Social networks becoming catalogs, says company exec.

Instagram, which has proven a potent force for popularizing fashion items, from sunglasses to fine jewelry, has decided to join Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest in providing clickable links to its advertisers’ e-commerce pages. Previously, the photo-sharing social network held out against links, reasoning that user-contributed images should remain the star of the show. But Instagram, which began selling ad space in 2013, has yielded to pressure from advertisers demanding the change – and to the dramatic rise in marketing dollars going into digital. Says an Instagram official: “Retailers are dying for ways to turn visual social networks into catalogues people can buy from, too.”

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