Press Release: VigLink Analysis of Holiday 2012 Content-Driven Commerce Growth

Content-Driven Commerce Grows at Double the Pace of Overall E-commerce

VigLink network analysis of holiday sales shows direct influence of  blogs, forums, and social curation in driving consumer spend

San Francisco, CA — January 24, 2013 Content-driven commerce is changing the way consumers buy, publishers earn, and merchants sell. More and more consumers are visiting social shopping sites, blogs, and discussion communities to find their next purchase. VigLink’s analysis of holiday spend proves this theory: While comScore recently reported that holiday e-commerce as a whole grew 14% over 2011, VigLink analysis of “content-driven commerce” —  defined as e-retail sales linked from blogs, forums and social curation sites — grew more than twice as fast, at 31%.

It’s the context that makes a difference. Unlike traditional online shopping sites, consumers look to blogs and forums for expertise and inspiration. In a recent BlogHer survey about women and their social media habits, 81% of women representing the general U.S. population said they trusted blogs most to learn about new products, to read product recommendations and make purchase decisions. For forums, the influence is tangible, as well: More than 53% of respondents in a survey from Huddler.com (a VigLink customer) reported that they had made purchases in the past 12 months as a direct result of doing research on enthusiast communities. Meanwhile, socially curated shopping apps and sites like Wanelo and Pinterest are exploding as a means of personal expression and product discovery for consumers.

With this real shift in consumer buying behavior, publishers are now the de facto drivers of online consumer spend. VigLink was built on the idea that publishers should be compensated for the content they create and the commerce they drive. Its technology captures the value of this “content-driven commerce” by making hyperlinks intelligent, allowing publishers to monetize and analyze out-clicks.

Publishers and merchants are lining up to get a piece of the action. VigLink quadrupled its publisher base and more than doubled its merchant base in 2012, capturing 90% of the affiliate programs within the Internet Retailer Top 500. The largest network of its kind, VigLink processes billions of page views and over three hundred million clicks every month. VigLink-driven sales (defined as outclicks to merchants resulting in a consumer purchase) outpaced overall e-commerce sales by 8x in 2012.

Consumers are tired of intrusive, distracting and generally irrelevant advertising in traditional forms.  Brands and e-retailers are increasingly relying on the influence of bloggers and the community experience of forums as a way to reach shoppers in the right environment. For retailers, an affiliation with the content in a curated blog that has a loyal audience is much more cost efficient and effective than trying to reach this audience using banner and pop-up ads. Once garnering a click through rate (CTR) as high as 78%, today these ad forms generate a CTR of just 0.09%.

“The outsized growth of this space compared to the overall industry shows the direct impact and value of intelligent links,” said Oliver Roup, CEO of VigLink. “Publishers automatically add revenue opportunities, consumers connect to products organically in an environment they enjoy and online merchants have a more efficient channel.”

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About VigLink
VigLink technology captures the value of content-driven commerce by making hyperlinks intelligent, allowing publishers to monetize and analyze out-clicks. The largest network of its kind, VigLink maximizes earnings for tens of thousands of publishers and works with more than 30,000 merchants, processing billions of page views and over three hundred million clicks every month. Founded in 2009 and based in San Francisco, VigLink is backed by top investors including Google Ventures, First Round Capital, and Emergence Capital. More information can be found at www.viglink.com or @VigLink.

Media Contact:
Oliver Deighton | VP Marketing | Direct: (408) 922-9462 | oliverd@viglink.com

 

 

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