Facebook is on a mission to become the Amazon of social media, introducing shops and e-commerce features to as much platforms as possible. Up until now, these shops were available on Facebook and Instagram, but now, Facebook wants to make sure that you can buy stuff even when you are having a chat on its messaging platform WhatsApp. This, and 2 other features-personalized advertisements and ‘Visual Search Feature’ have been announced by CEO Mark Zuckerberg, in a post on Facebook.
Icons for Instagram Shops and Facebook Marketplace are already visible on WhatsApp, but now, the app will get its own Shop tab. Pressing the shop button on a WhatsApp account will allow you to visit their ‘WhatsApp Shop’, browse through items and place orders, all in the app. This, along with the option of chatting with said business account, will allow WhatsApp to turn into an actual, online shopping mall.
“More than 1 billion people use Marketplace each month, so we’re making it easy for businesses to bring their Shops into Marketplace to reach even more people,” Zuckerberg said.
The rollout of Shops will start soon.
However, that’s not all that the Facebook CEO had in store. He also announced that shops will now feature personalized ads, allowing the company to your exact needs. “We’re launching the ability for a business to send shoppers to where you’re going to be most likely to make a purchase based on your shopping behavior,” he said. These ads will also come with AR experiences called AR Dynamic Ads, in which you will be able to see what a lipstick will look like on you before you buy it. Users can expect this feature to be expanded to other items as well.
Last but not the least, Instagram will receive an AI-based Visual Search feature, allowing users to post their own photos and find relevant items based on that input. For example, if you like a dress but can’t seem to find it, you can upload its picture on this tool, which will then direct you a source with said dress/relevant items.
This can be a game changer for the online shopping world, since finding exact items is always an issue on platforms like Amazon and Flipkart.
With all of these new features, it’s clear that Facebook is trying to find ways to enter the e-commerce market, which is fair, given that its main source of revenue-advertising, is being demonized by the entire market.