Welcome to our weekly review of major happenings in the digital space. Here are a few significant updates that might interest you;

  • Shopify & Microsoft Team Up To Help Merchants Reach More Shoppers

Microsoft and Shopify have just announced a new partnership to help Shopify merchants reach more shoppers. With this update, merchants will now have access to more customers via the updated Microsoft Channel app in Shopify.  This will enable advertisers to utilize both the Microsoft Search Network and Microsoft Audience Network. Now, products are automatically eligible to display in the Microsoft Bing Shopping tab and the Microsoft Start Shopping tab free as Product Listing. The program manager at Microsoft Advertising also revealed that Product Ads and Product Listings will “soon” have a Buy Now button to give shoppers a quick checkout option directly from the ad experience. 

Shopify has been making efforts to improve the whole shopping experience for merchants and shoppers. With the recent launch of Shopify Markets, a centralized hub for managing cross-border sales, and the addition of Facebook Pay as a checkout option (in the U.S.), Shopify merchants now have greater control over SEO for their store. The onboarding process of this update is very simple, and it allows merchants to quickly connect with shopping offerings that showcase their products using free and paid listings. This update is currently available to merchants in the U.S. and Canada and will be rolled out to other regions soon. For more information, click here.

  • Facebook Announces New ‘Meta’ Corporate Title, Aligning with the Next Stage of Digital Connection

The news is finally out. Facebook has just announced that it is re-naming the company’s name. From now on, Facebook’s overarching company name will be ‘Meta’. To clear up any confusion, the Facebook app will still remain and still retain its name, as well as the other brand names and identities. The only difference is that Facebook’s various projects will now all come under the ‘Meta’ banner, reflecting its evolving focus on the next generation of digital connection. The company is separating its operational streams into two segments: ‘Family of Apps’, that is Facebook as we primarily know it, via Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger, and ‘Reality Labs’, which will cover its VR and AR technologies and other evolving tech bets. Facebook is also changing its stock ticker from ‘FB’ to ‘MVRS’ on December 1st. For more information about this update, click here.

  • Instagram Makes Links in Stories Available to all Accounts

This is great news for all Instagram users. Instagram has announced that links are now being made available in Instagram Stories for every user and not just those with 10k followers or verified accounts. Now, all users will be able to access the link sticker for Stories, which Instagram introduced as the primary link sharing option in August. 

As noted by users, the addition of the link stickers, as opposed to swipe-up links, has given users more creative control over how links appear within their Stories frames, which could be a good way to drive more referral traffic. However, Instagram noted that new accounts, as well as accounts that repeatedly share content that violates its Community Guidelines, will not have access to the Link sticker. This will provide some safeguards in limiting misuse of the link option. The social app also notes that it is developing new ways to customize the link sticker so that it is clear when someone wants to tap on the link. For more information about the link update, click here

  • Clubhouse Adds Pinned Links to Provide More Context in Rooms

Clubhouse is introducing more context to in-app discussions with a new Pinned Links feature, that will enable users to attach any URL to the top of the room display. Now, moderators will be able to add an external URL link within the room presentation. By tapping the menu at the top right of the screen, then tapping ‘Pin a Link’, any moderator will be able to change or remove the link at any time during the chat. Clubhouse explained that this will now open up more opportunities for engagement. They also noted that it is another opportunity for creators to drive direct benefit from their rooms, which could provide more incentive for them to keep broadcasting, and building community in the app. For more information, click here.

  • Twitter Launches Spaces Recording Option to Some Hosts

Twitter has announced that it is officially launching Spaces recording to selected hosts on iOS. Now, Spaces hosts will be able to switch a toggle in the Space set-up process which will help recording. This will give a new way to share and re-use Spaces audio, and maximize the value of the option. Hosts will be able to download the audio of their Space, which they can then edit as a podcast, or as audio clips to help promote upcoming shows.

This update could greatly expand the value of Spaces, even if it does move beyond the original approach that saw audio social chats gain traction. For more information, click here. 

Thank you for reading. See you next Friday for more news and interesting reads in the digital space.