Need more traffic to your online store? A new social e-commerce Web and mobile app can help.
Social shopping community Bestie launched today (Aug. 19), offering merchants a consumer-driven e-commerce platform to list products and bring customers to their online stores. Using an Instagram-like newsfeed, Bestie allows retailers to grow their businesses by letting users find, follow and favorite products and sellers. Instead of directly buying on Bestie, however, listed products link back to a merchant's own online store where buyers can complete their purchases.
To further drive sales for merchants, Bestie also gives users product recommendations based on their favorites, accounts they follow, browsing histories and user preferences. The service also functions as a deal-finding platform that automatically showcases and updates merchant promos in real-time. [15 E-Commerce Solutions for Small Businesses]
Bestie is open to businesses of all sizes. Although its roster of merchants include big names like NastyGal, Nordstrom and Etsy, the platform nonetheless provides a level playing field that lets the smallest businesses compete with top brands.
"Anyone can sell on Bestie," said Gary Lipovetsky, co-CEO. "Our goal is to level the playing field and allow mom and pop merchants to compete with the likes of multibillion-dollar public companies."
Unlike similar e-commerce platforms that spotlight merchants based on their advertising budgets, Bestie democratizes e-commerce by sorting and displaying products based on their popularity as indicated by user engagement. Metrics include the number of followers a merchant has, how many products a merchant has listed, and how many times a product has been favorited by users.
"Bestie allows all sellers equal opportunity to set up an account and showcase their products to our community of shoppers,"Lipovetsky said. It's all about how good products are, not how much a company is willing to spend on advertising, he said. "On Bestie, the merchants with the best products rise to the top, which is not always the big-box stores."
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To start selling on Bestie, merchants can either sign up for an account or have an account set up for them by a Bestie curator.
"Our full-time curators search the Web for merchants that carry great product," Lipovetsky said. "If our curators like a merchant, we'll go ahead and set up a Bestie account for them. We also listen to our user community, and if enough people post products from a certain merchant, we'll set up an account for them."
Bestie is available over the Web and on iOS and Android devices.
Originally published on Business News Daily