Retailers love social media. They spend a lot of time posting content, engaging with fans, and selling. After all, social media platforms allow users to shop with a click; it could not possibly be any easier. But does that engagement and interaction lead to sales?

Does Social Media Drive Sales?

Social media has definitely impacted the way in which consumers shop. Facebook has been the leader in this area for years and while, social media does influence what consumers purchase, it may not exactly be a great referrer for actual sales.

A study from Salesforce found that the influence of social media on e-commerce may be fading. The research noted that social media traffic is stuck at less than five percent of traffic and at two percent for orders. [1]

Yet, there are stories every day that say an optimized social media presence is the way to more sales. So, the strategy and the data are not always in harmony. That is not to say that social media does not entice users to check out products. They just might need longer to research a purchase. Consumers, even younger generations, may be checking out products online but purchasing in-store, as well.

This indicates social media is a valuable channel to build brand awareness, but its power to fuel purchases may be less than imagined.

Enter Amazon and Snapchat’s New Collaboration

Now, Amazon has entered the equation. Although unconfirmed, a developer found “secret code” in Snapchat that is believed to be connected to a visual search feature that would allow users to press and hold to identify an object, barcode, and more with the Snap camera.[2] Snap sends the data to Amazon, and users have the ability to click to see results on Amazon.

Why might it work where other collaborations have stalled? It is completely user-generated. The camera automates the research process that a prospective customer would otherwise have to do on his or her own, bringing them to the product page instantly, which may increase the chances of a purchase.

When users browse Facebook or Twitter, it is a different experience. Although they may follow a brand and see their new product with a link to purchase, the user may not be in the mood to shop.

Experts will be watching this new partnership to see its effect in moving the needle on social media shopping.

[1] https://www.demandware.com/shopping-index/

[2] https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/09/snapchat-camera-search/