In a recent survey conducted by ForeSee Results (a global leader in technology-driven customer satisfaction analytics), findings suggest that social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter barely influence online shoppers in their shopping decisions. Despite the big expectations of online marketers that social media will create a major boost in their overall product sales, the latest report negates these far-from-real assumptions.
This latest report by ForeSee Results shows that social networking sites influence only 5 percent of visitors to retail websites in the United States. In fact, shoppers still prefers traditional marketing techniques including brand familiarity, promotional emails, search engine result, and digital & print advertisements.
Here is a simple graph demonstrating the survey result:
Regarding proper product promotion, Larry Freed (President and CEO of ForeSee Result) said: “Every retailer should know how many customers are influenced by promotional emails, advertising on Facebook or word-of-mouth recommendations, and furthermore, they should know which group is most likely to buy,”. “They should also know how people want to hear from them and how well they’re doing when it comes to communicating through those channels. Serious thought needs to be given to finding out whether social media is worth the investment for their business, and then if the answer is yes, they need to make the most of it by making sure that interactions on social media meet the needs and expectations of customers. Otherwise, the effort is wasted and could even be detrimental to the business.”
For detailed information of the report, you can read it here.
In my opinion, social media can really make an impact on product sales only when these new “marketing channels” are used properly and effectively by companies. Although social media can improve customer service satisfaction by offering a new way of company-customer communication, companies should focus more on traditional marketing methods such as brand familiarity, digital & print advertisement, most especially creating quality and satisfying products.