When you did you last check your Facebook account? Perhaps you’ve sent a Tweet today or you’ve posted a photo of your outfit on Instagram. We’re all hooked on social media and it’s had an impact on our behaviour in more ways than you might think. Social media has, in fact, changed how we shop.
But how and is it really a meaningful change?
Importance of Social Media for Online Shopping
Before we examine the different ways social media has changed our shopping, it’s important to understand whether this change has had any impact. In essence, are we really influenced by social media when we shop? The overwhelming evidence points to a resounding ‘yes’. According to a Deloitte report, 47% of millennials admit social media to influencing their shopping decisions. However, interestingly the figure is nowhere near as high for other age groups.
Has Social Media Changed The Way We Shop?
The huge influence social media has on our shopping decisions is good news for the retailers. It’s not just that we make decisions based on social media, we also seem to spend more money in the process. Indeed, consumers who use social media as part of the shopping process will spend four times more money on these purchases.
For brands and retailers, the power of social media is undoubtedly something they need to tap into. It can make a huge difference in terms growth and increasing sales.
But what are the exact ways social media has changed our shopping such drastically?
Discover New Styles And Trends
Social media is definitely a key part of pushing out new trends. So-called social media influencers are followed closely and if they post about a new product, it can sell in seconds. Indeed, consumers are turning to social media when they want to find what is trending at any given moment – no matter what the product or service is about. Naturally, visual sectors such as fashion and beauty are at the top of the chain for finding trends on social media.
The interesting thing about this is to note that people don’t necessarily go out searching for specific products that are trendy. Rather, people tend to follow their favourite celebrities or influencers and then get excited about the products they talk abouat. So, when people see an influencer post about the new clothes they bought at Jabong, they tend to follow the lead and look for those same items.
In addition, sometimes even a simple hashtag can spark an interest into a trend that the person then searches further and ultimately, makes a shopping decision.
Receive Feedback From Other Users
Social media’s impact on shopping is largely driven by the information it provides to consumers. Today’s shoppers are spending a lot more time on researching the products and services they need instead of just falling for marketing talk. Indeed, social media influences shopping decisions, not because of the brands being able to market their products, but because of other people providing feedback on those products and services.
Whether it is your friend or just someone you happen to follow on social media, you will pay attention to their opinions in terms of products to buy. People look for product reviews, opinions and ideas on social media. This information is available because we also love to share. Millennials, especially, are eager to pass on a good word or to give negative feedback when their experiences have not been good. When you have a positive experience with MakeMyTrip or another such travelling site, you want to mention it to others and help them travel smoothly as well.
Engage In Conversation With The Brand
Social media has also managed to turn customers into more socially conscious buyers. We don’t just buy products like robots – we want to know how the specific brand or retailer is influencing its local and global community. We look for brands in terms of their impact on the environment and society in general and we use social media to share this message.
Shoppers are also more engaged with the brands. They talk to them, either to ask questions or to give feedback. It has made brands more conscientious as well and given them a real face rather than just hiding away behind their corporate walls.
Find Discounts And Promotional Offers
When shoppers start making informed decisions regarding the things they buy and use, they will also start paying more attention to the price. Social media has had an impact on the way shoppers not only search for discounts but also take advantage of them. Again, shoppers don’t always go directly to the source – Coupon code sites like OyeCoupon.in are used to learn about new offers and to connect with the social media accounts of different retailers. There is an emphasis on following retailers on social media just to be the first to find out about different deals. Furthermore, different kinds of referral systems have increased in recent year, largely driven by social media. People are looking to not only save money themselves but help others do so as well.
Social media has had a huge impact on the way we shop. It’s influential in helping us find new products and services and most people use it for making better shopping decisions. If you want to find out the best products to buy, you should definitely consider turning to social media.