Facebook opens Shop—a new e-commerce tab for brands to showcase their wares
Facebook has launched a new Shop tab, which follows a similar e-commerce play on Instagram from earlier this year.
On Tuesday, Facebook Shop opened with a prominent placement in the social network’s mobile app. Consumers will see the Shop option in the No. 1 position when they click on the Facebook menu in the app, in the same area they find Watch videos, Groups, Marketplace, Games and News.
The Shop opens to a section populated by businesses showcasing products, and includes a category to “explore brands.” Facebook Shop is basically the same program as Instagram Shop, which was released in May in the “Explore” section, delivering a smattering of products for consumers to scroll through.
In May, Facebook updated many of its e-commerce features, capitalizing on the opportunity presented by the recent pandemic that led many consumers to shop from home. Facebook evolved its family of apps, which includes Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger, to make it easier for businesses to transact on the platform.
Facebook has deals with Shopify and BigCommerce to help power its e-commerce offering. Retailers use platforms like Shopify to manage their online products, and they integrate with apps like Facebook, Snapchat and Pinterest.
Facebook has been touting its e-commerce potential at a time when sellers are looking for more channels to promote their wares. In May, Facebook also released new e-commerce tools for brands on Instagram, including the ability to sell directly from video livestreams.
In a slightly confusing use of terminology, Facebook Shops launched in May, too, a new product that enabled brands to create a shopping page. Facebook Shops are like online storefronts.
The Shop tab will be a place that aggregates a feed of products from the businesses and brands that have Facebook Shops. Facebook did not disclose if ads will eventually appear in the Shop section like they do in other parts of Facebook.
On Tuesday, Facebook said that 1 million business have created Shops since May.
The launch of the Facebook Shop tab coincided with an announcement about news, too. Facebook said it would expand its publisher hub, designed to aggregate credible news sources, to more countries. Facebook launched the news tab last year with top publishers like The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and CNN.