Social-Media, Mobile Shopping Becoming the Norm

Courtesy of Pinterest

Shoppers’ use of Pinterest to connect to retailers has exceeded both their Facebook and Twitter use, according to the 2012 “Social and Mobile Commerce Study”—a joint research project by the National Retail Federation’s Shop.org division, digital business-analytics firm comScore and global-strategy and management consulting firm The Partnering Group.

Pinterest, a visual social-media platform, has already generated exceptional interest by consumers following retailers as individual Pinterest users are following an average 9.3 retail companies compared to the average 6.9 retailers they follow on Facebook and 8.5 retailers they track via Twitter.

“Pinterest has given retailers another channel to listen to and interact with both existing and new customers, telling an ongoing visual story through images of their products and brand spirit—a story that customers can then tell again to their friends and family members,” said Shop.org executive director Vicki Cantrell.

Overall, 38% of online consumers follow retailers through one or more social-networking sites.

The survey also found that company blogs, YouTube and Facebook command the majority of consumers’ social activity. Particularly: 70% of consumers who follow a retailer’s blog click through to the website; while 68% of consumers use YouTube to browse and research a retail company.

Not surprisingly, finding good deals, such as coupons, is still the leading reason for consumers following retailers online—although the reason has declined since last year, from 58% to 51%. Additionally:

  • 43% of consumers are looking for product information
  • 36% want to post/read comments about merchandise or services
  • 34% are actively looking for information about events
  • 31% are looking for current trends and ideas
  • 30% are looking for photos and videos, e.g., how-tos and styling ideas
  • 27% are looking for expert opinions

[Image: Courtesy of Pinterest]