In theory, the more needs a site can cater to – while still being focused and navigable – the more time a user will spend on the site.
It’s no surprise, then, that the best social shopping sites on the market broach a number of our online activities, and eliminate our needs for other sites in the process. The goal is to satisfy the most needs with the least amount of effort by the user.
How do you do that?
- Simplify – a picture is worth 1000 words, especially when you’re targeting female customers. A picture also occupies much less real estate than 1000 words on a page.
- Streamline – if a user sees a product they like, they likely want to A) share it with friends, and/or B) buy it. Platforms that allow online consumers to see and share images of products they like are the fastest growing aspect of ecommerce.
The following three sites take this one step further, allowing users to purchase products in the same place where they see and share them.
Description – “The Minimalist Niche”
Fancy allows users to browse feeds of product and editorial imagery aggregated from other sites via a “Fancy It” bookmark button. Once on site, users can follow friends, create lists, and shop for items spanning myriad categories. The site is constantly fresh with beautiful imagery of new, unique products, all the while being fun to engage with.
The more you items you “fancy” on the site, the better your recommendations become. Each week, you’ll receive “The Fancy Five” in your email inbox, containing “wonderful things picked just for you.
The Bottom Line: Fancy is a beautiful site of beautifully photographed products that would rarely otherwise be found without exhausting hours perusing niche blogs and sites on the regular.
Description – “Smart, Organized, Specific”
At first glance, Lyst resembles a more traditional fashion-oriented e-commerce site, with top navigation including links to What’s New, Men, Women, and Designers. The catch is the site’s has a social angle that helps you discover the best fashion for you, based on your preferences. Lyst’s stylefeed keeps you up to date with the latest and greatest from your favorite designers, boutiques, bloggers, and stylists, all of whom you can elect to follow on the site.
The end result is a one-stop-shop where you can search, shop, “influence and be influenced,” all in one place. You can even subscribe to instant sales alerts on products saved to your lyst. Just to be sure you really don’t need to leave the site, Lyst also allows you to link your Pinterest account.
The Bottom Line: For the shoppers who love the organization of department store caliber e-commerce stores, but lack the inspiration or direction to navigate wide product assortments on their own, Lyst is dreamlike.
Description -“The Social Mobile App and Online Shopping Marriage”
Pose is a mobile app similar to Instagram’s user-uploaded photo feeds with comment threads, but it enabled users to attach brand names to items pictured. As opposed to seeing something you like and simply admiring or wondering.
Pose’s functionality gives you enough information to go the item yourself. Just this week, though, Pose removed that big search step, bringing their platform online and extending it to include shopping functionality straight from the tagged products in users’ photo feeds. Pose’s new online shopping layout is also tried-and-true: nearly identical to that of Pinterest.
The Bottom Line: If you ever desired to buy something you saw on Instagram or Pinterest, look no further.
Guest Author: Kate Endress is the CEO and cofounder of DITTO.com, an ecommerce site selling designer eyewear and features cutting-edge video “try-on” technology. Kate is also a graduate of Stanford University and was previously a private equity investor before becoming an entrepreneur.
Image Big Stock Photo