Target has begun making products available through Instagram Checkout, saying it’s the first mass retailer to do so.
Minneapolis-based Target said yesterday the solution, designed by its technology team, allows customers to buy products displayed in @Target and @TargetStyle posts directly through Instagram, and without having to leave the social media site.
The @Target Instagram page features such items as food, housewares, home goods, baby/kids and apparel. Categories on the @TargetStyle include skin care, makeup, nail care, clothing and accessories, and footwear.
To buy an item via Instagram Checkout, Target customers click on a shopping bag icon in the lower corner of the Instagram post. (Image courtesy of Target)
“More and more guests are searching for digital shopping options, and we’re continuing to invest in experiences that allow them to get what they need from Target whenever, wherever and however they want,” Dawn Block, senior vice president of digital at Target, said in a statement. “We know our guests are already using Instagram, so we’re making it even easier for them to find and buy the quality, affordable products they expect from Target.”
Instagram Checkout at Target works as follows: Each purchase-enabled Instagram post is marked with a shopping bag icon in the corner. Consumers then tap on a product, select preferences such as size or color, and check out. For the first purchase, customers will need to enter shipping and payment information at checkout. Target said that, after the first purchase, customers can complete the process in two clicks while remaining on the Instagram site.
“We want to make it easy for people to instantly shop every product they discover on Instagram,” commented Justin Osofsky, chief operating officer at Menlo Park, Calif.-based Instagram. “That’s why we collaborated with Target to set up a virtual store that makes discovery to purchase seamless right in the app with Instagram Checkout.”
Target saw explosive digital sales growth for its first quarter ended May 2, fueled by changing shopper behavior during the COVID-19 pandemic. Online sales jumped 141% on a comparable basis, with digital comp sales rising each month during the quarter, from 33% growth in February to 282% growth in April. Same-day pickup and delivery sales soared 278%.
“To put this volume into perspective, on an average day in April, our operations were fulfilling many more items and orders than last year’s Cyber Monday, a day for which we had planned months ahead at the time,” Target Chairman and CEO Brian Cornell said in a conference call with analysts. “In contrast, this unprecedented surge in volume was completely unexpected at the beginning of the quarter, and it ramped up from normal trends in a matter of weeks.”
More than 5 million customers shopped on Target.com for the first time during the quarter. “One thing we’ve observed about this crisis is that it is causing an acceleration in consumer trial and adoption of digital shopping,” Chief Operating Officer John Mulligan said in the call.
Other large grocery retailers also have increasingly looked to social channels to engage with customers and spur purchases. In December, Albertsons Cos. said it was using a new tool from Pinterest to spotlight its lineup of “Own Brands” private-label products on the social media platform. And earlier last year, The Kroger Co.’s Precision Marketing unit partnered with Pinterest to enable consumer packaged goods (CPG) brands to market more effectively to the retailer’s millions of customers via the platform.