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Twitter pilots new shopping feature

Twitter is expanding its social commerce functionality.

Twitter is diving deeper into social commerce.

The platform is beta testing a new offering called Twitter Shop, which will allow retailers to curate a collection of up to 50 products to showcase to customers on their Twitter profile.  The free feature enables Twitter users to view selected products from the profiles of brands.

When a user visits the profile of a retailer that has Twitter Shops enabled, they will see a “View shop” button just above their tweets. When they tap the button, it will open up that retailer’s shop, where they can scroll through items. When a consumer is ready to make a purchase, they can click on their chosen product, which will open an in-app browser where they can learn more about the product and check out on the retailer’s website.

Twitter’s current Shop Module, initially piloted in July 2021, allows retailers to showcase up to five products directly on their profile. When consumers visit a profile with Shop Module enabled, they can scroll through a carousel of products and tap through on a single item to learn more and purchase seamlessly in an in-app browser, without having to leave Twitter.

Twitter Shops provides a larger, fully immersive virtual space for retailers and brands to highlight a longer catalog of products. Businesses of all sizes can utilize the feature.

Other recent efforts by Twitter to increase its utility as an e-commerce platform include the November 2021 debut of a livestream shopping event from a U.S. retailer, a 30-minute livestream shopping event held by Walmart during Cyber Week.

According to a July 2021 survey of  Bazaarvoice’s Influenster online product review community, shopping via Twitter had grown 300% over the preceding 12 months. Seventy-two percent of respondents strongly agreed or agreed that they were more influenced to shop via social media now compared to a year earlier.

Twitter Shops is currently available to select retailers and managed partners in the U.S. For now, people in the U.S. who use Twitter in English on iPhones will be able to view and interact with Twitter Shops. According to Twitter, users are already discussing Twitter Shops products in tweets.

As Twitter continues to test Twitter Shops, it says it will explore enhancements such as making the feature more discoverable; adding new ways for retailers to tell their brand story; expanding the number of products that can be showcased, and bringing Twitter Shops to more retailers and more consumers.

“People are already talking about products on Twitter,” said Twitter staff product manager Justin Hoang and product manager David Lie-Tjauw in a corporate blog post. “We want Twitter Shops to be the home for merchants on Twitter where they can intentionally curate a catalog of products for their Twitter audience and build upon the product discussions already happening on our service by giving shoppers a point of action where a conversation can become a purchase. Stay tuned – we look forward to making shopping easier than ever on Twitter.”

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