Women’s Influence on Purchase Decisions on the Rise

Women’s use of social networks such as Facebook continues to grow year over year—73% of US female internet users now use Facebook, compared with 65% in 2010. The number of Facebook friends for the average US woman also continues to grow, and so does the number of brands she follows. According to the Fleishman-Hillard/Hearst study, women follow 12% more brands than they did in 2010.

In terms of talking about brands and making product recommendations on social networks, millennials appear to be standouts. Nearly half of online millennial women said they prefer shopping on the internet vs. in a store. And 51% use social networks to share commentary related to products and shopping.


Millennial women most likely to broadcast shopping decisions, recommendations

Today’s US woman is expanding her “sphere of influence,” according to September 2011 research fromFleishman-HillardHearst and Ipsos Mendelsohn. Through social networks and web tools, she is both contributing and seeking out purchase recommendations from friends and followers.

According to the survey, 54% of US female internet users said they feel a responsibility to help friends and family make wise purchase decisions, and nearly half said they influence friends and family to buy—or not buy—a product or service on a regular basis. When a similar study was conducted in September 2008, only 31% of women said they felt they regularly influenced other people’s purchase decisions.

Social networks and social reviews have played an important role in this rise in purchase influence. In the last six months, 46% women said they had read reviews about a product on a website. Moreover, 33% had recommended a specific product or service to someone, and 30% had reviewed a product or service on a website.

Product/Service Review and Recommendation Activities of US Female Internet Users, Sep 2011 (% of respondents) Leer más “Women’s Influence on Purchase Decisions on the Rise”