During the 1950’s a Psychologist by the name of Abraham Maslow held a meeting to discuss what is now known as The Third Force of psychology. This force is now known as Humanistic psychology. The humanistic approach tampered with the ideals around self-actualization, creativity, and individuality.
Here at Social Annex we strive to discover what it is that makes eCommerce sites social. What is it that humanizes a site to the point where people feel connected to the shopping experience and the brand? These ideas of self-actualization, creativity, and individuality have seen to work their way into every aspect of social eCommerce.
We have found that people who are shopping online are essentially doing the same thing that people on Facebook and Twitter are doing. They are looking to develop significant relationships. These people are looking for a group of like-minded souls that they feel comfortable with and can engage with. And it is creativity and individuality that humanizes a site to the point of self-actualization in the consumers mind.
There are many ways that companies are can humanize this shopping experience for their customers. Let’s look at small talk. People start off their conversations with small talk. These conversations lead to deeper conversations. Essentially, these relationships that happen over small talk build and build to create a much stronger bond. So actions of incentive based sharing and product recommendations are great ways to engage in this small talk with your customers.
Concepts of gamification and gifting tend to take this bond one step further. You may be thinking why is gamification and gifting so important when it comes to eCommerce? In a world of influence and how people function gifting is one of the most powerful influencers. There are many studies focused on the fact that when someone is given a gift they feel the need to reciprocate. And this is a very powerful feeling. When it comes to online shopping a simple gift such as 10% off for sharing can lead to this feeling that one gets from gifting. This feeling essentially makes someone feel the need to buy something and reciprocate to the gift they have been given.
By creating these connections with your customer you have essentially humanized your site. You customer has realized that you are now connected. Your creativity and individuality has connected your brand to them and you are now in a position where you can nurture this relationship and increase the life time value of your consumer.