December 07, 2010, 3:15 PM — Six months ago, Kembrel, an online discount retailer serving college students, added promotional features and a shopping cart to its Facebook page. Today, Kembrel's Facebook page drives 20% of all sales. Students stuff up to 10% more goods into the Facebook shopping cart than they do at Kembrel's e-commerce Web site.
"Social promotion technology is becoming a very important customer acquisition and retention enabler," says Kembrel founder Cherif Habib. "Shopping is often a social activity in the physical world, so it is only natural that it is becoming much more social online."
Kembrel is quickly learning about new tools and practices driving the latest evolution in social networking: social commerce. Most companies have thrown up a Facebook page or jumped on the Twitter bandwagon with little thought behind it. Their social activities morphed into interactive marketing. With social commerce, however, the opportunity for real revenue is emerging.