New “F-Commerce Facts” study from Payvment shows sellers are optimistic about holiday sales. Retailers are continuing to embrace Facebook Ads; increasing their use of Twitter and Pinterest to drive buyers to Facebook storefronts.
The 2012 holiday season is expected to be enormous for online retailers, with Facebook storefronts reaping the biggest rewards.
Facebook e-commerce platform Payvment surveyed over 1,000 sellers on Facebook in its second “F-Commerce Facts,” focusing on smaller businesses with fewer than 500 Facebook fans.
Facebook sellers are optimistic about the 2012 holiday season; nearly half of sellers anticipate increased sales over last year while 48 percent are running promotions to boost sales during the holidays.
“With hundreds of thousands of small businesses now selling products on Facebook and many planning significant promotions and discounts for the holidays,” said Payvment CEO Jim Stoneham in a press release, “Cyber Monday could very well become ‘Facebook Monday’ this year.”
Data also shows that Facebook sellers are increasingly investing in promoting storefronts via Facebook Ads, offering deals, promotions and aggressively marketing via other social media platforms such as Twitter and Pinterest.
1. Facebook sellers are optimistic about the 2012 holiday season.
Nearly half of Facebook sellers—49 percent—anticipate holiday sales will grow from last year; only 13 percent are expecting a decline in sales.
“Cyber Monday,” the Monday after Thanksgiving, when many people begin online holiday shopping, sellers are planning a mixture of promotions to boost sales.
Nearly half of Facebook retailers (48 percent) are planning promotions; of those planning a campaign, 34 percent will provide free shipping, 23 percent will offer discounts of up to a 10 percent, and 18 percent plan to offer discounts up to 20 percent.
Established Facebook sellers will also be expected to produce larger discounts. While free shipping is the most popular online perk, larger sellers (more than 500 fans) are also expected to offer discounts of 11-20 percent.
The Facebook mishandled IPO and poor stock performance have done little to chill retailer’s holiday spirit.
Nearly half of Facebook sellers state that Facebook, as a retail platform, has not changed since the IPO earlier this year; 20 percent of respondents say they have more confidence in the company, with 17 percent say that Facebook’s problems have made them feel less optimistic about Facebook.
2. Facebook Ads continue to enjoy substantial support.
Facebook Ads enjoy high favorability among retailers that have used them; 42 percent of retailers surveyed report using Facebook Ads (up from 38 percent), and more than 65 percent say they want to use Facebook Ads again.
The major reason for Facebook Ad popularity is the fan and customer; 65 percent plan on more Facebook Ad campaigns. The ability to start and stop campaigns and Facebook Ads’ ease of use were also high on the list.
Only 48 percent cited Facebook’s ad targeting capabilities as the motivation to continue using the service; this is a shift from 59 percent in the beginning of 2012.
Established sellers use Facebook Ads more aggressively: 53 percent of sellers with 501-1,000 fans used Facebook Ads, compared to 29 percent for sellers with only 1-10 fans.
Not everyone has had success with Facebook Ads. The 35 percent who say they wouldn’t use Facebook Ads again, 61 percent of them report that the ads failed to bring new fans or customers
3. Twitter is the second most popular vehicle to drive traffic to Facebook storefronts; Pinterest is also showing promise.
According to the sellers actively marketing Facebook storefronts and selling products through posts on their Facebook page, 82 percent plan to continue. Twitter has become the second most favorite marketing strategy; 35 percent post tweets to send shoppers to
Facebook storefronts, up from 33 percent in the beginning of 2012. Forty-one percent will use Twitter to promote the Facebook storefront in the next six months.
Pinterest has also become a popular way to market Facebook stores; 20 percent report using Pinterest as a marketing vehicle; 32 percent expect to use Pinterest more in the next six months.
Nearly one-third of sellers market their Facebook store on company web sites, email marketing is used by 30 percent; in more traditional marketing outside of Facebook, 8 percent of Facebook retailers also run print ads, 9 percent use, direct mail and 7 percent purchase search ads on Google.
4. Brand Marketing and selling products on the same platform is a leading value for sellers.
Facebook is seen by retailers as a way to build customer base. Nearly half of those surveyed say, the favorite part of selling on Facebook is the ease of customers to “Like” their page, opening them for future marketing.
Sellers also use a variety of marketing tactics to drive Facebook sales: offering deals (30 percent) and merchandise promotions (26 percent).
The F-Commerce Facts poll cements the appeal of Facebook as a platform to sell products and improve online brand presence.
A majority (56 percent) of those surveyed says the ability to market products via social marketing is the chief benefit; 54 percent also like that customers don’t have to log out of Facebook to buy their products.