May 26, 2021
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UK shopping on TikTok surges as social commerce gets pandemic boost - report

May 26, 2021

TikTok isn’t only a social media phenomenon, it’s also a key shopping destination in the UK with a new study showing that shopping on TikTok grew 553% during the pandemic. That was almost three times the growth of shopping on Instagram (189%) and Facebook (160%).

Photo: Pexels/Public domain

It’s part of a wider shift to social shopping that’s being seen and with recent reports that TikTok is testing an in-app shopping feature in Europe, the social platform’s potential for e-commerce is booming. 

Bazaarvoice’s Influenster community spoke to 3,272 UK consumers and found that there’s been a “significant increase in the influence social media has had on consumers’ shopping preferences in the last year”.

Instagram is ahead in the social commerce game because of its visual focus, with 64% of consumers shopping from the platform in the last year, followed by Facebook (45%) and TikTok (24%). But TikTok saw the really big growth. However, second only to TikTok in terms of percentage growth, Pinterest has seen a 356% rise in shopping in the past 12 months.

The point here seems to be that regardless of individual growth rates, social commerce is a trend that can’t be ignored.

Some 79% of consumers are now more influenced to shop on social platforms than they were a year ago and that has blended with a trend that’s seeing e-commerce in general becoming increasingly social anyway. 

The number of those ‘always’ shopping from their smartphone rose by a significant 214% last year, while those who ‘always’ shop from social media specifically was up by 146%.

As many as 70% of consumers indicated that they’d used social media to shop for a new brand in the last year and perhaps even more significant, 49% opted for a new brand over their regular one due to social media.

Clearly, the discovery element of social media is a key driver, but the relevance of a product is also a top reason (for 47% of respondents) why consumers choose a new brand from social media. This is followed by a product’s benefits, features or ingredients (41%), the visual content produced by the brand (27%), and the price (27%).

The people the company spoke to divided down as Gen Z (18%), Gen Y (71%), Gen X (10%), and Baby Boomers (1%).

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