Facebook has announced new features for retailers to make a push towards online shopping on the social network and Instagram. The Shops tool is aimed to help brick and mortar retailers who have been massively hit by the COVID-19, to continue to generate sales.
Facebook Shops for Online Shopping
These customisable online storefronts, which are currently available for Facebook pages and will be debuting on Instagram profiles by summer, allow people to browse and purchase items without leaving the apps. “We really hope that our commerce solutions help businesses not only survive but thrive during coming months, and adapt to new consumer behavior,” said Instagram Shopping product lead Layla Amjadi.
Merchants who have signed up can easily set up their shops on Facebook, as well as to customize looks and display products. “This is the biggest step that we’ve taken yet to enable commerce across our family of apps,” Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said. “If you’re running a small business or if you’re thinking about starting one even from your living room, you have a whole suite of tools available that can help.”
Just before the pandemic, online shopping accounted for around 15% of total retail sales in the United States of America, but it now accounts for around 27% according to Bank of America. Therefore, further highlighting the popularity of e-commerce during this COVID-19 crisis.
Additionally, Facebook will not be charging a fee or taking a cut of sales from businesses on Shops. However, if companies are to make use of Facebook’s Checkout feature to accept payments, a 5% fee will be charged.
Keeping up with privacy concerns, Zuckerberg said that information about what people buy will be kept private unless shoppers want to tell friends about purchases made. In the long run, Facebook plans to eventually weave Shops into its Messenger and WhatsApp communication platforms.
Source: Vox, TechCrunch, AFP Relaxnews