If you’ve used Instagram, Facebook or Pinterest in the last 12 months, you’ve probably been exposed to a phenomenon often hiding in plain sight: social commerce. The next blog in Flame PR’s ‘In the Know’ series discusses the rise of social commerce within e-commerce, and the ever-growing influence it has on the way we are shopping online in 2022.
What is Social Commerce?
Social commerce is the incorporation of social media platforms in retail e-commerce. E-commerce has boomed over lockdown, and social commerce has ridden the wave of tech-savvy consumers glued to social media apps, by marketing products through hyper-targeting, communal shopping experiences and influencer marketing.
Brands on social shopping apps, such as Instagram, can utilise reels to showcase products in facetune-worthy lighting, or trial products on live commerce sites like Rakuten live, incorporating interactivity, reaction buttons and glossy notification alerts to engage and excite their end-user.
With e-commerce expected to balloon in size over the next few years, social commerce is predicted to be an integral factor in that growth. The markets for clothes, electronics and consumables are reaching an ever-expanding consumer base, and social media marketplaces are transforming into indispensable hubs within a dynamic shopping landscape.
How is Social Commerce Transforming the Nature of e-Commerce?
Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest are among the most used social media apps globally, but they also have something else in common – they are the three most used social commerce tools. The term has been mentioned almost 5,000 times in the U.S. in the last month alone, with conversational messaging, broadcasting streams and relationship marketing being the biggest trending tools utilised by sellers and businesses alike, to connect with their audiences on social media platforms.
TIME Magazine hailed augmented reality (AR) the “future of e-commerce”, with social media platforms like Snapchat, Instagram and TikTok hosting the most developed AR tools amongst companies today. AR is revolutionising the social commerce space by replacing the touch and feel of products with holistic virtual experiences, so that prospective customers can try on a pair of Nike shoes by simply directing a phone lens at their foot.
Sellers who are looking to expand their sales to a younger consumer base have started utilising social commerce as a key means of selling. This has boosted the global social shopping industry to a whopping $585 billion in 2021, with that set to skyrocket to $3.3 trillion in 2028. In 2021, social commerce sales also increased by 35% year-on-year, a growing e-commerce trend that captures the imagination of its shoppers.
As social commerce becomes an essential means of selling online, companies need to reposition their brand as a dynamic, multichannel business that is up-to-date and embraces the latest industry trends. Discussing trends like social commerce allows companies to reach new demographics and break into new markets, keeping their fingers on the pulse of ever-changing consumer trends. At Flame PR, we can support companies who are navigating the world of social commerce. We can help your brand excel in a sea of noise, with our public relations and broadcast PR services, or amplify your voice in the online conversations about social commerce with our digital marketing offering. Contact us today if you would like to find out more about social commerce or our service offering here at Flame PR.