Tablets More Important Than Social to Merchants

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The idea that social networks will revolutionize the ecommerce experience has yet to materialize. But tablets? That’s another story.

Baynote’s 2011 Online Holiday Shopping Experience report, which surveyed 1000 consumers between Cyber Monday and Christmas Eve, revealed that 80.2 percent of shoppers said that personal connections on Facebook or another social networking site did not influence their shopping decision. Just 9 percent of consumers purchased something from a retailers Facebook fan page. Keep in mind however that it is not always easy to measure "influence" as the sales cycle can in some cases be exceedingly long for social media.  

For merchants that have optimized for the tablet experience however,  Baynote's data looks very promising. 48.6 percent of tablet owners made a purchase through their device. And it's not just applications; responsive design presents a low-cost, high impact means to optimize for tablets. 

One of the most interesting data points in the Baynote study was the relevance of personalized product recommendations by channel, and the usefulness of promotions. In both cases, email was the channel cited most frequently, beating out both search and social for the top spot.

Additional findings from the study, as it relates to retail websites in particular, include:
- 59% of all consumers purchased a product on a retail website.
- 93% of all consumers researched a product online and then purchased in a store. 

Related content on Baynote from Website Magazine:
- A Perfect Pair: Personalization and Conversion
- Personalization in Daily Deals & Flash Sales 
- Baynote and Monetate Announce Partnership 

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