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The ultimate guide to selling on WeChat

The ultimate guide to selling on WeChat

Selling things on WeChat can be a highly lucrative opportunity. With over 1.3 billion active monthly users, WeChat has become a powerful marketing and sales platform, with businesses using it to sell a wide range of products and services.

In fact, in 2020, WeChat accounted for over 40% of China's social e-commerce market. This highlights the immense potential for businesses to grow their customer base and revenue through WeChat selling.

This guide will take you through the steps to effectively sell on WeChat, from setting up your WeChat Official Account to creating your own WeChat Store. Whether you're a small business or a multinational corporation, this guide is essential for anyone seeking to succeed in WeChat selling.

What is WeChat?

Instant Messaging apps for work: WeChat

WeChat is a well-known messaging and social media app that was created by Tencent, a Chinese multinational corporation. This platform was initially launched in 2011 and has grown to become one of China's most widely-used social media platforms. WeChat boasts a range of features including instant messaging, voice and video calls, social media, e-commerce, and mobile payment. With its vast user base, WeChat has become a powerful marketing tool for businesses to reach and engage their target audience, particularly in China.

Why use WeChat for businesses?

WeChat Work - WeChat for Business

WeChat has a unique ecosystem that businesses need to understand to effectively sell on the platform. WeChat Pay, WeChat Moments, WeChat Mini Programs, and WeChat Mini Shop are the key features that businesses can leverage to sell their products or services.

WeChat Pay

WeChat Pay

WeChat Pay is a mobile payment solution that allows users to make purchases using their WeChat wallet. It's the most popular payment method on WeChat and is necessary for businesses that want to sell on the platform.

Read more about the features and benefits of WeChat Pay

WeChat Moments

WeChat Moments on the app

WeChat Moments is a social media feature similar to Facebook and Instagram News Feed. It allows users to share photos, videos, and text posts with their friends. Businesses can create attractive content that resonates with their target audience or share articles that offer valuable information to keep followers engaged.

WeChat Mini Programs

WeChat Mini Programs are lightweight applications that run within the WeChat app. Businesses can use Mini Programs to build e-commerce stores, customer service platforms, and other types of applications.

WeChat Store/ WeChat Mini Shop

WeChat Mini Shop 微信小商店

WeChat Mini Shop allows businesses in China to set up a store on WeChat without coding.

WeChat Mini Shop is a feature of WeChat that enables businesses to create an e-commerce store within the WeChat platform. This allows businesses to sell their products or services directly to WeChat users, without requiring them to leave the app. WeChat Mini Shop is integrated with WeChat Pay, which makes it easier for users to purchase products using their WeChat wallet. WeChat Mini Shop is a popular tool for selling things on WeChat, especially in China. It has become an essential part of WeChat's social commerce ecosystem.

How to sell on WeChat via WeChat Store?

Building an e-commerce store on WeChat is a great entry point for selling things on WeChat. Businesses can promote their products or services directly to their target audience on WeChat. Choosing the right platform, designing the storefront, and integrating payment options are key components of building a successful WeChat e-commerce store.

How to set up a WeChat Official account?

WeChat for Business - WeChat Official accounts

A WeChat Official Account is a necessary first step for businesses that want to establish a presence on WeChat. There are 3 types of official accounts: 

  • subscription accounts

  • service accounts

  • WeChat Work/WeChat Enterprise account

Service accounts are recommended for businesses to sell and support. Explore each type of account in detail in our blog guide.

To set up an official account, businesses need to go through a verification process that requires them to provide a business license, a copy of the legal representative's ID card, and a brief introduction to the business.

For a step-by-step guide, read Setup Guide: WeChat Official Accounts.

You will need to pay an annual fee of US $99 to get your WeChat Official Account verified.

How to create a WeChat Shop?

Selling things on WeChat means setting up a WeChat Shop, and the process can be quite tedious due to its stringent rules for the verification process. 

If your business is legally registered in China, here’s what you need to prepare before you start:

  • Business license, identification documents of the administrator

  • Trademark certification, brand authorization certificate

  • Report or certification depending on the industry of your business

If you are running a business in China as a US LLC, it would involve establishing a legal entity in China, typically a wholly foreign-owned enterprise (WFOE) or a joint venture. This requires complying with Chinese regulations, including registering the company, obtaining necessary permits and licenses, and adhering to local laws. The company in the US state, suppose your business is registered as an LLC in Florida, acts as the parent company, and holds ownership of the Chinese entity. It allows the business to benefit from limited liability protection while operating in China and facilitates financial and legal separation between the US and Chinese operations.

To create a WeChat Shop, you’ll need to:

1. Log in to your WeChat Official Account and search for “小商店助手” under “Mini Programs”.

Search for WeChat Mini Shop Assistant 小商店助手

2. Click on the button “免费开店” to register a WeChat Mini Shop for free.

Register for a WeChat Store for free

3. Choose the type of store you want to create: Business 企业 / Personal 个体户 / Governmental 事业单位. Choose “Business” (企业), tick to agree to the terms and conditions, and click on “Next”(下一步).

Choose the account type for WeChat Mini Shop

4. Visit mp.weixin.qq.com on the desktop and log in.

5. Select the WeChat account you want to use to create a WeChat Mini Shop on your mobile and it will show that you’ve successfully logged in.

Log in to WeChat Official on desktop to access WeChat Mini Shop

6. On the home page of the WeChat Mini Shop, click on the button “Create Now” (立即开张). You will then be directed to the page to complete the list of “missions”.

7. Click on the button “Fill in”(填写)and fill in all the necessary business details, including your industry, upload your business license, and provide all the information as prompted.

Create a store from WeChat Mini Shop Home page

8. Once you received the notification on the completion, go back to the previous page. The next step is to click on “Verify”(验证)to complete the account verification. This must be done within 30 days.

Verify WeChat Mini Shop via business admin

9. Complete the verification following the prompts.

Verify WeChat Mini Shop with verification

10. Click on the “Fill in”(填写)button to complete the basic details of your business, such as business logo, store name, nickname, address, and more.

Fill in business details for WeChat Mini Shop

10. Wait for the 3 sections to get verified. It will normally take 1 to 3 business days. You will receive a notification on WeChat once the verification is complete.

11. After that, you can click on the “Sign contract” (去签约)button.

Sign contract on WeChat Mini Shop

12. Scan the QR code using your business admin’s WeChat account.

Scan the QR code with business admin's WeChat account to sign contract

13. Click on “Complete”(确认)and the business admin will receive a notification on their WeChat account.

Successfully created a verified WeChat Mini Shop

14. On the desktop, it will show that the store is successfully created.

15. Upload the products you want to sell onto your WeChat Mini Shop.

When the Mini Program is under maintenance, you may not be able to see the button to register for free.

Once your WeChat Store is published and live, a new WeChat Pay business account will be created automatically. Customers can only make purchases on your WeChat Store via WeChat Pay. There will be no charges for you to withdraw the earnings from your WeChat Store business account, but WeChat Pay will be charging a 0.6% transaction fee for each order placed.

Customer request refund on WeChat Mini Shop

If you do not have a business license in China, you can consider the following options:

  • Get your Chinese-speaking in-house developers to create your WeChat Store using JavaScript (from your WeChat Dashboard, you can find “Developer Tools” under the tab “Development” on the menu bar)

  • Apply through a third-party agent or a WeChat Store provider

Make sure to build your community and followers on WeChat before you start selling things on WeChat. Brand visibility and exposure are essential to generating sales on your WeChat Mini Shop.

Read or watch the video from the complete guide in Mandarin Chinese from WeChat.

How to increase efficiency when you sell on WeChat

Selling via a WeChat account can be a highly effective way for businesses to reach and engage with their target audience. However, managing conversations and transactions on WeChat can become overwhelming, especially for businesses with a large customer base. Fortunately, there are several smart tools available that can help increase efficiency and streamline your sales process:

Use auto replies and chatbots

SleekFlow automation for building chatbots

One of the most effective ways to increase efficiency when selling on WeChat is to use auto replies and chatbots. These tools can help you quickly respond to customer inquiries and provide support around the clock. Auto replies can be set up to provide instant responses to frequently asked questions, while chatbots can handle more complex inquiries and help guide customers through the sales process.

Manage WeChat conversations simultaneously in an all-in-one inbox

omnichannel platform example for customer instant messages

Managing multiple conversations on WeChat can be challenging, but using an all-in-one inbox can help streamline the process. With an all-in-one inbox, businesses can manage all their WeChat conversations in one place, making it easier to respond to inquiries, track orders, and manage customer relationships.

Use QR code to generate more leads

WeChat SleekFlow QR code

QR codes are a powerful way for businesses to drive WeChat followers. Businesses can include their WeChat QR codes on their printed or online marketing materials, such as business cards, flyers, website banners, and more. Once the customer scans the QR code, customers can easily follow the business on WeChat and receive updates on new products, promotions, and sales.

Use WeChat Pay or payment gateway integration

in chat payment link

Integrating WeChat Pay or other payment gateways can shorten the sales cycle and increase customer satisfaction. WeChat Pay is a popular payment option for WeChat users, and integrating it into your sales process can make it easier for customers to make purchases without leaving the app. If WeChat Pay is not available in your country, you can also integrate with other alternatives such as Stripe to allow customers to pay in the chat with just a few clicks. They won’t even have to fill in their information again when they come back for repeat purchases.

1 out of 5 shoppers abandoned a cart because the checkout process is too long or complicated.

Send automated abandoned cart reminders on WeChat

shopping cart

Abandoned carts are a common problem in e-commerce, but sending automated, personalized retargeting messages on WeChat can help recover lost sales. By setting up these abandoned cart reminders, customers are more likely to return to the items left in their shopping carts and complete their purchases.

Personalizing retargeted ads can increase ROI by over 1300%.

Track your sales performance on WeChat

Social sales performance on SleekFlow

Tracking your sales performance on WeChat is essential for optimizing your sales strategy and improving customer engagement. You can use detailed analytics to track the sales progress of each team or outlet and create incentives to motivate the team.

Integrate with existing CRM for better customer segmentation

Social CRM SleekFlow

Integrating your WeChat sales with your existing CRM such as Salesforce or HubSpot can help improve customer segmentation and provide a more personalized sales experience. By integrating your WeChat data with your CRM, you can better understand your customers' needs and preferences and tailor your sales strategy accordingly.

Get all the tools you need to boost your WeChat sales strategy on SleekFlow.

Further reading: 

Frequently Asked Questions

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