Social Commerce Forecasts 2021

How a Trend ‘Made in China’ Is Shaping Up in the US

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About This Report
Social commerce is rising rapidly worldwide. But to what extent can the US market mirror that of China, the world leader in social commerce?
Table of Contents

Executive Summary

Social commerce in the US is following in China’s footsteps, but the path to success won’t be exactly the same. Here’s how US brands can use China as a road map for their social commerce strategies, including livestream shopping.

How big is the US social commerce market, and how does it compare with China?

China is the world’s largest social commerce market, with $351.65 billion in sales in 2021. Social commerce sales in the US will be about a tenth of that amount, at $36.62 billion, but that’s still up by 35.8% from 2020.

What are the leading social commerce platforms in the US and China?

Facebook is the top social commerce platform in the US, with 56.1 million buyers in 2021, according to our inaugural forecast. Instagram is in second place, with 32.4 million, followed by Pinterest, with 13.9 million. WeChat dominates the social commerce space in China, though group-buying apps like Pinduoduo have also driven its growth.

How important will livestreaming be for social commerce in 2021?

Livestreaming commerce is still in its infancy in the US, but in China, it’s already big business: Our forecast shows that China will generate $131.52 billion in livestreaming social commerce sales in 2021. US marketers can use China as an example of how to incorporate livestreaming into their own social commerce strategies, such as tapping creators and influencers to drive engagement and sales.

WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report explores our latest forecasts for social commerce sales in the US and China, and how much marketers can look to China as a case study for social commerce’s development in the US. It also includes our forecasts for social buyers in 13 markets worldwide.

KEY STAT: US retail social commerce sales will reach $36.62 billion in 2021, but that’s still about one-tenth the size of China’s social commerce market.

Here’s what’s in the full report

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    Table of Contents

    1. Executive Summary
    2. The State of Social Commerce in the US and China
    3. China as a Case Study for US Social Commerce
    4. Best Practices for US Brands
    1. Livestreaming Commerce Best Practices
    2. Key Takeaways
    3. Insider Intelligence Interviews
    4. Read Next
    1. Sources
    2. Media Gallery

    Interviewed for This Report

    Eden Amirav
    Become.co
    Co-Founder and CEO
    Interviewed June 7, 2021
    Alessandro Bogliari
    The Influencer Marketing Factory
    Co-Founder and CEO
    Interviewed May 19, 2021
    Sophie Frères
    LiSA
    Co-Founder and CEO
    Interviewed June 3, 2021

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    Read This With Insider Intelligence

    authors

    Jasmine Enberg

    Contributors

    Blake Droesch
    Junior Analyst
    Nazmul Islam
    Junior Forecasting Analyst
    Natalie McGranahan
    Senior Researcher and Taxonomy Manager
    Jillian Ryan
    Principal Analyst
    Peter Vahle
    Forecasting Analyst
    Debra Aho Williamson
    Principal Analyst