Social to Have Greater Influence on Holiday Purchases, Survey Finds
A survey released today by MarketLive, a commerce technology platform provider, identifies key buying trends for the upcoming holiday shopping season as well as tactics retailers can employ to better engage consumers during this busy season. Here are some of the key findings from the report, which surveyed a random sample of 1,000 U.S. consumers who had shopped online at least four times within the past year, own a smartphone, and typically spend $250 or more online annually:
- 36 percent of shoppers intend to buy gifts via their mobile device, up 29 percent from last year;
- 70 percent are likely to research on their smartphones the gifts they find in retail stores;
- 49 percent will make a purchase because of a social referral;
- 44 percent intend to discover new products via social networks;
- 48 percent say it's important to share product recommendations with friends/family via social channels;
- 52 percent feel it's important to post product reviews to social media sites;
- high shipping costs is the top reason that might prevent respondents from buying gifts online (42 percent), followed by the enjoyment of being in stores during the holiday season (28 percent), and finding it easier to research and compare products in-store (16 percent); and
- high shipping costs is also the top reason why consumers will abandon gifts in their shopping cart, cited by 64 percent of respondents.
"Based on our consumer survey for this holiday season, retailers need to pay particular attention to what's going on within their social networks," says Ken Burke, founder and CEO of MarketLive. "Retailers must participate alongside their customers with social activity and work to engage them. Also, retailers should maximize their use of social media to communicate promotions and merchandise hot products. This holiday season, retailers need to be very aggressive with all aspects of social media and not shy away from this channel to promote their business."
Joe Keenan is the executive editor of Total Retail. Joe has more than 10 years experience covering the retail industry, and enjoys profiling innovative companies and people in the space.