One-stop shopping and selling is now an even greater possibility on social networking site Twitter after the group’s integration with San Francisco payment solutions provider Stripe.
What’s being lauded as “the missing link” between promoting an item on Twitter and allowing users to purchase it has been forged by a new tool called Relay. By allowing retailers across the US and Europe to attach a ‘Buy’ button to Tweets, selling through the network could be about to get a whole lot easier.
The move translates to ‘one-click buying’ for users of the site, who can complete a transaction without having to migrate to another page.
But caution is still being stressed to the many social sellers that will likely flock to Relay as a result of one of its biggest partnerships to date.
Testing the water
In the lead up to his presentation on social buying buttons at Performance Marketing Insights: London, the world’s biggest gathering of performance marketing professionals, Damien Bennett of digital media agency Net Media Planet is aware of some of the debates surrounding Twitter’s new add-on.
According to Bennett, the partnership is a “logical” step for Twitter; coming amid efforts from retailers in simplifying the path to purchase in order to bring down their rates of cart abandonment.
However, three issues attached to the introduction and popularity of buying on social networks still remain.
“The first is where the lines will be drawn with regards to fulfilment, the second will be a concern around the impact of losing some of the customer experience to a third party, and the third will be around the ownership and use of customer data,” he comments.
“With this solution in its infancy only time will tell exactly how it plays out.”
Bennett touches on some of the external considerations that retailers will have to confront as they hand a crucial phase of the purchase process over to Twitter and Stripe. In providing a rundown of sales and customers obtained via the network, both firms will gain crucial insights into what sells and to which audience.
From there, the network will be able to increase the amount it can do for retailers in terms of providing information on prospective buyers.
Positives in store
Yet, for all the caution, the move also has some exciting implications for Twitter, not least for users of the site’s paid-for ad options.
“One thing that will be interesting to see is whether the ‘Buy Now’ button is exclusive to Twitter Ads, or whether they will allow it to be integrated with product endorsements,” Bennett adds.
“For example, when Cristiano Ronaldo endorses the latest Nike football boots, will he have the ability to use a “Buy Now” button to make it as easy and possible for his avid followers to purchase a pair?”
Bennett sees an effective “Buy Now” button as a way for Twitter to finally commercialise the Tweets of product endorsers and influencers that attain great value from the platform at no cost.
From today, retailers can use Stripe’s range of APIs to bake ‘Buy’ buttons into their posts on Twitter, with Levi’s Oakley and Ted Baker among the early adopters.