Black Friday and the State of Social Shopping

Two opposing views on the impact of social media on Black Friday Cyber Monday shopping says something about where we are in this area — and where we are is at the beginning.
IBM’s Black Friday Report 2012 said that social sites generated just .34 percent of all online sales on Black Friday. It said referral traffic from social sites to retailers was almost zero. It said Twitter failed to account for any site visits.
To that DataSift responded with The IBM Study is Wrong. Twitter & Facebook Rocked Black Friday/Cyber Monday. DataSift said, “We analyzed a variety of keywords and hashtag terms and the numbers are staggering. During the five-day period between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday, we recorded more than 50M Tweets relating to Black Friday/Cyber Monday, with peaks of almost 100 Tweets per second.”

It said, “From what we could tell there were several million posts worth of coupons posted and shared across the social networks. We were amazed to see how frequently they were for mostly offline retailers like Radio Shack. Radio Shack even beat both Apple and Amazon in terms of virality around coupons. … A lot of other “brick and mortar” retailers like Walmart did well. We think it’s likely that IBM massively underestimated the impact of social on retailers by only focusing on online retailers.”
I’m inclined to agree with Peter Kafka’s take published on All Things D. He said, “It really is hard to believe that all that chatter didn’t result in more people clicking through to the stores themselves. So, perhaps future studies will figure out a more refined way of tracking that traffic … .”

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