Social media funnels record-breaking traffic to retailers: study

January 28, 2014  |  Wing Sze Tang  |  Comments

Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Tumblr sent unprecedented numbers of target shoppers (“qualified traffic”) to retail websites in the fourth quarter of 2013, according to Adobe’s latest Social Media Intelligence Report. What’s more, the revenue per visit (RPV) gained from those clicks reached all-time highs across social channels.

Adobe’s number-crunching looked at aggregated and anonymous data from retail, media, entertainment and travel sites between Q4 2012 and Q4 2013, including 500 million referred visits from social platforms.

See what the study had to say about the biggest social media services:


• Shoppers aren’t yet bored of brand posts on Facebook:. Social engagement with such content rose 180% year over year. What fared best? Posts with images had a 650% higher engagement rate than plain old text. In fact, interest dropped for brand posts based on text, links or video.

• Facebook is still the reigning champ for referring traffic, and its ads are performing better, too. The ad click-through rate was up 365% year over year, while ad click volume went up 125% in the same timeframe.


• Among the four social media platforms studied, Twitter continues to grow fastest in its share of social referred visits to retail sites—up 125% year over year. Retailers can make the most of this growth by trying promoted tweets, images and video, the report advises.


• The photo-centric newcomer is one to watch. Next to Twitter, it’s growing second fastest in its share of social referred visits to retailers—up 89% year over year. And Adobe predicts it will exceed Facebook’s revenue per visit in the U.S. in 2014.


• Boosted by holiday shopping sprees, all social networks referred a record amount of revenue to retailers. But Tumblr’s revenue per visit saw the most impressive increase – 340% year over year.

View the complete Q4 2013 Social Media Intelligence Report (PDF) here.

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