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20/08/2020 Luke Goldsworthy

Understanding Social Media use for your eCommerce business

One of the most significant shifts in information and communications technology since the turn of the century has been the adoption of social media, something that has further surged during the coronavirus pandemic. It is estimated that globally, social media users are now spending nearly two and a half hours per day on social networks and messaging apps.

Datareportal’s Digital 2020: July Global Statshot found that more than half of the world now used social media, that’s over a 10% increase over the past year. Even with the easing of Covid-19 restrictions, digital habits developed during the lockdown have continued. TikTok and Instagram have been the standouts of the past quarter.

Search behaviours are also evolving. In Australia, 31% of internet users aged 16-64 use voice search and voice commands at least monthly. Similar numbers are seen for the use of image recognition services such as Google Lens and Pinterest Lens, which have become especially important for eCommerce. Additionally, social media are increasingly what people are turning to learn about brands and products, second only to search engines. For users aged 16-24, social media is the top choice.

Research from Smart Insights released last month, drawing on the latest data from several sources, shined a light on current consumer use of social networks. 

Global Usage Data

  • There are 4.57 billion users of the internet, an increase of 346 million over the past year.
  • 3.96 billion people are active social media users, an increase of 376 million over the past year, making up 51% of the world’s population.
  • 5.15 billion people use mobile phones.
  • 99% of total social media users access them via their phones.

Most Popular Social Media

  • Based on monthly active users, user accounts, and advertising audiences, Facebook is the most popular social network, reaching over 2.6 billion people per month.
  • YouTube and WhatsApp are next, both reaching roughly 2 billion people.
  • Among other networks relevant to Australia, Instagram reaches just over a billion people globally, while Reddit reaches 430 million, Snapchat 397 million, Pinterest 367 million and Twitter 326 million.

Brand Interaction

  • 27% of users globally discover products and brands via ads on social media.
  • 24% discover products and brands via recommendations.
  • 43% research products and brands on social media.
  • 23% are effected in their decision to purchase by lots of likes or positive comments.
  • 13% would increase their likelihood of purchase with the presence of a ‘Buy’ button.

Social Media Engagement

  • On average internet users have almost eight social media accounts.
  • On Facebook, most brands make one post per day (except for sports teams nearer to four, and media nearer to eight).
  • Post engagement rates of Facebook at below 0.2% across the board, with retail just under 0.09% over average.
  • On Instagram, businesses post less, but the engagement rate is roughly ten times higher.

Post Formats

  • On Facebook, live video received the highest rate of organic interactions, nearly double all others.
  • This is followed by images, video, links and status posts in decreasing order.
  • On Instagram, image carousels were most effective, followed by images and then videos.
  • When posting videos, shorter is better. On average, just a quarter of a video under 30 seconds is watched. Only 5% a video over a minute is watched.
  • Portrait (vertical) videos also perform slightly better than landscape.

In last week’s blog post we discussed social commerce, making products directly available to purchase natively within social media. Due to their reach, these platforms are also vital for marketing and customer interaction. To discuss how your business can better take advantage of social media, book a free consultation below.

Get in touch with our team and we can talk to you about this or any eCommerce questions you may have.