17 Feb 2015 15:47 IST

Social media is a key selling tool

Tiffany English, an online shopper, uses mobile phone app to check the price of items on eBay in Hoboken, N.J., Dec. 15, 2010. Purchases made on mobile phones are still a mere slice of retailers' revenue, but this holiday season, mobile shopping has leapt from negligible to noticeable. (Juan Arredondo/The New York Times)

The internet is the third-most-shopped channel each week, after supermarkets and mass merchandisers, according to WSL Strategic Retail’s How America Shops MegaTrends 2012 report.

Details of the report on EY’s web site says internet shopping has had a significant impact on many categories in bricks-and-mortar stores. Shoppers prefer internet ordering and re-ordering of bulkier items, to be delivered to their doorstep, often at better prices. Price-savvy consumers are using the internet to research products before they buy. Price comparison websites and consumer forums are frequently browsed during shoppers’ “path to purchase.” Social networking has affected the way shoppers come to brands and products. Shopper reviews are generally considered more trustworthy than retail sales associates. The report says that social media is more than an information source — it is a key selling tool. Retailers and brands have realized its importance in shopping decisions and are reallocating resources to support social media efforts.

Sourced from the Ernst and Young webpage

Read the whole report here.



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