eBay survey predicts the value of 'social shopping' is set to more-than double by 2014
New research commissioned by online auction site, eBay, estimates that the value of social shopping is set to more than double by 2014. The findings follow the news that social-networking site Pinterest is set to dramatically increase the number of visitors who can access its site, by removing its invite-only policy and launching a series of apps.
Commissioned by eBay and conducted by retail experts, Conlumino, the survey estimates that within the next five years the value of social shopping will more than double from its current £1.6 billion to around £3.3 billion.
UK retail sales directly via social media are predicted to rise by 44 per cent from £210 million to roughly £290 million as retailers target consumers with personalised offers and deals on social networks.
It was discovered that the real value of social media will come from its ability to influence and inspire purchases, with £3 billion of retails sales in 2014 expected to be influenced by social media. Already nearly half (46 per cent) of social media users are using sites like Facebook and Twitter while thinking about making a purchase.40 per cent of users also admit to making a purchase following what they have seen on social media, for example reviews and recommendations. The research also found that almost half of all social media users interact directly with retailers on social media platforms.
Head of mobile shopping at eBay, Petra Jung, commented: “There’s a billion pound prize for UK retailers in using social to help customers make up their minds when they’re looking to buy something. Generating direct sales is part of the prize in social shopping but using peer-to-peer networks to influence purchasing decisions is the far bigger opportunity.
“Many shoppers, particularly women, want fun and inspiration as much as information when they shop, and social networks are a great way to seek out a friend’s advice, see other people’s style, and get ideas.”