Social Commerce Is Here Just In Time For The Holidays

Retailers can celebrate early this year knowing the promise of social commerce has finally come to fruition. New “buy” buttons on both Facebook and Twitter look to reinvent online shopping for 2014. The move offers former fans of paid social advertising higher conversions and improved sale sharability.

How Many Social Sales Should We Expect?According to one online marketing firm, Invesp, 2015 social commerce sales are expected to top $15 billion. Competing firm DigitasLBi says that number could rise as high as $56 billion if recent studies are to be believed and the 20 percent of Americans who would consider purchasing over Facebook, Twitter and other social platforms take the bait. That’s less than half of those willing to take the plunge if the site could guarantee their payment information would stay secure.

Opportunities for Local Businesses

Missing out on social media advertising will have a tremendous impact on any business’s ability to keep up with their competition. This is especially true for local companies, even if the connection isn’t quite clear. When people have work done on their plumbing, when they order food, when they have a local seamstress replace a zipper on a coat – these are the mundane types of statuses that show up on Facebook, each of them regularly linking to a business page, where now, customers can order with the click of a button.

Marketing That Works

Sharing works, says Share This, who found that 55 percent of users born in the ‘80s and ‘90s follow up on these kinds of links when posted by peers. What may be trickier for platforms to put to work are paid advertisements, like retargeting ads, without alienating customer bases. While retargeting ads enjoy high conversations, they are also seen by many shoppers as an invasion of privacy and an overreaching of social media into people’s lives. Companies involved in social commerce will have to work diligently to balance the convenience of “buy” buttons with the tried-and-tested methods needed to secure sales.