A new survey report from research, ratings, and reviews platform GoodFirms analyzes the current state of social commerce, its key drivers, opportunities, challenges, and future scope. The research reveals the most successful marketing strategies used in social commerce to boost brand awareness, sales, and customer engagement, including user feedback requests, availing of customized choices, use of eye-catching graphics and videos, promotion of the brand through influencers, direct linkage to the shopping cart, and others.
The report, Social Commerce—Progress and Future, details how transactional activities occur in digitally intensive social environments—from showcasing products and creating shoppable content to in-built payment procedures and AI-driven chatbot conversation, brands conduct multiple activities within their social shops.
Further, the survey reveals that about half (48.6 percent) of respondents prefer virtual try-on clothing and accessories on social commerce platforms—making VR an ideal medium for product evaluation. One-fifth (21.6 percent) like to purchase products from live-streaming events on social media platforms. In addition, 62.2 percent indicated that they use virtual worlds created in the metaverse for social shopping.
The study points to common challenges people face while purchasing from social commerce platforms
Almost half (45.9 percent) of social commerce users surveyed said that they were redirected to another unrelated website, 40.2 percent complained about customer service-related issues, while 37.8 percent people pointed out the unavailability of their preferred payment mode, 27 percent faced spam attempts, 18.1 percent faced invalid coupon code issues, 13.5 percent had checkout issues, and 10.8 percent faced out-of-stock issues. Only around 10.8 percent of the respondents had a seamless buying experience.
The research also uncovers rising trends in social commerce
About one-quarter (23.5 percent) of respondents like group shopping with friends on social commerce platforms, Instagram’s visual store, live streaming e-commerce for higher engagement, shoppable Instagram posts, conversion-led commerce, social media influencers, and more.
Overall, social commerce is a highly useful platform for businesses looking to expand their reach and increase sales, and also makes it easier for customers to access the products they want and simultaneously creates new opportunities for online sellers.
Additional findings from those surveyed:
- 86.5 percent prefer Instagram for buying products
- 56.8 percent buy products on the advice of social media influencers
- 48.6 percent prefer virtual try-on clothing and accessories on various social commerce platforms
- 21.6 percent have purchased products from social media live-streaming events
- 62.2 percent prefer using virtual worlds created in the metaverse for social shopping
- 40.2 percent are unhappy with social commerce brands’ customer services
- 37.8 percent did not find their preferred payment mode while purchasing via social commerce channels
- 27 percent reported spam selling on social commerce platforms
- 54.1 percent preferred buying recommendations features in social commerce platforms
- 18.9 percent use social commerce to know and compare the prices of products
- 48.6 percent prefer social media to learn about newly launched products
- 23.5 percent like group shopping with friends on social commerce platforms
- 51.4 percent believe that social commerce is the future of e-commerce
The survey queried 370 social media sellers and users globally for various aspects related to their processes, operations, financials, social shopping features, challenges, etc.