64% of customers purchased by way of social networks in 2021

The latest study published by the consulting company Accenture shows the growing importance of social trade in the world. The report is based on a survey of 10,053 social media users in China, India, Brazil, the United States and the United Kingdom, between August and September 2021.

Social platforms, future eldorado e-commerce

Social commerce, which consists of using social media as a sales channel, is experiencing real success. Indeed, transactions on social platforms are currently estimated at more than $ 492 billion worldwide. According to the study, 64% of social media users surveyed said they bought through social commerce in 2021, which, according to consulting firms, will represent 2 billion customers worldwide.

Accenture also predicts exponential growth, and revenue is expected to triple by $ 20 trillion by 2025. At the same time, some countries have already taken the lead, such as China, where more than 80% of social media users have adopted social commerce.

Growth multiplied by 3. © Accenture

And social platforms have realized their growing role in online commerce and the problems that arise from it. So Twitter, Facebook, TikTok, Instagram or even Pinterest offer more and more functions dedicated to social commerce: virtual commerce, live shopping, recommended products, etc.

The trend of social trade could have a special impact on new generations. Indeed, by 2025, millennials and Generation Z are expected to be responsible for 62% of global e-commerce spending on social platforms.

Millennials and Generation Z are more likely to buy through social trade. © Accenture

The largest spending from social trade should be on:

  • clothing, with more than 18% of worldwide consumption,
  • consumer electronics, with 13% of consumption,
  • interior design, with 7% cost.

We note that the category of “beauty and personal care” will also occupy an important place by 2025, with a total of 40% of Internet consumption, even if total revenues will be lower.

The constant increase in time spent on social media reflects the essential nature of these platforms in our daily lives. They are reshaping the way people buy and sell, giving platforms and brands new opportunities for user experience and revenue streams, said Robin Murdoch, global head of software and platforms at Accenture.

A real opportunity for small businesses

Social commerce has the advantage of drastically reducing costs and barriers to entering the e-commerce market. Indeed, the mere presence of a company on a social network is enough to open a virtual store or start a live purchase. This makes it easier for independent creators, VSE and SMEs to get involved in social trade. In addition, the study found that 59% of respondents were more likely to support SMEs through social commerce rather than through traditional e-commerce sites. 63% of them also confirmed that they are more likely to buy from this seller again. Social trade therefore seems to guarantee a certain level of consumer loyalty.

Social trade is a force of equalization driven by the creativity, ingenuity and power of the people. It empowers small brands and individuals and forces big brands to reconsider their relevance in a million-dollar marketplace, said Oliver Wright, global head of consumer goods and services at Accenture.

Olivier Wright also explains the need to create synergies between creators, retailers and brands, in order to bring products and services where consumers are, through “Dynamic ecosystem of platforms, markets, social media and influential people”.

Social trade still raises doubts

Like traditional e-commerce in its infancy, social commerce still causes anxiety among users of social platforms. Indeed, 50% of respondents said they feared a lack of customer protection, as well as a loophole in the refund policy for purchased goods. The global head of consumer goods and services at Accenture explained: “Trust is a problem that will take time to overcome, but sellers who focus on these areas will be in a better position to increase their market share. »

Those who have yet to use social trade say that one of the reasons why they have kept the lack of trust in the authenticity of social sellers, while active users point to a bad policy of return, return and exchange, he confirmed.

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