Social networking sites have become the eternal abode of Gen Y. They are experts at the skill of multitasking any work that doesn't involve two hands and you can find the smartphone in the other.
Be it during a commute or waiting at a doctor’s office, you can find people glued to their smartphones and scrolling through e-commerce catalogues.
Our two favourite pastimes are social media and online shopping. These two have produced an even more alluring offspring, Social Commerce.
Social Commerce is when you are scrolling through your favourite social media site and see a product advertisement that interests you. You follow the post to the brand’s page and browse for products. The “Buy Now” feature most sites are sporting allows you to purchase even without leaving the social media site.
It has opened up a world of accessibility and promotes the relationship between customers with brands. Worldwide social commerce revenue is an estimated $ 20 billion and is expected to witness further growth.
- The presence of consumer brands in major social networking sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter has garnered a huge following for it. About 54% of social media users follow or like these brands to see the products it offers. Call to action features like Shop Now or Buy Now buttons are generating a huge increase in e-commerce traffic.
- Facebook is the major player contributing about 19% of direct purchase from the site. About 85% of e-commerce orders from social media is from Facebook. It has the highest conversion rate at 1.85%.
- It is closely followed by Twitter that drives 10% of total social commerce revenue. Instagram advertisement posts by brand's appeal about 10% of its users to take an action.
- Instagram is growing into a thriving platform for social commerce. Brand engagement on Instagram is ten times higher than Facebook and a whopping 84 times more than Twitter.
- Social Commerce promotes Brand engagement to a whole new level. You don't have to visit a retail store anymore to check out its collections. All you have to do is follow the brand’s official social media page, and you get updates on its latest products and collections.
- Some social commerce sites offers to customize your experience with features like fashion quiz to curate your personal style and make suggestions and recommendations based on it.
- Brands employ strategies like consumer reviews to lure potential customers into buying their products. Reviews are found to 157% more effective when compared to advertisements.
- Amazon lets it customers add items to shopping carts using #AmazonCart. This is an example of hashtags and pictures used as a strategy to spread the buzz for the brand.
- Blog posts, product videos and comparison charts are tools of social commerce that enhance a brand’s reach and build a loyal customer base.
E-commerce is expected to generate a revenue of $491.5 billion in the United States by 2018. However, the growth rate of e-commerce from social shopping is expected to exceed the overall growth rate of e-commerce by 10%. Business owners can take advantage of this trend by joining the social commerce bandwagon.