EBay is opening a social media-led pop-up shop on Friday on what the retailer expects to be its busiest online shopping weekend.
The online shopping giant will launch the eBay Social Shopping pop-up store in Covent Garden which will operate for three days from Friday until Sunday December 2.
EBay forecasts Sunday December 2 will be the busiest online shopping day of the year, while around 30% of the most popular Christmas products are expected to be bought via a smartphone.
Displayed on in-store screens, social media networks will provide a live feed of what products people are recommending from sites including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram so shoppers can get an idea of the top products to buy this Christmas aligned with eBay’s product offer.
Research commissioned by eBay shows 47% of Brits ask friends for advice when making shopping decisions, which includes using social media channels. And with almost a quarter of people planning on shopping via smartphones and tablets this Christmas, the relationship between social media and mobile shopping is getting stronger.
Shoppers will be encouraged to download eBay’s apps to browse and shop products in-store, use QR codes, augmented reality and 3D technologies, enabling top toys and gadgets to come to life via smartphones and tablets.
EBay head of buyer experience Carrie Bienkowski said: “By pairing views of social communities with eBay’s own vast selection of top Christmas gifts and mobile expertise we hope to give shoppers lots of inspiration and put a little bit of fun into Christmas shopping.
“Mobile technology is a catalyst for retail growth and is changing the way we shop. Consumers now carry a global showroom in their pocket and are increasingly as inclined to seek recommendations online and shop mobile as visit the high street.”
The store will include a virtual high street made up of a wall-to-wall collage of high street-style stores with QR code links to live product listings.
EBay research shows augmented reality and 3D technologies could provide a £2.4bn boost to the retail industry by 2014.