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Twitter is testing a way for indie hackers to sell products through tweets

  1. 4

    This will be Twitters second attempt at this. Back in 2015 they implemented the Buy Now button, but due to internal choices and ecom platform limitations they could not implement truly native checkout and this required merchants to manage some parts of the inventory/order process from within Twitter. This was a significant pain point for merchants and ultimately played a role in the initiative being phased out in late 2016. Ecom platform technologies have come a long ways since then so they should be able to get it right this time, assuming they choose to go beyond links and implement fully native commerce.

    1. 6

      Very interesting. Basically: the tech wasn't there, so merchants generally felt it was more trouble than it was worth.

      If the tech issue actually has been resolved, it's one of two very favorable new winds at the back of a feature like this. The second wind is that our culture at large is just way more open to the idea of doing business online with individual creators.

      The pandemic massively accelerated this trend, so I suspect Twitter is strategically timing all of these product launches based on the success of companies like Substack and OnlyFans, etc.

      1. 2

        You're spot on @channingallen. I've known Rhen since those early days, and he humbly didn't mention that he actually worked with Twitter on the Buy Now button back then. It's one of the experiences that inspired us to found our current company. We completely agree with you that individual creators are a great source for products across to sell across different mediums: social, video, live, forums, voice, AR, VR, etc. We've often debated whether Twitter would give the commerce effort another go. Glad to see it happen.

  2. 1

    Twitter is certainly announcing a bunch of interesting things so far in 2021.

    What do people think about how Twitter will monetize such a feature, if at all? Will advertisers be able to utilize this new post style? if so, what does that do for the UX of users?

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