Facebook has been pretty serious about e-commerce in recent months. In May, the company announced that it will be rolling out ‘shops’ on both Facebook and Instagram. In light of the ongoing pandemic, e-commerce saw a huge boom as more people preferred online purchasing.
This move was welcomed with open arms as small businesses that couldn’t function due to the pandemic could continue to run over Facebook and Instagram.
However, some users might have noticed some changes in their in-app buttons. Instagram recently launched a new global test for the shops feature. Some users might see their activity tab replaced with a shops tab. This is due to the new global test-launched recently.
Users running this global test version can browse for products to buy through the new tab. The tab gives shops a small makeover. Users will be able to filter products by categories, just as they could through the existing Shop experience in explore.
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The company also announced that it’ll give Instagram a new layout. This new layout will also feature a newly designed Instagram Shops layout as well. However, those changes aren’t being tested yet.
For now, Instagram is looking for a place for its shops tab. Since, the company’s jump into e-commerce, it has been working day in and day out to make the user experience as pleasant as possible. It’s a simple strategy. You make shopping easy and fun, then you add accessibility to the mix and you have yourself a successful project. Instagram is trying to do just the same.
In this global test, users can access Instagram Shops from the tab in the navigation bar at the bottom. They’ll be able to see products from brands they follow. Moreover, the shop feed will also have curated products from different categories like Home, Travel, Jewelry, and Watches, etc. Some sellers might not direct users to Instagram’s universal shopping cart. They could also take users to check out from their own websites.
A small selling fee is also involved if the business is testing Instagram Shops features and allows you to check out directly from the app.
The upcoming Shop experience will also be a little different from the present one. According to Instagram, the shops section will also include suggestions from @shop alongside the products from the brands that the user loves. The layout will have three tiers, with the bigger images at the top, a grid you can scroll through, and a well-curated ‘Suggestions for you’ section.
This new experience is expected to roll out in the last quarter of 2020, an exact date, however, is still to be announced.
But, what about the activity tab?
Don’t worry about it. Instagram didn’t take that tab away, they just moved it from the navigation bar. Users running the global test version can access the Activity tab from the top right of the screen. It should be right next to the Direct Message paper plane icon. Another way to access it from their profiles by clicking the heart icon.
The new update was rolled out to a small portion of the US user base. The expanded test will bring the change to a small number of users worldwide.
Instagram is treading very carefully with these changes. Through the results of these tests, the company will determine whether to actually replace the activity button with the shops button or adjust it somewhere else. Moreover, Instagram has fiddled with the activity tab before as well when it removed the feature that allowed users to see the activity of the accounts they were following.
Wherever they place the shops tab, it should be a success. Most people stumble upon the products they want to buy on Instagram and Facebook. Moreover, a major part of a social media platform is marketing. With the shops tab, Instagram will be able to bring the marketplaces to the user instead of just marketing.
There’s no doubt that e-commerce is the future. It is good to see that apps are moving in the same direction.
It is a win-win situation for everyone. Sellers will be able to market their products better and also make the check out process much easier, Instagram will not only get a lot more traffic, but also make money from the commissions, and the users will have ease of access to the products they want to purchase.