Facebook's latest app combines Messenger and Instagram chats for small businesses

Facebook is introducing a unified app that lets small business owners manage their pages and profiles across Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger, Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer at Facebook, announced in a blog post. She stressed how integral Facebook's tools and services are for small businesses:

"Facebook’s free tools and personalized ads are a lifeline for many small businesses making this transition — and we’ve worked hard to create new products like Facebook Shops to make it easier for them to showcase their products and sell directly."

The app, named Facebook Business Suite, would unify the backend infrastructure for the three Facebook-owned apps, so business owners are able to receive messages from customers, updates, and alerts in a single inbox. The Menlo Park firm also plans to add WhatsApp integration in the future, it confirmed to The Verge. The social media giant also plans to expand the app to larger businesses next year.

The app lets users post to Facebook and Instagram simultaneously, in addition to viewing insight into the performance of ad campaigns on the platforms. Doing so lets owners "easily see what's working and learn what's resonating with customers with Facebook and Instagram insights."

Additionally, to help small businesses better analyze impacts of COVID-19, Facebook released two new surveys: its latest Global State of Small Business Report and a study on the pandemic's impact on consumers' purchasing patterns.

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