Social commerce: What is it and why you should be using it in 2022

Social commerce capabilities are showing up across many of the social media platforms we use everyday and some exciting new opportunities have come along with it.

During the pandemic the global market for Social Commerce was estimated to be US$89.4 Billion in the year 2020 and it is projected to reach a revised size of US$604.5 Billion by 2027.

If you haven’t already, it is time you learnt exactly what social commerce is, why your brand should be using it, and how to go about doing that. 

What is social commerce?

Social commerce is the selling of goods directly on a social media platform, one form of social commerce you’ve most likely interacted with already is the ‘Shop’ tab on your Instagram app. This feature was revamped by Instagram in 2020 because they saw the need for retailers to boost sales and streamline the shopping process.

The easily accessible tab makes it easy for scrolling users to quickly turn into shoppers. Other platforms including Facebook and Pinterest also offer social commerce capabilities and TikTok, YouTube, and Twitter have begun experimenting with shop buttons so we expect to see more social commerce features from them popping up soon.

Here at Outfit we are working on our own form of social commerce that we are calling CreatorCart. This will utilize highly engaging SMS and allow your brand to sell across all channels via your curated influencer tribe. The results so far have incredible and we can’t wait to share more on this with you soon.

Why should my brand be using social commerce?

  1. Streamline the shopping experience

Online purchases tend to have a much higher cart abandonment rate. This is thought to be due to a number of factors including customers getting distracted on their way to purchase products and the smaller screen deterring people from buying, especially first time customers and bigger purchases. Social commerce attempts to combat these drop offs with a more streamlined, mobile-friendly experience. With less distractions and a more direct path to purchase there will be less opportunities for brands to lose customers during their online retail journey. 

  1. Make shopping social 

Social commerce makes shopping a more social and shareable experience. It makes it easy for users to share products they have discovered with friends privately in messages as well as publicly as links and posts on their social pages. This means there are even more opportunities for your products to be shared with potential new customers. 

2. Millennials and Gen-Z’s love it!

The 18-34 demographic feel comfortable and familiar with these apps. They are already online and taking advantage of social commerce. Almost half of Gen-Zs and Millenials have made a purchase via social media and another 27% wanting to give it a try. 

How do I get started?

  1. Getting set up

Instagram and Facebook both require you to set up your catalogs in Facebook Shop in order to start using these features. Once connected, partner platforms like Shopify will automatically sync up your store for you. 

Pinterest also allows users to set up catalogs with Shopify but the process is more manual if your online store is on another platform. Pinterest does not offer purchasing in app right now so users will be redirected to your website.

Our own social commerce platform CreatorCart will plug directly into your Shopify store and there is no need to rely on any other social media channel in order to create customizable, sharable micro-sites for each influencer you are working with. This also means that you have complete control over all of the customer data and attribution.

Click here to apply for early access to CreatorCart.

2. Promote it with great content 

Once you are set up it is time to start promoting this new way for your customers to shop. Create engaging content that drives users to your shop. Don’t forget to tag whatever products you are talking about in the content so people can immediately shop for those items. Influencer content will be the most engaging and it will also help you reach more people within your target audience. Outfit can help you with every step of the influencer marketing process so click here to get started planning your campaign today.

Photo of Maddy Budd

Maddy Budd

Social media marketing guru & Outfit contributor based in NYC. When she isn’t keeping up with the latest social media trends you’ll find her riding her bike around Greenpoint.