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September 8, 2014

Twitter launches mobile shopping service

Initial launch includes artists, brands, and non-profit organisations.

By Vinod

Twitter has announced its first foray into the ecommerce market with the unveiling of its "Buy" mobile service, which allows customers to make purchases via tweets.

Initially launching to a select number of customers in the US today, the trial scheme allows customers using the iOS or Android Twitter app to purchase goods or content such as songs from registered accounts.

Customers simply need to tap on the new "Buy" option in a tweet, which will take them to a new page with additional product details and prompt them to enter payment and shipment information (pictured below).

BuyNow

Once entered and confirmed, an order is sent directly to the merchant, with the user receiving an email confirmation to the address registered with their Twitter account.

Twitter has partnered with four payment providers, Fancy, Gumroad, Musictoday, and Stripe for the initial trial, and says more will follow soon.

Amongst the accounts participating in the initial launch are music artists such as Pharrell Williams, Eminem and Demi Lovato, and major brands including Home Depot and (RED).

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Twitter says that it hopes that the launch will help be a revolution in the way people interact and shop with brands online.

"Today we are beginning to test a new way for you to discover and buy products on Twitter," group product manager Tarun Jain wrote in a company blog post.

"This is an early step in our building functionality into Twitter to make shopping from mobile devices convenient and easy, hopefully even fun."

Twitter says that no payment or shipping information is shared with the seller, instead being encrypted and safely stored in-house after a user’s first transaction, meaning you can then make future purchases without needing to re-enter all of your information – although the company says you can remove this information from your account at any time.

Although highly expected for a long time, Twitter’s move into the mobile shopping market only really gained steam following the company’s acquisition of leading payments provider CardSpring in July.

In a post on Twitter’s official blog following the deal, the social media site’s head of commerce, Nathan Hubbard, said that the move was part of "the future of commerce on Twitter".

 

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