• Krystal D'Souza

Instagram's New Shop Tabs and Reels

You may have noticed that Instagram recently had a complete redesign of the app. But why? Why change something that is already working for so many of us? The simple answer is: to keep us on our toes, stay current, and be top of mind for our eager followers and interested consumers.



Instagram recently rearranged everyone's home screen and added new features of Reels and a Shop Tab. What does this mean for the average business owner?

Increased Product and Brand Exposure: The new Instagram Reels allow you to easily create, record and edit 15-second video clips to be seen by not only your already existing Instagram followers, but virtually anyone and everyone on Instagram. Since Reels are now quickly accessible, front and centre on users’ home screens, it is now much easier to be found by new consumers if you post Reels on Instagram. Similar to the Discover page, the new Reels page, is not only available to people that are already following your account, but also easily discovered to new users/new accounts. This gives businesses a new way to get eyes on their products, and get noticed quickly and immediately. Purchase Suggestions and Product Recommendations:

The new Shop Tab has the same approach as Reels. Product recommendations are offered based on user search history and social media habits. People are shown products and brands that they could possibly be interested in, but are not currently following. This is also another example of the importance for businesses to integrate their websites with their Instagram pages. Products featured as online purchase suggestions, simply have to be available for purchase directly on the product website, or you risk losing consumer interest altogether.


One-Click Facebook Pay:

Facebook is planning to implement Facebook Pay in the future. They are currently developing it. What a game changer this will be! The new Facebook Pay will allow users to purchase directly in the app with one click, versus clicking on the product, then being taken to the brand's website.


Why fix what ain’t broke?

It’s evident that Instagram/Facebook had to do something to compete with TikTok. And Reels – 15 second multi-clip videos – was the app’s answer. Moving both the Compose button and the Activity tab to the top-right of your home screen, now gives Reels the prominent position of the lower centre button, in hopes of earning popularity and user satisfaction. As explained by Instagram:


"At Instagram, our focus has always been on young people and creators because they’re trendsetters. Change is happening quickly right now, including how both of these groups use Instagram and engage with the world. This year, with the pandemic and much of the world sheltering in place, we’ve seen an explosion in short, entertaining videos on Instagram."


Unfortunately the new Reels feature hasn't had the warmest welcome because, quite frankly, it isn't as easy to use as TikTok. It has gained “meh” reviews in its early days of release. The social media world waits in anticipation for the app’s next move, while the team at ThinkHatch can’t wait to see what the social media giants are hatching next.


Krystal D’Souza, Director | Design & Social


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