More Than 40% of Consumers Use Their Social Media Feeds to Find Products

woman shopping online

In today’s digital age, social media has become a powerful tool for consumers to discover and purchase products. Platforms like TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube have transformed the way people shop, with each channel catering to different consumer interests. The influence of these platforms is evident in the billions of views and viral purchases associated with hashtags like #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt, for example.

In “Tracking the Digital Payments Takeover: Monetizing Social Media,” PYMNTS Intelligence leverages insights gathered from a survey of close to 3,000 consumers to assess the most influential factors that drive them to make purchases on social media, the payment methods used for these transactions and what merchants must do to boost conversion.

Findings captured in the joint PYMNTS-AWS study show that 43% of consumers browse social media to find goods and services. Notably, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok have the highest conversion rates, with users frequently purchasing products they discover on these platforms.

chart, products consumers buy on social media

Among the 77 million consumers who use Facebook for product browsing and reviews, 24% end up making a purchase based on their findings, while 21% of the 57 million consumers who use Instagram to browse products and reviews end up making purchases from their findings. TikTok, coming in third, has 39 million consumers who browse products and reviews, with 17% of them purchasing what they find.

In terms of products consumers buy on social media, Instagram’s visual nature and curated feeds make it an ideal platform for fashion inspiration and clothing advertisements. The survey reveals that nearly half of consumers (47%) bought clothes on Instagram in the 30 days prior to the survey.

On the other hand, TikTok’s short-form video format, which allows users to watch influencers demonstrate and review beauty products, makes it the preferred platform for purchasing beauty products, with 33% of consumers doing so in the 30 days prior to being surveyed.

Additionally, YouTube’s video-centric platform is well-suited for advertising products that require consumers to see how they perform before purchasing. Moreover, the longer video format allows for real-time product demonstrations, making it an effective channel for showcasing products. As PYMNTS Intelligence noted, “this feature may explain why consumers were more likely to buy appliances, home furnishings, pet products and office products on YouTube than other social media sites.”