Instagram is continuing on its quest to become a shopping mall. The platform today announced that all users will be able to tag products, meaning that anyone can sell an item directly from a post. The feature had previously only been available to creators and businesses.
Over the next few months, users will be able to link to products they are wearing or using in the Instagram posts. Business owners will receive notifications when their products are tagged, and brands have the capability to control who tags their products.
Meta-owned Instagram first launched its product-tagging feature in 2016, and since has made several pushes into becoming a full-blown shopping app, with the launch of features like in-app checkout and the ability to tag products in videos, stories and Reels. Around 1.6 million people tag at least one brand on average each week, according to Instagram.
"Product tagging will make it possible for anyone to support their favorite small businesses, share how they styled their looks along with the products they used, and more," Meta spokesperson Anne Yeh told Protocol.
The feature doesn't exactly turn every Instagram user into an #ad-sponsored influencer. According to The Verge, users that tag brands won't make affiliate revenue from purchases made through tagging products. However, the company is testing a program in which some affiliates can make commissions for making sales through recommendations.
Instagram is following Pinterest and Twitter, both of which recently added more shopping features to encourage people to buy and sell on their platforms. Pinterest just recently made it possible to buy things directly on Pinterest, a feature long requested by its users. Twitter expanded its shopping tools in early March, allowing users to set up Twitter Shops to sell goods via their profile pages. Instagram making its platform more shoppable makes sense, given that it reportedly has about 2 billion users, many of whom likely want to share products with friends and family.