Shopping on Instagram – good news for brands and users

Instagram promises a better shopping experience

Instagram has promised a better shopping experience on its platform.

That is great news for the 80% of people following a business account, and a global community of over 600m Instagram users.

The platform says it is making it easier to explore and find new things from brands users love while giving businesses more opportunities to build relationships with their valuable customers.

These are the highlights from the Instagram announcement:

Making Discovery Simple

When it comes to shopping, we set out to create something that was less transactional and more immersive. Something that gave people more time and space to browse and evaluate products, making mobile shopping feel just like shopping. The solution is not as simple as just adding a buy button.

In November, we began testing a new shopping experience that made it easier for people to find, evaluate and track relevant products on Instagram. Posts with tags have an icon that makes discovery simple. If a product catches your eye, there’s a space to explore, where you can easily tap to see more details from products featured in posts, and even click to a business’s website if you’re ready to buy.

Retailer kate spade new york has been using shopping on Instagram since November, and has seen great results.

“Our partnership with Instagram has been very successful. Traditionally, our customer had turned to Instagram for inspiration, and we’re seeing that she’s reacting positively to the new shopping experience, which allows her to seamlessly tap and shop the product – going from inspiration to information to purchase in just a few steps – we’re excited to see where the feature continues to take us.” – Mary Beech, EVP and Chief Marketing Officer of kate spade new york

Expanding shopping to more businesses

Based on encouraging early results, we’re rolling out these shopping features to thousands of businesses that sell apparel, jewellery or beauty products in the coming weeks. Instagrammers in the US will soon be able shop and browse products from these businesses from posts in feed, on profile and in explore.

Tagging, Tapping and Insights

We’re also giving businesses the power to create and tag a post with products directly from their iOS mobile phone. Once a business has a product catalog connected to their account, tagging a product is as simple as tagging a person in a post.

Businesses will also soon be able to get insights around the metrics that matter to them, like how many people tapped to see more product details or clicked on “shop now.” By telling businesses more about their audience and which posts are performing well, they can create more relevant content.

All of this is part of our continuing efforts to strengthen relationships between people and the brands they love, by creating more opportunities—and simpler ways—to discover and explore products on Instagram.

Here’s what an early test partner said about shopping on Instagram:

“While Instagram is a place for inspiration and visual wonder – there is nothing more satisfying than being able to buy that thing you love RIGHT NOW! The number of times I have found myself in a rabbit hole hunting down that pair of shoes, that beautiful chandelier, those sunglasses, rugs, flower arrangements, random gift ideas – countless!! We were thrilled to be a part of this pilot and to have our customers experience the next generation of shopping via Instagram.” – Jenna Lyons, President and Creative Director, J.Crew

Learn more about shopping on Instagram here.

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