Douglas MacMillan over at BusinessWeek asks the question “Does social media sway online shopping?”  and used a recent MyYearbook survey of 45K users to answer the question.

The results – 17% of respondents said they had posted information about something they wanted to buy as a status message or on their profile page so they could get their friends’ opinions – and most often online advice was sought for offline purchases.

  • 64% posted about an item they would buy in a store, not online
  • 81% received advice from their friends and followers
  • 74% of those who received advice were influenced by it

Interestingly, people seem much more likely to solicit opinions about certain categories that follow fashions, fads and trends (e.g. tech products, movie tickets, music, and video games) than staples and services (appliances, airlines, flowers).