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Social media buy buttons boost e-retail to $1.7tr

Retail activities of Facebook and Twitter will increase online purchases.

By CBR Staff Writer

Worldwide e-retail sales are estimated to reach $1.7 trillion this year, up by over 17% when compared to last year.

Online retail will get a boost from social media companies as they compete with other existing retailers through their direct sales platforms.

New data from Juniper Research revealed that while recent eRetail growth was boosted by factors like public Wi-Fi deployments and 4G rollout, in the medium term sales will receive strong support from these social media sales platforms.

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest have already launched buy buttons for faster conversions on their mobile apps.

The companies are expected to improve sales prospects via strategic retailer partnerships, with Twitter currently allowing users to connect their accounts to Amazon.

It is being supported by online retailers, who are providing same day delivery options to lower the time between ordering and receiving products.

However, it may be hampered by conflicting messages from their brick and mortar stores. Therefore, an integration between in-store and online channel will play an important role in finding omnichannel shopping habits of an individual.

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Research author Windsor Holden said: "The key is to ensure that consumers are allowed to choose their own path to purchase rather than have it effectively mandated by channel limitations."

Smartphones will account for over 40% of e-retail transactions by 2020, Juniper Research said.

The research noted that the use of carrier billing for physical goods purchase is expected to be limited by comparatively higher share of revenues demanded by network operators and billing platforms.

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