Snapchat and Amazon are joining forces to develop a visual search feature on the app through which users can shop Amazon products. As visual search grows in popularity, is this simply Snapchat’s way of bending to the trends, or is it a step towards a wider future with the e-tail giant?
TechCrunch’s Josh Constine reports that the new feature lets users point their camera to “identify an object, song, barcode and more!” and then be presented with Amazon product listings for those items. This tacks on to a pre-existing feature that Snapchat already has with Shazam, in which users are able to identify songs via the messaging app.
According to Gartner L2’s search visibility report, winning brands make outsize investments in visual guided selling tools in order to lower barriers to purchase. This is evidenced by the ad and sales success that color cosmetics have had, partly due to the category’s highly visual nature. Snapchat is still thriving with teens, despite press reports of its declining popularity. By popping up on the platform, Amazon would be able to target this audience without having to lure them with ads.
If the new feature does well, it might open up a bigger partnership between the two companies. Since teens are already spending time on Snapchat, often while on-the-go, it makes sense for retailers to enhance the app’s shopping features in hopes of targeting this youthful audience.