Instagram launched a new @shop account managed by an internal team that curates shoppable posts from across the app.

“Content featured on @shop will be 100% community-trends driven. The team managing @shop will work with the Community Labs team at Instagram to identify trends, brands and creators that are of interest to our community so the account will be a real-time indicator of what’s new and emerging on Instagram,” said an Instagram spokesperson.

At launch (with fewer than 15 posts) the account featured products from Feel Jeans, Cafuné, The Lip Bar and more, all with product tags that lead to product pages on the app, listing the item’s price and a link to purchase the product.

Why we should care

While the @shop content is 100% driven by trends and emerging brands, and managed by an Instagram team, it is another step Instagram is taking toward its e-commerce initiatives.

Curated by Instagram employees, the content boosts exposure for brands and creators and, most likely, will make them more inclined to create their own shoppable posts. It is also expanding the reach of the featured brands, giving them a small boost with their e-commerce efforts on the app. Companies may not have any control over their products being featured via the account, but depending on how popular @shop becomes among users, it could boost a brand’s exposure on the platform.

Whether or not posts from brands in Instagram’s Checkout beta (a program that offers in-app checkout capabilities) will be featured on the @shop account remains to be seen. But, if so, it would be a short hop for users who follow the account to see something they like in their feed and then click to buy it on Instagram.

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