Facebook is making a major push in e-commerce by launching a new Facebook Shops. Facebook Shops is a tool for setting up a business storefront on Instagram and Facebook. These stores will be powered by various third-party services like BigComemrce, Woo, and Shopify. The main goal for this new feature is to turn Facebook and Instagram into shopping destinations.
Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg shared that as the pandemic continues to grow, expanded e-commerce would be a crucial aspect for rebuilding the economy. He stated in his live-stream:
“If you can’t physically open your store or restaurant, you can still take orders online and ship them to people. We’re seeing a lot of small businesses that never had online businesses get online for the first time.”
As per a survey conducted by Facebook, the pandemic has been devastating for small businesses, with a third of them reportedly stopping their operations. Furthermore, an additional 11% of small businesses have said that they would do the same if the current situation continues.
Shops are free from Facebook but it will be creating a business opportunity for Facebook in the form of ads and payment methods.
How will Facebook Shops work?
Shops can be found on Facebook’s Businesses pages or Instagram Profiles. They can also be promoted through ads or appear in stories. Businesses can run their customer support on Messenger, Instagram, or WhatsApp. Furthermore, there are plans to let users go through catalogs and make purchases directly from the chat window.
Facebook is also looking forward to integrating loyalty programs with shops. The company shared in a blog post:
“You’ll be able to easily see and keep track of your points and rewards. And we’re exploring ways to help small businesses create, manage and surface a loyalty program on Facebook Shops.”
The feature is rolling out today on Facebook in the United States and will be coming to Instagram in a few weeks. There are also plans to add a Shopping tab to Instagram’s navigation bar later this year.