Instagram is replacing the Activity tab with a ‘Shop’ tab for selected users as part of a global test.
The traditional heart icon will be replaced with a shopping bag icon in Instagram’s navigation menu.
Tapping on the new icon will take users to the Instagram Shop section, which was brought back in May.
Previously only available in the United States, Instagram users around the world will now be able to access the Shop section.
Instagram Shopping is a place where users can browse and buy products without leaving the app.
Before having a dedicated tab in the navigation menu, Instagram Shopping could be accessed through the Explore section. It will still be available to users who are not part of the test.
The latest version of Instagram Shop
The version of Instagram Shop, accessible from the navigation menu, is slightly different from the previous version.
In this version, consumers will only see the products of the brands they follow. It’s like a personalized feed of products from brands that consumers are already interested in.
The second version of Instagram Shop, accessible via the Explorer tab, is designed to level products from a wider selection of retailers.
Products can be filtered by category, such as beauty, clothing and accessories, home, jewelry and watches and travel.
Some products can be purchased directly on Instagram, while others will need to be purchased on the retailer’s website.
The goal of testing two different versions of Instagram Shop is to determine the best way to introduce this feature to everyone in the future.
An Instagram spokesperson told Tech Glass:
“This is a small global test of the Instagram Shop tab, which we announced in May. We will use this test to gauge how we decide to take it further. “
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People who are part of the test will be able to find their activity data elsewhere on the Instagram app.
Where is my activity data?
Users who have changed their activity from the Tabshop tab can be assured that their activity section is not completely deleted.
If you’re part of this test, you can now find the Activity tab at the top right of the main feed (with the live message icon).
No worries, this isn’t another iteration of permanently deleting part of the activity that follows Instagram – which is why so many people are still lamenting.
This test is not intended to exclude the activity tab in any way. Rather, Instagram wants to attract its users to the shopping section.
All kinds of businesses can list products for free in the Instagram shopping section, which makes it a great way to get more products in front of more people.
For businesses located in one of Instagram’s collaborative markets, it’s all a product catalog and an Instagram business page.
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A business’s Instagram account also needs to be linked to their Facebook business page.
Combining the two can give the Instagram business page access to Facebook’s catalog manager.
From there, the product can then be enabled for display in Instagram Shopping.
For more information, see Facebook’s Guide to Setting Up Instagram Shopping.