LONDON: Consumers who share and click content are nine times more likely to purchase than non-sharers, a new report has revealed.

RadiumOne's The Power of Sharing Data study also found that dark social – where consumers share via email, private link sharing or copy and paste – to be a purchase driver.

The research measured more than 10.5m shares globally over a 30-day period and tracked sharing behaviours that led directly to conversions, such as online purchases, sign ups or subscriptions.

According to the report, dark social now accounts for more than 75% of consumer sharing online and although public platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter, offer easy-access analytics to brands, the research indicates that dark social is much more important when it comes to conversions.

RadiumOne proposes this is because, in most instances, websites, pictures or links are shared with other individuals with a specific intent in mind.

More than three-quarters (77%) of converted sharers went via dark social channels, compared to just 12% on Facebook and 4% on Twitter.

The data also indicates that the more content a user shares or interacts with, the more likely they are to convert, suggesting brands should ensure that analytics tracks non-public sharing and also offer incentives to most active sharers rather than just remarketing to them.

People who share content between platforms with themselves – for example, emailing themselves a link to re-visit later – also emerged as an undiscovered opportunity for brands because these self-sharers have a 16x lift in conversion rate.

Commenting on the findings, RadiumOne CEO Bill Lonergan said: "Taking advantage of consumer sharing behaviours has thus far been a widely untapped resource by marketers.

"By analysing and acting upon consumer sharing signals, marketers get a real-time view into what consumers are interested in and where they are on their journey."

Data sourced from RadiumOne; additional content by Warc staff