Meta Launches New ‘JioMart’ eCommerce Store for WhatsApp Users in India

Meta is putting its $6 billion stake in Indian internet provider Reliance Jio to work, via a new eCommerce integration for WhatsApp , called ‘JioMart’, which will enable Indian WhatsApp users to browse and shop within the WhatsApp UI. As you can see in these example screens, JioMart is essentially an online shopping platform within WhatsApp, which will help Meta expand its eCommerce push in the world’s second most populous nation.

As explained by Meta :

“JioMart on WhatsApp will enable people in India, including those who have never shopped online before, to seamlessly browse through JioMart’s entire grocery catalog. Shoppers can add items to their cart and make a payment to complete the purchase — all without leaving the WhatsApp chat.”

It’s a major step for Meta’s larger eCommerce plans, and its monetization strategy for India, which is now its biggest user market .

Indeed, WhatsApp alone is used by 487 million people India each month , and with that huge user base, Meta has been working to make WhatsApp the essential app for connectivity in the region, similar to how Chinese messaging apps have become essential utilities in mainland China.

But Meta itself is not entirely trusted by Indian users, or local authorities.

Meta’s first big push into India, called ‘Free Basics’, aimed to help get more Indian citizens connected to the internet. But that it was an internet that was essentially controlled by Meta, and eventually, the Indian government, concerned about Meta’s financial motivations for the project, shut it down , which forced Meta to look elsewhere.

Facebook too has had its share of challenges in the region, and while WhatsApp has thrived, and Instagram has surged following the removal of TikTok in the market , Facebook – and by extension Meta – is still far from a loved brand name […]

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