12th October 2015

Twitter’s Buy Button

Twitter’s Buy Button

Well, it really was only a matter of time once Facebook made their announcement that Twitter would follow suit and adopt the buy button. The new announcement means that you can buy any items that take your fancy on Twitter, right then and there without the inconvenience of redirects. All shop-able items can now be purchased through a one-click procedure. Obviously, this is exciting news for online shoppers already fully engaged in social media, but will it take off across the board? Advances in security technology may have put to bed the concerns and reservations shoppers had about eCommerce in the early days, but this has also been thanks to the growing familiarisation shoppers have with purchasing procedures. This new one click solution, may leave many feeling insecure and suspect, because of how easy and quick the procedure is. Others, millennials in particular, will no doubt relish this new opportunity to shop whilst browsing their social media news feeds, seeing it as one more opportunity to access their favourite brands and products online.

So, how does it all work? Firstly, the Twitter buy button is available on all versions of the site including desktop and mobile, as well as on IOS and android apps. It is powered by payment gateway Stripe and this is all made possible via way of a new product called Relay, unveiled by Stripes San Fransisco owners, earlier this week.  Relay is essentially an API, which enables apps to allow retailers to sell products. It has already been adopted by the likes of Pinterest, for their successful buy button.

To make a purchase on Twitter, all consumers have to do is tap the button embedded on the tweet that contains the product that they wish to buy.  Then an external pop-up appears, whereby users have to enter their shipping information and review the product attributes before confirming their purchases.  An order confirmation is then sent and your details, including shipping and billing information is stored, ready to be used again on your next purchase.

This one-click sales pitch is all well and good, but Relay forget to inform you that the one-click process is subject to the initial purchase, where users have to enter all their details, under going the usual rigmarole before they make their first payment. Payment and shipping information is encrypted and safely stored after your first Twitter purchase and available to be recalled from then on in.  Your card details are never shared with a third party, but if you are extra security conscious, you can always opt to rid your account of all your stored details. That being said, you will have to of course re-enter all your details when you next look to buy on Twitter.

The functionality of the buy button was developed not only by Relay, but also with eCommerce company, Gumroad and social shopping platform, Fancy. The service was rolled out with some great top brands such as Pharell Williams, Burberry and RED, all coming on board.

The buy button, is a huge step in the evolution of eCommerce. Twitter is an internet heavyweight and should its significant volume of users be given the opportunity to purchase products whilst tweeting, sales of any brand that feature on Twitter, will no-doubt see colossal spikes in sales. The buy button is essentially one more way of accessing consumers, this time through social media. It allows brands to access a massive audience and so long as that audience trusts the legitimacy of the buttons safety procedure, no doubt they will start using the button regularly. Watch this space.

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