- Today we’re introducing Facebook Shop, a new place to discover businesses and shop for products in the Facebook app, and we’re expanding checkout on Instagram to all US businesses and creators.
- We’re also making Shops available to any eligible business and adding customization features, messaging and new insights.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the shift to online shopping has rapidly accelerated, with an estimated 85% of people worldwide now shopping online. We want to make shopping easier for people and empower anyone, from an entrepreneur to the largest brand, to use our apps to connect with customers and grow their business. That’s why we’re creating new ways for people to shop on our apps and providing tools to help businesses sell online.
A New Place for People to Shop in the Facebook App
Today we’re introducing Facebook Shop, a new place to discover businesses and shop for products in the Facebook app. Facebook Shop makes it easy for people to find products from businesses they love, discover new ones and make purchases, all in one place. We just started testing this in the US and we launched a complementary shopping destination on Instagram in July, called Instagram Shop, where people can discover and buy products from creators and brands, all in one place.
New Tools for Businesses to Create and Manage an Online Store
One of the easiest ways for businesses to showcase their products on Facebook and Instagram is through Facebook Shops. Shops makes it simple for businesses to set up a single online store that customers can access on both Facebook and Instagram. We launched Shops in May, and in the coming weeks, we’re making it available to any eligible business and adding customization features, messaging and new insights to help businesses measure results. We’re also expanding checkout on Instagram to all US businesses and creators.
These new features give businesses more control over how their digital storefront looks and make creating new collections easier. These include:
- New design layouts for featuring single products or groups of products in Shops
- Real-time preview of collections as they are designed
- The ability to automatically create Shops for new sellers
- New insights to measure results in Commerce Manager
Expanding Checkout on Instagram
In the coming weeks, all eligible sellers in the US will be able to start using checkout on Instagram. Checkout makes it easy for people to make a purchase in just a few taps, without leaving the app. To use checkout, businesses must have Shops and use Facebook Commerce Manager or our partners Shopify and BigCommerce. We’ll support more platform partners soon.
We’re also waiving selling fees for businesses through the end of the year to reduce the cost of doing business online, especially given the current economic crisis.
Connect with Customers Using Messaging and Live Shopping
Messaging through Shops combines the in-store experience of being able to ask a salesperson questions with the convenience of online shopping. Messaging allows businesses to provide personalized assistance so people can make more informed decisions about their purchase. The new messaging button on Shops makes it easy for people to message businesses through Messenger, WhatsApp or Instagram Direct. Customers can view products right within the chat, making it easy to share products with friends and family to get feedback before making a purchase. We’re testing this feature on Messenger and Instagram Direct now, and will start testing it on WhatsApp soon.
With Live Shopping, we’re making it easier for people to shop in real time. We’ve been testing this feature on both Facebook and Instagram, and now Facebook Live Shopping includes new features to help businesses easily set up a live experience featuring products from their Shop and sell directly from the video. Instagram Live Shopping is now available to all businesses and creators using checkout in the US.
Upcoming Changes to the Messenger API
As part of our efforts to update our messaging products in response to new privacy rules in Europe, we are making changes that will impact some developers and businesses using apps enabled by the Messenger API.
Beginning December 16, 2020, several Messenger API features will no longer be available for developers and businesses in Europe, and for people in Europe who connect with businesses on Messenger and Instagram globally.
Examples of some features that will no longer be available via Messenger API include:
- Persistent menu
- One-Time Notification
- Some templates (e.g. Airline, Receipt) and audio/video attachments
- Some templates and buttons on web (e.g. Generic, Button)
These features will continue to be available:
- Sending and receiving text messages and images
- Get Started button
- Ice breakers and quick replies
- Generic template, button template, and media template on Android and iOS only
- URL button, postback button, call button on Android and iOS only
- Private replies, m.me links and the Message Us plugin
- Handover Protocol for Messenger
Relatedly, developers that also use the Instagram Graph API will see some metrics are no longer available. You can see more details here.
What this means for developers
APIs and UI components of the Messenger platform listed above will be unavailable to businesses in Europe in all chats, and to global businesses in chats with people in Europe. Before these changes go live on December 16, we encourage developers to update their experiences that could be affected by these changes – such as those that power Pages in Europe or Pages that receive a significant volume of messages from people in Europe – to use available features instead. For more details on what is changing, please refer to the developer documentation.
We recognize that compliance requires changes to our product experiences, and we’re committed to supporting our partners throughout this process. We’re working hard to bring features back and will provide an update if and when these features are made available again in the future.
ELI5: Docusaurus – Making Documentation Easy
In this post, we will briefly talk about Docusaurus, a website building tool that makes it easy to develop, maintain and deploy a documentation site. If you prefer to learn about Docusaurus in a short video rather than a blog post, go to the Facebook Open Source YouTube channel to watch another episode of ELI5.
The top open source projects on GitHub have their own documentation sites that contain an overview of the project, short getting started guides, in-depth tutorials and project blogs. These resources are key to the success of any open source project, but building, managing and deploying them can be a lot of work. Unless you’re using Docusaurus.
Docusaurus is an open source project for building, deploying and maintaining websites. This project’s main goal is to get you started with your website in a matter of seconds. Beyond creating the site, Docusaurus emphasizes speed of both developer and end users by following the PRPL pattern and by relying on an incremental build for content changes.
Docusaurus allows developers to use tools they already know like Markdown or MDX to write documentation or blogs. With React as the backbone of Docusaurus, developers can customize their website to fit their use case.
The cherry on top is that you don’t have to manually update your documentation every time you update your code. Docusaurus automatically syncs docs to project releases so that you can spend more of your time working on the things you care about.
Where is it used?
Docusaurus was first released to the public by the Facebook Open Source team in 2017. Since then, this project has been used by a large number of the Facebook open source projects and by over 100 external projects.
Where can I learn more?
Want to learn more about Docusaurus? You can find extensive documentation and tutorials covering a wide range of topics on building and customizing your site. If you want to engage with the community, feel free to join the Discord channel or talk to the team on Twitter.
About the ELI5 series
In a series of short videos (~1 min in length), one of our Developer Advocates on the Facebook Open Source team explains a Facebook open source project in a way that is easy to understand and use.
We will write an accompanying blog post (like the one you’re reading right now) for each of these videos, which you can find on our YouTube channel.
2020 Developer Circles Community Challenge regional winners announced
It’s often said that one of the best ways to learn is to become the teacher. That’s why, for this year’s Developer Circles Community Challenge, we invited developers and creators to put an innovative spin on technical education by creating tutorials that showcase the capabilities of Facebook technologies.
Participants created step-by-step written tutorials that demonstrated one or more features of open source tools including Hack, React, React Native, PyTorch and Docusaurus; as well as products including Messenger, Spark AR and Wit.ai.
For their efforts, we offered cash prizes, as well as the opportunity to have their tutorials credited and shared with fellow innovators across the Facebook ecosystem.
Our regional winners
As our first step in deciding the overall winners, we’re very excited to announce our regional winners today.
The teams behind the below inspiring tutorials have each won a US$2,000 cash prize, and will also be invited to make further enhancements to their projects by Monday November 30, in order to have a chance at the global prizes announced in mid-December.
Create Smarter Messenger Experiences on Facebook with Bright
Covid Center Bot (Intermediate)
HayWord | Case Study for Making Real Word Chatbot Messenger
React, Messenger, Wit.AI
IndoNLU: Finetuning Tutorial IndoBERT using PyTorch
How to make Smoke in Spark AR
Create a serverless Messenger bot with Wit.ai
Spark AR – Art Series
Middle East and North Africa
Customer Service Messenger Bot
Build an Encryptor/Decryptor Chatbot on Messenger using Wit
Your Claw Machine
Wit.ai CI and CLI
Job Finder Bot tutorial
Pneumonet-Building an AI COVID-19 Product with Pytorch
Chatbot for Class
Rabbit Coder (Spark AR Tutorial)
Our local language winners
In acknowledgment of our diverse, global community, we’re also pleased to offer a set of special local language prizes for the first time. The below winning tutorials have each won a US$1,500 prize.
Violence Detection in videos
Adding Drag & Drop to React components
React, PyTorch, Docusaurus
HayWord | Case Study for Making Real Word Messenger Apps
React, Messenger, Wit.ai
New building opportunities coming soon
Congratulations to all of these trail-blazing winners, and to everyone who took part in the Challenge. Stay tuned to our Facebook Developer Circles page for more information on our global winners announcement in December!
We’ll also be hosting a range of challenges including hackathons, as well as product immersion opportunities, for developers and creators in 2021. Don’t forget to sign up for our email newsletter to be among the first to know about these initiatives.
Stay safe and we can’t wait to continue supporting you as you #BuildwithFacebook.