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Shopify Is ‘Just Browsing’ Ads
Shopify held its twice-annual road map update event this week. Shopify Editions, as the get-together is called, offered up a handful of tantalizing tidbits for industry observers awaiting news of a consolidated Shopify ad platform.
In May, there was the launch of Shopify Audiences, which packages audience segments based on purchase intent signals across Shopify’s network. Shopify isn’t the ad platform; it pushes audience segments to Facebook, TikTok, Snapchat, et al.
It’s also increasing incentives for its Shop app, a stand-alone ecommerce service.
But Shopify has only tentatively waded into advertising and launching its own ecommerce marketplace. The Shop app, for instance, is framed as a personal shopping assistant, not an open ecommerce marketplace.
There’s a reason Shopify is hands-off on advertising and has no private-label products. An ad platform is lucrative and the opportunity is ripe. Shopify collects payment data that makes the hearts of mobile marketers and DTC merchants flutter.
But Shopify is reluctant to step into the consumer decision-maker role. Because Shopify is the technology behind scores of fashion merchants, when the company carries each of their products in a marketplace or an ad platform, it must choose who gets customers and who doesn’t – and it’s not ready to do that yet.
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