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Twitter’s new ‘Shop Module’ explained

Twitter is rolling out its Shop Module beginning today

Twitter has unveiled its new Shop Module, a space in which users can discover, view and shop for products within the Twitter app. It is the platform’s latest investment in commerce capabilities – an area it says it is still exploring.

Twitter is the latest social platform to debut a commerce function, announcing today that it is rolling out its new Shop Module. Just two weeks after announcing it will be sunsetting Fleets – the platform’s short-lived, Instagram Stories-like ephemeral media function – Twitter is tossing its proverbial hat into the increasingly competitive ring of of social commerce.

With the Shop Module launching as a pilot in the US market today, users can access a new space wherein businesses can exhibit their products. If a user clicks through to a business Twitter profile with the Shop Module enabled, they will be able to browse a carousel of products. They can click to learn more about the product or buy seamlessly.

In a blog post released today, Bruce Falck, Twitter’s revenue lead, said that the company has been investing in the development of commerce features since 2015, when it introduced a ‘Buy Now’ button and product pages (the former of which was eventually killed in 2017). During the company’s Analyst Day event in February – in a session covering the platform’s revenue durability – Falck said: “We know people come to Twitter to interact with brands and discuss their favorite products. In fact, you may have even noticed some businesses already developing creative ways to enable sales on our platform.”

As recently as this spring, Twitter was testing new commerce tools including a ‘Shop’ button that appeared beneath certain organic tweets. Shop Module is the platform's latest investment in commerce capabilities. The company says it is continuing to test various products and features to determine how to deploy and optimize such tools in order to create better opportunities for users to interact with brands.

With in-app purchasing enabled through the Shop Module, Twitter is the latest in a long line-up of platforms expanding their social commerce capabilities. In May, Instagram – already a key player in the e-commerce space – expanded its commerce offerings with Drops, a new feature promoting brand collection launches.

To support its efforts, Twitter is also assembling a new Merchant Advisory Board, which will “consist of brands that have established themselves as best-in-class examples of merchants on Twitter,” per today’s announcement. Board members will serve as advisors to help businesses of all shapes and sizes succeed on Twitter.

The Shop Module is not only an attempt to build out the platform’s commerce capabilities, but will also add to Twitter’s efforts surrounding Professional Profiles, which launched this April. “With modular components for Professional Profiles, businesses across the globe – from small businesses and legacy brands to creator-founded businesses – will have access to customized profiles with features intended to help drive engagement and business outcomes,” Falck said in the blog post.

The Shop Module pilot is rolling out to a select number of US brands today. Plus, Twitter itself will also be participating: the company says it’s dropping new merch that users can browse and purchase via the Shop Module. As it stands, only US users who use Twitter on an iOS device and in English can access the feature.

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