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Instagram to launch shopping app

By Don-Alvin Adegeest

5 Sep 2018

Instagram is thought to be launching a shopping app, making it a de-facto platform for visual storytelling and consumer shopping.

As was reported by the Verge, Instagram’s new app, already dubbed IG Shopping, will let users browse collections of goods from brands that they follow and purchase them directly within the app.

According to The Verge, “sources familiar with its development say Instagram believes it is well positioned to make a major expansion into e-commerce.”

More than 25 million businesses already have Instagram accounts, and 2 million of them are advertisers, Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg said on the company’s most recent earnings call. Four in five Instagram users follow at least one business. Creating a standalone app would allow the company to provide a dedicated home for an increasingly popular activity on Instagram while also expanding opportunities for revenue.

Currently shoppable posts can be linked to a corresponding product page from a brand's a website. The shopping feature is also being tested in Instagram Stories. Approved businesses using shopping can create up to 3 product stickers per story. Shopping stickers can be created with the product name or shopping icon.

Shopping posts and stories give people access to pricing and product details both within the Instagram feed and through the Shop button on a brand’s profile. By tapping on a post, people can take the next step to learn more about products that inspire them from the brands they love, says Instagram in its Shopping Help pages.

Instagram have not released any information regarding its new app or when it could go live. The Verge notes the app “could be canceled before it is released,” however, the social media giant is believed to be optimistic about the potential of its shopping expansion.

Photo credit: Instagram Business page