How Social Commerce is Transforming the Shopping Experience

Rita Batalha
6 min readMar 27

It’s showtime!

The social media feed is the new storefront — and users are doing more than just window shopping. Since the arrival of Alibaba’s Taobao Live in 2016, a new chapter in sales has opened, which blends discovery, inspiration, and purchases on social media platforms.

Social commerce can be described as a shopping experience built around social interactions among people with shared likes, habits, hobbies, and behaviours from the consumer’s mobile phone (Source: BCG).

The author on TikTok

When implemented correctly, social commerce can help consumers, brands, and platforms in three ways:

  • Consumers — accelerate purchases: more seamless, convenient, and novel shopping formats and experiences.
  • Brands — improving brand equity and differentiation: can strengthen brand positioning among existing and new shoppers with new shopping features that are natural extensions of social media platforms.
  • Platforms — leverage shopper data to support offerings: benefit from opportunities to collect data about consumer behaviours and preferences to evolve their existing and future propositions.
Source: BCG

Social commerce can be a difference maker in the commerce market bringing many benefits for brands and consumers, from streamlining the shopping experience to improving community building and communication. Here are three examples of how brands are tapping into social commerce:

Maybelline: Create live shopping experiences on Taobao

Live commerce allows brands to interact with their consumers and create buzz around new products, like a QVC shopping channel for the digital age.

In 2016, Maybelline launched a live-streaming campaign to promote its new lipstick line, which was broadcast across nine popular live-streaming platforms to over six million people using the leading mobile purchase platform, Taobao.

During the live stream, viewers were able to add the product to their shopping carts with one click on their…

Rita Batalha

Technology and Innovation geek. Excited about all new things in the world 🌎

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