The ongoing pandemic had a serious impact on pretty much every branch of every industry. Its effects, in turn, were the most painful on small businesses that rely on walk-in customers for their livelihood. In many areas, the number of these customers has decreased significantly due to the public health situation, with going online remaining the only option for many of them.
To help them, and any other small business looking for an easier way to sell their products and services online, Facebook has introduced Shops this May. Here are a few things to know about the new feature.
Initially, the new feature is available to a limited number of businesses using Facebook Page Shops, and later it will be rolled out to everyone. Existing Page Shops will be converted into Facebook Shops.
Creating a Facebook Shop will be similar to creating a Merchant account, and businesses won’t even need to be Verified to have one. Signing up will be free, and running a shop also won’t cost anything – Facebook will perceive a fee for payments accepted through its processing service and will have revenues from ads promoting the products. Businesses that process payments through other platforms – like Shopify, for example – won’t have to pay extra.
The shoppers’ privacy will be taken into consideration when using Facebook Shops. The shoppers’ Facebook accounts will be kept free from any kind of notification about their purchase. The sellers will only be notified of the shoppers’ identity and personal information if they pay through Facebook Pay.
Vetting the sellers’ good practices will not be Facebook’s job, though. Brands will be required to report any intellectual property violations.
This one will be a useful feature for influencers and content creators but will open up exciting opportunities for every seller.
Facebook Live Shopping will allow content creators, influencers, and brands to select a product or service to highlight during their live broadcasts, allowing their followers to quickly and easily find out more information about them – and buy them if they’d like.
“Soon, sellers, brands, and creators will be able to tag products from their Facebook Shop or catalog before going live and those products will be shown at the bottom of the video so people can easily tap to learn more and purchase,” Facebook’s announcement about the new feature reads.”We’re starting to test this with businesses on Facebook and Instagram, and we’ll roll it out more broadly in the coming months.”
Facebook’s Shop can become an invaluable tool in bringing a never-before-seen number of businesses online, especially useful in the current situation. It integrates with popular eCommerce platforms like Shopify or WooCommerce that will allow owners to link their existing platforms to Facebook, integrates the catalogs, and still work through a familiar interface.