Does your store need Snapchat?

As a retailer, you probably already feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day without adding a new social media platform into the mix. There’s a good chance you already have a website, Facebook and Instagram account (not to mention an actual store to run) but Snapchat is fast becoming an important tool for connecting with your customers. So how does it work?

The basics

Snapchat is a free mobile app that lets users send photos and 10 second videos (‘snaps’) to their friends. After a user watches a snap it disappears, so while you might spend 15 minutes styling the perfect in store shot for Instagram, Snapchat is all about offering an unedited look into your world.

Who uses it?

Globally, the platform is used by more than 100 million people every day. According to the 2015 Sensis Social Media Report, 15 per cent of Australian consumers are on Snapchat, with users most likely to be women aged between 18 and 29.

Have fun

Because Snapchat isn’t permanent, you can afford to have some fun. Its strength lies in creating ‘behind the scenes’ exclusive moments for your audience, so they can get a feel for the person behind the store.

High engagement

To follow someone on Snapchat, you need to type their account name directly into the app. Because of this it can be harder to increase your audience than on Facebook and Instagram but your engagement rate will be higher. Your audience has specifically chosen to receive content from you; basically they’re your biggest fans.

Steal from the best

Before you start sending out snaps, take a look at other retailers that have mastered the platform. American fast food chain Taco Bell and clothing brand Everlane are known as some of the best, along with beauty retailer Sephora and online giant ASOS. Closer to home, homewares wholesaler and retailer Hunting for George recently joined the Snapchat party.

What to post

Decided to open an account? Here are a few ideas:

1. Promote new products: a quick product demo or sneak peek of an upcoming drop builds anticipation and gets customers excited.

2. Behind the scenes: take viewers on a 10 second store tour, document the installation of your next display, film a quick q&a with a member of staff… The options are endless!

3. Drive foot traffic: encourage customers to take a screenshot of your snap to get a percentage off in store.

By Ruth Cooper