‘Tis The Season For Online Shopping

Don’t look now, but Halloween is two weeks away with Thanksgiving and Christmas close behind.  This can send either sheer excitement or terror up one’s spine.  Enter social media and online shopping to the rescue!   According to a study by Lightspeed Research, during last year’s 2010  holiday season, 38 percent of consumers who shopped for holiday gifts online say they spent more money with e-retailers than the prior year.  This is great news for online retailers and social media.  Experts agree that a trifecta of sorts is responsible for this increase:  the public’s greater comfort of buying goods on line; a larger age group comfortable with the Internet and e-commerce; and the relative ease and speed of online shopping.

Not to mention the change in demographics.  No longer do grown children stay in the same hometown as their parents when entering the job market.  This creates a need for sending and shipping gifts for the holidays.  I know this is my situation.  As all of my family and my husband’s family are located across the country, online shopping/shipping is the answer.  Most online retailers offer free shipping if you spend a minimum amount.  While the Lightspeed Research survey concluded only 7 percent of consumers did all of their shopping online, I suspect that figure will likely continue to climb.  The key, however, to online shopping  is to get it done early.  Otherwise, last minute shipping will cost you an arm and a leg.

Social media like Facebook and Twitter are also becoming major players in promoting hot new items for the holidays.  If a company or product is “liked” or promoted on Twitter, it is more likely a consumer will check it out for purchase.  Again, the powerful word-of-mouth benefit of social media is at play.  I can vividly recall being in San Francisco in the late ’90s and seeing people on the streets promoting the Internet and online shopping for the upcoming holiday season.  I thought what a strange concept.  We’ve come a long way.  Where do you see the future of online e-commerce and social media?  Do you see it continuing to grow or falling short of its promise?

This entry was posted in Elevation PR. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to ‘Tis The Season For Online Shopping

  1. estrapko says:

    In my opinion, shopping online will grow in the future. Although few years ago, I thought that by this time we would buy most things online. It didn’t happen to such an extent as I and a lot of other people expected. Shops are still full and most people prefer to buy things “in person.” Me too. When buying clothes, I want to try them on; when buying groceries, I want to see them; and even when I am buying books, I prefer to “touch them” before I buy them. However, I think that social media will help e-commerce grow. If a potential client sees something promoted on Facebook or Twitter and can click to the link, they are more likely to buy it, than just search for it on the Internet.

  2. ammarty says:

    I personally do most of my shopping online because, these days, I just cannot find time to shop in stores, as much as I may want to. I think online shopping is a hassle and usually I end up sending items back for different sizes or colors, but nothing can beat the convenience of a “click of a mouse.” When it comes to birthday or Christmas shopping, online shopping is my lifesaver. I can buy gifts for everyone and make sure I don’t miss any gifts because it takes only a few seconds for me to make a purchase. Social media is making this even easier and I am excited to see where it will take online shopping next.

  3. smwillar says:

    I definitely see an increase in online shopping on the horizon, especially with the holidays coming up. My family mostly lives nearby, so I never have to worry about shipping gifts but I do like the convenience of being able to buy products online rather than having to gear-up for a long day at the mall fighting for parking spots and the last items in stock. Even during the non-holiday bustle, I still like the ease of being able to plug my credit card number into a form and having my purchase delivered to me. However, I still feel that an in-person shopping experience is necessary because the annoyance of having to wait two weeks (or more) for what you bought is directly contradictory to our demands for “instant gratification.” It also often happens that the shipping and handling charges are more than the price of the product! Hassle or not, there will continue to be a place for online shopping.

  4. rsteinga says:

    I think this post is completely on point. Online shopping has become such a staple for most of us who have family and friends in different parts of the country. Not only is the selection online much larger than any store, you can ship directly to the recipient’s house, lowering the cost of shipping and the hassle of the Post Office! I think social media is catching on to how influential it can be when it comes to awareness of products and services.

  5. caolson says:

    I definitely see e-commerce and social media continuing to grow in the future. In fact, I just recently purchased a wig for my Halloween costume online, and I will almost positively be sending my grandmother (who lives in Kansas) a present via online ordering for Christmas in the next month or so, like I do every year. I think the ease of online shopping and shipping will make this phase a lasting one, and I think online retailers are that much smarter if they know how to use social media to their advantage and to grow their online shopping customer population even more.

Comments are closed.