The State of Social Commerce

Shoppers aren’t flocking to social platforms to make purchases

December 19, 2017

Though marketers are still using social media to influence purchase decisions and drive sales, getting consumers to actually complete a purchase while on a social property is no longer a top priority for most.

In 2017, 70.7% of US internet users will use social networks—time spent among adult users will average 1 hour,15 minutes per day. It’s a popular channel, and marketers are showing no signs of stopping efforts to reach shoppers there.

Shoppers aren’t flocking to social platforms to buy, but social media plays an important role in the early phases along the path to purchase, as a research tool and general influence. In a 2017 PwC global report, online buyers cited social networks as the digital media most used for purchase inspiration.

Meanwhile, new iterations of social commerce continue to evolve. Retail-friendly ad products and features from the major social platforms are constantly being introduced, influencer marketing is still a popular tactic, and visual commerce, including video, is becoming more influential on purchase behavior.

These insights are drawn from eMarketer’s latest report, “Social Commerce 2018: Its influence in the Path to Purchase.” The report examines retail-centric initiatives by the major social platforms and looks at how social plays a role in US buying behavior. eMarketer PRO subscribers can access the full report here. Nonsubscribers can learn more here