- Amid its social commerce transition, Instagram is now allowing all U.S. users to add product tags to their posts, the social network announced on Monday.
- Now when users tag items in their posts, others can see detailed product information, such as styles or colors, and buy items through the app or on the brand's page, according to the announcement.
- The platform is also developing product tags for the Instagram Stories feature, per the announcement.
Though Instagram rose to prominence as a photo-sharing app, the social platform has pivoted to emphasize its potential in other areas. Last July, Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram, said the platform would turn its attention toward videos, shopping, creators and messaging. With the COVID-19 pandemic catalyzing the rapid rise of e-commerce, Mosseri noted in a video announcement that it plans to "lean into that trend" by rolling out more social shopping tools.
Instagram has been working to turn the app into a social shopping destination for years. In December 2020, the company debuted Shopping in Reels, a tool that lets sellers and creators tag products on their Reels. In August 2021, it extended ads in its Shop tab worldwide, which allows merchants to advertise to users shopping on the platform. Interested customers can then click on the ads and find more information about brands or products.
Consumers are increasingly shopping via social media. Per a 2021 NPD report, 51% of consumers surveyed saw posts on their Facebook and Instagram feeds that led to a purchase. More customers used Facebook (41%), followed by Instagram (35%) and Pinterest (21%) to discover and learn about products, NPD found.
But as Instagram tries to capitalize on the social shopping trend, so are other social media apps and e-commerce platforms. Companies including Pinterest, Snapchat, Verishop and Poshmark have introduced social shopping tools and experiences to their platforms, too, over the past year or so.