For anyone who hasn't noticed, 'Social Shopping' is the newest important online experience being tapped into by retailers. This combination of social networking and shopping is being pushed increasingly by a variety of retailers who are using our online social habits to their advantage and ours.
Social shopping is about allowing consumers to shop in a social media environment where they can swap ideas with friends, communicate directly with the retailer, review products in real time and generally discuss their purchases. It reflects how we as consumers are choosing to shop and that our purchase journey is no longer a simple visit to a shop and making a purchase. We want more. We want shopping to be a whole experience, especially as we are increasingly actively choosing to shop online.
Social shopping in it's infancy primarily centred around product reviews by customers. It was reported by Internet Retailer that 67% of shoppers went onto purchase online after a recommendation from within a online community. In part, I suspect, this may be down to knowing reviews and recommendations from other customers are not coming from a company bias.
But the concept of social shopping extends much further with designers and retailers, such as ASOS, utilising social media alleys, such as Facebook, to sell directly to their followers without them having to leave the social network environment.
The social aspect of shopping online with your friends, is becoming a huge focus and one we'll see become more prevalent in the next year or so.
Sites like Motilo have pushed it even further by cleverly combining the addictive aspect of Polyvore, where people can build outfits from pretty much any item online, with online shopping.
Motilo have hand picked the most desirable designer pieces from across the globe and you can go on and build outfits, like Polyvore, but you have the very important added option to buy the entire outfit form the site. I warn you now - this site is addictive. I have spent many imagery pounds, and not so imagery hours, on creating outfits. Eventually the plan is to allow you to create your looks in real time and you will be able to share your outfits with your friends. They will be able to recommend items and you can change up your looks together. It's social in the truest sense of the word.
At the moment the site is still at the Beta stage and has many glitches yet to ironed out, which does sometimes mean the site won't load or accpet your log ins, but I do recommend persevering and going on for a play around. It's amazing creating these looks with the most beautiful pieces available and watching how much it all costs and having a little button that says 'buy the look'! Simply create an account and start putting together looks. I have created a few already. If you do this then Motilo go through their users looks and pick the best one and feature it on their blog as 'Look of The Day'.
The selection from the Motilo team is impeccable, with sought after labels both mainstream and avant garde being catered for which is why I think it's so addictive.