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Instagram Checkout: What It Means for E-commerce Retailers

Shoppers despair - you’re about to spend a whole lot more. Retailers rejoice - online purchasing has just been made a whole lot easier!

Right now, US Instagrammers are enjoying a trial of a new in-app option that allows you to buy products without leaving the Instagram app.

Instagram Checkout is expected to roll out wider once the trial featuring select major retailers is proven to be successful in a closed beta trial for a few US users.

Checkout

Retailers involved in the initial beta include Adidas, H&M, Kylie Cosmetics, Nike and Zara.

It is expanding on its current Shopping posts set up, allowing customers to purchase via the tag that displays product information and prices. After clicking the product tag in the shopping post you will now be redirected to a ‘Checkout on Instagram’ option, which will allow you to pay using various online payment options and monitor shipment and delivery progress inside Instagram.

There are two opinions on how Instagram may impact e-commerce retailers once it is widely available.

  • Will it rule retailer websites obsolete? Why pay to maintain an online store if there’s a free option with an easier sales journey for the user? Will it mean small businesses will be forced to negate Instagram if their competition is making waves with Instagram Checkout?
  • Alternatively, will selling products on Instagram improve profits for small businesses as they don’t have to maintain an online store and can better promote products to their audience?

There is no confirmed launch date for the UK or worldwide rollout of Instagram Checkout but it is rumoured to replace the previous suggestion that Instagram was developing a standalone app.

As an e-commerce retailer would you change your current selling strategy to focus on Instagram Checkout or does your audience still respond to traditional website selling?