Lack of social media engagement is costing retailers sales


The majority of high street retailers are failing to engage with consumers on social media, according to a recent study into the shopping habits of young consumers.

The study, commissioned by Maybe*, a new platform that helps consumers decide what to buy, found that one in four shoppers aged between 16 and 34 turn to social media for inspiration before making a purchase.

Maybe* questioned 1,978 young adults in a bid to understand how millennial shoppers make their purchasing decisions.

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Additional research questioned 296 Gloucestershire-based retailers, which revealed that a staggering 74% of those outlets polled didn’t actively use Twitter or Facebook.

Polly Barnfield OBE, founder of Maybe*, said: “The research presents an interesting dichotomy. On the one hand, one in four millennial shoppers are actively using social media to influence their decision making, yet on the other three quarters of retailers are failing to tap into that market. Consequently, they’re missing a huge opportunity to engage with consumers and help to facilitate a sale.”

Maybe* is working in partnership with the University of Gloucestershire and the University of Nottingham to establish retail and consumer trends in a bid to understand the gap between shopping and buying.

Barnfield added: “The critical aspect of the consumer journey is the part between that of the act of going shopping and that of actually making a purchase. In order to survive, and indeed thrive, retailers need to shine a light on that process and bridge the gap between these where possible. Our research findings suggest that social media is a key component and one that retailers should be exploiting.”

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Andrew Seymour

The author Andrew Seymour