March 5, 2010, 12:00 AM

JomaShop says its new social media app is turning shoppers into buyers

JomaShop recently added a widget to its web site that shows shoppers if consumers in their ZIP code or their friends purchased items from the retailer. Shoppers who use the widget convert six times more often that those who did not.

Zak Stambor

Managing Editor

Jewelry retailer JomaShop recently added a social widget to its web site that shows shoppers if either consumers in their ZIP code or their friends purchased items from the retailer. Shoppers who use the feature, from TurnTo Networks, converted six times more often that those who did not, says Osher Karnowsky, JomaShop general manager.

 

While anyone can enter a ZIP code and view the items purchased by consumers living in that area, consumers who complete a free registration can create a profile and see a list of their friends who have shopped on the site along with a listing of their purchases.

Registered members also can import contacts from their Gmail, Yahoo, Facebook and other e-mail and social network accounts to invite them to join TurnTo. If the contacts had previously authorized it, their names will be shown. If not, the TurnTo user can click on "see who" and an e-mail goes out, from the retailer to the friend, saying...` "your friend is currently on our site shopping and could use your advice, are you willing to help? This is very effective in engaging past shoppers with current visitors."

 

Jomashop.com, No. 209 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, embedded the TurnTo link on product pages. Consumers who select a specific product see a link under the product description "See what your friends are buying here." Or, if a shopper has already signed up for TurnTo, it will show them his name and his friends who have shopped at the retailer and what his friends have purchased.

 

JomaShop says average order volume for shoppers using the feature was 20% or about $60 higher than those who did not use it. It also says it believes the application helps build trust in consumers who may have landed on JomaShop while searching online for, say, a high-end watch but who have never heard of the retailer.

 

"When people shop for watches and jewelry online, they`re doing a lot of research. They want to know they`re buying from a credible site and that they`re making good product decisions. TurnTo gives our visitors this extra confidence and helps them make decisions they`re comfortable with," says Chaim Posen, marketing manager.

In addition to boosting average order size and conversions, JomaShop also says its number of Facebook fans have increased since it added the feature in September.

 

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