Instagram Introduces Native Payments

Instagram Introduces Native Payments

Every time I move to a new city, the search for a new barber begins. I start scouring Instagram for a place that is turning out clean cuts.

Finally, I find one that I like and now I have to make a reservation, how daunting. I could call the shop…but it’s 2018, who calls anymore? So, I head to the shop’s website, which usually means encountering a reservation application that’s not ideal for user experience.

Once I make my reservation I wonder if the entire process was worth it, and start shopping for at-home clippers on Amazon. Then I cut my hair myself, obviously ruin it, and the whole process has been a disaster. 

Ok, so maybe that was a bit dramatic, but switching between apps or loading websites in-app is never a fun process.

Well, earlier this week, we found out Instagram is going to make that process a lot easier with a native, in-app payments feature.

First reported by TechCrunch, Instagram will begin rolling out payments to a few partners with the idea of expanding in the future.

The payments can be seen on some of the partner clients of the restaurant booking app Resy. 

According to Instagram, you will eventually be able to buy movie tickets within the app and book and pay for services. TechCrunch confirmed that the payment feature is available to certain users in the US at this time.

Where will it go from here?

It truly seems like the possibilities are endless. Looking at ads specifically, I could see the payments feature being added to timeline ads. You see a sneaker, a shirt, an electronic that you want, and when you click ‘shop now’ it opens an in-app checkout feature.

Pick your size, enter your shipping info, pay, and just like that your new kicks are on the way.

This seems like a no-brainer. Instagram is one of the main platforms where consumers find new products and brands they are interested in. And to cut out the middleman should only lead to more purchases by consumers.

On a larger scale, this could be a sign that Facebook and Instagram have their sites set on taking on monster eCommerce sites like Amazon and Walmart in the future.

Is it a battle they can win? Who knows. On the one side, you have the benefit of being the main platform for showcasing new products and campaigns. On the other side, Amazon and Walmart have the experience and trust of the public.

It will be interesting to watch how this move by Instagram impacts the eCommerce landscape going forward. What are your thoughts on the new updates? Tweet us @socialfly with your predictions!

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