Social media platforms are now considered very valuable tools for many people. First and foremost, they allow users to connect with family, friends, and others no matter where they are. Socialization is indeed their primary focus. But over the years, they have evolved and penetrated different areas in our lives. Enter the Twitter Shops!
For example, websites like Twitter have allowed people to hear about breaking news mere seconds after the event happened. Also, country presidents, prime ministers, and government organizations can use the platform to make announcements. Important organizations like WHO can do that, too, as they did in response to COVID-19. In short, social media websites allow speedy dissemination of information.
The global health crisis has underscored the importance of e-commerce. And social media companies have made their moves to integrate that into their platforms. For instance, Meta has a Marketplace, and even TikTok has added Shopping features.
The microblogging website Twitter tried social e-commerce before they did. However, it discontinued the feature long ago. But with the industry’s accelerated growth, Twitter is making a comeback to the scene. Perhaps, they were just ahead of their time!
Twitter’s Shopping Features
In 2015, Twitter started testing shopping on the platform with the “Buy Now” button. Unfortunately, that experiment was not fruitful enough for Twitter to keep the feature. So, the company stepped back to focus on other areas. At the time, society wasn’t really accepting the concept of Social Buying, as the internet was rife with scams, and many people still weren’t accustomed to buying things online. It seems fate had other plans to get humanity quickly acclimated to the new societal norm of online shopping.
At present, social e-commerce is one of the industry’s main focuses. And so, last year, Twitter launched Shopping Modules – now Shop Spotlight. That is its first step in testing out the potential for shopping on Twitter.
Shop Spotlight builds a bridge that allows people to cross from talking about products to actually purchasing them.
When people visit business profiles with this feature enabled, they will see a carousel of products. They can scroll through and tap on a single product to learn more and purchase. The best thing is that they don’t need to leave Twitter for that. Users can buy seamlessly in an in-app browser.
Shop Spotlight allows brands to display five products in a dedicated space at the top of a profile. The feature was available to a handful of brands in the United States. People who use Twitter in English and iOS can see Shop Spotlight.
This feature builds upon Twitter’s efforts around the Professional Profiles, another feature it launched earlier.
Aside from Shop Spotlight, Twitter also introduced Live Shopping. Live streams are another type of content that the pandemic helped grow. A trend in this space is Live Selling, where the streamers/influencers showcase products that the viewers can buy.
Social media platforms, including Twitter, have streamlined the experience to support their content creators. They introduced Live Shopping features.
While you are watching a Live Shopping stream on Twitter, you can take several actions. For starters, you can check out the Shoppable Banner and Shop Tab on the Live event’s page. Furthermore, viewers can switch between the Shop Tab and the Latest Tab throughout the Livestream. That allows one to be a part of the conversation as they check out products.
Additionally, you can continue to watch the Livestream on the merchant’s website within an in-app browser. Therefore, you would not miss anything while you are making a purchase.
Twitter did its initial testing of the Live Shopping feature with Walmart. Singer, songwriter, and dancer Jason Derulo hosted that Livestream, which is the first shoppable one on the platform.
The company wrote that Livestreaming on Twitter gives businesses the power to engage with their most influential fans. And it believes adding shopping to this experience will attract a receptive audience and keep them engaged.
Twitter Shopping Manager
The shopping features on Twitter will not be successful without the merchants. Thus, it is imperative to ensure that they are satisfied with the experience. So, Twitter also started testing the Shopping Manager last year. It will be the sellers’ one-stop-shop for managing how they appear on Twitter.
Twitter Shops: Twitter’s Latest Social e-Commerce Feature
In March 2022, Twitter launched the beta experiment for the latest addition to its Twitter Shopping family. That feature is the Twitter Shops.
This feature will allow merchants to add a “View Shop” button to their profiles. The said button will appear just above their tweets.
You will get into the merchant’s online shop by tapping that button. There, you will find a maximum of 50 products which you can buy. Then, you can tap an item if you want to buy that. That will open up an in-app browser that contains more information about the product. The in-app browser will also allow you to checkout on the merchant’s website.
Twitter Shops gives merchants more space to showcase their products than Shop Spotlight. That’s a solid 900% increase in the number of products they can sell on the platform.
However, the latter allows the merchants to display products at the top of their profiles. Meaning they are already visible as soon as you open their pages. Thus, Twitter Shops is not exactly replacing Shop Spotlight.
For the beta test of the feature, Twitter only made it available to select merchants and managed partners in the US. That includes @Verizon, @ArdenCove, @LatinxInPower, @GayPrideApp, and @AllIDoIsCookUS.
And just like Shop Spotlight, it is not available worldwide, at least for now. Only users in the US who use English on Twitter and on iOS devices can view and interact with Twitter Shops.
Twitter wrote that they want the Twitter Shops to be the home for merchants on Twitter. There, they can curate a catalog of products for their audience. Moreover, they can build upon the product discussions already happening on the platform. And they can do that by giving users a point of action where a conversation can become a purchase.
What’s to Expect From Your Followers
Twitter promises that it will find ways to make Twitter Shops more discoverable as the test progresses. That is much needed because you can’t access them unless you visit a merchant’s profile.
Aside from that, Twitter aims to make the feature available to more merchants and shoppers. And last, it plans to increase the number of products merchants can display in their shops. The current most effective approach on Twitter up until this point has been to amass as large of a Twitter following as possible and occasionally drop Tweets about your products while spending 80% of your time demonstrating value and contributing to your niche. This could come in the form of answering questions or posting custom memes that only insiders of the niche would understand and appreciate.
This works well because every niche is filled with people who want to monetize their presence in a niche, no matter what verticle it is, and the best way to do that is to engage with and share great Tweets like the memes you make on a daily basis! Once you repeat this process every day for a few years you’ll quickly find the rewards are exponential thanks to the psychological impact of Social Proof. Essentially, the more people that follow you, the more likely the next user will be to follow you when they come across one of your posts. The algorithm reinforces this as it continues to send your tweets into the same batch of Twitter timelines of everyone in your niche. Before you realize it, you’ve got ten thousand followers and your Tweets draw in 100+ clicks consistently that result in at least one sale.
How Twitter Shops Multiplies the Value of Twitter Followers via Social E-Commerce
We’re all accustomed to the statistic called “conversion rate”, right? Well, using the last example, if you can push 100 clicks to the website of a given product or service – you know roughly 5% will convert with regularity. The fundamental value proposition of Twitter Shops is that it makes the actual Tweet itself the final landing page of the product. This means that the 100 click-throughs are not as important as the 2000 “Tweet Impressions” that the same Tweet earned. You can now apply the 5% conversion rate to the “Tweet Impressions”, and you’ll be much happier with the final number.
This makes the actual value of Twitter Followers much higher, which in turn makes Twitter more valuable. It can be argued this was inevitable for Twitter to do to monetize the site properly, especially if Twitter Shops can incorporate Reviews and feedback on the products themselves for everyone to see, share, and interact with. This will skyrocket the demand for brands buying Twitter Followers, and once a Social E-Commerce Conversion Rate is established for Twitter, will raise the water on all Twitter Influencer marketing boats, so to speak.
This means if you were getting paid $100 to promote a product via a Tweet, you can demonstrate with real numbers a value proposition that could be $2000 per sponsored tweet. Imagine how quickly the headlines will talk about how fast Twitter changed overnight as corporations around the world suddenly realized they’ve been sitting on a gold mine this entire time, and they only now picked up the figures.
Our Advice and Recommendations for Twitter Shops
As we’ve just demonstrated, once an industry average for social conversion is widely known, we expect to see a massive widespread increase in the basic value of nearly everything on the platform. Now is the time to get ahead of this, as your rewards will be exponentially increased when the shift happens and Twitter Shops are widespread across the business world.
There are lots of ways to increase your Twitter Following before this is well known, so take every approach and use every option you have now. In the future, people will be more hesitant to follow brands as they begin to realize they are signing up for advertising venues and will psychologically distance themselves from brands in new ways.