With Shops, Facebook is focusing on the fact that bringing small businesses online will save them from the crisis and create new opportunities for the social network. The project will allow retailers to open their own online store, which will then be visible on both Facebook and Instagram.
With Shops, Facebook wants to take a big part of the ecommerce industry. Not so much to compete with Amazon (for now), but to be a substitute for all those services that allow small artisans to sell products easily online, such as the popular store Etsy. Or rather, of those who do not collaborate with Mark Zuckerberg’s company: Shops is in fact based on third-party services such as Shopify, BigCommerce and Woo, which already offer the ability to create online stores easily. The approach is the same: on Facebook, sellers will be able to quickly create a virtual store where they can sell their products.
“If you can’t physically reopen your store or restaurant, you can always take online orders and send them to people,” Zuckerberg explained in a live stream on his profile. “We’re looking at a lot of small shopkeepers who have never had an online business make it for the first time.” Of course, the timing is right: during quarantine, online sales have experienced a huge surge due to the inability to go to the shops to buy goods. At the same time, however, small businesses suffered an equally huge crisis that led about a third of them (Facebook data) to completely stop their operations.
In this situation, however, online sales have exploded, as have the businesses of those who have been able to ride this digital wave. With Shops, Facebook is focusing on the fact that bringing small businesses online will save them from the crisis and create new opportunities for the social network. But how does the new tool work? It’s actually very simple and, of course, Free: Facebook will take a percentage on the order if something is purchased within the store, but this is a common item for all such services. Each store can then create its own custom page where you can enter all the products sold, which can be purchased directly from the portal. The store will be visible on both the activity’s Facebook page and the Instagram page. Shops will initially launch in the US, while its arrival on Instagram is scheduled for this summer.