Tech Talk: E-Commerce Owners Should Get to Tweeting! It Boosts Website Visits and Purchases

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November 21, 2012 ‐ By Kimberly Maul

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Black Friday is just two days away (or less if you’re planning to venture out Thursday evening for deals). But when you’re out shopping, or looking at retailers’ websites online, how much does your Twitter activity influence your shopping habits?

Compete, the market research division of Kantar, partnered with Twitter for the “Tweets in Action: Retail” study, which found that if a user sees a tweet from a retailer, they are more likely to not only visit that retailer’s website, but they’re also more likely to make purchases.

The study analyzed 7,600 consumers around the back-to-school shopping season (August 1 to October 14, 2012) and separated them into three groups: average Internet users, Twitter users who were exposed to retailer tweets, and Twitter users who were not exposed to retailer tweets.

All users were very likely to have visited a retailer website, with 89.9 percent of average Internet users doing so. But both sets of Twitter users were more likely, with 94.4 percent of normal Twitter users and 95.2 percent of those Twitter users who were exposed to a retailer’s tweet visiting retailer sites.

Looking at actual purchases, 38.9 percent of exposed Twitter users made an online purchase during the time frame, compared to 33.4 percent of non-exposed Twitter users and 26.9 percent of mere Internet users.

In general, Twitter users are already Web-savvy, which may be a factor in their propensity to visit retailer websites and make online purchases. But the fact that people exposed to retailer tweets are even more inclined to do so is great news for Twitter—and the brands that are on the site.

This exposure doesn’t have to be Promoted Tweets or advertising on Twitter, the study found. It could be seeing a regular tweet in their feed, seeing a friend re-tweeting a retailer’s comment, visiting the retailer’s page on Twitter, or seeing a retailer tweet while searching on Twitter. We’ll be curious to see how inundated we are with retailer tweets come Black Friday.

Do you see retailer tweets while you’re on Twitter? Does that impact your online shopping habits?

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