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New Phase Of E-Tail Exploits Social Media’s Unique Selling Advantages

November 18, 2015: 12:00 AM EST
E-tail has evolved to a new stage, beyond simply having a choice of products online and fast, cheap and convenient delivery. The new stage is called social commerce because it so heavily depends on social media users who develop an emotional connection with products first seen on sites like Facebook and Pinterest. These sites are adding Buy! Buttons as fast as they can. Facebook’s button could increase its annual revenue by 5-10 percent. Retailers and technology companies believe Instagram, with all of its product photographs, is an ideal platform to boost sales. They are developing systems to make shopping there possible. It may soon be possible to make customer photographs posted on Instagram “shoppable” from their own Web sites.
Andrea Felsted, "Retail enters third phase of digital evolution", The Financial Times, November 18, 2015, © The Financial Times Limited
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