Commerce at Twitter is not dead

The reports of commerce’s death at Twitter have been greatly exaggerated, according to a tweetstorm by Nathan Hubbard, Twitter’s head of commerce. Last month BuzzFeed reported that Jack Dorsey had put Buy Buttons, product pages and other commerce efforts on the “back-burner,” and the commerce team was shifted into other divisions.

But now Hubbard writes: “commerce is alive and well at Twitter :) Our commerce work has always been much broader than just buy buttons,” “Industry is just in the first phases of parsing product/market fit for the Buy Button concept across products, services and platforms,” and “As such, rumors of their demise have been greatly exaggerated :).”

Hubbard explains that Twitter learned a lot from Buy buttons and he expects they’ll come back, but, in the meantime, it’s concentrating on the success of dynamically personalized product ads and using customer service conversations as jumping off points for commerce.

Facebook came to a similar conclusion, finding dynamic product ads to be a hit. These ads use retargeting and other info about a user to select which of an advertiser’s products they’re most likely to buy and show those front and center in the ad. Facebook recently expanded these ads to Instagram.


How dynamic product ads work, via Smartly

It’s important to note that Recode reported last month that Hubbard is set to leave the company, so his statements should be taken with a grain of salt. But Hubbard’s tweets do mesh with Twitter’s official statement to BuzzFeed that contradicted its report:

“We made a change 3 months ago to INCREASE our investment in commerce by moving fully into Dynamic Product Ads after seeing the great early results (2x the CTR, 2x the conversion rates) we talked about in our Q1 earnings call. We have more product, engineering and business focus on commerce as a result of focusing on DPAs. The bottom line is DPAs work for advertisers and we will continue to invest in that product.”

You can see Hubbard’s full tweetstorm below:

Image credit: Yiying Lu