First, Facebook made it easier for us to avoid garage sales with Marketplace. Now, it introduces Facebook Shops, or the stores on Facebook, which is all about shopping at small businesses, many of which are struggling in the unprecedented economic recession precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
What is Facebook Shops?
Facebook Shops (and its sister Instagram store), is a new platform that allows small businesses to set up shop windows on their Facebook Business pages where they can display product offers. Consumers can browse stores, save products, and even buy them.
Unless these stores have Facebook's payment service enabled, which was introduced a year ago on Instagram, Facebook stores will direct shoppers to the seller's website. If they use Checkout, Facebook typically charges a fee of 5% per transaction, but due to the challenges presented by the COVID-19 crisis, Facebook recently waived seller fees until 06/30/2020.
Facebook stores are free and easy to create
When you set up your store, it will appear on your Facebook and Instagram accounts to begin with and soon on Messenger and WhatsApp as well. The stores are native and fast, which means they don't switch the app to a slow mobile web browser where you have to re-enter your credit card when you touch an interesting product that you see on the news.
They are also working with partners such as Shopify, BigCommerce, Woocommerce, Channel Advisor, CedCommerce, Cafe24, Tienda Nube, and Feedonomics so that small businesses can easily integrate into a strong and open ecosystem of tools to help them manage their end-to-end journey. , and it is up to the business to decide what level of integration they want.
If you are running a small business or thinking of starting one, you now have a suite of tools available that can help you serve people. You can create your online presence on Facebook and Instagram. You can use Messenger and WhatsApp to communicate with your customers. You can reach new customers through ads. And now, you can also set up a complete online store experience with Facebook Shops.
Facebook also integrates customer support through its own chat applications, including Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram Direct.
When can I buy?
Facebook started launching Stores today, which means that even if it's available on its Facebook app, small businesses have yet to build their stores.
What about Instagram?
The new Store will be under the Browse button and will be found through product collections in the @shop account. Finally, Shop will get its own Instagram navigation tab.
Bottom line: Some of the small local stores now closing, unable to survive with virtually no foot traffic, may find salvation on Facebook. As for buyers, they have to weigh whether or not they want to add more information to Facebook's vast amount of personal data.