Instagram is phasing out its Shop tab.
The feature, which first appeared in 2020, will eventually be replaced by a simpler and less personalized version of the existing shopping page, according to an internal memo circulated on Tuesday and obtained by The Information. Meta, the Menlo Park, California-based parent company of Instagram and Facebook, told staffers that the change represented "a new northstar and goals for the commerce organization that are more directly tied to advertising revenue for Meta."
Meta shared a statement with Inc.: "Commerce remains important for Instagram as we continue to make it easier for people to discover and shop products throughout the app from feed, stories, reels and innovations like live shopping and drops."
It's unclear as of yet how the changes to Instagram's shopping page will impact businesses that sell directly on the platform. In July, Instagram added new capabilities to allow customers to place and track orders in direct messages and sellers to request and receive payment in the same thread using Meta Pay.
Currently, the Shop tab gives Instagram users recommendations of shops (brands with storefronts on the app) based on users that they follow and products they've previously bookmarked. The upcoming changes may not have a considerable impact on the way that businesses convert customers directly from their own Instagram profiles, but it could shift how brands are able to attract new audiences on the platform.
Since May 2021 when Apple launched its iOS 14.5 update, which restricted access to third-party cookies, privacy restrictions have presented new challenges to businesses looking to track and target users on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. While Meta has not shared its plan for Instagram's Shop tab, its future design will likely change the way businesses are able to reach customers on the platform.