|Thu May 17 2012 12:37:29|
Do Sites Like Facebook Impact Your Purchasing Decisions?
By: Julia Wilkinson
We're still knee-deep in Facebook IPO hype, and one of the promises of Facebook is that it will be the place people look to in order to make purchasing decisions. We will tap our Facebook friends to help us decide which jeans, car, or shampoo to buy, and it might even replace Google.com as the Internet's search "dashboard"; the first place people look to find things and solve their problems. And social networking will take the experience of consulting friends "offline" about purchases and move it "online."
But does that meet up with your reality? Do you ask your Facebook or other social networking sites' friends advice on purchases? Or are you influenced by what products or services they say they use?
Personally, that has not happened for me. The first and foremost place I look to when buying something is amazon.com's user reviews. I see these as a gold mine of information before buying just about anything. And maybe I don't want my Facebook friends to know if I plan to buy a Macadamia nut oil-based shampoo. (Remember the Facebook outcry when the guy's decision to buy his wife a diamond ring was broadcast, thus ruining the surprise?).
This caution comes among other skeptical news around the IPO, such as Greenlight's Global Study revealing that 30% of people "strongly distrust" Facebook with their personal data while 44% say they would "never" click on Facebook sponsored ads. Still, 900 million and counting people can't ignored.
But, do you look to Facebook or other social networking sites to help make your purchasing decisions? Or do you use amazon.com reviews, local reviews sites like Yelp.com, AngiesList, or something else? And if so, what?