A recent Gartner press release suggested a major change in the way we might interact with ecommerce in within the next few years. Their prediction is that by 2015 fully half of retail customer identities will be based on social network identities. The report’s main thrust is on the impact of this shift on IT and security infrastructure, but what is much more interesting is the potential for a more direct connection between purchase and social identity.
The logic behind this potential growth is the frictionless “log-in with Facebook or twitter” option that allows customers to skip the laborious sign up or registration process. But the obvious question that arises is: What happens when social identity becomes purchaser identity? When you consider the potential meshing of purchase data with social data there appears to be a huge opportunity here for e-commerce sites to improve sales and build loyalty.