F-Commerce not Accelerating as Analysts Expected
Remember when nearly everyone was talking about the huge potential of integrating online stores in Facebook brand pages? Well, I think it’s fair to say the growth hasn’t happened as expected. Several brands have tried and eventually closed up their Facebook store fronts like Gamestop, Gap and JC Penney.
So why hasn’t F-Commerce taken off like originally thought? I think it’s a combination of a few things. The first is, do people really want to shop when they’re on Facebook? As a Facebook user, I certainly do not. I’m on Facebook to see what’s going on in my friends and family’s lives. Not to buy a video game from Game Stop’s Facebook store. If I want to buy the new Fifa on Xbox 360, I’d probably visit their website. That brings me to my second point. Categorically speaking, the experience on brand’s websites are generally very good. If there is nothing wrong with a brand’s website, why wouldn’t the person just buy their goods from the website. I see Facebook as a place for users to hangout and interact with their friends and family. It’s not a place where they decide to buy that new cashmere sweater regardless of how awesome they think it will look on them.
I think at the end of the day, Facebook is obviously very valuable for retailers and brands. It’s an extremely efficient channel to connect with customers and fans. While using the network to sell directly may not work, we do know communicating about sales, new products, etc certainly does work. Oh and don’t feel too bad for Facebook that the whole F-Commerce thing didn’t take off. I think they’ll be quite alright with all the other areas of growth they have. The company reportedly earned more than $3.7 billion in revenue for this past fiscal year. Absolutely absurd…