Given Twitter’s exceptional ability to spread announcements like wildfire, most of us suspected this might happen sooner or later: Twitter is testing out in-tweet purchasing. It seems an obvious opportunity for the social juggernaut. Just picture a sale with the hype and inertia of Amazon’s Prime Day, with the ability to embed timed sales on the most agile platform on the Internet. Beautiful chaos ensues, resulting mostly in piles of money resting at the seller’s feet.
That scenario is still to come. For now, Twitter is running a controlled experiment, only working with four startups: Stripe, Gumroad, The Fancy, and MusicToday at the platform level. A handful of celebrities, merchants and charities are also going to be testing in-Tweet purchases at launch, including Pharrell, Home Depot, Donors Choose, and Brad Paisley.
(Quick shout-out to Stripe’s web designers, for one of the most beautifully designed sites on the web today.)
If these limited tests go well, we can expect Twitter to embrace in-Tweet purchases and expand their platform integration to other e-commerce platforms. I think the tests will go well, and I wholeheartedly agree with Nathan Hubbard’s vision for Twitter’s purchase capabilities:
“Anything with a perishable component, temporal nature, or limited supply, is going to thrive on Twitter,” says Hubbard. “Given the speed at which word can spread across our network, it feels like an opportunity to create a new kind of sales.”
More info on Twitter’s in-Tweet purchasing process can be found on the relevant support page.