Social commerce: towards an increasingly social shopping

14 February 2020
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Nowadays social networks are one of the most popular channels to get inspired for shopping and to discover new products. Social selling is changing the marketing for eCommerce deeply and quickly, along with other valid allies like AR, influencers, and chatbots

In this context of intense transformation, the way people buy is changing, as well as the way brands promote their products. Most people today love to shop online and love to do so on social media. A study carried out by eMarketer in the States shows that 55% of the Z generation makes fashion purchases online and gets inspired by social media browsing; the same happens for 50% of Millennials. 

The boundaries between social media and eCommerce are becoming less and less defined, and if we think about the huge quantity of time that people spend online, no wonder that social commerce has become one of the expected market trends for 2020.

Let’s see how the social network landscape is evolving in this scenario and what chances if offers: 

FACEBOOK
 

For some years now, Facebook has given users the chance to show products in the “shop” tab: a special section where you can insert prices, products/services and their conditions, directing users to the purchase on the official website. 

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Another important possibility offered by Facebook is the tag for products. This is a very useful function to quickly trace the products that appear on a shot, for example in a total look, and complete the checkout. 

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INSTAGRAM
 

Also Instagram, in 2018, integrated the shopping function making the app become a real virtual showcase where users can view the products and then be redirected to the official page of the brand to complete the purchase. It’s easy to recognize them, since both posts and stories contain the symbol of the “shopping bag” that stands for product sale. Be careful: the shopping tag always works along with you Facebook shop, so you need to have one to use this option. A very recent novelty of this social network is Instagram Checkout, which allows you to complete the purchase without leaving the platform. At the moment this functionality is available only for some brands in the States. 

instagram-shopping-come-attivarla

PINTEREST
 

Pinterest is the social network par excellence where people get inspired for their purchases. It was a really short step from product search through Pinterest Lens to direct purchase. This is why the platform decided to put at the users’ disposal some new tools for shopping, like “Catalogues” (not available in Italy yet). This function gives company the chance to upload their product list and make them purchasable. If you see a pin with a shopping tag, you will only need a click to immediately see price and availability! Some of the brands that have already implemented this function, like Leroy Merlin and Maison du Monde, registered an increase in traffic to the website and in users’ engagement in the purchase phase. 

Pinterest-cataloghi-online

The youngest (but not less popular) social networks are not excluded from this world: the famous Tik Tok offered to selected profiles the chance to insert links in the videos to make purchases on external websites, while Snapchat integrated the function “Visual Search” in 2018, which allows iOS users to frame an object with the camera and find the correspondent products on Amazon. 

Social networks have come a long way since they were born. What in the beginning weremeans to connect with colleagues and friends have now turned into an essential business tool for brands and companies. Do you really just want to stand by?

Author
Anna Messina