As we enter 2012, there is one thing on peoples’ (in the social commerce arena) minds – does the “f” in f-commerce stand for “fantastic” or “failed”? The answer unfortunately is the latter, and why is that?
The main reason is simple enough – most of the f-commerce solutions out there are simple storefronts that present products within fan pages – i.e. a mini ecommerce store within Facebook.
Following the news that a Saudi Hacker stole thousands of credit card details, people started thinking about safe shopping online.
Shopping is usually fun and stress free but the dangers lurking in any type of shopping are always there. If your gut tells you something is wrong – it’s probably more than that dodgy kebab you ate last night.
So social shopping should be scarier right? Wrong! Here’s why:
One of the most prevalent questions in the ecommerce world today is; "How do I use Facebook to drive engagement, loyalty and ultimately…sales?" The answer actually already exists and even better its foundations lie within the well-known Magento ecommerce infrastructure.
Offline retailers know the power of impulse buying (around 40% of all buys are impulse buys)– they specifically cater to us by offering a lot of stimulation to our senses – strategic locations, beautiful displays, great smells and music. What do online retailers offer? – the ability to browse a lot of products, which is a great way to encourage impulse buys, but there should be another, more social way to encourage impulse buys, one that stimulates us in a manner similar to offline shopping.
Offline shopping will always trump online shopping – because in offline shopping we use all our 5 senses and we love it. Think about the amount of great deals online – then think how you still prefer to grab a friend and go to the mall even though you could save by shopping online.
When you consider that Maslow ‘s hierarchy of needs was developed in the 1940’s it’s pretty amazing that you can still apply it to almost everything in our modern lives – even more so now that we are more connected than ever.
At Sortal we are always looking for the customer experience, for the engagement and the fact that marketers are always looking for the next tool, idea or theme to excite and activate their fans, but the question remains – how to monetize these fans?
The Social commerce arena needs a new definition for "customer"
Let’s start with the traditional e-commerce definition of a customer – someone who purchases a product/service, paid and generated an order, now let’s look at Sortal’s definition of a customer (within the social network commerce arena): when a person engages with the product/service and accesses the merchant’s Sortal platform (under any terms) what do we mean by engage?
As a part of cooperation between Facebook and eBay, Magento developed a native extension integrating the new version of Facebook Open Graph API. Questions were raised about the differences and compatibility of this extension with Sortal.