Business development · 20 June 2016

Small business marketplaces lead the way on social media

social media
Small business owners are focusing on candidates’ social media skills

Amazon, eBay and Etsy have been ranked as the best retailers in the world when it comes to social media strategies, according to a new Retail Social Index compiled by analytics company Brandwatch.

The micro business-friendly platforms trailed ahead of corporate competitors including Nike, Tesco and Marks & Spencer, based on an analysis taking into account monthly brand growth, conversions and conversation volumes.

The report also highlighted the importance for all retailers of timing social media posts based on data. Sunday is the least effective time to post, while content shared on Wednesday gets the most engagement.

Additional new research carried out by marketplace giant eBay highlighted the importance of social media skills to small firm owners looking for new talent, with over half of small business leaders citing a candidate’s social media skills as important to their recruitment decisions.

“We train everyone to have capabilities across all aspects of the business, from marketing, sales and front-of-house activity to admin and packaging. Being social media savvy is now intrinsic to all of this because the entire nature of word-of-mouth has been changed by new media,” said small business owner Karl Baxter, who has an eBay shop for his business Wholesale Clearance UK.

“Even a packer in the warehouse has to understand that the presentation in the box they are packing could have an ongoing social media impact with pictures being taken and shared with the world,” he added.

Social media channels including Instagram and YouTube have upped the game when it comes to small business tools in recent weeks. The photo-sharing platform announced the introduction of “promote” and “insights” features and free small business profiles – while the video hosting giant is offering free access to professional video editing when entrepreneurs buy advertising space.

Both firms’ offerings are being rolled out in the US first, with UK small business owners promised access soon. In the meantime, have a read of these top tips for getting the most out of your digital marketing activities.

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Hannah Wilkinson is a reporter for Business Advice. She studied economics and management at Oxford University and prior to joining Business Advice wrote for Kensington and Chelsea Today about business and economics – as well as running a tutoring company.

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