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Facebook’s new Shops bring online stores to the social network

Published May 19th, 2020 2:00PM EDT
Facebook Shops
Image: Facebook

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  • Facebook Shops are customizable storefronts that businesses can create for free on the social network to show off their products and sell them directly to shoppers.
  • Facebook Shop owners can set a cover image, change the color scheme, and create collections of items that users can browse on Facebook or Instagram.
  • Facebook Shops will also include live shopping features and loyalty programs.
  • Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.

Facebook announced a brand new feature on Tuesday that will change the way people buy and sell products on the social network forever. Facebook Shops are customizable storefronts that allow businesses to show off and sell their products across all of Facebook’s properties for free. Businesses can set a cover image for their Shops, change the color scheme to suit their brand, and group items into collections to make them easier to find.

“People can find Facebook Shops on a business’ Facebook Page or Instagram profile, or discover them through stories or ads,” Facebook explained in a news release on its website. “From there, you can browse the full collection, save products you’re interested in and place an order — either on the business’ website or without leaving the app if the business has enabled checkout in the US.”

Facebook Shops also allows customers to communicate directly with businesses through WhatsApp, Messenger, or Instagram Direct in case they have any questions, need support, or want to track a delivery. In the future, it will also be possible to place an order within a WhatsApp, Messenger, or Instagram Direct chat.

Facebook Shops are powered by third-party services such as Shopify, BigCommerce, and Cafe24. Although they’re free for any business to create, Facebook will give businesses the ability to buy ads, and every time a customer uses Facebook’s checkout option, the business will be charged a small fee. Facebook is framing the launch of Shops as a boon for businesses during the pandemic, but it will certainly be profitable for the social network as well.

QVC fans will be pleased to hear that live video will play a part in Facebook Shops as well. In the release, Facebook explained that businesses will be able to tag products from their Facebook Shops before they go live and have those products appear at the bottom of the video for viewers to click on and check out. Live shopping features are being tested on Facebook and Instagram, and will roll out to more users in the coming months.

Finally, Facebook says that loyalty programs will give shoppers the ability to earn rewards from Shops they frequent, and will make it easy to keep track of your points and rewards as you shop. Shops are rolling out on Facebook today, and will come to Instagram this summer.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.