I liked the analysis in my Social Commerce e-newsletter which I received this morning, as it accords with my approach I picked up at Shopping.com to strive to make folks happy first and foremost:
“What f-commerce will become has yet to be determined, in my view. It’s an evolutionary process fraught with experimentation. Each of the people mentioned in this post – Mulpuru, Gerten, Marsden and Taylor – have their own distinct views of Facebook, its impact on commerce (or lack thereof), and the business model that’s best suited to take advantage of what the social network has to offer.
“Whether or not you buy the view of SCT Editor, Dr. Paul Marsden that f-commerce is only likely to thrive as fan-commerce in the context of Facebook as a fan-loyalty platform, he perhaps draws a useful conclusion for all involved with Facebook commerce: ”There are no cookie cutter recipes for setting up successful Facebook stores for your brand fans; f-commerce is too new and experimental for that.”
“His advice is to retailers is simple: make customers smile. “Ultimately, f-commerce for consumer brands will not succeed or fail based on processes, but on the ability to act on the insight that making your fans smile is smart for business,” Dr. Marsden said. “So the best advice for embarking on an f-commerce journey is to ask yourself how you can make your customers smile with a privileged and personal point of purchase on Facebook, and work back from there.”
In that same opinion piece Marsden says he’s not so convinced by the Facebook commerce concept which revolves around getting people to share recommendations with their (average of 130) friends. But perhaps only time and customer validation will tell. Certainly it’s great to see peer-to-peer ‘recommendations & relevancy’ based f-commerce startup Shopcade in action, as outlined by their CEO Nathalie Gaveau. And both the ‘recommender’ and the buyer get cash-back with Shopcade:
So perhaps the synthesis of these approaches is ‘shared smiles’, that is creating a great Facebook community for fans which is more likely to recommend relevant products to their network? What do you think?