The recently released report was based on 10,822,531 online conversations across various social media platforms. Brandwatch rated retailers based on five categories, including general visibility, net sentiment, reach growth, social engagement and social visibility. According to the resulting Retail Social Index, Amazon, eBay and Nordstrom received top scores for consumer social media engagement efforts.
According to the report, 93 percent of social conversations are initiated by consumers. Retail, compared to other industries, involves brands that are more responsive to their demographics. Retailers reply to Twitter mentions, on average, about 40 times a day.
Although this may be the case, only 10 percent of consumer conversations address retailers’ replies and retweets. Retailers only receive an average of 93 replies and 65 retweets daily, compared to an average of 1,268 mentions each day. With this in mind, retailers may need to revamp their social media strategy to address today’s digitally savvy (and demanding) consumers.
For retailers’ Facebook pages, the report found that photos are the most popular content format (56%). This method of consumer communication yields retailers 3,464 likes, 128 comments and 159 shares. Although retailers’ videos were shared more by consumers (284 shares), retailers did not prioritize this Facebook content format (13 percent). Depending on each retailer’s unique demographic, Facebook posting may vary on a regular basis.
Consumer audience identity results also showed that retailers’ online audiences are mainly female. For the 42 retail brands studied, 65 percent of tweets were initiated by females. In regard to apparel and fashion, department stores and Etsy were favored highly by female consumers.
“Although retailers struggle to accurately measure the effect digital has on their business, most recognize its critical place in the mix; most notably giants like Amazon, Walmart, and Target,” said Brandwatch content and research manager James Lovejoy. “Brands that are lagging in the area of social engagement stand to lose more than just ‘followers’ and ‘likes’; they’re forfeiting deep insights and a good knowledge of their audiences – both necessities to raising the bar and supporting the business holistically.”