Instagram users can now order food through the app to help struggling businesses

INSTAGRAM users can now order food through the app.

The step is intended to help the photo app and its users aid small businesses that might be struggling due to coronavirus-related lockdowns.

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A statement on the Instagram website explains: "You can set up food orders on Instagram to give people a way to support your business.

"When someone taps the Order Foodbutton on your Instagram profile or the Food Orders sticker in your Instagram story, they’ll be directed to your partner’s website to order food delivery or take-out from your business."

Many restaurants, pubs and hotels around the world have been forced to close but delivery services still continue.

To order from a restaurant's Instagram page, check if they've put an "Order Foodbutton" or the relevant stickers in any of their Stories or mentioned it in their posts.

This scheme was initially launched in the US and Canada but has just been made available in the UK as part of a worldwide rollout.

Instagram has also added a gift card feature.

The tech giant explained: "Businesses can share new gift card, food order, and fundraiser stickers in Stories and on their profiles.

"When you see gift cards or food orders, you can tap to make your purchase through our partner’s site."

It added: "Spread the word by resharing the stickers in your Stories. For many businesses right now, every sale helps.

"We'll continue to work on features that make it easier to support the small businesses you care about."

As with ordering anything online, make sure you're ordering from the legitimate website so you won't end up disappointed if your food doesn't turn up.

We have reached out to Instagram for comment on how users can use the new feature securely.

Instagram – the key facts

Here's what you need to know…

  • Instagram is a social network for sharing photos and videos
  • It was created back in October 2010 as an iPhone-exclusive app
  • A separate version for Android devices was released 18 months later
  • The app rose to popularity thanks to its filters system, which lets you quickly edit your photos with cool effects
  • When it first launched, users could only post square 1:1 ratio images, but that rule was changed in 2015
  • In 2012, Facebook bought Instagram for $1billion in cash and stock
  • In 2018, some analysts believe the app is worth closer to $100billion
  • In October 2015, Instagram confirmed that more than 40billion photos had been uploaded to the app
  • And in 2018, Instagram revealed that more than a billion people were using the app every month

In other news, Instagram is rushing to release a new memorialisation account feature as the COVID-19 death toll soars.

Instagram influencers are allegedly propositioned daily with huge sums of money for sex.

And, TikTok has been accused of copying Instagram after developers gave the booming app a surprise makeover.

Have you been ordering more food online recently? Let us know in the comments…

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