Where do shoppers get their information? A new WSL Strategic Retail How America Shops The PULSE of Shopping Life–which is the benchmark report on the impact of social media on shopping–reveals that while the use of social media is growing, only 16% of shoppers consult social media vs. fully 60% for Google to get information on what’s new to buy.
Product websites ranked #2 with 54% almost equal to #3 friends and family at 51%; retail store websites #4 at 42% and traditional printed media #5 with 35%. Web-based sources now dominate where shoppers get their information. Although social media is considered more reliable than sales associates and less biased than manufacturers information, only 1/3 of users are confident that social media reviews have not been infiltrated by manufacturers.
While men embraced the Internet before women, significantly more women have embraced social media–46% vs. 38%. And even while women are the early adapters of social media they have not given up their gal pals with 58% consulting friends and family vs. 44% of men.