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Here’s what you need to know about Amazon Inspire (the new in-app shopping experience)

Amazon is always creating new tools and resources to make your work as an influencer easier and more fruitful. Inspire – the company’s new in-app shopping experience that was announced this December – brings product discovery capabilities to the platform via a personalized feed of shoppable posts and videos. The idea behind this launch is encourage casual scrolling on the Amazon app (via a social media like experience) so that consumers can discover products and make purchases while being entertained.  

When did Amazon launch Inspire

Despite the company starting work on this new feature for creators last fall, Inspire was only launched in the second week of December. The ‘silent’ introduction of this cool new feature (without all the fanfare and widespread announcements) perhaps indicates that Amazon has been working on getting this out without letting its competitors in the social commerce space know what it was up to.

How will Inspire fit in with Amazon Live?

Amazon Live has been the most prominent livestream shopping platforms in the US thus far. While competitors like YouTube, Pinterest, Shopify, TikTok, Instagram, and others have either launched or announced similar initiatives – nothing has come quite close to Amazon Live in terms of making live stream shopping so practical. Inspire will complement Amazon Live by making it much easier for creators to reach more customers via engaging shoppable posts and videos.

What kind of content can consumers discover via Inspire

The new in-app shopping experience will work  – more or less – like what you see on TikTok. Consumers will be able to discover ideas and explore products from content created by influencers, brands, and other customers. This then enables an integrated shoppable interface that keeps consumers engaged via endless photos and videos that they can swipe through. While at it, consumers can seamlessly shop (in just a few clicks) whenever they find something they may be interested in.

What is Amazon looking to achieve with Inspire?

By launching Inspire, Amazon is clearly looking to get ahead of the social commerce curve before its competitors do so. The content published on Inspire will directly compete for consumers’ attention with the likes of YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, and many others. TikTok is already testing its own in-app shopping features in the U.S., while Shopify is collaborating with YouTube for a live shopping partnership that aims to reach tens of millions of U.S. based customers.

Does Inspire work like a social network within the Amazon app?

Some critics have argued that Inspire sounds more like Amazon Spark – the company’s social network that was launched in 2017 and failed to gain traction. There are similarities in that costumers will need to select a few interests they’d like to follow to personalize their Inspire feeds with relevant content. But it’s also key to note that this is a different time and social commerce has become more of a norm since Covid-19 lockdowns forced shoppers to turn to alternate ways of product discovery. By attracting a large volume of content from hundreds of millions of shoppers, Inspire could cut a niche as the top-tier social commerce network in the country.

Why would a successful Inspire be a game changer for creators?

A key challenge that many social commerce apps have right now is to compel users to visit the app even when they don’t want to shop. People usually open the Amazon app only when they want to buy something. If the goal is just casual browsing, users will go to TikTok or the other social media apps. If Inspire succeeds in a lot of engaging content from creators, then it’d made it likely that consumers will visit the ap just to enjoy the exciting shoppable posts and videos (not just to shop). This would in turn unlock unprecedented product discovery potential that would dramatically enhance the kind of reach that creator content yields on the platform. While some will argue that this possibility is still a long shot, it’s important to appreciate just how this new launch can change how the social commerce ecosystem works.

How do you upload content?

Creators on the Amazon Influencer Program will simply need to upload photos and videos to their Storefront and tag at least one product listed on Amazon. The company will then decide what videos will appear in Inspire. Creators can upload up to 15 videos (simultaneously) within Creator Hub on desktop. Amazon recommends that you upload videos that are full screen and vertical when viewed on mobile to ensure the best experience on Inspire. The recommended maximum video length for Inspire videos is just 30 seconds.

How will creators earn commissions on Inspire

Creators will earn onsite commissions when their shoppable videos are viewed by customers and result in qualifying purchases. Because videos uploaded to Influencer storefronts have always earned a commission, Inspire will only make it easier for creators to maximize exposure.

2 Responses

  1. Hi Emma! I’m excited about Amazon Inspire. It’s good that Amazon is focusing on vertical video content and giving people another way to discover new products and the content we create. Thanks for the article.

    1. @Ileane Smith, thank you. It’s good when we have a continued stream of innovation and tools that are designed to make our work as creators easier.

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