your way to increasing brand loyalty between your business and your fans. When fans feel their voices being heard by a company, they can become fiercely loyal, resulting in not only their choosing you over your competitors, but also turning them into your own little brand ambassadors, thus increasing your sales.

So what are you waiting for? Get out there and get some fans. Happy Facebook-ing!

If you would like to connect with Helen and the rest of the Vendio team you can follow Vendio on twitter or check them out on Facebook!

51 Responses

  1. I’m struggling a little with my facebook page. I think I’ll do the like us on facebook with my out going e-mails on my website. How do you get the address details for competitions on facebook, do you get enterants to message you there details?

  2. All sounds good, but im not sure tho, proof is in the pudding so they say, so why has vendios only got 64 people who like them, not gud at all, and these are people who say they are the experts and by the sound of what they say they are…. the figures speak for themselfs

    out of those 64 people you may get a few sales every now and again yes but not much realy, now if you can show us how to get 64 people liking us everyday for the next year, so that would be 23360 liking us in a year then I think you may get some sales worth talking about.

    And yes I am a facebook user and log in about 4 times a day on both my laptop and my mobile phone, so I use facebook a lot.

  3. Be very careful with Facebook competitions. Point 6 above is in breach of Facebook rules and regs and I’m surprised it is even included by someone who is a social media expert.

    There are very strict rules which at the moment just about everyone who has a business page on FB ignores, but I’m guessing FB will soon make an example of a business and I’m sure you’d rather it wasn’t yours.

    Details of how you can run a promotion/competition are here:

    The most important one is you are not allowed to run a competition or promotion on your wall and get poeple to comment to enter. You have to use an external app for people to enter. And “you must not notify winners through Facebook, such as through Facebook messages, chat, or posts on profiles or Pages.”

    There’s a very good post on what you can and can’t do here:

    So, now you’re warned. 🙂

  4. How does the cost-benefit work out? Don’t forget to pay yourself a wage.

    Facebook’s business model is to sell their users info to advertisers, big bucks advertisers not us eBay/Amazon/small website types. Everyone who likes your page will be directed to a competing company spending big advertising bucks. Unless you are very lucky, hardworking and ruthless all the longterm effect of taking advantage of Facebook’s ‘free’ promotion will be to direct your customers to your larger competitors.

    That’s how it works folks.

    This Vendio promoting piece of tips are straight out of the first class of web marketing for dummies available on day one at your local college. It’s all BS and if you can’t work it out for yourself go get a proper job.

    Spam your customers with an email every week, spend an hour writing it and piss some of them off. Spend fifteen minutes a day composing a nice little story to post. Think I’m exaggerating the time taken, I doubt it. Spell check and grammar check everything manually at least twice otherwise you create the impression that you can’t be bothered. And you have to find unique content to write about, that may take some time (you can’t write about the cat every day). Don’t forget to pay yourself wages and take them out of the profits from the additional sales.

    Use some of those profits for reprinting business cards with like us on Facebook added, and PVC stickers for the van (back and both sides).

    Shouldn’t Facebook pay you for advertising them?

    Do something every day and you can’t stop without it having a negative effect. Maybe best not start. Give free stuff away, sure that’s a winner, make it up in volume (/sarcasm). Answer every comment that some idiot writes on your wall, think answering eBay questions is bad, wait till you try this.

  5. Warren,

    I would say you have a pretty good range of products that the sort of customers that would buy would be on Facebook a lot.

    Just having a fan page isn’t enough you need to give people a reason to be there, so exclusive offers just on facebook, maybe talking about the reasons behind some of your products…ie what they are used for and why they are good.

    I would suggest next newsletter you send push it in a big way, ,maybe offer a prize for fans on there or something like that?

    Also if your on Facebook then like some of the big companies pages like Asos and see what they do!


  6. Sales with Facebook as a referrer currently hit about £300 a month, that’s without any effort or spend.

    Simply by having a Facebook page and linking through to our website.

    A shop on Facebook costs £99, and given what we know about our conversion rates etc, I would estimate sales via Facebook to hit in the region of £1000-£1300 per month.

    Add a bit of spend on ads and promotion and a number nearer £2500-£3000 per month would be achieved.

    This is only related to our market and the products we sell.

  7. @Helen

    Have you got any advice about Myspace. I was checking my competitors links and their Myspace link was placed very highly by Google. As this was placed highly it must be considered a good link. Have you got any advice for Squidoo as well? Would you suggest I carpet bomb social media as share this buttons are full of different social media companies, although I’d take care not to use link building as black hat tactics.

  8. Well, I tried out Payvment’s free Facebook store and I’m still waiting for my first sale, even though I have 1000’s of fans on multiple facebook pages. A couple of years ago it was easy to build up fans and direct them towards your store links but now it near impossible, so I’ve directing my energies elsewhere. No one seems to want to part with their cash on facebook.

  9. Those stores would be great if they worked but I don’t think buyers trust them and they don’t want to part with cash on Facebook.

    The classic is, I get phone calls from a company that wants to sell me a Facebook store. If I can’t even get a sale out of free one why would I pay. I soon told them where to stick it 😀


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