ShopSocially Debuts Social Sharing Tool For Retailers

Social product recommendation site ShopSocially is debuting its “Social Connect” product for online retailers, that allows shoppers to recommend products from the retailer’s site on Facebook.

Social Connect aims to turns shoppers into brand ambassadors by allowing users to share their favorite products to Facebook from a retailer’s site. It’s similar to the Like button, but ShopSocially says that it gives merchants the ability to access conversion rates on the links shared, number of clicks and more.

Social Connect also helps retailers monetize their fan base by creating a shopping community called Shoppers” on their Facebook fan page, where fans can see what their friends and other shoppers are buying at the retailer site. The Shoppers tab also shows who the top shoppers are for a retailer and the top products bought. A number of online retailers have signed on to use Social Connect, including Sephora, CafePress, Zales, Rawlings Gear and several others. Paid subscriptions to use Social Connect start at $49 per month. Custom pricing is available for large merchants.

As we wrote in our review of ShopSocially’s consumer facing site, the startup brings your Facebook friends into its system, and you can choose which friends you’d like to “shout” your potential purchase to get feedback on the site. You can also publish your purchase to the site, a la Blippy. In order to publish your desired product, you simply publish the link to the item and ShopSocially will include a picture and link in the update. Users can post comments on friends’ items and you can push your posts to Facebook.

The startup is also revealing a few statistics from its data that supports the notions that e-commerce and Facebook are becoming increasingly complimentary. ShopSocially says that Facebook posts generate 3 times more clicks compared to Twitter (after normalizing for number of friends/followers).Each shared purchase is worth $3.08 to $5.56 on Facebook and worth $1.27 to $1.89 on Twitter (the numbers vary by product category).

Shared purchases by influencers drive 40 to 60x more clicks compared to average. And conversion rate from friend referred traffic is 48% higher than average. Finally, ShopSocially claims that enabling Social Connect creates an immediate revenue lift of between 2 and 6.5%

While we haven’t seen the actual revenue spikes to prove that lift, the new product is just another confirmation that Facebook is steadily becoming an integral part of e-commerce.