Facebook Announces New Ecommerce Features to Help Brands Connect with Customers

Facebook Announces New Ecommerce Features to Help Brands Connect with Customers
Posted on June 24, 2021

Facebook is going all-in on ecommerce. Hot on the heels of its Live Shopping Fridays announcement, the social media giant announced a set of new shopping and discovery tools across its suite of apps. 

During his live stream announcement,* CEO Mark Zuckerberg stated that Facebook and Instagram Shops are seeing over 300 million visitors per month. He also shared that there are more than 1.2 million monthly active Shops on its platforms, which it launched just one year ago. 

With that level of engagement from both merchants and consumers, it’s no surprise that Facebook is continuing its push into ecommerce. Here’s what ecommerce brands need to know about what’s coming up: 

Shops on WhatsApp and Marketplace

Retailers will now be able to present their entire Shop within the popular messaging app WhatsApp, giving users yet another way to find products and engage with brands. 

When customers view a Shop on WhatsApp, they’ll have the option of chatting with a business before making a purchase. It’s a massive opportunity for brands to deliver an exceptional customer experience and make a lasting impression. Facebook also says it’s working on enhancing product discovery and payments in the app.

Image: WhatsApp

Shops product listings will also be expanded to Marketplace, giving brands another way to connect with interested shoppers — and more ways for Facebook to encourage both longer browsing sessions and purchases. With more than 1 billion people using Marketplace each month,* it’s a massive opportunity for brands to connect with highly engaged customers. 

According to Zuckerberg, businesses will only need to set up their Shop listing once to integrate it across Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Marketplace. 

Personalized Shop Ads 

Facebook will also offer personalized Shop ads that display products based on each user’s individual shopping preferences and browsing behavior. These personalized ads will send users directly to a Shop’s curated collection that’s aligned with their interests. 

“We’re launching the ability for a business to send shoppers to where you’re going to be most likely to make a purchase based on your shopping behavior,” Zuckerberg explained. 

Facebook plans to expand ads with product tags beyond the US to be available globally. It’s also expanding its Augmented Reality try-on partnerships beyond the US. Beauty brands Laura Mercier and Huda Beauty are currently using AR Dynamic ads to help users try on lipstick shades before making a purchase. 

Image: Facebook

Instagram Visual Search

How many times have you scrolled through Instagram and seen something that made you say, “Oh cool, I want one of those!” Well, Facebook is making it easier for you to find and purchase those products within the app. 

Users will be able to take a photo of an item (or use any uploaded photo or video) to find similar products to buy.

Image: Instagram

“A lot of shopping discovery begins with visual discovery, right, so you see something that you think is awesome. And then, you know, maybe you want to see other products that are like that, or you want to figure out how to get that product,” Zuckerberg said. “And this is the type of problem that AI can really help out with.”

Setting Up the Future of Social Commerce

The last year has ignited a massive shift in the way people discover brands and purchase products — and Facebook’s recent announcements are only going to accelerate habits around social search and purchasing items in-stream. 

By bringing this new technology to its global platforms, Facebook is setting up to fundamentally change the relationship between brands and buyers. 

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