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More than one-half (55%) of social media users in the US say they are uncomfortable sharing credit card information with a known brand via secure payment on a social networking site such as Twitter or Facebook, according to a new survey from Digitas.

Moreover, women, who tend to outnumber men on most social networks, are more likely than men to say they are uncomfortable handing over credit card information (60% vs. 51%) in order to complete transactions on social sites.

However, 45% of all surveyed social media users say they would be at least somewhat comfortable sharing their credit card information. Among those 45% of users: 

  • Those age 18-54 are more likely than their older counterparts (age 54+) to say they are at least somewhat comfortable sharing their credit card information, 49% vs. 35%.
  • Men are more likely than women to say so, 49% vs. 40%.
  • Those with an annual household income of $35,000+ are more likely than those earning less than $35K to say so, 50% vs. 38%. 

Below, additional findings from the Digitas survey of US social media users, conducted by Harris Interactive.

Accessing Social Sites via Mobile

The survey also revealed insights into the amounts of time spent people spend on social networks via mobile devices, as well as spikes in mobile usage patterns across age and gender.

Social media users who use their mobile phones to access social media sites spend nearly one hour per day on average (50.7 minutes) on social sites via a mobile device. By contrast, social media users who access social sites via laptop or desktop computer spend 56.3 minutes per day on average.

Moreover, 38% of social media users who use their mobile phones to access social media sites cite general browsing (e.g., scrolling through updates, visiting brand pages, "liking," or "following" posts) as their primary social media activity. Men age 45-54 (53%) are more likely than younger men (age 18-44) (35%) or those age 55+ (42%) to cite the same.

Friend Recommendations Beat Likes

Fully three in four social media users (75%) say they would be more likely to purchase a product or service endorsed by a friend (writing about it or recommending it) on a social media site than by a brand they "like" or "follow."

Meanwhile, more than one-third (34%) of social media users say they would be more likely to share information about a purchase they made via a social media site with friends than one made via a traditional e-commerce site:

Some 20% of social media users say, if able to, they would likely make group purchases from a brand on a social media site with friends.

Virtual currencies have little influence: 74% of social media users say, if given the option, they wouldn't use virtual currency, such as Bitcoin or Facebook Credits to pay for a purchase made via a social media site.

Other findings among surveyed social media users: 

  • 20% say, where possible, they would purchase products or services from their favorite brands on a social media site.
  • 18% say they are more likely to make a group purchase (i.e., planning and paying for a trip with friends or purchasing a joint gift) via social media vs. a traditional e-commerce site.

About the data: The Digitas survey was conducted online among 2,630 US adults age 18+, of which some 2,247 were identified as social media users, Jan 12-16, 2012.

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