eCommerce Feature for Businesses: Facebook Shops
With many new features and updates during this period of uncertain times, Facebook managed to surprise us all once again. The social media platform announced that they're starting Facebook Shops with the idea that any small business can start an online shop to sell items through it.
Because people are spending their time in their homes, being present online is important for smaller businesses. Now, when people go to someone's shop, they'll be able to see the business's story, what they are selling and decide to buy directly from Facebook's apps.
Let's see what we know about Facebook shops and how can this eCommerce feature benefit your business.
What We Know About Facebook Shops
There are some new eCommerce features on both Facebook and Instagram. Even though they already established a touch of eCommerce with the Marketplace and being able to buy products from the ads on Instagram, the news about Facebook shops are something else!
With people getting all of the information from these social media platforms, it was about time to make them a go-to for shopping as well. It's probably what Facebook had in mind, why not let users make purchases without having to leave the apps. The shops will arrive on business pages, Instagram profiles, and targeted ads.
It's nice to mention that creating this feature is free and easy. After you've created your shop, it will appear on both of your accounts the tech giant owns: Facebook and Instagram. Mark Zuckerberg says that it will be soon available on Messenger and WhatsApp as well.
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
Some benefits that are promised with the launching of Facebook Shops is that they will be fast loading, which means people won't have to spend time on a slower web browser.
Facebook partnered up with some eCommerce platforms such as Shopify, WooCommerce, and BigCommerce to include some integrations in their Facebook Shops. Small business owners can decide which tools will help them more to manage their shop.
New Features on Instagram and Facebook
Facebook also announced that they are developing more features to Facebook and Instagram, which will help small businesses get discovered from the customers. That way people can easily buy the product they're interested in.
One of the features is a Shopping Tab on Instagram and another destination in Explore where people can look for products from shops they are interested in.
Facebook also mentioned that they will be launching new Live shopping features across Facebook and Instagram, which will enable customers to shop on Live in real-time.
The tech giant stated that soon Shops will use AI and augmented reality tech to create better shopping experiences. This will mean automatically identifying and tagging products in feeds so people can easily buy things they like. The shops will also be able to personalize their shops so that it first shows products that are most relevant to the buyer.
If you remember the Ikea AI app which allowed people to see how their furniture can look like in their homes. Well, Facebook is also planning to give shops the use of augmented reality to let their clients virtually try on things to see how they might look on them before buying, or what the furniture might look like in their room.
How Are These eCommerce Features Helping
This is an amazing opportunity for small businesses. Sometimes building the online presence of a company can be a hard thing to do. Now, every business owner can put their business on 'the map'.
Even from your own home, you can manage your store, use free tools, and lead people through the buyers' journey. Getting people to your Facebook and Instagram shops can later help you lead them to your Messenger and WhatsApp for easier communication, retention, and nurturing of customers.
"Hopefully this helps relieve some of the pressure that small businesses are facing right now and helps them prepare for a more online future. " - Mark Zuckerberg
Create a Branded Facebook Shop With Shopify
Facebook Shops will eventually roll out to everyone in the next few months. Right now, you can start by setting up the Facebook channel for Shopify.
Shopify suggests that businesses can prepare their online store, by firstly installing their Facebook Channel. This can be your new home manager that will power all of your sales and marketing activity across the Facebook family of apps. When you are done with syncing all of your goods through Shopify's Facebook channel, you'll automatically get access when Facebook Shops will become available for your account.
So, showing your brand's unique style and being able to convey the message, to customize the colors and layouts on your Facebook Shop with Shopify should definitely be on your to-do list.
Facebook’s Piece of the Cake
Online sales have been booming, especially for small businesses. The revenue for entrepreneurs selling at Etsy had doubled from three years ago. Imagine what can happen when you set up a Facebook Shop? We all know that Facebook is way better at bringing more people to see your shop.
These shops are also creating significant new business opportunities for Facebook. Of course, businesses will be able to set ads for their Shops. Think about how much more money will be spent on advertising and some other services.
So, by helping other businesses, it seems like the tech giant will also make 'some money on the side'. Predictions say Facebook's dive into online shopping could be a $30 billion opportunity for the corporation, which will increase its annual revenues by nearly 50%.
Deutsche Bank predicts Facebook's big push into online shopping could be a $30 billion opportunity for the company — increasing its annual revenues by nearly 50%. https://t.co/RNtBmjDB4F
— Rob Price (@robaeprice) May 20, 2020
We are well aware that nowadays every business is an online business. That's why retailers must stay current with where their clients and prospects choose to spend their time. Yes, you guessed it right, today, that means engaging with them on Facebook and Instagram.
With some uncertainties and many businesses failing to make a profit, this step is huge for smaller business and it may be their only way to survive the crisis and thrive online.