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COVID-19 has forced a rethink for many business, especially those in the food industry. With whole populations across the world now forced to stay at home and restaurants closed it has become essential to find new ways to get products to consumers. Small businesses have especially started to feel the pinch and platforms such as Instagram have begun looking for new ways to provide support to help keep enterprises going. One of these is making it easier for consumers to order food by enabling it via Instagram.

What is Instagram doing?

The social media platform has announced new stickers and profile buttons in Instagram Stories that can be used for buying gift cards, ordering food, and donating to fundraisers. Stories that feature these stickers are shared so that users can then tap to make a purchase through a partner site. The idea behind this is that all marketing helps and every single sale is valuable for those businesses that are facing huge drops in customer numbers due to the pandemic. Currently, the potential for food ordering and delivery is available in Canada and the US but the plan is to roll this out to other countries around the world in the coming weeks.

Giving consumers the power to support

Instagram has aimed this feature at businesses and users who want to support those that they value, essentially spreading the word about purchases that may also appeal to their own followers. There is considerable potential for any business to gain support and increase audience share in this way, both of which could provide essential lifelines when it comes to surviving the COVID-19 crisis. Instagram has said that it will continue to work on new features that give its users more power to support the businesses that they care about

How does it work?

1. Story stickers

  • Users create an Instagram Story as normal and open the stickers resource – look for the one that says ‘food orders’
  • When the sticker is selected there will then be the option to select the food delivery partner that the user is opting for
  • Once the delivery partner has been selected then the Story can go live and anyone who taps on it will be able to order from the same business

2. Instagram profile buttons

Businesses looking to access this resource can add a food orders button to their Instagram profile to make it easier for consumers to place an order

  • Simply go to Edit Profile, and then tap Action Buttons
  • Select the Order Food option and then choose a delivery partner
  • The button will appear on the business Instagram page and users will be able to go straight to place an order with the delivery partner

The impact of coronavirus is forcing a rethink of the way that the food industry meets the needs of consumers. The features being introduced by Instagram provide an opportunity for individuals to support the businesses they love and for those businesses to make it easier for their customers to continue to get what they need.