Instagram Expands ‘Tap to View’ Shopping Tags

Instagram expands shop tags to thousands of US retailers
By Chantal Fernandez. Source: Business of Fashion. 

Instagram expands “tap to view” shopping tags to thousands of US retailers

Getting social media users to actually click through to e-commerce sites is notoriously difficult, especially in fashion and apparel. Instagram is tackling the challenge with “tap to view” tags, which debuted back in November. The feature allowed its nearly 600 million monthly active users to learn more about products from a selection of 20 brands and access e-commerce sites through the in-app browser. Now, the Facebook-owned image platform has announced that it is opening the pilot programme to thousands of US retailers in the apparel, jewellery and beauty markets.

In the testing period, 4 percent of users who encountered product tags tapped for more information and 19 percent of people that tapped the tag clicked on the “Shop Now” link. To facilitate the initial interaction, Instagram has redesigned the tags to be more apparent to users who are not aware the function exists.

The more posts with shopping tags in them, the more likely someone is to engage.

“We have seen that once our user discovers the product detail view, the percentage that then go to our e-commerce page directly is extremely high — double digits compared to what we normally see on an average social click through,” said Mary Beech, chief marketing officer of Kate Spade, one of the pilot program brands. She said consumers react more positively to images of product “in situ” on a model or influencer. The brand’s best posts to date have been of handbags with some novelty element, including one shaped like a rabbit from the holiday collection.

“The more posts with shopping tags in them, the more likely someone is to engage, so people are looking for products and this experience is helping them to learn more and hopefully make those purchases,” said Instagram’s Director of Product Marketing Jim Squires.

Brands that already use Facebook’s product catalogue function, which is necessary to self-produce the shopping tags, may automatically be eligible to use the functionality, while others can apply directly to Instagram for access. Squire says the tags will be made available in other regions and categories in the future. In the meantime, Instagram is rolling out analytics capabilities to retailers who will now be self sufficient in posting images with the tags.

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