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Trey Sheneman Vice President Blueprint

Why is Facebook's Shop Tab this Year’s Gift that Keeps on Giving?

While the children were nestled all snug in their beds, visions of buying products directly on Facebook danced in their heads. When what to their wondering thumbs did appear, but a Shop Tab just in time for Christmas this year…

Facebook has done it again. The social-digital-giant unveiled its newest “test” feature slowly throughout October and November just in time for the Holiday push. E-commerce Facebook page business owners should see the Shop tab roll out en-masse as the beta run was estimated to be 4-6 weeks. Now that it is here and most likely here to stay, here are three (speculative) predictions as to why Facebook’s Shop Tab is one of those disruptions that could change digital consumption forever.

3 Predictions That Change The Digital World Forever

  1. Small business owners realize massive savings on credit card processing. Imagine you are a local dry cleaner who does $5,000 a week in credit card processed business. If the average credit card spread is 3%, then you pay out $150 to service that revenue. If the collective buying power of the nearly 50 million small business pages on Facebook all pushed hard on the Shop tab, then Facebook could become one of the cheapest processing companies in the world. What if businesses could process orders via Facebook at 1.5%? The dry cleaner above would save $3600 a year. To the average small business owner, $3600 could pay rent for 3 months, give an employee a much needed raise, or, if Facebook had its way, go into an advertising campaign to drive the total weekly revenue number even higher.
  2. Facebook wins the war of walled gardens over Google and Amazon. I attended the #ISUM15 conference last week in Raleigh; the idea of the big four (Apple, Google, Amazon, and Facebook) competing in the race of walled gardens came up a ton. Facebook wants its user base to focus in the platform as the nucleus of how they communicate, connect, and consume every day online. The addition of the Shop tab now positions Facebook to provide an even richer, more connected customer experience on the website that currently hosts 1 out of every 8 minutes online. If the massive user uptake happens as I suggested in prediction #1, can you imagine the revenue stream this creates for Facebook and its shareholders? All of those Buy-Sell-Trade digital yard sale groups can now officially do business with a digital footprint, protecting some of those victimized by the currently rogue transaction environment.
  3. Facebook raises enough money to cure cancer. Facebook already empowers the world’s non-profits and causes of every size and reach to stay connected to their most loyal supporters. What if they could enable them to raise exponentially more money than they do now? Through proper usage of the Shop Tab and the many ad sets already proven in the platform, these groups  who need the most help could tap into their warm (and lookalike) audiences like never before. And, Facebook would be incentivized to support these bastions of hope in the process. Could you imagine the connectivity and support around organizations like the American Cancer Society, The Salvation Army, or the United Way? Watch out cancer; Facebook is coming to save the ta-tas for good.

Who knows what the Shop Tab will end up being on Facebook; one of those changes that sticks forever like Messenger or a “here today and gone tomorrow” tweak like Fan Gating or third party apps. None of these 3 predictions may actually happen or they could all happen. As a marketer who has made a living since 2010 by using Facebook as a direct-to-consumer channel, I am excited about another feature that clearly connects marketing to selling. If enough people adopt and enjoy the Shop Tab experience, then explaining how to calculate your social media ROI will become mere arithmetic.