Ecommerce Product Releases: June 2, 2022

Here is a list of product releases and updates for the end of May from companies that provide services to online retailers. There are updates on social commerce, customer service, omnichannel solutions, returns, live streaming and shoppable video.

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Ecommerce Product Releases

eBay made easy with Snapchat. Snapchatters can now share eBay listings with friends using the Snapchat camera on Android and iOS. First, open the eBay app and select any listing. Tap the share icon and select the “Snapchat” option to automatically jump to the Snapchat camera with the automated eBay sticker. Create an original snapshot with the eBay sticker and overlay them with any creative tools. When Snapchatters send a Snap with an eBay sticker to their story or directly to their friends, the recipient or viewer can tap the eBay sticker to jump to the listing.

Screenshot of eBay listings on Snapchat

eBay listings on Snapchat

Facebook and Instagram introduce recurring notifications. To help businesses have more meaningful conversations, Meta has announced recurring notifications for the Messenger platform. Recurring notifications allow businesses to send automated messages to encourage re-engagement and keep the conversation flowing right in the thread. Create personalized messages on a selected topic, e.g. B. Product discovery recommendations, product alerts, discount codes and product service reminders. Send messages daily, weekly or monthly. Consumers are shown the topic and frequency in advance and are required to opt-in before businesses can send recurring messages.

YouTube teases expansion of live stream shopping At its first-ever Upfronts media conference, YouTube announced new features designed to help creators and advertisers connect with their audiences in more meaningful ways. Later this year, two channels will go live and co-host to unite communities into a single live shopping stream. With live redirects, creators can start a live shopping stream on their channel and then redirect their audience to a brand’s channel so fans can continue watching.

Zowie Closes $14 Million in Series A Funding. Zowie, an AI-powered chatbot technology built for e-commerce teams looking to increase revenue through customer support, announced a $14 million Series A funding led by Tiger Global Management on. Zowie integrates with all ecommerce tools like Shopify, Recharge, Klaviyo, and more. Out-of-the-box automation, powered by an open API, allows Zowie’s customers to quickly set up automations such as order status, subscription management, package tracking, and more. This latest round of funding will support Zowie’s mission to enable better online customer experiences and expand its automation capabilities to new channels, including email. Other investors in the round include Gradient Ventures (Google’s AI-focused fund), 10x Founders (investor in Revolut, Robinhood, Adyen) and The Inovo Group, as well as strategic investor Jack Altman (CEO at Lattice).

Screenshot of the Zowie homepage

Zowie

Meta opens up WhatsApp to all businesses and developers with a new cloud-based API. Meta makes WhatsApp available to any business of any size by offering free, secure cloud hosting services through its new cloud-based API. With the new API, businesses and developers can quickly access and build directly on WhatsApp to further customize their experience and increase the speed with which they can respond to their customers. WhatsApp is also working on expanded capabilities for these companies to help them take operations beyond a few individuals and continue to strengthen their brand online. An advanced feature includes the ability to manage chats on up to 10 devices to better manage a flow of conversations. These services will also eliminate costly server expenses for partners and provide instant access to new features. Organizations can sign up directly or work with an enterprise solution provider to get started.

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TikTok announces live subscription. TikTok Live empowers developers to inspire, entertain, and connect with engaged communities in real time. TikTok introduced Live Subscription, a monthly subscription that allows people to show their appreciation for their favorite Live creators. Live Subscription allows creators to increase their earnings while continuing to grow their community, and offers engaged communities the opportunity to regularly thank their favorite creators. Subscribers receive badges that appear next to their name on their profile and are updated over time. Subscribers get access to exclusive emotes customized by the creators during live sessions. And when subscribers-only chat is enabled, creators and their subscribers have exclusive access to each other. Live Subscription will be available to creators only by invitation only later this month and will later be available globally.

ManyChat launches WhatsApp chat marketing automation. ManyChat, a marketing platform serving 1.5 million businesses, announced the launch of WhatsApp Chat Marketing Automation. The new channel will allow brands using WhatsApp to communicate with customers and automate chat marketing and customer support. Businesses can now automate campaigns to increase sales, answer FAQs, or quickly route customers to live chat agents using WhatsApp automation. Users save time by creating automated responses to customer inquiries and quickly raising concerns that typically require an administrator’s attention.

Screenshot of ManyChat WhatsApp product page

ManyChat

WooCommerce announces partnership with TikTok. WooCommerce announced a strategic alliance with TikTok to connect the 3.7 million Woo-powered stores and the TikTok community with a new extension, TikTok for WooCommerce. Now available on the WooCommerce Marketplace, the extension allows merchants to sync their catalog with TikTok and promote products through ads to its 1 billion active users worldwide. Merchants can now create native, shareable “in-feed” TikTok ads right from their WooCommerce dashboard, including an embedded smart video generator that simplifies the process by creating video ads using existing product images. The integration enables an enhanced TikTok pixel on a merchant’s website for ongoing tracking of campaign performance. It offers priority access to all e-commerce features that TikTok plans to release in the coming months.

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Fast Simon launches the no-code editor. Fast Simon, a player in AI-powered shopping optimization, announced a new no-code search and collection editor. The interface provides a drag-and-drop visual page builder with a publishing and hosting platform, eliminating the need for coding and reducing the time and cost of delivering optimized shopping experiences. With the no-code editor, merchants can build front-end pages on major ecommerce and headless platforms and deliver personalized experiences without high upfront costs. The interface integrates with all major ecommerce and headless platforms including Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento, WooCommerce, and Shopify Hydrogen.

Cycleon introduces omnichannel returns management. Cycleon, a returns management company for fashion, retail and electronics brands, has implemented omnichannel returns management. The new service simplifies returns processes and makes them scalable by integrating all returns flows and offering brands a single point of contact. Items are registered, consolidated and revised in Cycleon’s network of decentralized warehouses before being transported to their final destination. Brands can use Cycleon’s returns portal and draw on the already established ecosystem of local carriers, logistics providers and development partners.

Instacart announces new shoppable video and display ads. Instacart announced two new advertising integrations: Shoppable Video Ads and Enhanced Shoppable Display Ads. These new formats add experiences to Instacart’s ad product suite to give brands a more immersive way to tell stories, engage audiences, and drive sales. Shoppable video and shoppable display enable consumer goods brands to shorten the user’s journey from awareness and product discovery to purchase—all in one media unit. Advertisers can now promote engaging, targeted, and creative content to consumers shopping at their favorite retailers on Instacart. Dove, Mondelēz International, PepsiCo and S.Pellegrino are among the first consumer products brands to test Instacart’s shoppable video and shoppable display products.

Screenshot of the Instacart Ads homepage

Instacart Ads

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