The Covid-19 pandemic affected larger and small businesses. It changed consumers behaviors and as a result businesses started reacting differently in their day-to-day business cycles. It has also presented some opportunities and helped improve the online solutions as we witnessed a huge switch to online service providers. Businesses started exploring their online solutions and innovative products.
Recently, Facebook has announced the launch of its new product: Shops, planned to run across its different applications including Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp in future. This comes as a reaction to the pandemic’s effects on the economy or in other words, a smart use for an economic opportunity that appeared because of the pandemic. When discussing Facebook and Instagram shops, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that setting up an online shop won’t compensate for the entirety of the misfortune in deals, however it could help. He stated through a live video that the pandemic isn’t only a wellbeing crisis yet “the biggest economic shock” that individuals have felt in the course of their life. He mentioned that the pandemic has been affecting startups and small and medium businesses negatively: “As people are being told to stay home, small businesses are having a hard time staying open and millions of people are losing their jobs and this creates a deeper crisis for our communities.” Zuckerberg concluded that setting up an online shop might not entirely compensate for the misfortune in deals, however it could help. He called Facebook Shops “the biggest step” the social network has taken to allow trade over its group of applications.
What are Facebook and Instagram Shops?
Taking on tech giants like Amazon, Facebook is making a more grounded web-based business push through introducing Shops. These online shops could likewise get clients to invest more energy on the planet’s biggest social network. Helping private ventures benefits Facebook on the grounds that the organization brings in cash through advertisement dollars. The move shows how Facebook is incorporating online business over all the applications it possesses. This comes after the success that Facebook made through the Marketplace feature and again seizing an opportunity that has been created with the COVID-19 breakout. Facebook has decided to work with several existing ecommerce providers. Here is a part of Facebook’s announcement:
We’re also working more closely with partners like Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, ChannelAdvisor, Cedcommerce, Cafe24, Tienda Nube, and Feedonomics to give small businesses the support they need. These organizations offer powerful tools to help entrepreneurs start and run their businesses and move online. Now they’ll help small businesses build and grow their Facebook Shops and use our other commerce tools.
The new Facebook and Instagram Shops consist of a shop tab and a product catalog managed, respectively, via the company’s Commerce Manager and Catalog Manager, allowing users to easily access the new feature and make the best out of it.
Commerce Manager is an e-commerce feature that is founded to help the business owner showcase the different featured products to allow for easy shopping experiences to consumers.
The Catalog Manager helps the business owner reach more customers on Facebook and Instagram through page shops, ads and marketplace.
The process is easy and straightforward as illustrated on the web page:
How can your businesses benefit?
As highlighted by Zuckerberg when launching the new Facebook and Instagram Shops feature, we can state the below benefits or quick wins for small businesses:
- Easily start a shop to sell things directly across our apps.
- Facebook Shops are free and easy to create, therefore this serves the switch to online shops in light of COVID 19 situation without having to build your own platform
- Setting up your shop on Facebook will automatically be reflected on Instagram and soon on Messenger and WhatsApp too.
- Facebook and Instagram shops are User-friendly. Shoppers do not have to re-enter credit card details or switch to another window to enter their details.
- Partner with major e-commerce giants such as Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, Channel Advisor, CedCommerce, Cafe24, Tienda Nube and Feedonomics.
In addition, there are future features that will make Facebook and Instagram shops even more rewarding to small businesses:
- A dedicated shopping tab on Instagram and a destination inside Explore where you can find and buy products you might be interested in.
- New Live shopping features across Facebook and Instagram.
- Shops will use AI and augmented reality tech to create better shopping experiences.
- Small businesses will also be able to personalize their storefronts to first show products that are most relevant to customers and use augmented reality to let customers virtually try on things like sunglasses, lipstick or makeup, or what furniture might look like in the customer’s room.
In other words, Facebook and Instagram shops allow business users to fully run their businesses from their couches with a lot of tools available that will help serve customers perfectly and even improve and make their shopping experiences more appealing. Facebook and Instagram shops will be means of creating online presence, while Messenger and WhatsApp will help in more efficient communication with customers.
COVID-19 has been slowly changing
the way individuals live their lives, the way businesses function and
accordingly we expect to see some more innovation in the daily business as
social distancing measures remain a major concern on our planet.