UK retailers are still failing to take full advantage of social commerce opportunities and missing out on a potential £9bn additional revenue online, new research has shown.
Social commerce and recommendations expert nToklo analysed 101 top retailers in the UK and found the take-up of user generated content (UGC) and recommendations could account for almost 27% uptake in sales.
According to the figures, the UK’s online retail spend for 2011 was £68.2bn and expected to grow by a further 13% in 2012. Therefore, with half of retailers not offering online recommendations to consumers, nToklo estimated that retailers missed out on an estimated £9bn worth of additional revenue online last year.
The research also highlighted the importance of social, with over 90% of respondents having a presence on Facebook and Twitter.
However, over three quarters of the retail sites reviewed also did not have their own social community functions onsite, despite many requiring customers to sign-in to the site in order to make a purchase, said the report.
Anton Gething, co-founder at nToklo, said: “The increasing interest in social commerce stems from the natural progression of two trends that have seen tremendous growth in recent years: online shopping and social networking.
“However, this research shows that social commerce is yet to become the sum of its parts and many businesses are missing out on a potentially significant additional revenue opportunity. In strained times, this additional revenue could provide a much needed lifeline for British retailers.”