I’m sure every one of you has encountered this at least once in their Facebook wall — a Facebook seller posts an interesting item complete with all details, except the price. So you’ll see the succeeding comments of “HM” or “interested.” You, being the 100th potential customer, will do the same after scanning the entire comment thread for the price only to see “PM sent” responses from the seller.
So, we asked a few people in the e-commerce space, one of whom has been in the industry for close to a decade and started with a capital of PHP 100,000 and now hitting PHP 25 Million in sales per month.
Our resource tells us a lot of factors affecting online selling, and here are the reasons:
- Under-cutting by Competition. By not revealing the prices of the goods in public, the seller avoids being leeched for potential customers by competitors on their FB pages. Competitors selling the same items might under-cut each other if their price list is posted publicly. Sending it via PM is the most effective and efficient way for competitors from stalking each other.
- Capturing Generated Leads. By requiring interested customers to leave a comment, sellers get a good figure on the total volume of potential sales. Sellers don’t get this kind of insight if they have the prices posted publicly, and no one comments “how much.” To further capture these leads, a PM is sent to initiate a private one-on-one conversation that starts with revealing the price.
- Upselling Opportunities. By engaging in a private one-on-one conversation with a potential customer, the seller has all the opportunities to upsell and increase potential revenue per customer. There is also a lot of room for negotiation in order to get a higher conversion rate.
- Re-Marketing Opportunities. Once a seller has initiated a private conversation with a lead or previous customer, there’s a huge opportunity to re-market. It’s either with a better, newer version of a previously offered or sold product, a lowered/sale price of a previous unsold offer, or a completely new offer of a new product line. The FB Messenger has effectively replaced email marketing in the social media age.
There are a few other less compelling reasons given to us by our sources, but these are the top reasons why “PM is Key” is a dominant strategy for most newbie online sellers.
From the seller’s standpoint, it makes sense and, if one day you become an FB seller yourself, we think you’d be employing the same strategy yourself.