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Instagram’s DM-Based Shopping Tools For Businesses – Is Social Shopping The Next Big Thing? 

instagram shopping

Instagram has taken the cake as the most effective and efficient social media platform for small businesses, especially after its new DM-based (Direct Message) shopping tool introduced by Meta.

Though the platform’s prime purpose has always been connecting people, Instagram has not withheld from connecting people to businesses and vice versa. As per statistics by Instagram’s Internal Data, 

  • 90% of Instagram users follow a business. 
  • 50% are interested in brands when they see ads for them on Instagram. 

Small brands and businesses have enjoyed implementing strategies to reach customers and drive sales with Instagram shopping. This positive response from the customers and business owners to Instagram Shopping was rewarded by Instagram in the most innovative way. After strengthening social bonds, and enabling marketing & sales for small businesses, Instagram has now levelled up its customer service. 

Introducing A New Way To Shop – Making Product Purchases Via DMs 

Across Meta’s family of apps, one billion users use Instagram’s DM features every week, whether they are giving feedback, looking at items, getting help, or engaging with stories (Instagram’s Internal Data).

As a response to this general use of Instagram DMs, the platform has made shopping simple and straightforward for consumers. Customers can now locate and purchase the things they love, directly from Instagram’s chat thread, and get real-time assistance from sales representatives while browsing products. You can ask about customising the product, any offers or even consult your friend before you make the purchase. 

You can let your sales representative know that you are sure of making a purchase and they will provide you with a payment request which you can use to finally make the payment for the product. Here’s how it will look on your mobile screen: 

social shopping
Source: Meta

What Opportunity Lay For Businesses With This Feature? 

Depending on your creativity in using Instagram for boosting marketing and sales for your business, you can use the platform to tap into a demand for this preferred mode of shopping by consumers. A mode where customers do not have to migrate outside the application to make a purchase or payment. 

Take a look at what the statistics say about Instagram Shopping till now. From these statistics, one can concur that using Instagram for Shopping is giving competition to e-commerce platforms. 

According to HubSpot’s Marketing Trends Report

  • 79% of users have made use of Instagram’s shopping facilities, and 21% want to do so for the first time in 2022. 
  • 1 out of 4 people between ages 18 to 24 utilised social media direct messages (DMs) for customer support in the last three months.
  • For Gen Z, social media is the most preferred platform for learning about new products and services. In the last three months, 57% of Gen Z users have discovered a new product on social media.

It is evident that prospective buyers, especially Generation Z (born between 1997 and 2012), shop and look for items with assistance from brand employees on social media rather than visiting a company’s online retail store. This is where the opportunity lies for your business. Enabling payments within the application, especially if your target market is Gen Z. 

This is a huge opportunity not just for small businesses but even well-established brands and businesses. If you are not sure where to start, look for a social media agency for some guidance before you can start selling on Instagram. 

Will Social Shopping Become A Thing In 2022? 

Generation Z is soon about to take over the social media landscape, becoming one of the most popular communities for shopping using social media. If there’s one thing clear for businesses, it is that they can effectively use marketing tactics on Instagram to target Generation Z and even the Millennials and influence their purchase decisions. 

Social shopping isn’t exactly a new concept, but consumers and marketers are starting to use it more frequently. Looking ahead, we can certainly predict that Instagram will continue to enhance the buying experience and introduce new and innovative ways to enable e-commerce. 

It’s still too early to predict how consumers and marketers will use these purchasing tools, however, the scope for small businesses is only limited by their extent of creativity. Based on the available statistics, social shopping has enormous potential, but social media sites like Facebook, and Instagram need to maintain a balance between connecting people and connecting people with businesses. 

We hope this article guides you and your business in using Instagram’s latest features for making sales. Though this feature is currently available in the USA, Meta has planned to introduce it throughout the world soon. In the meantime, you can think of creative ways of implementing strategies once it launches in your country. You can even join hands with an Instagram marketing agency for some innovative ideas. 

All the best! 

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