The platform is part and parcel of daily Chinese life. This creates huge opportunities for brands hoping to market their products and services to that sizable user base.
WeChat functions like a hybrid of Facebook, Messenger and Paypal.
Users can create posts and chat to friends. They also have a WeChat wallet that they can use to make mobile purchases at both online and brick-and-mortar stores.
As well as allowing users to make purchases through the platform, WeChat allows brands to create WeChat stores.
By shopping at a WeChat store, users can buy the things they like without having to navigate away from the platform. And brands get to use a host of incredibly useful e-commerce tools.
What is a WeChat Store / WeChat Shop?
A WeChat shop or store is an e-commerce platform that exists within WeChat. It’s like a mobile website, connected directly to your Official WeChat Account (your brand’s WeChat page).
Once you have an Official WeChat Account, you can set up a WeChat Store.
Key features of a WeChat Shop
Customers can pay for your products and services from within WeChat, cutting down the number of clicks it takes to pay for an item they like and improving user experience.
WeChat also makes brand marketing and promotion super simple:
- Because WeChat was built as a social platform there are plenty of ways for users to share your WeChat store with their friends.
- Brands can collaborate with influencers and easily create a link between the influencer campaign and your product page.
- You can access WeChat store data, which makes it easy to retarget users with WeChat ads or direct messages.
- Brands can send coupons and special offers via their WeChat store.
All in all, WeChat Stores help brands to create a seamless, high conversion experience for their customers.
How international brands are using WeChat Stores
Set up your own WeChat Store and you’ll be in good company. Gucci, Burberry and H&M are just some of the international brands already making the most of the opportunities provided by WeChat Stores.
Combining a strong social presence on the WeChat site, allowing WeChat payments in-store and utilizing WeChat Store functions too, these brands are covering all the bases.
And it’s not hard to see why brands are investing so much time in the WeChat experience.
Working on WeChat in conjunction with influencer Becky Li, Mini Cooper managed to sell 100 of its iconic cars in just 5 minutes.
Botkier New York is an accessory brand founded back in 2003. Through clever promotion and WeChat influencer marketing, the brand saw a 960% ROI in the first three months of running its WeChat Store.
WeChat Store setup process
If you’re an international business looking to set up a WeChat Store, here’s what you need to do.
Step 1 – Set up a WeChat Official Account
This is a relatively straightforward process.
Head to the WeChat accounts page and change the language to English. Select a Service account (Subscription accounts aren’t available to international businesses).
Next, enter your details and follow up by verifying your store. Verification costs an annual fee of $99.
Step 2 – Set up WeChat Pay
Whether your brand has a Chinese bank account or just an international one, you’ll need to set up WeChat Pay. This will allow your Chinese WeChat Store customers to pay in their own currency and will support the seamless experience you’re trying to create.
Step 3 – Create your WeChat Store
- Use your own Chinese-speaking in-house web development team to create your WeChat Store.
- Use a SaaS WeChat Store provider. These guys specialize in WeChat store development and will create your WeChat store for you.
Whichever route you go down, you’ll need both local and technical know-how on your side if you’re to build an attractive and well-functioning WeChat shop.
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How to drive traffic to your WeChat Store
As with any e-commerce offering, you can’t just create a site and expect sales to start rolling in.
You need to put your new site in front of your potential market to attract account followers and product sales. Luckily, WeChat offers lots of great opportunities to do just that.
Take a look at the following tips for driving traffic to your WeChat Shop:
Collaborate with influencers
Influencer marketing is big in China. As an international brand, working with Chinese influencers brings a number of benefits.
Firstly, you get a local perspective on what your market needs and wants to see.
And secondly, you get to leverage the loyalty and trust built between influencers and their followers – ideal for new companies entering the Chinese market.
Make use of WeChat advertising features
With WeChat you can use banner ads, article ads, moment ads and mini program ads to drive traffic to your WeChat Store.
These ad types vary in effectiveness and cost. The ads you choose will depend upon your marketing budget and at which stage in the buying process you’re trying to reach users.
According to 2019 research by Quest Mobile, recommendations from other WeChat Official Accounts were the primary way users found new Official Accounts to follow.
So, develop partnerships with other WeChat Official Accounts and arrange cross-promotional activities. You’ll advertise your brand to a whole new user base in the process.
Opt for easy WeChat Shop set up with AdChina.io
For international businesses, developing a WeChat Store can be a challenge.
There’s the language barrier to overcome and lots of administrative hoops to jump through. You also have to understand what the Chinese market wants and expects in an e-commerce experience.
If going it alone doesn’t sound too appealing, why not enlist the support of AdChina.io?
As part of our Chinese e-commerce service, we’ll design and set up your brand’s WeChat Shop. We’ll set up your accounts and payment options. We can even help in the day-to-day running of your Chinese e-commerce operations.
Want AdChina.io to help your brand reach the Chinese market? Get a free trial to find out more.