Two in five sales are now made via social media

Thirty-eight per cent of sales are now being made via social channels, according to the PayPal mCommerce Index 2019, which was released today.

Social commerce is growing rapidly in Australia, with 18 per cent of surveyed businesses now selling via social media, which is an increase of 38 per cent year on year. An additional 21 per cent of businesses are intending to sell via social channels within the next six months.

This is good news for consumers, who are very active when it comes to shopping via social media, especially the younger generation with 38 per cent of Gen Z consumers and 36 per cent of Gen Y consumers purchasing via social media in the last six months.

Selling and shopping via social channels has experienced rapid growth as the line between social media and e-commerce continues to blur, explains Libby Roy, PayPal Australia managing director.

The incredible amount of time people spend―especially younger people―on social media has positioned social commerce as the biggest trend we’ll see in online commerce over the next five years, she says.

“Thirty-eight per cent of Generation Z social shoppers buy on social channels at least weekly, almost double the frequency of the average social shopper (21 per cent).

“The rapid rise of social commerce highlights the growing complexity of modern retail and the pressure on brands to effectively deliver omnichannel sales and marketing across all devices, applications and platforms.  With Gen Y and Gen Z almost constantly connected, mainly on social channels, and on track to become the largest consumer generation, the importance of social commerce is obvious.”

When it comes to purchasing products, environmental, fair trade and ethical considerations are increasingly important for consumers. In fact, 55 per cent of respondents were identified as conscious consumers.

Australian businesses are attuned to this changing consumer sentiment with three quarters (75 per cent) agreeing that businesses need to adapt to consumer demand for more ethical products and services and 62 per cent saying that an increasing number of customers make purchasing decisions based on the values they think a company holds.

“Australians, more than ever, are looking beyond the label to the impact their purchases have―environmentally, socially and in terms of fair-trade. With 55 per cent of Australians displaying conscious consumer behaviours, customers want more ethically produced and environmentally friendly products. Every buying decision has the power to change the world a little and I believe we’re seeing the beginning of a shift to sustainability, being driven primarily by the young,” adds Roy.