Snapchat partners with Amazon for push into mobile-commerce

Snapchat is pushing into mobile-commerce by way of visual search, the company announced yesterday.

Users will soon be able to point their smartphone camera at a barcode or product within Snapchat, have the app recognise the item, and present the product listing on Amazon for customers to shop.

“When the barcode is recognised, an Amazon card will appear on-screen, surfacing a link for that product or similar ones available in Amazon,” Snap said in a statement.

“Tap your selection to visit the Amazon App (if you have it installed on your phone) or Amazon.com, where you can complete your purchase or keep browsing.”

Snap notes that the feature will be rolled out “slowly”, but will make the Snapchat the fastest way to shop.

The move comes a week after competitor Instagram expanded it’s mobile-commerce capabilities through it’s successful Stories feature.

According to Instagram, more than 400 million accounts use the Stories function on a daily basis, and one third of the most viewed stories come from businesses.

Despite social channels making it easier than ever for retailers to connect with users, new research from PayPal Australia suggests consumers aren’t quite prepared for the change.

One in three buyers remained nervous while purchasing through social media, as the lines between what constitutes an ad are further blurred.

“Things are evolving so they are not obviously an ad,” PayPal Australia managing director Libby Roy said.

“We see the same (consumer fears) when people are buying from overseas and people are buying from a marketplace when it is a brand they don’t know.”

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