Recently, the news saying that ‘Alibaba plans to use virtual reality to provide immersive shopping experience’ has caused a huge sensation on the Internet. This makes me pay more attention to the relationship between social media and shopping structure nowadays.
I found that the structure and habits of shopping nowadays have changed dramatically due to the existence of social media.
Social media shopping refers to the use of virtual social networks, peer reviews and other online social tools in the purchasing process and even purchase through the social media directly. Actually consumers today really rely on the social media to purchase. So it is no wonder that companies conduct more and more branding campaigns through social media to capture more attention.
Firstly, we know that social media is actually a huge platform that includes all kinds of big data so that people can obtain a lot of useful information through different social media platforms. For example, as the article indicates (Social media changes the way of shopping) , social media has even changed way of purchasing cars in people’s life. Cars are always one of the major lifetime investments, which require more time and research than the typical purchases. However, with the social media, people can easily get more information of their preferred cars, such as professional researches released by professional car dealers and companies, current users’ comments and other historical data. With the customer database, the companies can reach out the customers through social media more easily and continue to pique shoppers’ interests in the cars. Although the buyers have ultimately to buy the care in person, with the social media, buyers can further their car purchase journey by getting enough researches from professional teams, feedbacks from other users and even coupons or deals from the companies. Buyers can get better purchasing experiences through the social media.
Secondly, social media actually triggers people to buy more. 64 percent of Twitter users surveyed claimed to follow brands in order to receive exclusive product promotions and discounts. Companies know well about their clients so that they will post lots of attractive deals, photos, videos or promotion codes through the social media accounts to trigger the clients to buy more.
Thirdly, social media provides a very great and convenient platform for second-hand sale. It was pretty difficult to sell our second-hand stuff before the popularization of social media and most of the stuff was wasted. Nowadays, with the social media, we can set up our second-hand selling accounts or post our stuff on the special selling accounts through the social media platforms to sell the stuff more easily and efficiently. The second hand market becomes more prosperous due to the social media.
From this perspective, social media is a good outcome for the society. It makes the shopping style more convenient and efficient and it reduces more waste in people’s daily life. In the future, with the improvement of technology, social media may bring more innovation to people’s shopping modes. This would provide more convenience and pleasure for people’s shopping journeys but might danger the traditional shopping industry. I am looking forward to the ‘new shopping era’.