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BizReport : Trends & Ideas archives : November 02, 2006

Sears Launches “Social Shopping” Site

Just in the time for the holiday rush, retailer Sears has launched a new kind of website. The social shopping experience allows users to find gifts, talk about products and share information through an online hub.

by Kristina Knight

Called Ready Set Holiday, the website is a cross-selling experiment that promotes products across different properties. When shopping for Thanksgiving preparations, visitors will be given information about their carpet cleaning service. When shopping for gifts, users will be prompted with product installation services and even prompted about buying new tires for holiday trips.

Then comes the social aspect. Users can create a profile, post questions and product review information to forums or even get gift ideas from fellow shoppers.

"The whole idea of social shopping, and the use of consumer created content in terms of reviews, has been shown to drive sales and help retailers get better exposure in search engines," explains Patti Freeman Evans, an analyst with Jupiter Research (via MarketingVOX).

Sears isn’t the first – and likely won’t be the last – to provide a social shopping experience. As more and more social networkers look for their kind of sites, filled with peer-to-peer reviews and other consumer driven content, etailers are jumping provide their spin on social sites as a way to boost revenue.

Tags: social marketing, social network, social network advertising, social shopping

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