Instagram took its next step to becoming a full-fledged commerce business a few days ago, announcing that it is bringing a checkout feature to its mobile apps. With checkout, you can store your payment informationwith Instagram to make purchases more quickly. In return, Instagram is charging retailers a selling fee. More than 20 brands will use checkout to start, including Nike, Adidas, Dior, H&M, MAC Cosmetics, Michael Kors, Oscar de la Renta, Prada, Uniqlo, Warby Parker, and Zara. Instagram believes shopping represents a massive new business opportunity. It was reported that 130 million people a month tap on product tags in shopping posts.
Where shopping via Instagram used to take the buyer to an external website, it’s now all done within the app, including notifications about shipment and delivery, etc. Users will need to enter their name, billing and payment information, and shipping address only the first time. After that, it’s literally shopping at the tap of a screen. For now, payment information stored with Facebook will only be used on Instagram. But it’s easy to imagine Facebook letting you use your credentials elsewhere in its family of apps. In the meantime, Facebook says it won’t share your payment information with other users or with retailers. Now is the time for Instagram users to ensure that their passwords are secure. Better yet, take advantage of the two-factor authentication that Instagram offers, especially once all of your billing information is connected to your account.