Skip to main content

Where & How Social Commerce is Thriving

A Smarty study reveals that 43% of U.S. adults purchased something because of a targeted ad on social media. The survey also examines how social is influencing generations, recommendations and privacy.
tiktok shop social commerce

Social media shopping remains one of the top marketing trends in 2024 as consumer confidence in influencer marketing continues to grow. 

Smarty, a coupons and cashback app and web browser extension, revealed findings from a “2024 Social Shopping Trends” consumer survey, which shows more than half of U.S. adults (52%) are using social media apps to shop, according to a media release on the results. Of those, on average:

  • 27% like using Facebook Marketplace
  • 21% like using Amazon Live
  • 19% like using YouTube
  • 17% like using TikTok Shop
  • 10% like using Pinterest
  • 8% like using InstaShop (Instagram)
  • 7% like using X (Twitter) Live Shopping

Trends Based on Generation, Gender 

When broken down by generation, the survey revealed that certain social commerce destinations get used even more. For example, 77% of Gen Z and 66% of Millennials were found to be using social media to shop for things. Additionally, many of the most popular social shopping apps were utilized much more by younger adults, with 34% of Gen Z and 37% of Millennials using Facebook Marketplace, 42% of Gen Z and 23% of Millennials using TikTok Shop, and 21% of Gen Z and 14% of Millennials using InstaShop.

[Also Read: Brands Flock to TikTok Shop Amid Platform Headwinds]

Interestingly, when comparing how often females and males shop via social media, the numbers are close to the overall averages, with some slight differences: 20% of females vs. 13% of males use TikTok Shop (17% being the average) and 18% of females vs. 25% of males use Amazon Live (21% being the average).

Social Media’s Influence on Recommendations, Ads and Privacy

More than half of survey respondents (52%) say they use social media to find product recommendations and half (50%) say that Google is one of the best websites/apps for giving recommendations on the best products. Even more respondents like Amazon (58%), while many also like YouTube (36%), Instagram (28%) or TikTok (27%) when social shopping. 

However, while Google is a top choice for product recommendations, shoppers noted multiple gripes when searching for products on the site, including:

  • 25% think most search queries Google shares are sponsored.
  • 23% think Google pushes them to its preferred retailers vs. what is the best for their search query.
  • 21% claim that deals in search queries are not always available/accurate, forcing them to look on the company’s website to confirm them.
  • 18% are overwhelmed with too many options.
  • 13% are disappointed that they’ve never been offered small business products.

The survey also found that 43% of U.S. adults have purchased something because ads were targeted towards them on social media, and Gen Z (64%) and Millennials (60%) are even more influenced by targeted ads when it comes to making purchases.

Additionally, only 21% (so far) have purchased something from TikTok Shop, while 56% of Americans said they’re concerned about their data privacy because the app is owned by China. However, 21% still use TikTok Shop anyway. 

“We’re seeing social commerce play an even bigger role in influencing consumer purchases, and retailers have responded to support that on their sites and applications,” Vipin Porwal, CEO and founder of Smarty, said in the release. “But the savviest consumers understand that stacking those influenced purchases with rewards and rebates ultimately make them the real winners when it comes to finding the best value from recommendations.”


Smarty commissioned the study from Propeller Insights, which surveyed 1,033 U.S. citizens, 18 and over, in January 2024. 

This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds