Facebook has unveiled updates that will urge users to shop with local independent businesses.
The Facebook and Instagram apps will introduce a new tab called 'businesses nearby', which will show posts from small businesses in the local area. The search radius can be adjusted between 1 and 500 miles.
From there, users can browse local businesses, from shops, takeaways to quirky homeware and craft stores. The move is designed to help these smaller companies get “more virtual foot traffic as they move online to stay open.” Businesses can also sell digital gift cards on their Facebook pages.
Users can also use the #SupportSmallBusiness hashtag on Facebook (or sticker on Instagram) to have their posts and purchases shared with similar posts. All of the posts featuring the sticker will be compiled into one story.
“Running a company during Covid-19 is far from ‘business as usual’, and for smaller companies the impact of lockdown has hit hard,” said Facebook vice president for northern Europe, Steve Hatch.
“I hope the additional tools and guidance we are launching today will help these businesses weather this difficult period, and with our gift cards and fundraisers I hope more people can say thank you to their favourite small businesses too.”