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Physical Commerce Through Social Networking Sites

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That’s the question USAT explored in a story last week, though as Mashable says, not sure why or how any of this will pan out, if ever. It cites a “survey” by the American Marketing Association, which says there may be billions of dollars being left on the table by the major social-networking sites like MySpace and Facebook. About 51% of respondents to the survey said they’d be willing to go to a social-networking site this holiday season to find out about store sales, or download coupons.
Again, that is flimsy, at best…the only working example is Japanese social network Mixi, which allows users to rate and review books, CDs, DVDs, games and electronics, then click through to buy them on Amazon Japan, as Mashable points out. This is probably the way U.S. networks might use commerce, besides digital downloads. Of course, there’s that trend of social shopping, through sites such as Crowdstorm, ThisNext, Kaboodle, Wists and Stylehive. Some more details on the survey are here in the release.
Update: ClickZ also does a story on social shopping service, and various ways in which retailers are trying to use them.

3 Responses to “Physical Commerce Through Social Networking Sites”

  1. Mary,
    I do not see how can be viewed as a social network shopping site. I do not see any form of community for the members. You just create an account and shop. The community is no different from that of an eBay or Amazon and they are not what you'd call a social network.


  2. Cool article. I am entuhsed to see the potential for social shopping sites. I agree with this potential. I am co-founder of a SS site ( that hopes to harness the power of the community to help members make better informed purchase decisions. The biggest problem we're having is building critical mass. A catch 22 situation I guess. Need members to build a community but need the community to make the site useful/powerful enough to attract new members. Honestly, I am a little bummed to hear MySpace et al are considering venturing into this realm. With their member base they are like the 800 pound gorilla in the room. They can squash a lot of up and comers if they so choose.