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Where is Shopping 2.0?

We’re a week past Black Friday 2006 and the big story is the lack of a Really Big Story, namely any growth in social shopping. “Traditional” e-commerce seems to be plugging along just fine, though Marketing Vox notes “…Cyber Monday in in fact only the 12th biggest online shopping day of the year.” Nice thing about e-commerce, clearly, is that the customer gets to shop when they want. Don’t fret over any one day.

Still, despite the gains e-commerce has racked up over the years and the significant growth of social media, there is no eBay or Amazon of social shopping (though one could argue those two have provided social shopping, after a fashion, almost since inception). Alexa rates the two leading social commerce sites, Kaboodle and Wists.com, as 7,153 and 15,858, respectively. By contrast, Amazon ranks 19th on Alexa and Ebay is 13.

Now look at Kaboodle and Wist’s numbers compared to other social sites:

  • Flickr Traffic Rank: 37
  • Digg Traffic Rank: 80
  • del.icio.us Traffic Rank: 131
  • Technorati Traffic Rank: 203

Oh, and if you haven’t heard, MySpace and YouTube have done OK, too. So, why such love for the social sites without anyone figuring out how to develop the commerce equivalent?

Om Malik noted over a year ago that Google, MSN, and Yahoo could readily duplicate features offered by the social shopping sites. Is it that entreprenuers and investors are afraid to go toe-to-toe with the big boys or is it something more fundamental? Apart from recommendation sites (Epinions, TripAdvisor, etc.), does social shopping have a future?

Tim Peter

Tim Peter is the founder and president of Tim Peter & Associates. You can learn more about our company's strategy and digital marketing consulting services here or about Tim here.

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