The Instagram marketing ecosystem is joining the ranks of Facebook Messenger in offering the ability to pay for things, and even schedule appointments at your favorite spa, restaurant, or other selfie location. The announcement was relatively quiet, most likely because at the moment, Instagram’s payment structures are still being developed. Essentially, it should be viewed as a limited trial run. Still, any business that uses Instagram will instantly recognize that a native payment feature fits hand-in-glove with Insta’s marketing powers. If and when the company fully rolls out these payment features, plenty of small businesses are going to be ready and rearin’ to get on board. Why? Because comfortable payment methods that ask less of the customer and utilize what they’re already using is always a great idea. Accepting credit cards as a small business is one thing. Very soon, your payment tech advancements will be gauged on how well you leverage native payment options like Instagram.
Marketing, in a general sense, is designed to channel that “buy” impulse that is excited in the customer when they come into contact with good messaging. Naturally when there are fewer steps between the product and the customer’s wallet, then a greater percentage of people will take the plunge and purchase the thing.
This is what Instagram Payments is all about. As a company, you’re already putting your product out there in front of people. You’re leveraging Instagram’s highly visual, engaging, and scroll-centric atmosphere to reach your audience. With a native payment option, your message can go directly to their wallet, so to speak, and you can eliminate the clicks that are typically required to navigate away from Instagram, access the website, and check out in the standard way.
Native payment options are really taking off, as technological advances lower the barrier to getting into the payment game. What this means for companies that sell online, is that your system needs to be flexible enough to work with these new additions to the multi-channel ecosystem, in order to stay relevant. As I said, Instagram wasn’t the first, and won’t be the last company to start leveraging its prominence to offer a viable and useful payment option. You don’t have to accept every single payment type out there, but as a small business who is looking for the best payment processing out there, it makes sense to keep an open mind, which will allow you to adopt these new technologies and not get left behind by them.
Remember: just as was said before about the question of whether or not to accept credit cards as a small business, every payment method you don’t accept is a barrier between you and some of your customers—and who would want to do that?