Social commerce is a relatively new subset of e-commerce that has emerged due to the growing popularity of smartphones and tablets. The term refers to the use of social networks in the context of e-commerce activity, leveraging the social power of these networks to make commerce more interactive and dynamic. The term itself was introduced by Yahoo! in November of 2005 to identify a collection of e-commerce tools that had features that allowed users to share information with one another.
Social commerce today incorporates the use of social media tools and content in order to facilitate e-commerce. This type of commercial has become particularly common within the fashion industry, where people like to share the products that they find with one another on a regular basis. The commerce platforms that leverage social connectivity are able to sell these products quite quickly. This connectivity is one of the most alluring features of social commerce.
Many people tend to enjoy social commerce because it allows them to interact with their friends and families while shopping. This social aspect can have a major affect on whether or not someone will purchase a particular product. Being able to quickly access opinions from a potentially large group of consumers can help people find out more about particular products and whether or not these products are worth anything.
Businesses have shown interest in social commerce as well, as it exists as a dynamic way to engage consumers effectively. Mobile consumers have proven themselves to be particularly difficult to engage for any prolonged period of time. These people tend to spend a lot of time on social networks, however, which social commerce an effective way to engage these consumers.