Meta, a tech company, recently announced that it is exiting the Instagram live shopping business. Starting March 16, 2023, Instagram users will no longer be able to tag products during live streams, a capability that has been widely available to US businesses and creators since 2020.
These changes highlight the difficulties the US market has had in making live shopping successful. Although this activity is already very popular in Asian markets, including China, where applications such as WeChat, Taobao Live and Douyin (China's TikTok) have proven that live shopping is a popular and profitable enterprise. During the pandemic, many US businesses have also sought to embrace live shopping to boost their own online profits. However, analysts found that US consumers did not embrace live shopping. According to one report, social commerce in general, which includes live shopping, only accounted for about 5% of US e-commerce sales last year.
Meta claims that despite ending live shopping, it is still engaged with the purchase, as 90% of users follow at least one business on the site. Instead, it will focus on advertising as one of the main ways people discover businesses and shop on Instagram. This will include the use of its automated tools, such as Shopping Ads and Advantage+ Shopping Campaigns, which are designed to improve ad performance. The company will also continue to invest in checkout, where people can purchase a product in just a few taps from Instagram and Facebook Stories, Feeds or Reels.
Instagram Removes Shopping Tab and Prioritizes Reels: What Does It Mean for Businesses?
Despite its promises, Instagram recently demonstrated that it intends to de-prioritize in-app purchases. Last month, it made a significant change to its navigation, which included removing the shopping tab and relocating the Reels. These changes were an effort to address growing user criticism of the aggressive push for Reels that stemmed from Instagram's competition with TikTok. Recently, the head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, admitted that the company
ia had pushed too much video and will try to balance the number of photos and videos displayed. The disappearance of live shopping is likely at least partially related to this recall.
Instagram says that creators will still be able to go live on Instagram and will be able to invite guests and host Q&As. Businesses will also be able to set up and run a shop on Instagram after the close of live shopping.
Despite Meta's recent announcement about the exit of the Instagram live shopping business, it is still possible to sell products through the platform. As? Creating an online store with Shopify. With Shopify, you can tag products in your Instagram and Facebook posts and drive customers to your online store to make purchases.
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