Consumers are wary of retailers with a social media presence and don‘t use social networking sites when it comes to e-commerce, new research shows.
Of the 1,096 UK adults surveyed by YouGov, over half of online shoppers say a store having a presence on a social networking site makes them trust the retailer less, while just over a quarter say it makes them trust it more. The numbers are similar among Twitter users (52 per cent say it reduces their trust in an outlet and 37 per cent say it increases it).
Television adverts is the most popular way for consumers to research a product (26 per cent) or newspapers and magazines (15 per cent) than social media (10 per cent.) Customer reviews on retailers‘ own site were the most persuasive (60 per cent) and reviews on third party sites such as Trustpilot and Which? (40 per cent.)
61 per cent of 16-24 year olds like to keep their social networking and online shopping activity separate. Just one in seven believed logging into social networks to shop made transactions and browsing easier.
James McCoy, Research Director at YouGov, said: “The rise of social networks over the past decade has coincided with the growth of online shopping and many retailers have tried to harness the power of sites such as Facebook to increase sales. However, it appears that consumers prefer to keep their shopping and social sites separate, with online consumers not trusting retailers that are on the likes of Twitter.
“What is worse for retailers is that younger, more social media savvy consumers are the ones who have the greatest objections to using their Facebook and Twitter accounts for shopping. This is something they will need to address if they are to affectively deploy online marketing budgets.”
It is understood that Facebook is aiming to attract major retailers to advertise since reducing its organic reach for brands to around 16 per cent last month.
E-commerce platforms such as Shopify and Amazon have taken steps to boost Facebook‘s online selling power with the former introducing its own Facebook store late last year.