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Mark Cullen, CEO, etv Media Group
F-commerce – opening stores on Facebook – is the latest must-have for retailers (nma 10 February 2011). But as this is a new, very different environment for brands, they should be aware of several very real constraints they face.
The evolution of online marketing means we have a slew of companies taking advantage of virality and social graph data to spam users with offers, updates and news. This could make people reluctant to sign up in the first place, as research clearly shows users react negatively to this type of activity on Facebook.
The current applications that allow for in-app ecommerce let users buy using real cash. It’ll be interesting to see whether Facebook offers a version of its Credits programme for real-world goods, with a lower revenue share than its current 30%. The creation of an app within the site’s framework, using Facebook Connect, is fairly straightforward. However, it remains to be seen what level of regulation Facebook imposes.
There needs to be careful and strategic thinking to deliver a real revenue stream for retailers.