Shopify has teamed up with Facebook to launch Facebook Shops, designed to help merchants create online storefronts. These online stores will be available on Instagram and Facebook. In simpler terms, Facebook will allow merchants to turn their Facebook Business Pages and Instagram profiles into digital storefronts to showcase and sell their products.
Through Facebook Shops, businesses will be able to make products available for purchase directly on Facebook. This means that users won’t have to leave Facebook if they click on an ad or a post. The purchase will be possible without having to leave the safety of Facebook. The user will only have to leave to checkout for completing the payment process. Note that this feature is only available in the US and has not been introduced in Australia as of now.
The need for a digital storefront like Facebook Shops
Here’s what Facebook tweeted regarding Facebook Shops launch:
Today we’re introducing Facebook Shops, which will make it easy for businesses to set up a single online store on both @facebookapp and @instagram, and soon @messenger and @WhatsApp too pic.twitter.com/bBloRGBFzP
— Facebook (@Facebook) May 19, 2020
In a press release, Tobi Lütke, CEO of Shopify, said that Shopify currently powers more than 1 million businesses across the globe. With Facebook Shops, they aim to bring the tech industry together to help entrepreneurs succeed at a critical this time.
How much does it cost to create a Facebook Shop
Businesses will be able to set up a Facebook Shop for free. Though setting up a Facebook Shop is free of cost, a small commission will be charged by Facebook on each purchase. However, real monetization will be derived from advertising. Businesses will also be able to feature their Shops in stories and ads.
Who can set up a Facebook Shop?
According to Facebook, any business, irrespective of the budget or size, to create a digital storefront with Facebook Shops and woo their customers with their product range. All the business needs to do is upload their catalogue, upload the products they wish to feature and add a cover. Post this, visitors can browse, save and order products from this digital medium.
The launch of Facebook Shops comes at an opportune time and may provide relief to small businesses that are struggling due to the effects of the pandemic. Time will tell if this digital initiative by the two brands will help small businesses grow and thrive in these uncertain times.
1) Hughes, C. (2020) “Australia: number of Facebook users 2015-2022” Statista [Online] Available from https://www.statista.com/statistics/304862/number-of-facebook-users-in-australia/ [acessed Jan 2020]
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