eCommerce companies have promoted their products on Facebook for years, but many are abandoning the social networking giant for more niche sites. Lots of eCommerce marketers have started using Pinterest and Instagram to reach new customers.
Which of these two networks is best for promoting an e-commerce site? Here are some things to consider.
The demographics of each site will play a very important role in your marketing campaign.
E-commerce sites invest millions of dollars marketing to women. On average, they spend about 20% more online than men. Therefore, marketers clearly love image sharing sites, because they have a strong female user base.
Approximately 55% of Instagram users are women. On the other hand, nearly three-quarters of Pinterest users are female. If you’re trying to reach female customers, Pinterest is the best site to use.
Pinterest is also better for reaching higher income households. The most popular income bracket for Pinterest users is over $75,000 a year. Instagram users are in a completely different economics status. The most popular income bracket there is under $30,000 a year.
Part of the difference may be due to the average age of the users on each site. Most Pinterest users are between 30 and 49 years old, while Instagram users are typically under 30.
Ecommerce companies typically target users with very specific tastes. Unlike insurance companies, wireless providers and other brands that appeal to a very broad customer bases, they need to be very strategic to make sure their ads are displayed to interested audiences to generate new customers and Instagram followers.
This is one of the primary benefits of Instagram. Since Instagram uses the same advertising platform as Facebook, it allows you to target very specific types of users. Pinterest’s advertising platform is not nearly as sophisticated.
What Pinterest lacks in targeting options, it makes up for in engagement. While Instagram allows users to share images with lots of other users, Pinterest allows users to curate photos. It is a much more engaging social community.
What does this mean for ecommerce marketers? Ecommerce companies need to engage their customers to get them to convert. They may have an easier time driving engage leads from Pinterest than Instagram.
Obviously, ecommerce sites focusing on certain verticals perform better on one social network versus another. Some industries have better luck on Pinterest, while others thrive on Instagram.
According to this infographic from Shopify, Instagram is the best social network for reaching Customer seating automotive, digital products and Mr. Linh is merchandise. Pinterest is surprisingly better for reaching customers looking for computing services, books and magazines, and antiques.
Number of Landing Pages
Ecommerce companies tend to market numerous products. Larger ecommerce brands such as Amazon have over four million products. Rather than promoting the root domain, marketers push users to their deeper landing pages for products they are most likely to be interested in.
This is a problem for larger ecommerce companies trying to promote on Instagram. They are only allowed to share links from their bio page. This makes it difficult for brands trying to promote a large assortment of unrelated products. However, Shopify points out that Instagram marketing works well for companies with a strategy that involves promoting the front page.
“Perhaps most interesting and surprising was community style site Polyvore which is generating the highest average order value ahead of Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter. Also noteworthy in this category is Instagram which is also generating higher average orders than those same sites. This is especially impressive considering the only clickable links in Instagram are those in profile bios.”
Instagram Buy Buttons
While Instagram doesn’t allow companies to link to their landing pages, they do allow marketers to include “Click to Buy” buttons. Dylan Kissane states that these buttons can be very effective if used properly.
“Today, perhaps thanks to the experience that parent company Facebook has offered, Instagram ads are far more targetable and allow for the integration of ‘click to buy’ buttons that mean the distance from image to shopping cart is far reduced. Forget about a link from the image to a website, to a shopping cart, through a shopping process – jump straight from the image to the cart and speed up the sale.”
However, they aren’t ideal for all ecommerce marketing campaigns. Sometimes you need to engage with customers more before converting them. Some campaigns require you to build an email list and establish a long-term relationship, which isn’t possible with a “Click to Buy” button.
The best option really depends on the nature of your conversion funnel.