Study : social commerce, eh? What’s that?!

Posted by Merchenta on February 8, 2011

A recent study of UK social media users by Lightspeed Research for Figaro Digital throws some light on not just why people use social media for eCommerce, but – crucially – why they don’t.

By far the largest group of consumers who are yet to experience social commerce, simply didn’t know it was possible. Despite a push by brands over the past 18 months to establish social media strategies, it appears that – in the UK, at least – there is still some way to go before consumers can readily buy stuff online via a social network.

Of those polled, only a third had made a purchase over social media.

This is a massive opportunity for retailers – if only a third of the UK’s estimated 24 million Facebook users have purchased something, the other 16 million consumers look like an increasingly attractive community.

Of the remaining two-thirds, a variety of reasons were cited for not having used social commerce :

  • 25% didn’t know it was possible to buy from social media sites
  • 19% didn’t see anything ‘worth buying’
  • 10% had security concerns
  • 7% preferred traditional online retail stores

With many organisations grappling with the challenges of multi-channel commerce across mail order, High Street & online, it looks like a social commerce has yet to become established in online retail strategy.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Jon Fortgang of Figaro concluded :

a focussed, industry-wide educational programme might be in order

At Merchenta we can help brands and retailers deploy integrated social commerce stores on Facebook and other social media networks. Our off-the-shelf MiniStores enable brands & retailers to establish a social commerce presence quickly and easily, without abandoning their existing investment eCommerce infrastructure.



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