9th October 2020
This week Instagram announced an expansion of its in-app shopping, with a global roll out of its Instagram Shopping service across IGTV and a soon to start test of shopping within its recently launched short form video platform Reels.
Shopping will be now available on Instagram’s long form video platform IGTV, globally. The function will allow brands and influencers to add shopping tags to their IGTV posts so users can tap items they see in videos and complete their purchase via the in-app checkout (in the US) or on the sellers’ website.
Instagram says its shoppable IGTV videos will also be made discoverable on Instagram Shop in the future but hasn’t provided any date for this service being enabled.
In addition, Instagram Reels, which is Facebook’s rival to TikTok, will also become shoppable. Shopping in Reels will be tested later this year before launching and the move could help make it more competitive and attract talent from TikTok, which has also been testing shopping tools for its creators.
Shopping has been a big focus for Instagram and is becoming a core part of the platform, even before the increase in digital commerce that has been driven by the COVID-19 pandemic. With this rollout, Shopping is now available on almost every feature of the Instagram platform, including Stories, livestreams and in the main feed. Earlier this year Instagram made in-app checkout available to all US businesses and in the summer launched Instagram Shop, a new destination in the Explore page that includes personalised recommendations and collections from the Instagram @shop team.
The new shopping features will attract even more brands and creators to use the platform as it becomes easier to sell directly to consumers and provides a more direct return on investment metric for the content created for the platform.
Instagram said: “people come to Instagram to shop and we’re making it easier to learn about products and make a purchase right within video content across IGTV, Live, Stories and soon Reels”.
Facebook has worked hard to make e-commerce ubiquitous across its platform. This latest move to expand shopping capabilities on Reels and IGTV and make it even easier for brands and creators to sell direct to consumers, shows how e-commerce is becoming central to Instagram’s growth strategy. The launch ahead of the holiday season shopping period should see it take advantage of the shift seen this year towards e-commerce – with not only sales shifting from retailers’ physical stores to their online presence but also the increased interest and appetite amongst consumers for buying online and across social video.