Facebook is testing a new "Buy" button that will allow users to purchase a product or service without ever leaving the social network, it announced Thursday.
the move "interesting but nonetheless predictable," and many in the marketing industry responded positively to the news, some taking to social media to say it would make life "simpler."
The button delivers on Facebook's promise from January to offer advertisers and marketers more tools to elicit direct responses from customers and potential customers. To many, a buy button represents the ultimate in direct-response tools.
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The Associated Press reported
that the button is being tested on the bottom of sponsored ads and posts by several small- and medium-sized businesses in the U.S.
"With this step, Facebook is becoming even more firmly established as a major player in direct response advertising, and though this test is still only a test, it's a definite sign that Facebook wants to restart its efforts to become an e-commerce company as well," said EMarketer analyst Debra Aho. She and other industry insiders said that the button could turn Facebook from what what is currently an awareness-building tool into a full-blown sales tool.
Frequently under the spotlight for privacy concerns, Facebook made sure to explain just how the feature worked behind the scenes in its announcement blog post
"We’ve built this feature with privacy in mind, and have taken steps to help make the payment experience safe and secure," it wrote.
"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."
Twitter has also also been rumored to be testing buy buttons, but initial reports have not been confirmed.
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