Growing a business requires getting sales, and one of the key steps to achieving that is getting your brand in front of the most eyes possible. To do that, you need to understand your target audience and their product discovery process. 

With more and more people shopping online, it should come as no surprise that the top product discovery platforms are dominated by digital sources. Here’s a closer look.

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Top 10 product discovery platforms

At the top of these platforms is search engines. Close to one in three (31.4%) internet users worldwide say they use them to discover new brands and/or products and services. With Google dominating the global search engine market share, it definitely is a platform that brands should focus their digital marketing efforts on.

Television ads rank closely behind search engines, with 30.6%. It is also the highest-ranking non-digital product discovery platform. Social media ads follow, with 27.7%. With 4.89 billion people on social media and growing, it’s no wonder many consumers’ product discovery process involves social media. 

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This list shows that personal interactions are an important part of consumers’ product discovery process. Word-of-mouth recommendations from friends and family are the fourth-most popular platform, with 27.6% of internet users worldwide saying it’s how they find out about new brands and products.

After word-of-mouth recommendations, the fifth-most popular product discovery platform is brand and product websites—used by 25% of consumers. Aside from running social media ads, having a solid online presence, especially on the most popular social networks, can be an extremely effective way to grow your brand’s reach. 

This is followed by television shows and films, through which 22.8% of internet users discover new brands and products. The seventh- and eighth-most popular product discovery platforms are ecommerce retail sites and website ads. Around 22.4% of consumers say they discover new brands and products through them. 

Social media recommendations and comments also help internet users discover new products—used by 22% of them. Consumer review sites round out the top 10 product discovery platforms, with 21.7%.

Of the 10 most popular channels internet users use in their product discovery process, seven are digital, which highlights the importance of having an online marketing strategy for businesses.

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