Have you ever thought about buying something through a social media site? If you have, you’re not alone. A new study shows that while 5% of Americans have actually done just that, another 20% are considering doing it.
The survey, conducted by Harris Polls, and commissioned by DigitasLBi, looked at consumers attitudes and concerns about shopping via social media sites. They found that even as consumer interest is on the rise, especially among the younger set, their participation hinges on whether or not they feel that the click-and-buy technology integrated into these mediums is secure, private and easy to use.
Interest is up, but…
Some expect social commerce sales to hit $14 billion by 2015 if current sales hold, and could reach as much as $56 billion if that 20% feel safe enough to click the buy button on sites like Facebook and Twitter. There is a lot on the line for brands and social networks, but they must meet consumers’ expectations.
So what would it take to get people who are on the fence to give it a try? There are definitely some features and perks that would sweeten the pot for respondents, including:
Knowing their payment data was secure (42%)
Knowing that their purchase was private (38%)
Total purchase price that is under $25 (33%)
Using a “click to buy” method that allows people to complete the entire transaction on the social network site (26%)
Being able to store payment information on the site, so they don’t have to re-renter it every time they want to buy something (24%)
Younger consumers are more Gung-Ho
Millennials (age 18-34) are more than three times more likely to have already used social media sites to buy something than their older counterparts (11% vs. 3%). Yet when people who have not used these sites to make a purchase where asked if they would consider it the age range widens, with individuals who fall in the 18-44 age range more than twice as likely to do so, than those who are 45 or older.
Just about one in ten parents with kids under eighteen have shopped on a social media site.
While you may expect the East coast to be more receptive to trying something new, it’s not the case. Consumers living in the South are more likely to consider buying via social media sites, than those living in the Northeast (24% vs. 15%).
While privacy is a priority for some people, just over a third of respondents would use a hashtag on their social media account if it meant getting a discount.
The DigitasLBi study was conducted online from August 13 to 15, 2014. They interviewed 2,016 adults aged 18 and older.