Instagram debuts tool. Short Description:
In an effort to boost support for influencers and creators, Instagram and Facebook on Tuesday announced plans to create new affiliate marketing and e-commerce features, according to a blog post.
Selected Instagram creators can already tag affiliate brands’ merchandise or sell their own products through the “Stores” feature. Over the next few months, the platform will be testing a “proprietary affiliate tool” that will allow creators to earn commissions on purchases they make by sharing items with their followers.
Instagram and Facebook have also improved their icons on Instagram Live and Stars on Facebook, which help authors earn money from their subscribers. Instagram and Facebook users can now get extra payouts when they reach certain milestones, the report said.
The rollout of these e-commerce features builds on Facebook and Instagram‘s efforts to help users monetize their audiences and products. In 2020, Instagram introduced monetization features for Instagram Live and IGTV and launched Shopping in Reels to allow sellers and creators to tag their products. Earlier this year, the platform rolled out Live Rooms, a feature that allows users to host virtual live events with up to three other users.
To launch this latest set of features, Instagram is testing its partnership program with some U.S. merchants and creators, including retailers and brands such as MAC, Sephora and Pat McGrath. The company said it will expand to more partners in the future. The social network also noted that select users can set up store and incentivize sales of a starter product with one of four companies: Bravado/UMG, Fanjoy, Represent and Spring. The feature will be available to all eligible U.S. creators by the end of the year.
“We want Instagram and Facebook to serve as a home base for creators to tell their story, develop and make a living,” the company wrote in its announcement. “Whether they are starting out or are already well advanced in building their business, we want to support creators and empower them to reach their goals.”
Meanwhile, other social platforms are opening up new features to take advantage of evolving social commerce trends. Earlier this week, Pinterest introduced a “Shopping List” feature that allows users to save pins of items and receive notifications of price reductions. And last month, Snapchat and Poshmark teamed up to create Poshmark Mini, which allows Snapchat users to browse select items, attend virtual shopping events and purchase items from top-selling brands on Poshmark within Snapchat.
Research shows that online shopping and social commerce are on the rise. According to a report by Coresight Research, the livestreaming market is expected to grow to $6 billion by the end of this year and to $25 billion by 2023. Sprout Social’s 2020 report showed that most shoppers shop from brands they follow on social media and spend more on brands they follow. In addition, Poshmark’s 2020 study found that more than half of consumers are willing to buy through social media rather than a company’s website, and three-quarters of shoppers are willing to shop with others online.