Business, Marketing, Tech

Shopping online is no big deal to savvy consumers of today. But for the little brands, breaking the fourth wall on Instagram will open a big window of opportunity.

More and more consumers are doing their own research online before making any purchase. They’re doing this from home, on commute and even right in-store! In fact, more than 84% of smartphone users in the US browse, research or compare products via a web browser or mobile app.

No one understands this better than the eclectic businesses that thrive in the ecosystem that is Instagram. And it’s these guys that are going to reap the benefits of the social platform’s trial online shopping feature. Both Instagram and businesses utilising the platform know that the sales of featured products are indirect. But by providing a direct line from consideration to purchase, consumers can immediately act on their intention and halt comparisons practices with competitors.

 

instashop

Source: Instagram Business

 

In a nutshell, the feature sees that Business accounts on the platform will be able to pin tags on products featured the post, right on the image itself. Clicking on a product tag will lead you to a detailed view of the product, its price and description – which means you’ll get educated about the product without having to switch apps. If you like what you see, you can make your purchase immediately by tapping a ‘Shop Now’ link, which will bring you to the business’ online store – all still within the Instagram app.

So what will this mean for your business? If your consumers are constantly searching for your brand on the ‘gram, you’ve got a good chance of cutting the length of your sales cycle. Internal research by Instagram found that only 21% of mobile purchases are made within a day. So we’re expecting to see this percentage increase, as this new feature could streamline the buying process for an already engaged customer.

For the retail landscape, the change can also enable an equalisation between big brands right down to boutique and start-ups, lowering the barrier of entry to mobile commerce. We could even predict a drop in usage of branded mobile apps created by retail giants, as Instagram would become  a centralised shopping hub. But just how drastic the change will be is riding on the price point Instagram will charge business accounts for the feature. Yes, that means Instagram will have a slice of your sales margin. With the incentive of extra revenue for Instagram, roll out of the feature to the wider community is probable.

The feature is currently being trialed for selected brands in the US. So while we wait on the feature to hit Australian soil, there are a few things you can do to get your business ready for mobile commerce. First, get your business online and website working on mobile. Even if your customers aren’t necessarily shopping for your products and services online, we know they are at least reading about you online and via their trusty smartphones. Secondly, ask us about the opportunity for Instagram and mobile commerce for your business. An effective digital solution is different for every business and industry. So get some insight from your local online marketing agency (*cough, cough* our dedicated team at Dando) before taking the plunge is high recommended. And finally, staying in the loop the latest digital trends and tech updates will give you a leg up, no matter what industry you’re in. The Dando Newsletter is a good place to start! We send you alerts on a need-to-know basis. So don’t miss out – sign up to the Dando Newsletter today!

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