While every major platform (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat and TikTok) now offer shoppable content, ads or capabilities, if we know one thing about social commerce, it’s that it’s ever evolving. Twitter and Pinterest both announced new social commerce features last week, expanding how businesses can feature products and how consumers can discover and purchase them.
Twitter’s big announcement was the addition of Twitter Shops, which allow merchants to feature a handpicked catalog of up to 50 products on their brand profiles. The feature boasts a larger, more immersive shopping experience—including additional product details and in-app checkout—and the promise of increased discoverability, branding and product count in the future. This feature and their conversation-based approach to social commerce aims to help brands turn in-feed product discussions into purchases.
Twitter Shops are only available for select merchants and managed partners in the U.S. For now, they’re only visible to English-speaking iPhone users based in the U.S. So while these new shops are part of Twitter’s larger effort enable large brands, small businesses and creators to do business on Twitter, there are still some limitations on overall accessibility.
Pinterest also unveiled some exciting new commerce features during their second annual Pinterest Presents ad summit. With the help of charismatic stylist Tan France, they debuted their new Your Shop feature, which is currently in beta in the U.S. and will officially launch later this year. Pinterest intends Your Shop to uniquely personalize and tailor product collections based on users’ browsing activity and interests. They also announced in-app checkout (in beta for select U.S.-based Shopify merchants) and a shopping API that provides full product catalogs with real-time product detail and inventory updates.
Applications of Twitter’s and Pinterest’s new features will depend on individual business cases, but some key differences are clear. Twitter Shops will offer smaller, brand-curated and -driven product collections, giving businesses more oversight and control over their product stories and related conversations. On the other hand, Pinterest’s Your Shop, in combination with Pinterest’s new shopping API, is highly customer-centric and personalized–and offers brands increased discoverability and scalability. Small businesses or creators with limited resources will especially benefit from this feature, as uploading a product catalog via API efficiently creates shoppable pins, and the algorithm powering Your Shop helps serve products to a wider audience.
These new commerce features join an ever-growing lineup across social channels but indicate that both Twitter and Pinterest are stepping up their commerce efforts to better compete in the space. For brands and retailers, it means even more ways to get products in front of consumers to browse, shop and buy.
Contributed By: Katy Bornholdt, Social Media Strategist
Image Source: Pexels