To potentially help shoppers discover and exchange gift ideas, Facebook is letting its users share collections on its social media platform. The feature allows consumers to share store links as well as posts that they find in their news feeds, Venture Beat reported.
Some industry observers, however, note that users might be hard-pressed to find items they like. Forrester eCommerce analyst Sucharita Kodali told the outlet, “The issue is Facebook is not a shopping destination for anyone — there is Marketplace, but it’s basically a souped-up version of Craigslist. I think people are challenged to find one thing they like on Facebook, much less a whole slew of things they would aggregate into a collection.”
But Publicis Communications Chief Strategy Officer Jason Goldberg told the outlet that the feature could help a company that sells suitcases — like Away — display an ad to users that have the item in their wish lists. And, in the future, one could see the social network allowing shoppers to buy the item through the platform and possibly receiving a commission on the purchase.
The news comes as Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, announced new ways to discover products in November to make it easier for people to shop during the holidays. In a company blog post at the time, Instagram said the new ways for consumers to come across items come on the heels of its move in September to grow Shopping on Instagram functions with the stickers in Stories rollout. Through the stickers feature, users can learn more about a given item.
The company also announced a shop channel feature called Explore, which enables consumers to shop from the brands they follow as well as come across new brands. And Instagram also added a way for users to save to a new shopping collection: if they discover a item that they must have, they can save it to their Shopping collection to come back to at a later point in time.