REPORT: Facebook Shopping Is Growing But Still Small

Facebook shopping is growing, but still accounts for less than one percent of retailing online.

Facebook shopping is growing, but it still represents less than one percent of online retail.

That comes from a new report by personalized shopping vendor RichRelevance. The company mined on data from more than 200 million shopping sessions in August, which resulted in over four million orders that totaled more than $500 million.

The good news from Rich Relevance is:

  • Facebook showed the most dramatic growth as a retail traffic driver, jumping 92 percent from August 2010 through August 2011.
  • Shoppers from Facebook spend more per order once they arrive at retail shopping sites than customers who found those sites via Google.

The bad news is:

  • While their impact is growing, social networks such as Facebook and Twitter still account for less than one percent of traffic to retail sites.
  • Shoppers who arrive at retail shopping sites via Facebook only make purchases 1.2 percent of the time.

When it comes to driving traffic to retail shopping sites, the search engine is still king, and Google is still king of the search engines. Organic search engine traffic represented 18 percent of total traffic, with Google accounting for 81 percent of that total, dwarfing Yahoo (9.7 percent), Bing/ (7.5 percent), and AOL (1.7 percent).

RichRelevance Chief Executive Officer David Selinger said:

As retailers vie to get their share of an estimated $450 billion in holiday spending, there is a tremendous opportunity to respond to the different ways that people are shopping on their sites. The ones who succeed will be those who most effectively wrap the e-commerce experience around each shopper, whether they come from Facebook or Google or a direct email link.

Chief Marketing oOfficer Diane Kegley added:

These data are a wakeup call for brands who want to reach holiday shoppers who are congregating in the online shopping channel. This is the time to focus on new ways to reach and influence consumers directly on retail sites, at the point of purchase, when they are ready to buy.

Readers, have you made any purchases at online shopping sites arrived at via Facebook? David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.