Sample Business Studies Research Paper on Negative Impacts of Social Media Marketing on e-Commerce Firms

Misty Schwartz


Social media marketing is a common practice among e-commerce platforms such as Alibaba, Amazon, Walmart, and eBay. Technology invention in telecommunication and instant messaging has promoted social media marketing. Most e-commerce firms attribute large profit margins to cost-effectiveness in social media marketing. However, modern social media practices do not lead to positive attributes in all firms. If all e-commerce organizations attracted high-profit margins in most economies, then some e-commerce startups would not be complaining of unfair marketing practices. This research bases its argument on Amazon and its dominance in the e-commerce sector of the U.S. economy. Social media marketing has attracted negative business impacts on Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) operating as e-commerce firms.

Problem Statement

Amazon uses social media platforms (such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube) to market its products. The company has been recording high profit-margins, which are attributed to cheap production cost. Startup firms operating as e-commerce platforms have failed to reap high-profit margins as Amazon. Affected firms struggle to stay in business despite incorporating social media advertisements in their marketing strategies (Yadav & Rahman, 2017). Social media marketing attracts negative business impacts on most e-commerce startups. These companies fail to adhere to moral and professional ethics that guide online practices. Upcoming technological start-ups should consider adopting recommended moral and professional ethics when implementing strategies of social media marketing. Poor marketing strategies attract negative response from consumers resulting in poor sales and low profit margins.


E-commerce startups experience negative market response from clients due to poor marketing strategies for social media platforms.If e-commerce startups exercised professionalism and ethical practices in social media marketing, then they will get positive market response that would translate into high profit margins.

Research Questions

  1. Why do e-commerce startups experience negative impacts of social media marketing?
  2. How has Amazon implemented professional ethics in social media marketing?
  3. When do e-commerce startups encounter negative effects of social media marketing?
  4. Where do affected firms need to rectify to attract large sales aided by social media marketing?
  5. What is the relationship between social media marketing and moral values?

Research Problem Statement

Social media marketing is a common practice in modern profit-making institutions. Target audiences of most organizations are now available on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Facebook. Most e-commerce platforms capitalize on the benefits of e-commerce and instant messaging new inventions and innovations. Amazon is one of the pioneers of e-commerce across the world. Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s CEO, is ranked among the richest people in the world based on the firm’s e-commerce platforms. Amazon is considered an e-commerce leader due to its integrated marketing strategies. It implements marketing objectives using a well-structured social media advertisement. The firm’s communication’s department adopts a professional approach, which affects the market in significant ways. For instance, the use of formal content and professional graphic design to develop its online adverts makes Amazon competitive.

A PESTLE (Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental, and Legal) analysis notes that Amazon is competitive in all fields. For instance, it does not support extremist views and opinions in its platforms of online reviews. Moreover, it complies with all commercial and economic regulations amongst its Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) in countries like China and South Africa (Moreno et al., 2015). Through social media marketing, Amazon has managed to create a positive organizational culture using an effective Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategy that is based on direct communication with clients. E-commerce startups, however, have failed to emulate professional and moral practices of social media marketing. It is common to find e-commerce platforms using irrelevant graphics to advertise a product on social media platforms. Other e-commerce startups adopt a standard use of content development for all target audience. Marketing inflexibility has negative effects on sub-standard practices of social media advertisement.

Research Variables

This research aims at discussing the causes of unprofessional and unethical practices in social media marketing. The effects of these causes are experienced by e-commerce startups. These firms fail to comply with basic professional and ethical standards of social media marketing. A causal research design is suitable for identifying the major causes of poor performance among e-commerce startups (Billings et al. 2017). The main emphasis of this research design is to identify unethical and professional malpractices of social media marketing. The poor performance of e-commerce startups is attributed to substandard policies, which are irrelevant to modern dynamics in the market. For instance, the age category is a vital criterion for developing graphical content for social media adverts.

Research Design

This analysis considers possible integration of all the basic types of marketing research design; explorative, descriptive, and causal. Explorative research design is important in formulating the main hypothesis. It provides adequate information on identifying different dynamic aspects of social media marketing (Creswell & Creswell, 2017). A descriptive research design will be important in collecting the required data for poor performance among e-commerce startups. For instance, the number of online sales will be crucial in measuring the impacts of social media marketing. Consumer insights, on how a product appeals to them, will be important in evaluating market response to products sold via an e-commerce startup. Causal research design is the preferred research design for the problem identified in this discussion.

A causal research design will be effective in measuring the negative impacts of social media marketing. The main causes of negative impacts in social media marketing are poor and substandard practices of implementing online adverts (Yadav & Rahman, 2017). A causal research design will measure negative impacts using statistical data of e-commerce startups. For instance, budget estimates of social media marketing strategies will be evaluated with respect to the revenue of sales in a fiscal year. Quantitative data will be instrumental in proving facts describing the hypothesis of this research. A causal research design will enable the analysis to identify the effects of unethical and unprofessional practices in social media marketing. For instance, the use of informal language in official adverts has negative impacts on the perception of a product in the market.

This research design will integrate qualitative and quantitative data collection methods. Quantitative data will be effective in illustrating the numerical facts of the financial performance of e-commerce startups. For instance, profits generated after a social media campaign will be important in evaluating feasibility levels of online marketing. Questionnaires will also be important in collecting quantitative data on the performance of e-commerce startups (Creswell & Creswell, 2017). Both closed and open questionnaires will be used to collect consumer data that describes the e-commerce pattern of sales in the market. Interviews will be incorporated into the research design to collect qualitative data. For instance, interviews will be used to collect qualitative data such as consumer behavior and attitude towards e-commerce platforms. Observation skills will also be included to identify certain measures of qualitative data such as market preference among consumers.


A causal research design will be effective in addressing poor financial performance among e-commerce-startups. Causes of poor financial performance among e-commerce-startups are based on unethical practices in social media marketing. Negative effects of social media marketing are measured with reference to ethical and professional standards in marketing. This research maximizes on information gathered from dependent and independent variables.


Billings, A. C., Qiao, F., Conlin, L., &Nie, T. (2017). Permanently desiring the temporary?      Snapchat, social media, and the shifting motivations of sports fans. Communication &          Sport5(1), 10-26.

Creswell, J. W., & Creswell, J. D. (2017). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed       methods approaches. Sage publications.

Moreno, A., Navarro, C., Tench, R., &Zerfass, A. (2015). Does social media usage matter? An                  analysis of online practices and digital media perceptions of communication practitioners in Europe. Public Relations Review41(2), 242-253.

Yadav, M., & Rahman, Z. (2017). Measuring consumer perception of social media marketing        activities in e-commerce industry: Scale development & validation. Telematics and      Informatics34(7), 1294-1307.

[Formulated hypotheses for a research study.] Not met

 [Explained the independent and dependent variables for a research study.]

Determined an appropriate research design to address the problem.

[Conducted a marketing environmental scan.] [Explained why the research design was chosen.]

Compared the three basic types of research designs.

Explained pros and cons of exploratory, descriptive, or causal research.

 Explained the appropriate data collection methods for a chosen research design.

 [Used reasoning skills supported by a minimum of three peer-reviewed research resources to substantiate the research design decision-making.]

Until you don’t formulate the hypothesis its impossible to address the rest of the assignment.