The top three trends for social e-commerce

The role of social media is always evolving. It morphs around how consumers digest content and what they expect to be shown by their favourite brands. 

And now, social media is changing again. Blurring the lines between social and E-commerce, we’re entering a new era for retail. A third of UK consumers are purchasing directly through social media. While brick and mortar shopping might still reign supreme for some, tech trumps the in-store experience. 

Trend 1: Facebook

Oops we mean META of course.
Regardless of a name change, the social media giant took the concept of connecting people online and turned it into something huge. And being the superpower they are, it’s no surprise they’re moving into e-commerce.

Facebook Shops have been around for a while. Business pages can take advantage of adding this function to their channel which allows users to browse product images, descriptions and price. However, purchasing directly through the channel is not yet available. In the US, they’re trailing a ‘checkout’ function, which isn’t fully rolled out, but shows the direction they’re headed. 

Another area where Meta shows strength for social e-commerce is via their messenger app. It’s becoming easier than ever to directly communicate and shop with a brand, especially when it comes to basic functions. Messenger can now perform a number of tasks, like booking appointments or finding opening hours, helping ease customer friction through smooth service. 

Trend 2: Pinterest

Once famed as the place to find inspiration, Pinterest is taking the next step towards social shopping. Their integration with Shopify means that ‘shoppable pins’ are on their way.

Currently, the platform works by sending traffic to purchase directly on brand websites. Their update with Shopify means consumers can purchase directly without leaving the app. It’s only available in the US at the min, but we’re expecting a global roll out soon. 

Social e-commerce

Trend 3: Shoppable Live Streams

Think QVC, but better. Shop in real time via live stream. Gen Z favoured social channels – Instagram and TikTok already had the capability to live stream, so adding a shop function was the obvious next step. And it’s snowballed from there, already huge in China, the trend is starting to take off everywhere.

TikTok UK created an entire event around the live shopping experience, with celeb hosts, musicians and big-name brands doing product demos, it catapulted the trend into the hearts and minds of British consumers. TikTok utilised their whopping 1 billion subscribers as bait for brand sign ups, plus they’ll benefit nicely from a cut of the sales.

What does the future look like? 

We can’t ignore the changing demands of the modern consumer. Experience tops the list for what shoppers value, whether it’s in-store or online, people expect to be wow’d. The pandemic mixed with brands looking for new and exciting ways to engage their audience has thrust live stream shopping in the spotlight.

But it doesn’t mean only the world’s biggest brands can have a slice of the pie. As social media continues to add more functions, including shopping, it’s becoming easier than ever to reach a bigger audience with little effort.

We’re The Behaviours Agency.

At every stage of the customer journey we find creative ways to give our clients the advantage. We do it by creating preference.

Preference is being ahead of the competition in the customer’s mind. That means being more motivating, more top-of-mind and easier to choose.

If you want help being the preferred choice for your customers, get in touch today.

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By Janey Leonard-Myers

Senior Account Manager