Social Commerce

Infographic | Social Media Timeline (and Amazon invests $175m in LivingSocial)

So yesterday Amazon invested $175 million (WSJ) in group-buy social commerce platform LivingSocial, putting other social commerce investor news  – $6m for f-commerce storefront software Payvment, and $5m for “eBay of Facebook” Yardsellr – into the shadows.

We’re not quite in bubblicious AOL TimeWarner territory yet, but whilst we’re waiting to see if 2010 climaxes with an almighty big social commerce bang – Google gobbling up group-buy giant Groupon for $6bn – twice the amount it paid for DoubleClick (think of Gmail as Groupon Mail (193m users) and you’ll start to see why it might make sense), here’s a superb infographic from the Skloog blog – the social media timeline…  From little acorns and all that.

Will the social commerce bubble pop? Some social commerce platforms will inevitably be destined for the dead pool like some of the hitherto heavyweights in the chart. Who will be the MySpace of the social commerce space?  Mean game, but fun. (click to enlarge the chart – it is huge, like social commerce right now).


Chartered psychologist specialising in consumer behaviour, wellbeing and technology. Certified CX professional experienced in Design Thinking. A researcher, writer and speaker, Paul is head of Digital Insight at SYZYGY.

13 Comments Add New Comment

  1. Adam Lewis says:

    Obviously guys like Google can afford to buy anything that moves. But I can’t help thinking that these social commerce platforms they are snapping up will prove their value – we are edging closer to demonstrating how social media generates business revenue.

  2. John says:

    Hi Paul,

    the latest news seems to suggest Google hasn’t bought Groupon – which makes this Amazon move interesting, if they knew this, then it might be a defensive more from Amazon to stop Google moving to the next most attractive option. I guess they’re also trying to cover the bases having bought Woot back in the summer.

    However, perhaps the most interesting thing to come out of all of this is the news from ATD that Groupon’s revenues for this year might be as high as $2bn which suggests that the Google price wasn’t that overinflated as many commentators suggested, and that the market might not be a bubble.

  3. Sean says:

    Can any shed some light on why Amazon would invest such a large amount rather than buying the company? Does the investment help Amazon stockholders in any way?


    1. Paul Marsden says:

      Hello Sean, thanks for the comment, interesting question. Perhaps Amazon is more keen on generating social commerce insight that would come from being an investor – without the hassles of ownership/integration? That, and given the dizzying valuations of group-buy sites now, maybe it’s smarter to have an option on future purchase than full ownership…

  4. John says:

    O.K. so now Mashable is saying that Groupon will turnover £800 million this year. This seems a more sensible figure. Still, I think it suggests why the owners were able to say no to Google.

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