Social network Facebook is testing a new buy button on its website to facilitate users to purchase products that are advertised on its social network. The new service represents Facebook’s latest efforts to help businesses accelerate their sales through the world's largest online social network.
The company said in a statement that the button will allow consumers purchase products directly from businesses without leaving the social network. The buy button appears at the bottom of sponsored ads, which Facebook described as a test with a limited group of small and medium-sized businesses in the United States. Facebook can store buyer’s credit or debit card information to enable more easy and convenient purchases in the future, however this is optional.
The company said it won't share users' credit and debit card information with other advertisers and would be giving out more details once it has collected feedback from the test.
“None of the credit or debit card information people share with Facebook when completing a transaction will be shared with other advertisers and people can select whether or not they’d like to save payment information for future purchases,” the company said in a blog post.
Members on desktop computers or mobile devices can make use of the buy button to purchase goods directly from participating businesses through their advertisements or other posts on the site.
The new venture comes as Facebook continues to show growth in its advertising business. According to eMarketer, the social network accounts for nearly 7.8 percent of global digital ad spending in 2014, up from 5.8 percent from last year. The world's largest recipient of ad dollars, Google accounts for 31.5 percent of ad spending this year.
It seems like a natural progression for Facebook to allow users to instantly buy items without leaving the social network. The new service could help the company attract new businesses to take a chance on the idea of purchasing items while casually checking the page. The upside is stupendous and could add to the sturdy advertising sales that the company already sees.
While the only negative aspect of this is that user’s will most likely feel uncertain about sharing their payment information on a site that shares almost everything. Despite the assurance, it may take a lot of good faith to buy something through Facebook.
According to reports, Facebook will not be taking any share of the revenue for products sold with the Buy button. A third-party payment processing company will be handling all the credit card transactions.