TECHNOLOGY

Instagram keeps expanding into social retail

BY Dan Berthiaume

Instagram is introducing yet another new direct shopping feature.

[email protected] is a new account members of the social platform can follow. It offers an assortment of shoppable products curated by a team of Instagram editors. According to a corporate blog, the content on @shop is intended to reflect current trending interests of Instagram users across categories such as fashion, beauty, and home products.

Consumers can directly purchase products featured on [email protected] by tapping on shopping tags that enable purchases within the Instagram app or website. Featured brands include Feel jeans, Glossier Play Colorslide cosmetics, and Mented Cosmetics.

[email protected] is the latest effort by Instagram to turn itself into a full-fledged e-commerce and mobile commerce platform. The social network recently began enabling a small group of Instagram “creators” (such as Kim Kardashian West, Kylie Jenner and Kris Jenner) to tag products in their posts, making the products instantly shoppable.

Instagram has been enhancing its shopping features during the past 12 months. Users can now shop on Instagram Stories, a feature that reveals images and video content in a slideshow format. As brands post items in their Stories feed, users can tap on the product to learn more. Separately, Instagram launched Shopping in Explore, an option that enables users to shop based on their specific interests.

Last month, Instagram started allowing users (more than one billion on a monthly basis) to buy products from a select group of brands without leaving the platform.

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