Online shopping, or eCommerce, has been all the rage for a few years now and, for many, has become the preferred method of shopping. Social commerce, however, has recently emerged with high hopes to utilize a one-stop shopping experience.

Social commerce is the act of shopping via a social media platform or page. Previously, if a user saw a product on social media that they wanted to purchase, they would have to leave the platform in order to do so. Once a user leaves a platform, it can be harder to bring them back and causing a decrease in engagement. As a result, social commerce was introduced.

It’s clear to see that social commerce has social goals in mind such as engagement and brand awareness, but it is still very new to many users. Regardless, apps like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and even WhatsApp have embraced this new style of commerce, opening the doors for small and large businesses alike to expand the way in which sales are conducted.

eCommerce, on the other hand, has years of reputable success and immense trust from the general public. Buyers may be more comfortable with the UI and UX of a store’s website and prefer to buy from there rather than on social media. Additionally, discounts and coupons are typically more visually accessible on an eCommerce website, further driving more people away from social commerce.

The digital landscape is changing daily and there's no telling which form of commerce will come out on top. Have you participated in social commerce? Which commerce experience do you prefer?

The Benefits of Social Commerce to Customers and Retailers