Despite all the buzz surrounding social media’s business potential, one national study puts its influence in perspective.
The study, conducted by Goldman Sachs, found social media has an overall “5% impact” on customers’ buying decisions. In other words, when customers were asked to rank several online resources, in terms of how much they influence final decisions, social media came in dead last.
Search engines were the leading online source for customers looking to find more information about products and services, which suggests companies may want to invest more time and money into pushing their online visibility via Google and Yahoo.
Despite the results of the survey, Facebook is already hard at work, developing new ways for companies to market and sell their products.
In addition to Facebook advertising, which sells space based on pageviews, Facebook has also added a new online selling feature, which is already yielding the same conversion rates as several e-commerce sites.
Twitter, on the other hand, continues to focus on providing business analytics, which help companies measure the effectiveness of their campaigns.
Among the most relevant benefits of “Twitter Analytics,” users can measure:
- which tweets generated the most buzz
- which tweets caused people to “unfollow” a company’s feed, and
- who the most influential followers are (in terms of retweeting).
Source: “Social Networks Have Little Influence Over What You Buy Online,” The Customer Collective.