Catalogs Have More Influence on Shoppers Than Social Sites

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Really, I don’t think it is too surprising that consumers value catalogs more than social media for shopping information whether they eventually buy in-store or online.  It’s comparing apples to oranges.

Catalogs vs social

Click image to enlarge this interactive chart.

This chart comes from The Baynote Blog and makes this point:

The survey was fielded by the eTailing Group and surveyed 1,000 shoppers that use tablets and/or smartphones. The results of the survey found that paper catalogues still hold a lot of weight when it comes to influencing holiday purchases. But why?

The paper catalogue offers an aesthetically pleasing way to view a variety of products, provides an experience of sorts and is typically delivered directly to you. In some ways, it creates a more direct interaction with the brand than a social media fan page post or a “pin” might. As a result, the tried-and-true paper catalog is a more powerful influencer when it comes to purchase decisions. According to the survey, paper catalogs influenced twice as many consumers as both Pinterest and Twitter for both in-store and online purchases.

Comparing social media to catalogs isn’t a fair comparison.  A catalog exists to sell you a product, a social site exists to share thoughts, ideas, pictures and more on a wide variety of life experiences.  Maybe comparing a magazine to social would be a little more logical.

However, the point is that printed catalogs still have a valuable place in marketing to consumers.

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