ShopStyle

San Francisco-based fashion search engine ShopStyle is upping the ante on efforts to help its Collective members monetize their Instagram Stories.

A new feature rolled out Tuesday seeks to increase the potential for increasing purchases by directing customers to a new landing page. That is, once a customer uses the “swipe up” function on Instagram Stories, they’re routed to a product page letting them either buy the product or save it to their inbox to review at another time.

ShopStyle’s affiliate network, called The Collective, makes up one part of its business, partnering influencers with fashion and beauty brands to generate affiliate links. The company’s business is also consumer facing by serving as a fashion search engine to connect consumers and brands.

The improved capability for Instagram Stories is aimed at aiding that latter group in hopes of increasing conversion rates via Instagram Stories. ShopStyle said conversion on Instagram via the swipe-up action is about 20 times lower than if someone were shopping on a mobile web browser.

“The problem for us really is when you look at the Instagram browser,” explained ShopStyle vice president of product Brent Locks, adding the focus for Instagram is keeping people within the application and stemming the flow to outside the network.

“It’s not good for shopping,” Locks went on to say. “For shopping, you need a couple more tools in your tool belt.”

Locks contends the new feature aims to offer the trifecta in solutions by helping influencers make more money, increase conversions for retailers and make it easier for consumers to shop from Instagram Stories.

What sort of conversion rates the new capability will bear out remains to be seen. The company’s not promising anything specific, but it is guaranteeing some sort of increase, Locks said, adding ShopStyle is “overly confident” the process will be improved so that there are more orders and more traffic for influencers and retailers alike.

“It’s really about tailoring something to a very specific experience,” Locks said. “It’s not that we think what Instagram is doing is bad. I think they’ve built a great native browser. It’s about us looking at data and identifying we have a subset of users around a specific objective around driving traffic and conversion. That’s really what we’re trying to do here.”

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