By Hannah Johnson
Amazon announced on Monday a new feature for Twitter users: reply to any tweet containing an Amazon product link with the hashtag #AmazonCart (or #AmazonBasket in the UK), and that product will be automatically added to your Amazon shopping cart. This new feature is only available in the USA and the UK for now, and requires users to link their Twitter and Amazon accounts.
This powerful combination brings us one step closer to determining whether Twitter actually sells books. Publishers and authors can now track how many people have added a particular book to their Amazon shopping carts as a result of a tweet, which could provide better insight into the effectiveness of certain campaigns, as well as social media marketing in general.
For consumers, #AmazonCart will allow them to see what books and products their friends intend to buy, and to broadcast their own purchases. Word-of-mouth and personal recommendations remain very persuasive elements in terms of how readers discover new books. Now that part of this process will become publicly visible on Twitter, publishers and authors have a new opportunity to observe and influence online book discovery.
Wondering how to use #AmazonCart? Wired has a handy how-to guide for linking your accounts and getting started.