When it comes to social commerce, the one thing we know for sure is that shopping is inherently social. We share stories about what we buy, before we buy, while we buy, and after we buy. Social sharing is a mainstream activity today, whether you're sharing stories about products you buy or activities you're participating in, from inside social networks, from websites, or mobile apps. Social login with Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn has rapidly appeared on major websites, providing a simple trusted authentication process that makes login and sharing easier. Open Graph results are starting to surface and it's no big surprise that sharing is top of the list, with Facebook's 845 million active users, of whom more than 50 percent log in daily.
The results of social sharing are surfacing across the web and are demonstrating just how much we love to share what we are doing and what we are buying.
Facebook sharing is driving more ticket sales than Twitter and LinkedIn for Eventbrite, the online service that allow users to create, share, and join any event. Eventbrite U.K. recently released figures revealing its true value of a share on various social networks. Eventbrite reports that each time an event is shared on Facebook, it's worth £2.25 to the organizer, compared to £1.80 on Twitter and £1.24 on LinkedIn.
Image by Eventbrite
Ticketmaster reports that each time users share information about a concert ticket they bought via Facebook, it generates an average of $5 in incremental sales. Consumers can connect with Facebook and more than 9,000 venues with Ticketmaster's Interactive Seat Map while buying concert tickets and share where they are sitting and see where their friends are sitting and buy tickets next to them.
Fab.com, a website that sends its users daily deals on design items, integrated the "Like" and "Share Links" social plug-ins on its product and live feed pages to encourage people to discuss products with friends in August 2011. In January 2012, Fab launched with Facebook Open Graph and since then the company has found that referral traffic from Facebook has doubled and membership has grown from 1.8 million to more than 3.2 million users. Fab.com offered a limited-time, promotional $5 free monthly credit to encourage people to opt in to the social shopping experience.
TripAdvisor's Cities I've Visited app, originally launched in 2007, relaunched with Open Graph and has seen the number of monthly active users increase by 10 times through the combination of Open Graph activity in Newsfeed, Timeline, and a targeted advertising campaign. The app allows users to share the places they've been with friends and family. Users can pin the cities and towns they've been to on their map, as well as the places they plan on visiting.
Last year, Levi's reported 40 times referral traffic from Facebook for Levi's e-commerce site after implementing the "Like" button. When American Eagle Outfitters added the "Like" button to its product pages, it found that Facebook users spent 57 percent more than non-Facebook users.
Social sharing is a major activity in the discovery of the products we purchase, and friends' sharing in the purchasing journey influences us. How businesses and brands are leveraging social sharing in the social commerce process and how the success of social sharing is measured against the product purchase is the beginning of how we demonstrate social commerce success.
The one thing we know for sure is that shopping is inherently social.
This column was originally published on April 10, 2012.
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Janice Diner is an award-winning creative director and technologist working in the area of social and emerging media technology and founding partner at Horizon Studios. Janice and her team built CATALYSTA, a sales force activation platform that engages, motivates, and rewards sales teams.
She is a pioneer brand builder in Facebook, serves as an advisor at the MaRS Discovery District, and was a judge at the Cannes Advertising Lions. Janice has a track record of accomplishment developing multiple social initiatives for global brands such as Motorola, LinkedIn Canada, TSN, Sony PlayStation, Hertz Car Rental, LexisNexis, to name a few.
Prior to starting Horizon Studios, Janice has held senior positions at Syncapse, Euro Havas, and Interpublic (Segal Communications).
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