Brands not embracing social commerce, or at least testing the water, will be left behind.
Social commerce, the latest darling of digital marketers, continues its meteoric rise, with the latest predictions putting the industry at $1.2 trillion in purchases by 2025.
With more than $958 billion spent in 2021, it’s clear that social commerce represents a genuine, profitable tactic for brands. No wonder there’s a hunger to invest. But at this pace, strategic marketers must ask themselves a few questions.
What is Social Commerce
Social commerce is a subset of electronic commerce involving social media and online media that supports social interaction and user contributions to assist online buying and selling of products and services. It encourages and allows users to buy products directly within social media platforms, never having to open another browser.
Social commerce uses social media platforms to promote and sell products and services. Very briefly, social commerce uses social networks in e-commerce transactions.
Social commerce capitalizes on the sheer number of people using social media platforms worldwide. For example, in 2022 about 55% of USA adults use Instagram daily, and 38% of those daily visitors log on multiple times daily.
That’s a vast potential audience for brands to advertise, far surpassing any reach from television, radio, and print advertising.
Social commerce aims to assist companies in achieving the following four essential purposes:
- social commerce helps companies engage customers with their brands according to the customers’ social behaviours.
- it provides customers with a platform to talk about their brand on their website.
- it gives an incentive for customers to return to their website.
- social commerce also offers all the information customers need to research, compare, and ultimately choose you over your competitor, thus purchasing from you and not others.
Social media users can discover and explore brands, products, and services, add products to their shopping lists or carts, and complete checkout without leaving the social network.
Social commerce can involve native shopping solutions (like Facebook or Instagram Shops) or eCommerce integrations (e.g. browsing a product catalogue and adding items to a cart on a social platform, then completing an online checkout store).