Social media powerhouse Facebook.com initially started out as a way to stay in touch with friends, but as the company started collecting more data, they have found ways to help e-commerce companies capitalize on their platform. So much so that analysts are predicting that Facebook could make as much of an impact on the e-commerce industry as companies like eBay and Amazon.com. The term of e-commerce on Facebook is “f-commerce.”
Internet startup companies like BeachMint, Fab.com, Oodle, and Yardsellr have come up with ways to persuade Facebook users into shopping. Fab.com now has 3 million users and they broadcast purchases that they have made through a “bought” button. This transaction is posted on Facebook. Fab.com provides a $5 per month incentive for people to agree to share their Fab purchases on Facebook. Fab.com CEO Jason Goldberg said that tens of thousands of people have opted in.
BeachMint co-founder Diego Berdakin said that the company set up a live event video called StyleMint.tv last holiday season and it has a brief appearance by Mark Zuckerberg’s sister Randi. They showcased BeachMint products that people could buy with one click. Over 50,000 Facebook users watched the show and a huge percentage of people bought something. BeachMint said that this was their biggest sales day in history.
When people want to make a purchase through the official Facebook marketplace run by Oodle, their Facebook identities are attached to the goods. This gives the buyers confidence in the transactions. When buying products from strangers on Craigslist, people often try to take extra precautions by meeting in public places.
“Facebook has a huge opportunity to monetize e-commerce,” stated Payvment CEO Christian Taylor. “They have the infrastructure and team to pursue that.”