It’s the thick of summer, but Facebook is in the holiday spirit.
The Mark Zuckerberg-led social media giant found that, in addition to people sharing 30 percent more posts during the holidays, people also shop more online during the holidays.
To research the role of technology during the holidays, and what that means for retailers, Facebook IQ analyzed Facebook and Instagram data from November through January and also commissioned a study to look at the habits of more than 20,000 people across 17 countries.
The research found that the share of online purchases made on mobile — and visible to Facebook — increased 33 percent over a year earlier, and that 59 percent of people who make mobile purchases in the U.S. extend the gift-giving to themselves.
Mobile shoppers, which Facebook referred to as “m-buyers,” care about shipping options — 77 percent take shipping times into consideration and 58 percent value the ability to pick up an item in the store.
They also are more likely to turn to Facebook and Instagram for ideas. M-buyers are 1.7 times more likely to use Facebook for inspiration and more than two times more likely to use Instagram for gift inspiration. And they are 3.6 times more likely to use Facebook to research gift ideas, compared with the total population surveyed.
Ultimately, mobile shoppers are determined. According to Facebook researchers, they “are not deterred by the friction points that can cause others to abandon making purchases on their mobile devices.” For example, as many as 43 percent said when they met with problems such as lost signals or difficulties with font size, they tried again later. Facebook recommended that retailers earn their loyalty by making sure that the mobile shopping experience meets the needs and screens of mobile buyers.
Facebook also found that despite plans to shop early, many people were last-minute shoppers, especially among the high-income set. It also found that Black Friday has become more of an international shopping holiday, with Brazil, South Africa and South Korea leading the charge.