Social media influences 58% of purchases, but in-app buy buttons still aren’t popular

Andy Boxall

In App Data. September 25, 2018

Social media is a strong influencer when it comes to purchase decisions, but has yet to become the source of an actual purchase, according to research by Sumo Heavy. As revealed in its Social Commerce Survey, 48% said they had purchased a product discovered through social media, but only 18% had used a buy button in a social media app.

The influence of social media over purchases has increased. In 2016, 42% said they had discovered a purchase through social channels, compared to the 48% in 2018. Interestingly, 58% say social media has influenced a purchase, even if they didn’t discover it through a social app.

The percentage of purchases made using a buy button has not changed since 2016, and Sumo Heavy says consumers are concerned by security — the highest issue with 71% — privacy, and legitimacy, both of which were a concern for 65% of respondents.

Facebook remains the most influential platform with 38% saying it factored into a buying decision,  but this number is the same as 2016. Snapchat has grown by 250% since then to influence 7%, and Instagram has grown by 120% to influence 22% of buyers.