Social commerce is a subset of ecommerce wherein consumers rely on each other to discover products and influence shopping decisions.
A number of companies have created social commerce mobile apps that support this approach to selling.
Here are six worth considering by merchants, to extend selling channels.
Qwiqq is a social commerce app designed to enable mobile ecommerce sales. Users simply create a Qwiqq post and enable PayPal in order to ready the product for sale on the Qwiqq website and through social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare, as well as via SMS and email.
To create a post, users snap a photo, write a note describing the product, and enter the price. The app integrates with PayPal to facilitate payments. A 3.5 percent transaction fee is charged when an item posted to Qwiqq is purchased.
Qwiqq fosters social discovery by revealing the most popular products. An analytics component enables merchants to track social engagement activity around each post.
Qwiqq is only available on iOS.
Developed by ShopSocially, Share on Mobile encourages users to share photos of a retailer’s products being via their mobile phones. This creates social photo testimonials that can be displayed on the merchant’s website, Facebook Page, or other social network.
Merchants can also use the app to run photo contests, which adds a game aspect that can drive word-of-mouth marketing.
Jifiti is a social gifting app that allows people to purchase virtual gift cards from dozens of name brand stores. Recipients receive the gift in their inboxes and can use it either online or in-store.
The app is primarily used by leading retailers such as Banana Republic, Barnes & Noble, and Sephora, but smaller merchants can contact the company to set up a their own gift registry.
ScanSee is a multi-function app that locates stores, products, services, daily deals, coupons, and discounts. Consumers use ScanSee’s barcode and QR reader to shop and compare prices from nearby retailers, as well as online.
The app automatically finds, filters, and displays information about a wide range of products. Users can add a product to a wish list, and the app will keep watch to find it on sale. Coupons, rebates, and loyalty discounts also appear when available.
Upon entering a participating store, users can press the “This Location” button to see information and bargains that match their interests. It also finds other nearby retailers with have products and special offers that may pique the user’s interest.
Users can rate and share products with their friends on Facebook and Twitter, or through SMS and email.
ScanSee is available for both iOS and Android devices.
Swaag is a mobile community where street wear and sneaker enthusiasts share photos of their favorite brands with friends. It has the following features.
- Photo sharing. Users take photos or share from their libraries, add custom photo filters (similar to Instagram), and tag clothing, sneakers, and other products.
- Shopping. Swaag includes the ability to purchase products directly through the app. Users can also get access to discounts, limited edition items, and exclusive promotions.
- Battles. Swaag also utilizes game techniques. Community members compete in a contest called “Battles” to see who has the best style. Winners get their names posted to a leaderboard.
- Discovery. Clicking the “Discover” tab reveals the most popular styles as determined by the community.
Swaag is available for iOS devices.
Consumers use Shopkick after they enter a participating store. A small box located in the store emits a signal that is picked up by the person’s smartphone once the app is opened.
Users receive reward points (called “kicks”) for visiting stores, scanning items, or making a purchase. Rewards can be redeemed for gift cards or real products. Shoppers who use the app can also receive special deals and exclusive offers.
Shopkick is used by more than 150 retailers — national chains and local stores. Merchants who want to participant should contact the company.
The app is available for iOS and Android devices.