WhatsApp makes shopping within its app easier

A new button on business pages will take you to product catalogs.


WhatsApp is making shopping within the app a bit easier. It's rolling out a shopping button, which will take you to a business' list of goods and services.

The button, which WhatsApp says will be available worldwide, looks similar to a storefront icon. If a business has set up a product catalog, you can tap the button to view it. You'll then be able to chat to the business if anything catches your eye. The button will sit where the voice call button used to — a single call button will instead have options for both voice and video calls.

Curiously, there isn't a formal checkout flow just yet. A video showcasing the feature displays a "message business" option, but no buy or "add to cart" button. WhatsApp recently released another video showing off its vision of "how easy we think messaging a business should be." There was an "add to cart" option shown in that demo. The button is just the first step towards a more robust shopping experience on WhatsApp, though a spokesperson couldn’t confirm when the service will expand the feature.

Facebook has been making more inroads into shopping across its various services over the last couple of years. Instagram, for instance, recently expanded its shopping features to IGTV and Reels. Last November, Facebook launched its own payments system, Facebook Pay.