Online shopping has dramatically changed in the past couple of years. Web-based e-tailers have taken center stage as traditional brick-and-mortar retailers have faded into the background. The online shopping experience has become faster, easier, and that much more convenient thanks to technological innovation and social distancing. Social media influencer marketing is now shaping online shopping as more brands steer customers toward their value offerings through these increasingly popular intermediaries. Let’s take a closer look at how online shopping is rapidly evolving.
The Evolution of Web-based Shopping is Speeding Up
Since 2019, online shopping has undergone significant changes. The shift to working from home, homeschooling, and on-demand delivery directly to consumers’ living spaces has caused the metaphorical pendulum to shift away from conventional brick-and-mortar retailers to online e-tailers. Though some people are still willing to venture out to local stores to check out prices, many of them subsequently place orders for products online as e-tailer prices are comparably low and shoppable media in social platforms makes the process as frictionless as ever.
According to a recent RAND American Life Panel survey, one-third of respondents have altered their online shopping habits since 2019. The survey reveals about 25% of people are shopping online at a higher frequency. It is particularly interesting to note those who live in wealthy households are much more likely to have shopped online in the past couple of years. Slightly more than 33% of such households with an income over $125,000 have increased their online shopping since 2019.
Consumers that are 35-years-old and younger, were that much more likely to shop on the web than older individuals age 55 and up since the "Before Times" as the mainstream media now describes the era before 2019. These youngsters were nearly 33% more likely to hike their web-based shopping in recent years.
The Latest In-store to Online Sales Statistics
According to the social commerce specialist Poshmark, 2020 is now referred to by industry insiders as the year of social shopping. Poshmark’s data reveals 41% of consumers discovered new brands through influencers on the web. The data also shows 33% of shoppers discovered new brands through social media marketing. In comparison, only 31% of shoppers discovered new brands through the traditional route of perusing the selections at brick-and-mortar stores.
Poshmark’s data from global commerce activity also reveals 90% of shoppers have navigated to an online retail store from a social media site. Additionally, just under three-quarters of all shoppers have bought a product online after the dramatic societal shift began in the spring of 2019.
The Impact of Social Media and Influencer Affiliate Marketing
Social media users with tens and hundreds of thousands of followers have considerable influence on the buying public. These new-age celebrities are now being used as spokespeople for brands of all types. Instead of paying a popular musician or actor millions of dollars to endorse a product, brands are shifting their focus to those with an expansive reach on social media. The top Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube users are that much more relatable to everyday people, making these influencers quite valuable in the context of brand marketing.
A recent study from gen.video has determined 54% of people who follow influencers reported purchasing a product after hearing about it from them, with Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and TikTok leading the way. Influencer campaigns featuring live-streaming content, posts, status updates, and product images are proving effective in the battle to win new customers. Social media users have developed a nearly impenetrable rapport with the influencers they follow on these popular web-based platforms. This deep level of trust helps brands move prospects through the sales funnel, eventually converting them into paying and potentially loyal customers across posterity.