New figures reveal rapid adoption of social in consumer shopping behaviours
- Facebook Commerce – the act of buying products through Facebook – has doubled in just six-months, climbing from 4% to 8%.
- Shoppers are increasingly turning to Facebook for product recommendations: 24% now use it to see what their friends have liked (up from 22% in March), 27% ask friends for product recommendations (up from 19%) and 21% see what products their friends have bought and recommended (up from 15%).
- Mobile phone usage to access social sources of information is on the rise. A majority of respondents now own a smartphone (57% versus 49% in March), and they’re not afraid to use them: 28% read reviews on their mobiles, 24% (up from 18% in March) use their smartphone in store to locate a discount voucher or coupon, while 9% (up from 6%) use their phone to read customer reviews while in store.
- Friends’ recommendations remain the most important factor in making a purchase decision. They are now ranked as important by 74%, up from 70% in March. The importance of consumer reviews written by strangers is also up, from 62% to 65%.
- Recommendations based on what Facebook friends ‘Like’ have increased in usefulness from 15% to 17%, while recommendations based on what Facebook friends actually bought grew significantly from 13% to 18%.
- Multichannel shopping is also on the rise. The proportion of consumers researching their purchases using at least three channels from a list comprising mobile, Facebook, online and offline has increased to 39% from 36% in the six months from March. The proportion using all four channels rose from 8% to 10%.
- Older consumers are increasingly turning to reviews before making a purchase decision. 32% of over 65s and 27% of the 55-64 age-group always read reviews before making a purchase (up from 21% and 22% respectively in March).
- The popularity of online shopping has increased by 10% as a share of total purchases (49% now, up from 39% in March). In addition consumers are increasingly beginning their research online for all purchases (46% now, up from 40% in March).
- The majority of respondents have written a review (56% now, up from 47% in March) and half of those who have written a review have also shared it with friends. 95% of respondents sometimes or always read reviews before making a purchase decision.