Arlington, VA – 02/22/2012 – Eighty-one percent of social media users are using online social networks to find information to aid consumer electronics (CE) purchasing decisions, according to a new study from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®. CEA’s study, How Social Media Influences Purchase Decisions of Consumer Electronics and Accessories,
examined the role social media websites play in the decision to purchase CE products and accessories.
Nearly one quarter (24 percent) of consumers who use social media say they always or almost always refer to social media websites before they purchase a CE device, and 38 percent say reviews or comments by someone they know influenced their CE purchase decisions. Those numbers jump dramatically among “high-engagement” social media users – those who spend more than 13.5 hours a week on social media sites – with 65 percent always or almost always referring to social media websites before purchasing a CE device. Four in five (84 percent) said reviews or comments on social media sites by someone they know influenced their CE purchase decisions.
When it comes to advertisements and promotions, high-engagement social media users were also more likely (71 percent) than overall users (23 percent) to be influenced or strongly influenced by ads or promotions posted by a company on social media. Among all consumers who researched CE products on social media websites prior to their purchase, fewer than half (42 percent) searched for a coupon or discount on a social media website. However, more than half of high-engagement users (53 percent) searched for a coupon code or discount in social media prior to their purchase.
“CE manufacturers and retailers have an opportunity to reach interested consumers directly by growing their presence on social media sites,” said Chris Ely, manager of industry relations, CEA. “When it comes to consumer electronics purchases, most high-engagement users are likely to follow or "friend" a company due to special promotions, contests, entertainment or exclusive content.”
The study also found most comments and reviews posted about recent CE purchases on social media are positive. While only a fifth (22 percent) of overall social media users posted a comment and/or review on a social media website after their CE purchase, that number jumps to 51 percent among high-engagement users. Most social media users (83 percent) who posted a comment or review characterize their comments or reviews as positive or very positive. Of those who posted comments/reviews, most (72 percent) were posted on their personal page on a social media website, followed by the retailer’s website (37 percent) and a personal blog (26 percent).
The study, How Social Media Influences Purchase Decisions of Consumer Electronics and Accessories, was conducted in December 2011. It was designed and formulated by CEA Market Research, the most comprehensive source of sales data, forecasts, consumer research and historical trends for the consumer electronics industry. Please cite any information to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®. The complete study is available free to CEA member companies at members.CE.org. Non-members may purchase the study at the CEA Store.