B2B Payments

Social Commerce Site Aims To Undercut Mega Retailers

Community powered digital retailer Joinem announced March 10 that it has raised $5 million in investment funds and has officially its public website.

Joinem is a social media website that focuses on “collective buying,” where products are shared among the website’s users in an attempt to influence digital buying decisions. Users agree to perform “Buys” of specific products with other users in bulk, and the orders are initiated once a specific target is reached. The item is purchased from the mega-retailer with the lowest price in real-time through a WePower-run group buying platform. According to Joinem, this guarantees savings of up to 25 percent off the lowest price that is online available due to bulk purchasing. Joinem also takes advantage of WePower’s data analytics to help people find like-minded shoppers to get to the buy target quicker, as well as filling out personal profiles to tailor profiles for specific items. For merchants, Joinem helps save on supply chain and promotional costs through bulk purchases, as well as providing social insights to help target products to specific customer groups.

The idea for Joinem was hatched as a result of a May 2014 survey of millennials and GenX digital shoppers. The company said its research showed an initial user base of 30-50 million people, with high customer penetration rates.

In November 2014, Joinem launched a closed beta test of the site to test the WePower group buying and savings platform, and to work on possible improvements to the site. Data collected from the beta launch showed that 66 percent of users would “definitely” or “probably” open a Joinem account when it went public, 70 percent would recommend the site to a friend or colleague, and 78 percent would “definitely” or “probably” participate in a group Buy.

“Similar to Priceline, Joinem offers a new digital buying and selling paradigm which, I predict, will lead the social commerce retail space,” said Rick Braddock, Joinem’s executive chairman and former chairman/CEO of Priceline, in the press release.

Braddock also projected a $58 billion market potential for the company based on the “multiplier effect” of social networking and sharing behavior patterns, as well as the growing e-commerce industry in America and worldwide.

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