Instagram to U-turn on social commerce features

Meta platforms’ Instagram is determined to scale back its shopping and social commerce features while it shifts its focus to efforts that directly drives advertising, according to the Information.

Staff were notified via an internal memo that Instagram’s existing ‘Shop’ page will be shut down.

Instagram will begin testing a simpler and less personalised version of the shopping page known internally as “Tab Lite”, in the coming months, the Information reported.

A public test of Tab Lite will launch on Wednesday, the report claimed.


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It was only last November that the social media platform started hedging its bets on social commerce, with the company’s shopping director of product Layla Amjadi telling Business Insider that there was a growing trend of young adults turning to social media and influencers for product recommendations.

“They already are looking to these folks for culture and trend,” Amjadi said. “The natural next step, often from culture and trend, is commerce.”

“How can we help people move, as we say in commerce, deeper into that funnel and move into consideration and then ultimately purchase?”

Amjadi revealed that the shopping tab experience was top of the agenda for Instagram in 2022, saying: “We’re only at the beginning, we’re building an ecosystem, versus a feature.”

The unpredictable macro-economic landscape that Meta finds itself in now may have contributed to the decision.

Meta has been battered by Apple’s iOS 14 changes which has made it harder to measure and track advertising analytics. Rendering targeted adverts –a pillar of the company’s digital ad strategy– less useful.

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