Social media has become an essential aspect of the modern world. Our social networks shape our interaction and opinions. With social commerce, this extends into our shopping habits and behavior as well. There are many beneficial features of social commerce. These include group shopping and shopping communities that bring together like-minded consumers. This social approach to commerce enhances the customer experience. Social commerce also offers features like mobile payments and bill splitting.

How Do We Define Social Commerce?

Social commerce is the blending of social networks with eCommerce. Social networks offer participants the opportunity to present and like posts. When combined with eCommerce, customers gain the option to buy. It is a natural step in the evolution of social networks.

Customers can share products and receive recommendations. Social commerce makes use of discussions, recommendations, votes, and influencers. Customers can discuss shopping decisions, receive group discounts, and recommend products or services to friends. This makes the online shopping experience more like offline shopping.

Impact of Social Commerce on the Buying Decisions

Social commerce influences the decision to buy in many ways. Recent studies show that trust, quality of information, and perceived usefulness are essential to the buying process. Trust is the most crucial factor and the best predictor for consumer purchasing. Comments, recommendations, and ratings are important for larger purchases.

Social networks create a trust for eCommerce production lines. They provide a forum for sharing customer reviews. This lets the consumer feel that the information is high-quality and useful. For more details on the impact of social commerce on buyer’s decisions check out this survey.

Future of Social Commerce

At this point, many consumers are still resistant to online purchases. But, eCommerce trends have been on the rise. Social media referrals to eCommerce websites more than doubled between 2014 and 2015. This trend has been growing steadily since this time.

The current generation has grown up with the Internet and social media. Information received through these channels is now seen as reliable. Social networking sites have kept up with this trend. Many now include “buy now” buttons, shopping platforms, and payment options. In the coming decade, social commerce activity is expected to grow to a level rivaling traditional shopping methods.

Benefits of Social Commerce

Shopping has been a forum for social networking since long before we developed the internet. As our mediums for social networking expand, they offer more ways to connect and share. In turn, we have more ways to expand this interaction to the shopping experience.

Social networking provides many added benefits. It allows consumers to connect with those who share their shopping habits and preferences. Social commerce lets the customer become an active participant. It also lets companies personify their brands. Consumers can receive personal recommendations from friends with similar interests. Finally, personal experience and reviews make consumers more comfortable with buying. This increases engagement and the likelihood of purchase.

Social Commerce Trends

As social commerce continues to explode into the consumer world, there are several trends that are leading market growth in 2018. One of the most powerful is the Facebook social commerce tool. Facebook messenger is one of the most widely-used messenger systems, including more than 1.3 billion users. Recently, Messenger has partnered with third-party software providers. This allows customers to integrate eCommerce activities with their messenger platform. Purchasing through the Facebook account makes transactions hassle-free.

Other trends include the use of chatbots, live-streaming videos, and influencers. Chatbots give the customer the same kind of experience they might have if they were talking to a real person, making them feel more valued. Plus, they have the highest approval rating of all customer engagement tools.

A live-streaming video is also on the rise, and more companies are using this medium to sell products every day.

Finally, influencers can speak to their customers in real time. This offers a unique opportunity to engage and monetize their audience. These trends make it easier than ever for entrepreneurs to enter the field of eCommerce.

eCommerce Through Social Media

Social media allows businesses to direct consumers towards deals and new products. It also allows a business to engage with customers and create a shopping community. Social commerce helps companies to retain customers and provide greater customer care. It facilitates personal engagement.

Social networking allows a company to bring attention to an eCommerce storefront. Plus, it’s simple. Consumers can share the interest with no more than the click of an icon. It also lets customers and companies share high-quality photographs to showcase products.

Social networks

Social media lets consumers share experiences, pictures, and ideas. They allow people to connect and communicate with one another. This is where social media and commerce come together. Commerce is social. Brands connect with people, and people are interacting with online shops and their products. Social commerce takes out the extra steps. It makes eCommerce as social as offline shopping.

Content and Social Sharing

For user engagement, content is king. Websites provide valuable content to their consumers, increasing engagement and attracting customer attention. Social networks are amazing mediums for collecting content from users. New users can read reviews and gain trust about the product and company that sells it. The key here is trust, the most important factor in consumer purchasing. More trust means a greater likelihood that potential clients will buy a product.

Online Reviews

As mentioned above, reviews bring in more customer confidence. This is more important for higher-cost purchases like computers and electronics. Customers don’t need to rely so heavily on online reviews when buying small things like books or kitchen products. However, major purposes require a bit more consideration and greater confidence. Essentially, online user reviews are a form of advertisement. Plus, consumers view them with greater attention than company-issued advertisements. They receive honest product feedback and then expect to experience similar results.

The Power of Social Commerce

Social commerce is one of the most powerful trends in eCommerce. It uses the popularity of social networking to gain product recognition. Plus, customers receive unbiased feedback about products and services.

Features of social commerce include group shopping and community engagement in commerce. It provides a platform for personal recommendations and reviews. Social commerce is the future of eCommerce. It has expanded steadily in the last decade and continues to pick up momentum as social networking evolves.

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