Facebook keeps trying to become the only place for its users spend their digital life by expanding into other markets. The social giant is transforming the News Feed once again, this time to make Facebook a one stop shopping destination.
The company said that it has begun trials for a few new ways that its users can shop using the Facebook app. According to Facebook, a new Shopping section will become visible in the coming weeks that will be a “single place for people to more easily discover, share, and purchase products.”
Ads will also change and allow users to browse products in a fast-loading, full-screen experience from within the app. These immersive ads are called Canvas and will let users view complete catalogues available from the related merchants. Sort of like Instant Articles but for ads, so users don’t leave Facebook when viewing these ads.
These steps are new but “buy” button has been around for a while letting users buy stuff while using the social network. Shop sections had been introduced for Small businesses and Pages some time ago as well. Today’s post also included Carousal Product ads and new Shopping sections alongside the Buy button.
The Shopping Feed will be a single place for buying all kinds of products. It will be accessible from the Favorites section of Facebook app’s navigation menu. The section uses a familiar interface and looks like a Timeline. Users can select which brands to view from their Facebook Pages. Other things like connections, likes and friends also contribute to the catalog of products visible to each user.
Facebook wants its users to spend more time on the network. It had previously teamed up with e-commerce service Shopify which enables retailers who use Shopify to sell their items directly on the new Shop section on Facebook pages. The company wants businesses to realize that going this way would be more beneficial than having their own online outlets.
Also read: Could Facebook Replace Websites for Small Businesses?
The company said in blog post “On Facebook we’ve seen that people are coming to our platform not only to connect with friends and family but also with products and brands”. It stated that nearly half the users use Facebook to actively look for products.
Facebook has a bigger goal planned. The more that the users stay on the social network, the more advertisers will have to pay to for their products. Just like the company convinced several big names to share their news stories directly on Facebook, the company is now trying to convince retailers to sell using the platform. The direction is similar to what giants like AliExpress, Amazon and eBay are doing; letting merchants use their platform to sell products.
All in all, Facebook’s mission to absorb the internet continues.