Everything is stores

Ugh, even Twitter is a store now

Twitter Shops is the latest venture into e-commerce by a social media company. When will it end?

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Twitter has launched a beta test for Twitter Shops, a new feature that lets merchants feature up to 50 of their products directly on Twitter. The beta is available for English-speaking, U.S.-based Twitter users who use Twitter’s iPhone app.

Twitter already has Live Shopping and a Shop Module that shows a carousel of up to five products, but Twitter Shops takes the bird app shopping experience to another level. The feature gives sellers a dedicated profile link that Twitter says is “fully-immersive” and, crucially, doesn’t require you to leave Twitter — and interrupt your scrolling experience — to shop.

Though Twitter Shops lets you peruse products, it doesn’t actually allow you to purchase things directly. Once you’ve browsed a merchant's offerings, you’ll have to navigate to another webpage to complete your purchase. Like TikTok’s shopping feature, the money exchange happens in an in-app browser. Twitter says it will not monetize the feature while it’s in beta.

“When you go to the profile of a merchant that has Twitter Shops enabled, you’ll see a ‘View shop’ button just above their Tweets,” reads a blog post from two of Twitter’s project managers.

Some of the businesses with Twitter Shops enabled thus far include @Verizon, @ArdenCove, @LatinxInPower, @GayPrideApp, and @AllIDoIsCookUS.

Location, location, location — Sellers want to be where the people are, and the people are on... Twitter. While online ads can direct potential customers to an e-commerce webpage, clicking away to a shopping site can disrupt a user’s social media experience (read: friction). As sellers work to sand away every last bump that slows down your purchase, consumers get speedy shopping experiences popping up everywhere we go (read: frictionless).

Everything is a store now. Instagram is a store! Facebook is a store! TikTok, which has a booming live shopping feature, is a store! Twitter is a store! It’s stores all the way down.