Social media ‘key to retail success’
Written by Chris Lemmon
Three quarters of UK consumers expect retail brands and businesses to be using social media to improve their level of service, while 39 per cent admitted that they will shun a brand if their social engagement is poor.
This is according to a new study from HSO, which found that 85 per cent of consumers would anticipate a reply if they had posted a negative comment about a business online, while 74 per cent would also expect a reply if they posted a positive comment. However, just seven per cent of consumers stated that they would be confident in receiving a response to a negative comment.
Social media engagement has improved many personal experiences with retailers, according to the research. Seven in 10 survey respondents who have interacted online with a brand experienced a positive outcome, while only six per cent of the survey classed their response as ‘poor’.
The study also revealed that almost a third of consumers had purchased something online from a link that a brand had provided when responding to a purchasing enquiry, highlighting a significant opportunity for engagement and sales.
Hector Hickmott, sales director at HSO, said: “The study highlighted that consumers expect brands to be engaging online, even though they may not always use this channel. It would be wise for retailers to be using social listening tools to support this function.
“Consumers are using social media engagement for a number of reasons, from complaining about products to finding out further information,” he continued. “It is vital that retailers engage in the right way to enhance public perception, with many consumers admitting they would leave a brand if their social media activity was not engaging.”