Social commerce, the idea of buying products listed on social media sites, is huge in Asia. So huge that Facebook recently jumped into the space with a payments trial in Southeast Asia, and it is far from the only one eyeing an industry that’s thought to account for as much as one-third of online commerce in the region.
From a merchant’s perspective, Instagram, Facebook and other sites are easy ways to post photos of items you are selling in your ‘shop’, but discovery and payments are tricky issues for customers. There have been plenty of companies trying to bring a more orderly approach to things, the latest of which is Goxip, a Hong Kong-based startup.
“When you see anything online or on Instagram, the frustration is that you can’t shop even when people are using it as merchants,” Juliette Gimenez, Goxip CEO and co-founder, told TechCrunch in an interview.
Gimenez’s take is “shoppable Instagram:” an app that uses image recognition and a large collection of retailers — 400-500 merchants selling over two million items from upwards of 15,000 brands — to create a more engaging and ultimately more fruitful social commerce experience.
Goxip won the top startup award at the inaugural Rise conference last year, just months after being founded. The company started out with an Android app, but over the last year it has redeveloped that app, launched a version for iOS and closed a $1.62 million seed funding round.
(Source: Tech Crunch )