E-commerce still has plenty of room to grow

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While it’s not difficult to imagine the demise of traditional retail outlets given the convenience of shopping online, the truth is that online shopping still comprises just a small slice of America’s retail sector.

In 2011, online shopping comprised only four per cent of the overall retail sales in the US, but it has since grown faster than traditional retail thanks to social media and mobile commerce.

According to a report by comScore, sales made through smart devices now comprise ten per cent of all internet purchases. On top of that, online transactions are expected to climb further as sales of tablets and smartphones continue to skyrocket.

While Americans spend a lot of time using social media sites such as Faceboook and Twitter, many new social commerce portals are also sprouting up such as Fab and ShoeDazzle. Many of these websites bank on earning the trust of consumers, especially through recommendations from friends and family.

The Business Insider hosted its annual Social Commerce Summit in New York City on 6 February. The event was attended by leaders in the social commerce industry, including representatives from startups and Fortune 500 companies. It was also attended by analysts and investors, who shared their expertise on customer engagement, acquisition, retention, loyalty and other topics. Executives from Walgreens, Sears, HSN, Group Commerce, Rue La La, One Kings Lane, Foursquare and Facebook were also in attendance. Henry Blodget, CEO and Editor-in-Chief of Business Insider, delivered the opening speech.

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