Small businesses are in luck this week!
Facebook Shops is rolling out in the midst of coronavirus, bringing retail opportunities to businesses that may be struggling.
The best part is, it’s not only limited to Facebook.
What is Facebook Shops?
Got some products you’d like to sell online? There’s an app for that.
It’s called Facebook.
Facebook Shops is a new platform that’s rolling out as you read this. You can use it to sell products to people who follow your page on Facebook.
But not just Facebook. You can also use Shops to market your products to people on Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger.
The whole ecosystem is your online storefront.
Want to know more? Read on.
Facebook Shops Comes in Good Timing
Why Facebook Shops? And why right now?
I’ll answer the second question first. Facebook Shops is timely because brick-and-mortar stores are currently hurting for customers.
That’s for two reasons. The first reason is that folks are practicing social distancing. They don’t want COVID-19 so they stay isolated in their homes instead of going shopping.
The other reason people aren’t buying and selling as much as before is that many of them are out of work. The pandemic put the brakes on a really hot economy.
Enter Facebook Shops. It’s a great way for you to sell your products while still maintaining your distance from people who could be carrying a deadly disease.
And it’s a way to jumpstart your business while many places are still locked down.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says that he personally worked with his teams to get the Shops product out the door ahead of schedule.
That’s good news because it’s released early but also bad news as accelerated schedules usually lead to buggy software.
Create a Facebook Shop: How Does It Work?
According to Zuckerberg, it’s easy to set up your own Shop. Once you do, people in your market can visit your online storefront where they’ll learn more about your business and browse through your catalog.
Oh, yeah. They can also purchase your products right there. Customers don’t even have to leave the Facebook Shops platform.
That means no clunky back-and-forth between a native app and a sluggish web browser. Also, your customers won’t need to re-enter credit card info when they make a purchase.
As of now, your Shop will appear on Facebook and Instagram. Soon, people will also see it on WhatsApp and Messenger.
Facebook Shopping Integration
No digital marketing tool is complete unless it can play nicely with the other products you’re using.
Facebook Shops integrates with well-known ecommerce platforms such as Channel Advisor, Shopify, CedCommerce, Cafe24, WooCommerce, and BigCommerce.
It’s up to you to determine how much you’d like to integrate with those platforms.
You can choose to go solo with each product or connect the platform with another service so you can get a beginning-to-end picture of the customer journey.
Look for further integrations in the future.
More New Facebook Features
The good news doesn’t stop. Facebook is also launching new features across its portfolio of apps to make it even easier for you to sell products.
For starters, the company is building a dedicated shopping tab on Instagram. You’re going to love that if you do a lot of image marketing on that platform.
Additionally, Facebook is adding a destination inside Explore so customers can learn about and purchase your products.
And then there’s Live shopping. Yes, people can soon shop at your e-store in real-time.
The icing on the cake: artificial intelligence. Facebook will use augmented reality to optimize the shopping experience for your customers.
Wrapping It Up
Facebook is doing its part to help small-to-medium-sized businesses as they struggle in the midst of this pandemic. The Shops platform offers a great way to practice social media marketing while still practicing social distancing.
If you’re selling products online, why not take a closer look at Facebook Shops today?