Insight July 1, 2020

What You Need to Know About Shoppable Posts


Long gone are the days when social media’s sole function was to keep up with your friends. Since the dawn of Six Degrees more than 20 years ago, platforms have seen a shift in their function again and again. One of the newest shifts is the focus on shoppable posts.

Businesses have taken advantage of social commerce since the ability to accept payments online. But in the last few years, brands have taken e-commerce to new heights with the help of shoppable posts. As companies adjust through the COVID-19 pandemic, this feature is more useful and popular than ever.

What Are Shoppable Posts?

Before Instagram introduced the shoppable post feature, the only way to send users to your website was through the link in your bio or an ad. Now, consumers are able to click directly on an image and buy the items shown, without leaving the app. Users can see not only what products are for sale, but also their price and description.

To get started with shoppable posts on Instagram, you need a business account and a product catalog on Facebook. Once you enable shoppable posts, the process of creating them is as easy as tagging someone in a photo.

Pros and Cons of Shoppable Posts

Before your business dives into shoppable posts, you should determine if this strategy is a good fit for your long-term goals. The value in activating this feature is easy to see, but it could have some effects on your overall user experience (UX) and bottom line.


  • 130 million Instagram users tap on shoppable posts every month.
  • There is an immediate purchase potential without extra barriers to hinder the sales process.
  • Instagram connects with many e-commerce tools, such as BigCommerce and Shopify, for easy integration.
  • Once an Instagram account is set up to sell, the process for tagging items and making posts shoppable is simple and timely.


  • Shopping within the Instagram app does not allow the same UX as on the mobile or web version of your site.
  • User data is limited through Instagram checkout. Businesses are given only the data they need to fulfill the order. This could affect retargeting your audience and make a dent in your retention funnel.
  • The Instagram audience skews younger with two-thirds of U.S. adult users falling between 18 and 29, which could exclude some key targets.


What Other Platforms Have Shoppable Posts?

Other platforms where social commerce is common, such as Facebook, do not yet utilize shoppable posts. Unlike Instagram, these platforms have long allowed businesses to link directly to their website, driving sales.

Pinterest, while allowing direct links in its functionality, also allows for shoppable pins. As of this month, shoppable pins are now shown in visual search results. This means they will be directly served up to users looking for the featured products. Like Instagram, this feature requires a business account and online catalog.

If your business is considering jumping into social commerce, now is the time. Retailers selling non-essential goods have seen increases of double and triple digits in online sales due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

inferno is ready to help you take your business to the next level in the e-commerce space. If you need a new website, a marketing strategy, or social media management, contact us today to discuss your needs with one of our account executives or a digital expert.