Facebook tests a new 'buy' button

22 July 2014
SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook has begun testing a new 'buy' button that will allow users to make purchases direct from their newsfeed without being redirected to a vendor's website, the social network announced in a blog post.

To allay concerns about privacy, Facebook insisted it has built the feature "with privacy in mind" and that no financial information shared with Facebook when completing a transaction will be shared with other advertisers.

Although currently only in the test phase, if it proves successful then Facebook may earn revenue by charging a fee from advertisers for processing any direct payments and boosting conversion rates, TechCrunch reported.

The 'buy' button would complement its 'like' button and is designed to sit in the bottom right corner of advertisements where, once clicked, would lead to purchase as long as a user's payment details have been stored on the network beforehand.

It means users would not have to fill in lengthy finance and contact details while at the same time it may boost conversion rates and impulse purchases.

As well as being of potential value for advertisers, by simplifying the buying process, Facebook hopes it would help to keep users on the network without forcing them to go to another app or site to make a purchase.

The development comes as Twitter announced that it will acquire CardSpring, a mobile payments infrastructure company that allows vendors to offer deals to consumers that can be loaded onto their credit cards, the New York Times reported.

When the card is used to pay at the store, the coupon is automatically applied – and it, too, means users would not have to leave the Twitter site.

Data sourced from Facebook, TechCrunch, New York Times; additional content by Warc
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