By announcing the release of Facebook Shops on May 19, Facebook is the latest GAFA to launch its fully integrated (in-app) shopping platform.
This platform competes directly with similar offerings from Google, Amazon and Apple, offers SMEs an easy and free way to sell their products. In this article you will find the answers to the following questions:
- What are Facebook Shops?
- What is their goal?
- What is the impact of Facebook shops on merchants?
- What is the impact of Facebook shops on Facebook ads?
- How to prepare for it?
What is the new Facebook Shop?
People can find Facebook Shops on a company’s Facebook page or Instagram profile, or discover them through stories or ads.
From there you can browse the entire collection, save the products that interest you. and place an order – either on the company’s website, or without leaving the application if the company has activated the “checkout” function.
Concretely, when you click to view a product from a publication, you will see a button “Order on Instagram” (or on Facebook) on the product page.
You will then be able to choose from different options such as size or color and then you will proceed to payment without leaving the app . All you need to do is enter your name, email address, billing information, and shipping address once.
Here’s how Mark Zuckerberg presents this new feature:
“Facebook Shops are free and easy to create. When you create your shop, it will appear on your Facebook and Instagram accounts to start with, and soon on Messenger and WhatsApp as well.
The shops are native and fast, which means it doesn’t It’s no longer necessary to switch from an app to a slow mobile web browser where you have to re-enter your credit card when you tap on an interesting product that you see in feeds.
We also work with partners such as Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, Channel Advisor, CedCommerce, Cafe24, Tienda Nube, and Feedonomics so that small businesses can easily integrate into a strong and open ecosystem of tools to help them manage their business. end-to-end customer journey, and it’s up to the company to decide how much integration they want. “
Mark Zuckerberg, May 19, 2020
Why Facebook Shops?
According to Zuckerberg, ” 1/3 of American SMEs say they are not operational at the moment” because of health security measures.
While many companies are forced to close their stores and strengthen their online presence, several industries are racing to develop new products for digital.
Facebook, which says it has been developing this feature for a long time, has therefore decided to step up the pace to bring out Facebook Shops during the crisis. Timing is everything.
What impact for SMEs and traders?
As the functionality is in the implementation phase, it is still too early to measure or quantify precisely the impact of Facebook Shops on merchant sales.
Facebook remains vague about the deadlines and warns that the Facebook Shops will be accessible to all the companies concerned “in the coming months”.
The functionality is already present for a good part of the American traders, in particular on Instagram.
A simplified customer journey
With its integrated checkout process , Facebook shop has good arguments to establish itself as a full-fledged sales channel for merchants in the months to come.
In short, this new product will allow small businesses to grow faster on a platform they already use for marketing purposes.
One of the ways that Facebook stores will create an advantage over their competition is through the integration of WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram Direct which will provide smooth and personalized support to customers.
New features like Live Shopping on Instagram
For years, brands have used live video to showcase their products, whether it’s fashion stores showcasing their new collections or influencers testing face masks.
Sellers, brands and creators will now be able to tag products in their Facebook store or catalog before uploading them to allow their audience to buy during the video .
This feature will be more widely deployed in the coming months, says Facebook.
While Facebook Shops don’t cost anything to set up, they still mean Facebook will have even more data about your business and customers available to it .
What impact on Facebook and Instagram advertising?
Product promotion is already raging on Facebook and Instagram. If you pull down your news feed, you will probably see a product appear after less than 10 seconds (that’s what it took to find the example above …).
But it is at the transitional moment of the transition to purchasing that Mark Zuckerberg believes that the user experience loses in quality, and therefore in conversion potential.
Facebook shop will prevent the sometimes painful transition from the Facebook application to a not always optimized sales site, which should probably improve the conversion rate of Facebook advertising for physical products . To be tested to be sure!
SMEs using Facebook Shops will therefore have the option of paying for ads that will redirect consumers directly to the payment page of their Facebook store .
This store and its content (stocks, updates, etc.) will be identical between Facebook, Instagram, and later Messenger and Whats’app.
How to prepare to use Facebook Shops?
If Facebook Shops are not yet available for your business, you can still take steps to prepare the ground so that you can use the feature as soon as it appears.
To prepare for the gradual implementation of Facebook and Instagram Shops, you can:
- Create a catalog and add products to your Facebook page
- Link your Facebook page with your Instagram page
- From the “business” settings, connect your catalog to Instagram Shopping if you are eligible, either:
If you have a business account (your Instagram account must be converted to a business account from the account settings)
If you have an associated Facebook Page (your Instagram business profile must be associated with your Facebook page)
If you primarily sell physical goods (there have been cases where some of our customers who were not primarily engaged in online sales were denied the use of Instagram Shopping)
If you have a professional account associated with a Facebook catalog (check or activate this setting from your catalog manager or in Business Manager on Facebook).
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