In an interesting coincidence last week, both Facebook and Twitter announced only hours apart from each other that both networks would soon be offering Ecommerce options. Facebook was the first to share the news, releasing a statement which said that they were currently testing out a “Buy” button with a select group of U.S. businesses that allows users to purchase products advertised without ever leaving the social network. Twitter later made a statement of their own; they purchased CardSpring, a payments focused company, to help complete the goal of creating their very own Ecommerce experience for users.
Facebook has tried to dabble with payment options on the network before, offering gift options for birthdays as well as the ability to buy games, but this new feature will bring much more to the table and hopefully, in their opinion, even more success. It will be interesting to see how both Facebook and Twitter succeed with this new feature. The idea overall is what you might expect: increase revenue by charging for the “Buy now” option and/or charging businesses for this particular advertisement space. Furthermore, the hope is to increase the overall engagement of users on each network, as this will give them another reason and area of interest to keep them on the site.