Whether you’re waiting for a table at a restaurant or riding in an Uber, you can browse and shop anytime and anywhere from a smartphone. A recent study found that almost everyone does. About 85% of smartphone users browse, research, or compare prices from their devices. While it’s easy to discover new products online, it’s always been difficult to find information on a specific item you may have seen in an advertisement or on social media. This week, Instagram will begin rolling out a new feature to iOS users in the US that will allow you to discover and shop without leaving the comfort of their app.
Instagram’s new feature will be a “Tap to view products” button on photos or sponsored advertisements which will reveal the products tagged and their price. Once you click on a tagged item you will then be presented with a page showing more information about the product as well as a “shop now” link that will take you directly to the sellers site.
Abercrombie & Fitch, Coach, Hollister, Levi’s, Kate Spade, JackThreads, and Warby Parker are just a few of the 20 retail brands Instagram will be initially partnering with while they test this new feature. Ryan McIntyre, CMO of JackThreads said “This test is going to change the scope of what we, as retailers, are capable of offering”
The clean user interfaces for this feature demonstrates the prioritization of Instagram to keep their app as user friendly as possible while maximizing their monetization efforts.
If all goes well, future iterations of this feature may include the ability the ability to save content so you can take action later, allow brands to create their own product pages, and making the feature available globally.
According to a study by emarketer, Instagram is on track to bring in $1.6 billion in ad revenue this year. However, James Quarles, Instagram’s VP of Monetization, said this initial test will not generate any income for them. “Instagram won’t take a cut of purchases, and instead plans to monetize the product by later allowing brands to pay to show their shoppable photos to people who don’t follow them”