Soon that image will be a purchase just one tap away. Instagram announced that next week it is going to be conducting online shopping trials in the US on Apple’s iOS version of Instagram.
The initial trial will include 20 retailers and is looking to revolutionise the shopping experience. Products in photos will be tagged so that when they are tapped they will display price information and links to buy them speeding up the purchasing process for the consumer.
Will this revolutionise shopping for us? Not really, but it offers some convenient benefits. Direct purchasing without the faff of trying to use normal websites on tiny screens. It will be much easier to get something that catches your eye on the photo-sharing app. No more third party apps (could this be the end of Liketoknow.it?!) or hitting the link in the caption and going on a hunt for what you want!
The new function will also add a new dynamic to public relations, marketing and advertising giving brands an even more direct way to target their audience. It will be interesting to see the correlation between the new service and spikes in sales for brands. Get the right image and sales could soar.
Instagram functions predominantly on mobile and is known for its power of mobile discovery. That power of discovery feels organic and is a very strong feeling that Instagram is trying to harness and monetise.
Tap-to-buy shopping is the next step for Instagram allowing it to offer a tangible service that is commercial and financially beneficial.
This new direction for the app comes fresh off the news of Vine being closed down. A reminder that to stay on top these apps have to move forward and Instagram is looking to evolve.
What brands are hoping to do is capitalise on that little joyous feeling that we’ve found something no-one else has through the intimacy of our mobile phones. And, we will be able to get this feeling any time, anywhere, through our mobile at the tap of the button. Powerful stuff. Just don’t remind people that those images and ‘finds’ are globally accessible on accounts followed by hundreds, thousands or millions of other people! Where’s that winky face emoji when you need it?! 😉