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Retailers must prepare for social media revolution

Retailers need to ensure their back end operations are fit for purpose if they want to cash in on Instagram as a commerce platform, according to digital commerce consultancy firm Tryzens. 

Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram, earlier this week set out his vision to ramp up retail on the platform and connect the dots between shoppers, sellers and the app’s huge number of influencers. 

On the back of this, Andy Burton, CEO of Tryzens, says retailers need to prepare for this next level of shopping on the social media site. 

“Instagram is already used to great effect by retailers and brands looking to communicate with and engage with consumers, but the challenge is that it can be difficult to tempt Instagram’s users off the site and therefore convert ‘likes’ into sales," explains Burton.

“Our research suggests that 85% of millennials reach for their smartphones first when making purchases via the internet, and with one billion people using Instagram every month, the market potential for retailers to capitalise on this move is huge," he says. 

"By working with Instagram, retailers will be able to reach the largest possible audience, who can purchase an item in a matter of seconds due to advancements in simplified payments on websites from the likes of Apple Pay, Android Pay, and PayPal," Burton says. 

Burton says there is 'logical excitement' around Instagram's 'shoppable' content.

"And I am sure we will see further advances in the market as a whole, as additional ways to connect user and brand generated content with an intuitive, immersive and efficient shopping experience come to the fore," he says.

Burton says making the social commerce experience as easy and seamless as possible is critical to increasing conversions. 

"However, retailers need to ensure that their support systems and back end operations are fit for the social media revolution – by which I mean being able to respond to enquiries in near real time, engage with consumers in the right tone of voice, and, ensuring orders are fulfilled effectively, requiring a single view of customer, single view of stock and single view of inventory to be truly agile," he explains.