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50% of ecommerce site visitors are logged into Facebook – personalisation will follow

Facebook Ecommerce Shoppers Stay Logged In

I seem to be posting a lot of stats this week, and today it is that 50% of ecommerce visitors are logged into Facebook.  This is data from a Sociable Labs study of 456 million visits to ecommerce sites.

As Sociable Labs CEO Nisan Gabbay says:

People look at Facebook’s active user count but don’t quite get how pervasive the service is in people’s lives. It’s there all the time in any activity they do online

(As a sidebar, I got to know Nisan in 2007 when he wrote an excellent series of posts on why selected consumer internet companies had succeeded.  He’s a smart guy – see his Betfair case study here.)

Ecommerce site owners can get rich data on the 50% who are logged in to Facebook and use that to target offers or otherwise personalise their sites.  Gender and age are the obvious places to start, but there is a huge volume of data to work with and the smartest etailers will use it all, employing sophisticated regression analysis to determine which parameters are the most effective to target against.

In order to get at the data the ecommerce site has to get its customers to link their accounts using Facebook Connect.  This can be a stumbling block as forcing people to connect to Facebook will hit conversion rates and have an immediate negative impact on the bottom line, particularly given that Facebook Connect often seems to be poorly implemented, especially on mobile.

I think we can expect to see etailers start offering incentives to connect via Facebook, or making it mandatory to access non-purchase path functionality like tracking orders.  After that we will start to benefit from a more personalised ecommerce experiences.

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  • Anonymous

    I’ve been looking at the social commerce space quite a bit over the past few weeks and the statistics you share certainly haven’t gone unnoticed – there are ‘f-commerce’ store provider start-ups cropping up everywhere, and larger e-commerce providers like Venda and the eBay group of companies building in a social layer to their offerings and APIs. I found a very neat example of the smart social data analysis you mentioned, on Etsy. Their “Gift Ideas for Your Friends” uses FB Connect to analyse your friend’s graphs and recommends matching products from their marketplace. Hopefully they’ll get to the point soon where we trust it enough to hit a big 1-click buy now button and your entire Christmas shopping arrives in a van, full of unique and tailored gifts for your family and friends. Now that, I would pay for :-)

  • http://www.theequitykicker.com brisbourne

    :). That would be good

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  • http://carrero.es David Carrero Fdez-Baillo

    Interesante para el comercio electrónico :)

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  • http://www.facebook.com/nisangabbay Nisan Gabbay

    Nic – thanks for the kind words and blogging about the Sociable Labs study.  It’s been too long since I’ve said hello, as I have been heads down building a start-up :)

    Getting consumers to authorize the use of Facebook Connect for an e-commerce site can indeed be a challenge.  However, it’s not quite as difficult as most people think.  In an upcoming study, we plan to show that when a user is presented with a feature that requires Facebook Connect, they will authorize use of their Facebook data close to 60% of the time.  The trick is creating a compelling enough personalization experience in the first place to entice them to Connect.  

    Thus far, Facebook Connect has mostly been used for login, and the value to the user is convenience.  Over time, we’ll see it become a core part of the shopping experience itself and drive much higher value for the consumer as a result.     

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