Connecting social media and ecommerce: Facebook and Instagram shops overview

February 20, 2021 / Time to read: 4 minutes
Connecting social media and ecommerce: Facebook and Instagram shops overview
Very often we get questions about how to leverage e-commerce opportunities from using leading social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. In our previous posts, we have already explored the importance of omnichannel experience when customers engage with the brand through various channels. When it comes to Social Media channels, Facebook and Instagram are good channels for engaging with your audience with the end goal of making conversion. In this post, we will explore how Facebook and Instagram platforms can help strengthen eCommerce marketing strategy and scale your business.

Preciously regarded as an easy and accessible advertising platforms, social media has outgrown its former capabilities while finding new ways to drive eCommerce. Following the massive increase in online purchasers in 2020, this year will continue to demonstrate the eCommerce growth and the importance of social media.  

Social platforms like Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram have already introduced cool features and tools giving brands new ways to promote products, enhance customer experience, encourage social participation, drive awareness and sales.  While the practice of adding social media to the marketing toolbox is not new it is important to understand how these platforms work. 

Facebook Shop 

Facebook Shops is a platform that will host your shop for just 5% of your sales. Facebook has turned its shops into an all-encompassing business tool that lets customers click, interact with, and buy things from brands without having to leave the platform. It operates much like any other eCommerce shop but lacks some of the features seen in advanced Saas platforms such as Shopify or platform-based/custom-built shops such as WooCommerce or Craft Commerce

Many eCommerce vendors have created integrations to simplify the process between their platforms and Facebook Shops. This lets online sellers use more features and access a more significant number of tools for selling. With over 60% of the accounts on Facebook contributing to the site’s eCommerce, there is no reason that you shouldn’t be integrating a Facebook Shop into your online B2C selling strategy. 

What are the benefits of Facebook Shops?  

There are many great benefits to having a Facebook Shop. The shops allow you to catalog your inventory, creating a simple and effective way to create ads that share information about your products. The platform is also great for launching new products as Facebook already has a massive audience. Sharing product launches with the millions of people using Facebook every single day is a breeze.

Facebook Shops provides the opportunity to create and manage a loyalty program, which is a fantastic way to build a loyal customer base that makes repeat purchases. You can add chatbots, integration with other eCommerce platforms, and even live stream certain aspects of shopping and interaction. Overall, the platform creates an immersive and comprehensive experience for your customers.  

Read the instructions on Facebook Shops setup. 

Instagram Shops 

The highly visual Instagram launched a massive update of its shopping platform in May 2020. Now it offers a full-screen storefront that allows sellers and businesses to share their brands and products through an incredibly native customer experience. There are two primary ways customers can shop – through their Feeds and Stories or by visiting the shop directly. Much like Facebook Shops, Instagram’s eCommerce platform is easy to start with.  

On Instagram Shops, users can browse your store, explore curated guides, and even shop collections, which is a great way to ignite buyer inspiration and create a more streamlined experience. Instagram’s new Shop Feed shows users items that they are more likely to buy. Overall, it is essential to have both an Instagram Shop and a Facebook shop if you sell your products directly to customers. Both platforms create unique interactions with current and potential customers, and there are likely to be missed audiences on either platform, so operating shops on both of these social media giants will allow you to minimize any gaps.  

What are the benefits of Instagram Shops?  

The Instagram Shops platform provides many benefits to businesses and eCommerce sellers. One of the primary benefits is how easy it is to increase your brand and products' discoverability. These shops not only educate potential buyers of new launches but also show them exactly where they can buy the products that have caught their eye. The advertising associated with Instagram Shops is incredibly authentic, which means that potential buyers are much more likely to trust your brand and convert to an actual customer. 

Because Instagram’s platform is so visual, it makes it easier to market your products and business in a more captivating way, which leads to more sales – visuals are one of the most attractive and engaging forms of marketing and selling. While you can easily increase engagement and sales, you are also able to foster a more straightforward, quicker, and shorter buyer journey. The longer the journey, the more time your potential customer has to change their mind, make the purchasing process as easy as possible with Instagram Shops.  

Read the instructions on how to set up your Instagram Shop. 

Wrapping up  

The ultimate goal of leveraging social media platforms in eCommerce is to create a direct and fast channel of communication between your business and customers. The Facebook and Instagram Shop platforms provide a hybrid opportunity between the typical social media marketing and selling platform allowing retail brands to create a cohesive customer journey to impact purchasing decisions. 

The omnichannel sales capabilities offered by these shops give you more opportunities to sell! rather than just having your store on one eCommerce platform, you can create multiple shops and increase your reach without any extra cost. 

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