Social Media Shopping Is Coming. Does It Make Sense For Your Business?

The most significant change in social media is fast approaching. Is your business ready for what’s to come?

Social media shopping will greatly impact how people shop in the future. Since many consumers turn to social media for recommendations and reviews, it only makes sense they will continue shopping on the same platform they consulted before purchase.

Here’s what Crowdtap discovered when examining how shoppers use various social networks during the holiday season:

Crowdtap-Social-Media-Shopping-Juntae-DeLane

As shown in the chart above, your customers are using social media for inspiration, researching gifts, finding deals and sharing recent purchases. So, at first glance, you’ll notice the impact social media has on your customers’ purchase process and how it should guide your strategy going forward.

More importantly, it shows how social media is quickly becoming the starting-point for many shoppers. With all the content noise residing on social media, you must decrease the number of actions it takes to purchase your product before your customers get distracted and go elsewhere.

I call this decreasing the friction in your customers’ sales process. Here’s my formula:

Did you know that 68 percent of people who add an item to an online cart do not follow through with purchasing that item. Additionally, it takes 5 clicks to purchase something on a mobile device. Think about how social media shopping will affect these statistics.

Now the shopping cart will be eliminated from the purchase process which allows customers to purchase your items within a few clicks.

 

Does Social Media Shopping Make Sense For Your Business?


Today, more shoppers are using social media to help with purchase decisions but does this make sense for your business?

Well, Facebook and Twitter believe it does. In fact, they started testing buy-buttons displayed alongside posts and tweets which allow users to make purchases in a single click (or two).

With this feature, people on desktop or mobile can click the “Buy” button on ads and page posts to purchase a product directly from a business, without leaving Facebook.

Twitter allows users to get additional product details and be prompted to enter shipping and payment information which is then sent to the merchant for delivery.

Social Media Shopping For Your Business Makes Sense When…


If you find yourself using social ads to help stimulate more traffic or sales to your business, you will ultimately benefit from social media shopping.

I worked with a client in Fresno who loves using Facebook ads to instantly increase traffic for his restaurant during a lull in sales.

Social media shopping is beneficial in this situation as he can offer instant happy hour prices during lunch and customers can pick up their food or have it delivered in a few clicks.

Most importantly, when customers notice time-sensitive offers, they may be inclined to act quickly and forgo comparing other offers from competitors.

Social Media Shopping May Not Make Sense If…


Buying a home or car is an often long and drawn out process. Users typically want information from multiple sources outside of a single social media ad.

Leveraging social media shopping may not make sense if it normally takes your customers more than one day to complete a purchase.

If this is the case, using social media ads for lead generation is the best strategy. So, instead of offering the ability to purchase you product or service in one click, give them a freebie in exchange for their contact information.

Conclusion


Perhaps the most significant function of leveraging social media shopping is its ability to tie sales to social media and track ROI down to a specific post.

This is a game changer. Seriously!

Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest all understand this and have begun to test social media shopping on their platforms.

Once implemented, these networks can categorically justify the importance of social advertising to any online business owner.

But does this make sense for your business? 


  • Ms.Elise

    Shopping is good for the soul, when obtaining my new product/invention. This seems to be a great way for my product to be available for everyone in the world. I look forward when this becomes part of the norm in our society. Thanks for sharing, and keep them coming. Education is what I’m made of. CEO/Inventor: Curtain Plus Rod In A Bag: Hang your Curtains Over the Window W/O Nails or Screws.

    • Thanks for reading and contributing! I look forward to future engagements.
      – Juntae

  • Ms.Elise

    Shopping is good for the soul, when obtaining my new product/invention. This seems to be a great way for my product to be available for everyone in the world. I look forward when this becomes part of the norm in our society. Thanks for sharing, and keep them coming. Education is what I’m made of. CEO/Inventor: Curtain Plus Rod In A Bag: Hang your Curtains Over the Window W/O Nails or Screws.

    • Thanks for reading and contributing! I look forward to future engagements.
      – Juntae

  • Fananza

    Great piece! No doubt, social shopping is here to stay and moving toward focus on specific lifestyles. Fananza.com is the 1st social discovery and shopping platform for sports gear. Expect to see more niche-oriented social shopping networks in the near future.

    • You mention a good point: niche-oriented social shopping will be a growing trend. Think about it, everyone loves shopping with friends. Now social media users can bring their network into their shopping experience. I’ll keep an eye on this.

      Thanks for commenting!

      – Juntae

  • Fananza

    Great piece! No doubt, social shopping is here to stay and moving toward focus on specific lifestyles. Fananza.com is the 1st social discovery and shopping platform for sports gear. Expect to see more niche-oriented social shopping networks in the near future.

    • You mention a good point: niche-oriented social shopping will be a growing trend. Think about it, everyone loves shopping with friends. Now social media users can bring their network into their shopping experience. I’ll keep an eye on this.

      Thanks for commenting!

      – Juntae

  • Wapo

    Man I like where your head is.. Check out http://wapo.co/. We are
    creating an opportunity for companies to use digital promotional
    products, like people use physical promotional products. You have to
    get noticed first.

    • Thanks for sharing! I look forward to future engagements.

  • Wapo

    Man I like where your head is.. Check out http://wapo.co/. We are
    creating an opportunity for companies to use digital promotional
    products, like people use physical promotional products. You have to
    get noticed first.

    • Thanks for sharing! I look forward to future engagements.

  • Great article Juntae! As i am a freelance Social Media Manager, I see Social Media Shopping as a benefit for myself as well as my clients.

    A. Being able to track specific ROI when it comes to actual sales is something that all of my clients want to see at this time so whether they are reading the analytics themselves or I am doing it as part of a service for them, this would definitely be a very useful component.

    B. I too am guilty of leaving shopping carts with items, never to return to complete the purchase. Distraction, I see as being a possible influence in this maybe a bit for myself because we all know there are just so many great things to be distracted by, especially when it comes to being online. In my case though, with multiple clicks comes too many opportunities to ask myself whether or not i really need the item(s), so those clicks give plenty of time to change my mind and not follow through.

    I also believe that time-sensitive offers have always played a big part on sales and see this as continuing with social shopping exposing us to these even quicker and more abundantly.

    As an advocate for small businesses who want to increase sales, I am all for the simple click or two shopping via Social because it makes sense for technology to allow us to do this. I feel this would be answering a calling from the general population.

    Hearing social sites mention that they would keep financial information secure in addition to all the news about personal information being compromised online, I would however, be interested in seeing a study of those who say they would not participate in this simpler method of shopping for fear of being hacked vs those that have total trust in the online securities these social channels are offering.

    In closing I will say that having two 20-something children in my household, one I know will definitely jump all over this easy click social shopping, while the other would probably not for some time, giving ample time to listen and see any ‘bugs’ getting worked out:)

    Thanks for sharing this Juntae!

    • Hi Heather. I must say this was probably the most detailed comment anyone has every posted on my blog. I appreciate your depth and personal opinion. Further, I agree that privacy is a major concern to potential social shoppers. I would also say its only a matter of time before consumers begin to value the ease-of-use over potential hacking or identity theft concerns–especially with robust fraud protection offered by financial institutions.

      I look forward your future engagements!

      • I don’t do anything in a small way Juntae…except maybe tweet lol

  • Great article Juntae! As i am a freelance Social Media Manager, I see Social Media Shopping as a benefit for myself as well as my clients.

    A. Being able to track specific ROI when it comes to actual sales is something that all of my clients want to see at this time so whether they are reading the analytics themselves or I am doing it as part of a service for them, this would definitely be a very useful component.

    B. I too am guilty of leaving shopping carts with items, never to return to complete the purchase. Distraction, I see as being a possible influence in this maybe a bit for myself because we all know there are just so many great things to be distracted by, especially when it comes to being online. In my case though, with multiple clicks comes too many opportunities to ask myself whether or not i really need the item(s), so those clicks give plenty of time to change my mind and not follow through.

    I also believe that time-sensitive offers have always played a big part on sales and see this as continuing with social shopping exposing us to these even quicker and more abundantly.

    As an advocate for small businesses who want to increase sales, I am all for the simple click or two shopping via Social because it makes sense for technology to allow us to do this. I feel this would be answering a calling from the general population.

    Hearing social sites mention that they would keep financial information secure in addition to all the news about personal information being compromised online, I would however, be interested in seeing a study of those who say they would not participate in this simpler method of shopping for fear of being hacked vs those that have total trust in the online securities these social channels are offering.

    In closing I will say that having two 20-something children in my household, one I know will definitely jump all over this easy click social shopping, while the other would probably not for some time, giving ample time to listen and see any ‘bugs’ getting worked out:)

    Thanks for sharing this Juntae!

    • Hi Heather. I must say this was probably the most detailed comment anyone has every posted on my blog. I appreciate your depth and personal opinion. Further, I agree that privacy is a major concern to potential social shoppers. I would also say its only a matter of time before consumers begin to value the ease-of-use over potential hacking or identity theft concerns–especially with robust fraud protection offered by financial institutions.

      I look forward your future engagements!

      • I don’t do anything in a small way Juntae…except maybe tweet lol

  • Interesting article Juntae! Shopping on social media is a big deal for many of my clients… especially those with e-shops. I think we will see a lot more of this in 2015. What do you think about Facebook’s latest move with Product Ads?

    • I think they’re on to something. Great move for Facebook! Thanks for reading and commenting.

  • Interesting article Juntae! Shopping on social media is a big deal for many of my clients… especially those with e-shops. I think we will see a lot more of this in 2015. What do you think about Facebook’s latest move with Product Ads?

    • I think they’re on to something. Great move for Facebook! Thanks for reading and commenting.

  • Kerry Ocei Carter

    I definitely think that this is the direction that those in e-commerce want to see things go. Anything that allows direct access and reduces friction is of HUGE benefit.

    • Exactly! Thanks for reading and commenting Kerry.

  • Kerry Ocei Carter

    I definitely think that this is the direction that those in e-commerce want to see things go. Anything that allows direct access and reduces friction is of HUGE benefit.

    • Exactly! Thanks for reading and commenting Kerry.

  • Great article, Juntae! This has been the reality of social media for years but businesses and major platforms are just beginning to understand it! But, one of the comments here seemed to indicate ‘ease of use’ will trump privacy. I believe the exact opposite. Ease of use is critical but privacy protection and security must be a crucial consideration if we’re really going to capitalize on this rapidly emerging trend. In fact, if not a key consideration, emerging fraud (think recent Apple Pay issue) will force financial institutions to only enable sites where transactions can be validated through authentication and sound practices. Also, as consumers become increasingly aware (and hurt by) identity theft, they’ll only buy from sites they trust. Products are available from many places. IMO, only those who ensure an efficient and trusted experience will truly realize this full potential.

    • Hi Steve. Privacy is certainly an issue we mist consider with regard to social media shopping. However, there was similar concern with the emergence of social networks in general–yet they keep growing. I attribute this to the utility of social networks. Privacy is a concern but I’m not sure if it supersedes the instant gratification consumers expect in today’s market. Just a thought. Thanks for commenting. I look forward to future engagements Steve!

      • Well, I guess we’ll see but right now the social networks that are growing the fastest from a consumer perspective are the Social Messaging services like Whatsapp and WeChat (and the other 10) primarily because of privacy. And, because of that growth, brands are gravitating towards them rapidly. They are now building out massive e-commerce functionality. It’s going to be an interesting battle between the consumer and the vendors. I personally believe we must protect the consumer because without them there is no business.

  • Great article, Juntae! This has been the reality of social media for years but businesses and major platforms are just beginning to understand it! But, one of the comments here seemed to indicate ‘ease of use’ will trump privacy. I believe the exact opposite. Ease of use is critical but privacy protection and security must be a crucial consideration if we’re really going to capitalize on this rapidly emerging trend. In fact, if not a key consideration, emerging fraud (think recent Apple Pay issue) will force financial institutions to only enable sites where transactions can be validated through authentication and sound practices. Also, as consumers become increasingly aware (and hurt by) identity theft, they’ll only buy from sites they trust. Products are available from many places. IMO, only those who ensure an efficient and trusted experience will truly realize this full potential.

    • Hi Steve. Privacy is certainly an issue we mist consider with regard to social media shopping. However, there was similar concern with the emergence of social networks in general–yet they keep growing. I attribute this to the utility of social networks. Privacy is a concern but I’m not sure if it supersedes the instant gratification consumers expect in today’s market. Just a thought. Thanks for commenting. I look forward to future engagements Steve!

      • Well, I guess we’ll see but right now the social networks that are growing the fastest from a consumer perspective are the Social Messaging services like Whatsapp and WeChat (and the other 10) primarily because of privacy. And, because of that growth, brands are gravitating towards them rapidly. They are now building out massive e-commerce functionality. It’s going to be an interesting battle between the consumer and the vendors. I personally believe we must protect the consumer because without them there is no business.

  • Steve Bryant

    Great read Juntae. Also interesting seeing the comments and the perspective they give on this topic. Are there any 3rd party shopping apps, in your opinion, that plug into social platforms like Facebook that do an better job than the rest?

    • Good question. Soon, I’ll release a tool kit which includes tools with this functionality. Stay tuned!

  • Steve Bryant

    Great read Juntae. Also interesting seeing the comments and the perspective they give on this topic. Are there any 3rd party shopping apps, in your opinion, that plug into social platforms like Facebook that do an better job than the rest?

    • Good question. Soon, I’ll release a tool kit which includes tools with this functionality. Stay tuned!

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  • Kanwal Tariq

    Nice to know all these tactics as an HR person I must admit that these things really matter in making your online business successful. Waiting for more Juntae thank you for such valuable information 🙂

  • Kanwal Tariq

    Nice to know all these tactics as an HR person I must admit that these things really matter in making your online business successful. Waiting for more Juntae thank you for such valuable information 🙂

  • Patricio Irarrazaval

    I love the idea of this working. The only thing I found a bit exaggerated was that it’s only 1 click (or 2). I saw 4 clicks on the video, which would be almost the same as in any app. Or am I missing something? =P
    Great post btw!

    • Hi Patricio – The ultimate goal is a click (or two). Twitter is exploring another way that may increase the number of clicks. As platforms begin to integrate, I’m sure the number of click will decrease. Thanks for reading and commenting!
      – Juntae