Do Consumers Actually Shop Directly on Social Media Platforms [New Data]

Facebook Messenger
Social media users who arent interested in sorting through a Shops list of items can also message brands on Facebook Messenger. As soon as a brand name creates a Facebook Shop, they can incorporate it with their Messenger account, WhatsApp account, or Instagram represent a smooth consumer acquiring experience directly in their threads.
When customers message brands with Shop combinations to read more about specific items, theyll receive automatic messages with product suggestions from the Shop owner– as seen in the image below.

When the COVID-19 pandemic began, lots of customers raced online to purchase products they could not get in-store. And, by July 2020, international retail ecommerce websites cumulatively saw a record 22 billion month-to-month sees.
As brands scrambled to provide more items and services online, social networks platforms– such as Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp– began rolling out ecommerce tools to assist companies sell more items straight from their social pages.
Now, as social media networks continue to expand on in-platform shopping tools, its clear that social media ecommerce is getting steam. As with any new marketing trend, you might question, “Are consumers actually purchasing products while surfing social media?”
The question above is worth asking. As a marketer, producing an online catalog or ecommerce process– even with the help of an instinctive social networks platform– takes some time and effort.
Not only will you require to identify which products will be offered online and how youll provide them to customers, however there may also be a technological knowing curve for your group. Chances are, youll need to know that customers are actively using social media shopping tools prior to you enable them
To help you figure out if social networks shopping functions are worth considering, I asked 467 consumers if they d ever purchased items on social media platforms.

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Of the 49.5% of participants that have not acquired a product straight from a social networks platform, 9% said they still plan to do so ultimately, while 40.5% state they prefer to purchase items from ecommerce sites. That 9% of consumers who plan to go shopping on social media one day seems like a little number, it might grow as social media shopping tools acquire more usage, appeal, or trust in the coming months.
Ultimately, while social media shopping features are still relatively brand-new to consumers, they may make good sense for brand names that are looking for a scalable way to get in the ecommerce world.
Listed below Ill dive into the 4 social networks platforms consumers state theyve acquired items from and how they might be beneficial for brands.
Which social networks platforms are customers truly going shopping on?
Facebook
More than one-third of the study participants above have acquired an item straight from Facebook.
Facebooks online shopping popularity isnt surprising. Even prior to the 2020 launch of Facebook Shops, users flocked to Facebook Marketplace to find products or items being offered by residents nearby, independent sellers, or even regional shops.
While Facebook Marketplace is more like Craigslist than an ecommerce shop– and still requires you to call a seller or go to their website prior to purchasing a product, its years of success most likely helped validate the launch of Facebooks most recent shopping functions.
Heres a short rundown of the most recent methods people shop on Facebook:
Facebook Shops
Facebook Shops, which rolled out this summertime, makes it possible for service page admins to develop a “Shop” featuring a list of items or product collections.
Users who check out the brand names Facebook Business Page can tap or click a View Shop button to see products, include items to their cart, and buy them directly from a Facebook Checkout page.

Do Consumers Actually Buy Products on Social Media?
There are now more ways than ever to purchase products on social media. Because some social media shopping tools are still rather new to brand names and consumers, you might think consumers have hardly used them.
But, when we asked, “Have you ever acquired a product directly from a social media platform? If so which one( s)?” more than 50% of customers had purchased a product on a minimum of one platform.

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The Facebook Shops Messenger combination isnt the very first function Facebook has actually used that made it possible for consumers to shop through message thread. Between 2016 and 2019, Facebook permitted business pages to send out messages that consisted of a product shot, standard description, and a Buy Now button which permitted clients to purchase products in the Messenger app through their phones payment function. Heres what this looked like:

If you do not have interest in a Facebook account, you can still utilize Instagram Live Shopping, Shopping Posts, and highlight your items in the Instagram Shopping tab.

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Takeaways for Marketers
Presently, launching a Facebook Shop might be one of the very best ways to offer items on social platforms. Not just does Facebook have the biggest and broadest reach of all the platforms on this list, but Facebook Shops can likewise integrate with Instagram and WhatsApp, permitting you to easily broaden to several social media platforms when youre prepared.
Even if you already have an ecommerce site, Facebook Shops can still be useful if you have big audiences on social networks who mainly utilize smart phones and apps to browse the web. For instance, if a brand-new prospect stumbles upon your brand on the Facebook app, they can merely click into your Shop, have a look at a couple of items, and even buy a few using their phones payment tool. If they required to leave their social media app to search through a big list of items shown in your ecommerce shop, this may develop much less friction than they d receive.
Ultimately, Shops flexible choices could be an excellent fit if you offer to a broad audience, have an interest in expanding to Instagram or WhatsApp, or are a knowledgeable online seller who also wishes to turn social media followers into consumers.
Instagram
Although the majority of Instagrams shopping features were included after Facebook Shops introduced, almost a quarter of respondents have bought products on Instagram.
Below are Instagrams most notable shopping functions:
Instagram Shops
Instagram Shops basically utilizes the same design, layout, and technology Facebook Shops, however is connected to Instagram Business Pages specifically. Like Facebook Shops, youll also require admin access to a Facebook Business Page and a Facebook Shop to utilize this function.
To utilize this function, you merely need to go to your Facebook Commerce Manager settings, link your Facebook and Instagram Business pages to each other, and enable your Shop on your Instagram Business profile so your visitors will see a View Shop button. When this Shop is triggered, your Instagram Shops viewers will see the same mini-online store they d see if they entered your Facebook Shop on that platform.
Instagram Shoppable Posts
While youll still need a Facebook brochure that notes your products, you do not need a Facebook Shop to launch Instagram Shoppable posts. This feature enables you to connect your Instagram feed posts and images directly to the products Instagram Checkout page.

Takeaways for Marketers
Instagrams shopping features may be helpful to your brand if you already have a presence on Instagram, target the Gen Z or millennial audiences, and have appealing or appealing picture or video assets to market your service, item, or brand name.
Its also scalable and easy if you already have a Facebook Shop and want to broaden your social media ecommerce method to Instagram. Because Instagram Shops are carbon copies of pre-created Facebook stores, you only require to take a few steps to place a Shops button on your Instagram Business Page. But, if you dont have interest in a Facebook account, you can still utilize Instagram Live Shopping, Shopping Posts, and highlight your products in the Instagram Shopping tab.
To find out more about each of these tools, how they work, and how brands can leverage them, have a look at this post for more information.
WhatsApp
While WhatsApp, also owned by Facebook, doesnt have its own shopping platform, users can still chat with brand names, request to purchase a product from the companies WhatsApp for Business brochure, and pay for it directly in the message thread.
The WhatsApp payment feature, shown below, is quite similar to Facebook Messengers older “Buy Now” function, shown in the section above:.

When we asked, “Have you ever acquired an item directly from a social media platform? If a brand-new prospect comes throughout your brand on the Facebook app, they can just click into your Shop, check out a couple of products, and even buy a few utilizing their phones payment tool. You can likewise optimize your Instagram item material to reveal up in the Shopping tab of Instagrams app. From there, they can tap the bag icon in the corner and purchase these items directly from the Instagram app.

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Takeaways for Marketers.
While buying items might take a bit longer on WhatsApp than on a Facebook or Instagram Shop, roughly 13.5% of respondents have actually still done it.
As WhatsApp continues to grow and broaden its service features, this app might be worth keeping on your radar if you are interested in developing a chat-based neighborhood and social income stream at the same time.
While this app may be opportunistic for conversational marketers, this app may likewise be advantageous if youre wanting to sell globally. While Facebook and Instagram also have audiences worldwide, most of WhatsApps user base lives beyond the U.S. In reality, WhatsApps biggest audiences are from India and Brazil.
Pinterest.
Until recently– Pinterest users could buy some of the products they saw straight in the Pinterest app. Interestingly enough, it released and stopped its tool prior to Facebook and Instagram launched similar features.
From 2015 to 2018, Pinterest made it possible for brand names to produce Buyable Pins that enabled you to bought pinned products straight from the app. Beside each Buyable Pins “Save” button was a blue “Buy It” button. When tapped, it sent out users directly to a Pinterest getting screen.

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While Pinterest offered its in-app buying feature for many years, the brand transformed Buyable Pins to more scalable Product Pins in 2018.
Product Pins, which the platform now utilizes, send out app users to a companys site checkout page rather than a Pinterest app page.
While the conversion to Product Pins avoided Pinterest from needing to handle millions of deals a year, it was likewise more advantageous to the brand names. In a 2018 declaration to AdWeek, Pinterest exposed that Product Pins received 40% more clicks than Buyable Pins.
Although Buyable Pins are no longer active, 10.5% of respondents still state theyve purchased items straight on the platform.
While respondents could have acquired products from Buyable Pins in the past, they likewise could have made purchases through Product Pins, which open an in-app web browser to a brand names checkout page without needing users to leave Pinterest. Although the deal itself isnt occurring on Pinterests servers, the function still allows users to make a fast purchase without disrupting their social media experience.
Takeaways for Marketers.
Pinterest no longer makes it possible for consumers to make purchases straight from the platform, you should still take its item marketing chances, such as Product Pins, seriously.
After all, many different audiences use Pinterest to create inspiration boards filled with items or items they may desire to buy. And Pinterest data reveals that users like to learn or browse about products on the platform.
Aside from the brand-friendly nature of Pinterests platform, marketers need to likewise take note of its constant development. By Q3 of 2020, Pinterest went beyond 442 million month-to-month active users, up from 322 million in Q3 of 2019. Even if it doesnt appear like Pinterest is the ideal platform for your brand name now, it might be helpful to your technique later as its audience continues to grow, progress, and utilize the platform to look for items or inspiration.
Which Social Platforms Should You Sell On?
While much of the respondents above still have not purchased a product through a social media platform, this might alter as consumers continue to accept online shopping.
Furthermore, as more brand names take advantage of social shopping tools in location of ecommerce shops, consumers may become familiar with using social networks shopping alternatives.
Youll want to look at your audience when determining the best location to begin if and when you do decide to introduce a social media shopping feature for your brand name.
For instance, if your audience is comprised of several age groups, Facebook may be the very best location to start a business. If your audience is mostly Gen Z, you may desire to welcome Instagrams tools.
Furthermore, you must prioritize social networks shopping tactics on platforms youve already constructed a following on. For example, if you have a large, engaged WhatsApp audience, selling products there may be a scalable growth to an already-strong social networks method.
Ultimately, the very best technique will be to identify where your audiences are most likely going to shop or browse social media and after that satisfy them where they are with your item listings or online shop.
For more information about where your target social media audience might be, take a look at this helpful post on social networks demographics.

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While an Instagram Shop enables your fans to see all the significant items or collections your selling, Instagram Shoppable posts allow you to highlight your product with innovative material, such as evaluations or demonstrations, while also connecting straight to a purchasing page. This makes it possible for users to find a product, view it in action, and purchase it nearly immediately if they like what theyve seen.
Instagrams Shopping Tab
You can also optimize your Instagram product content to show up in the Shopping tab of Instagrams app. With this tool, potential customers that might not understand about your brand name may look for products, find products from your brand, and add them to their bag. From there, they can tap the bag icon in the corner and purchase these items directly from the Instagram app.

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While this feature started specifically with feed-style posts, it has actually now extended to Instagram Stories, Instagram Live (shown below), and– most recently– Instagram Reels.

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