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Interview with Vinod Varma from Creator.co

Team eCommerce Next interviewed Vinod Varma from Creator.co to get more insights on Trends Shaping E-Commerce in 2022. Following is our interview with him:

How are social media and influencer marketing impacting eCommerce?

If the shutdown during 2020 taught us anything, it’s that social media impacts and connects us so strongly, especially when it comes to online shopping and the world of E-commerce. Ever heard of the phrase “TikTok made me buy it?” The explosion of E-commerce throughout the pandemic owes a lot to social media influencers and their influence. Individuals do not just want to purchase a product; they want to buy an experience, a story, from real people they trust.

That’s where influencer marketing comes into play. According to a recent study by Forbes, most millennial buyers are not influenced by advertising, and about 33% depend on blog reviews when making a purchase. This change has helped businesses in a massive way, not just in brand trust but also with ROI. 

How can influencer marketing improve a businesses’ profits?

A study by Tomoson found that influencer marketing is on average delivering $6.50 ROI for every dollar spent. More and more brands realize the importance of influencer marketing and how crucial it is to make a genuine connection. When individuals purchase an item recommended by an influencer, it doesn’t usually feel like simply a purchase but rather a way of being united with that influencer through a mutually shared product.

What are some of the differences in retail and eCommerce since the pandemic?

According to IBM, the pandemic has dramatically accelerated the transition to eCommerce. Two years ago, online purchases were responsible for about 14% of retail sales. Next year that number is expected to be about 20%, meaning almost a 50% increase in just a few years. As more companies pivot to meet customers’ growing needs and expectations, the impact of e-commerce will continue to grow.

Due to the pandemic, consumers are shopping online more now than ever, impacting almost all retail categories. It has pushed many retailers to rethink their business model. Convenience has taken the forefront as many large retailers have transitioned their layouts and utilized floor space to create fulfillment centers. For example, consumers can now place a product order online to pick up in just a few hours at larger retailers like Walmart, Target, and Best Buy. While people were staying safe in their homes during the pandemic, many spent more time online shopping and browsing social media. Platforms such as TikTok and Instagram became increasingly prevalent in influencer marketing and led to more customers discovering and purchasing products online.

Social commerce and influencer marketing will continue to make massive strides in the new year. As social networking has only grown stronger since the pandemic, brands are spending more on social media marketing and finding ways to use relevant influencers as the key to their campaign. With the impressive ROI from influencer marketing, 2022 will see more campaigns featuring influencer marketing, specifically mico influencers.

How are NFT and crypto impacting E-commerce?

Non-fungible tokens, known as NFTs, are taking center stage as digital products. Many brands and influencers are taking a closer look at how they can best leverage this new form of digital currency. NFTs will soon replace QR codes, membership codes, and more, ultimately making it easy for creators to connect and invest in digital content and commerce, all in one platform.

eCommerce platforms enable customers to search for products online and purchase them from the convenience of their homes with just a single click. Accepting cryptocurrencies as a form of payment can give a brand a competitive advantage. In crypto, blockchain-based technologies will be influential in transitioning business applications and processes. Blockchain can be used to impact every form of e-commerce – B2C, B2B, B2G, and C2C.

With cryptocurrency, customers don’t have to use their credit cards, head to a bank, or withdraw money when spending at checkout. It can also transform the foundation of eCommerce by enabling business relations without a mediator. For example, instead of a brand or individual going through investors to get their projects or products funded, they can sell tokens directly to the public.

What are the benefits of social commerce?

Social commerce is the convergence of social media and eCommerce. Social commerce can positively impact a business’s overall sales volume, but surprisingly that’s not the only remarkable thing about it.

  • Enhanced customer engagement – Social media serves as two-way communication between businesses and consumers. This connection allows the promotion of products and enables easy communication and relationship with customers. Users are more likely to read reviews from previous customers on these platforms, and because of this, the business grows and ultimately assists customers in making informed and trusted decisions. 
  • Consistent audience growth – Any business’s social media platform aims to build an engaged and consistent audience. Because new customers are discovered through these channels, brands need to maintain the same relationship with each new customer who interacts with the business online to keep constant growth.
  • Increased average order value – Companies with a seamless and convenient eCommerce experience can easily convince more customers to shop online. Social media, on average, already influences users to spend more. Having a streamlined process of getting customers from social media post to checkout is a simple way to leverage this fact.
  • Stronger SEO – Social media boosts traffic to businesses, leading to direct transactions. How? More robust engagement helps companies drive relevant content according to the users’ interests, thus motivating them to make frequent purchases. Furthermore, social media allows businesses to build up reviews, comments, and other feedback to improve their digital footprint, ultimately raising their search engine ranking.
  • Improved customer analytics – Social commerce allows brands to assess their insights regularly. These analytics can be measured consistently since built-in metrics assess impressions, reach, and engagement. These insights assist businesses in learning more about their audiences and help them create and share the appropriate content with their customers.

There are a few ways influencers market NFTs and content similar to them. Some of it can be entertainment, while some of it is precisely for informative purposes. Blockchain content can be found across many platforms, including Youtube and Instagram, meaning it is no longer a trend contained to very niche websites or mediums. 

Influencers will be monumental in affecting the worth of crypto and NFT based on their recommendations. As discussed above, many consumers prefer to make their purchase based on the recommendations of an influencer they trust rather than an advertisement. As influencers begin to market this type of content to their followers, businesses will now ultimately be exposed to a much larger audience. This can attract investors and boost growth in funds and the number of consumers aware of the brand.

About Vinod Varma

Vinod is passionate about bringing brands and influencers together. In 2016 Vinod founded Creator.co, and currently serves as the CEO. He has years of experience in creator marketing and branding expertise, and focuses on driving results for brands and empowering his team to push the boundaries on what a creator network can be.

About Creator.co

Founded in 2016, Creator.co is the first automated collaboration platform for Brands and Influencers – built to inspire authentic branded content and increase social engagement for both Creators and Brands. Our marketplace’s success is built on the premise that 92% of consumers trust advice and opinions over any sponsored advertising. Most marketing teams don’t have the time or resources to scale their Influencer strategy, that’s where we come in.

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