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
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.