Is Facebook Gifts the next big revenue source for the social network?

By on September 27, 2012, 6:30 PM

Facebook has unveiled a new service called Facebook Gifts that will allow users to purchase and send real-life gifts to other members. The social network said members would be able to buy gifts as part of birthday reminders or by simply visiting someone’s Timeline.

Gift selections for would-be shoppers are limited to just a handful of items at launch including Starbucks gift cards, cupcakes, chocolate bars and stuffed animals but Facebook says more items will be added on a daily basis.

Gift-givers can post the present directly to the recipient's Timeline or send a private message. The lucky individual can then “unwrap” the item and either elect to keep it, exchange it for something in a different color, size, flavor or choose something else altogether of equal value.

Payment for gifts can be made at the time of purchase or buyers can elect to be billed later. Once a gift notification has been received, the recipient will need to supply their mailing address at which time they should receive the gift within a few days.

The service is a direct result of the Facebook’s acquisition of social gifting mobile app company Karma. The social network paid an undisclosed sum of money for the company and its 16 employees on the same day their IPO went live back in May.

Facebook began rolling out the feature to US residents today and will continue to do so gradually moving forward until everyone has access. Only time will tell if this extra revenue stream will make much of a difference in the eyes of investors.

User Comments: 5

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spydercanopus spydercanopus said:

They had this years ago but the "gifts" were just little icons of teddy bears or lolli pops and the cost $1 or more each. People are very, very stupid and this will definitely bring in bank for Face.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I knew I wasn't dreaming when I said I didn't have a way to upload images without using a file sharing site. The only options I have in the editor is adding a URL address. The only option I have below the editor is Post Reply, Preview, and More Options. More Options doesn't give any additional features for uploading images.

Uploaded the image to another TechSpot comment I made in the past. Then I inserted the URL address here. I don't understand why there is no "Upload File" option here though.

Tygerstrike said:

Actually given the general laziness of the American consumer, this should go well for FB. Especially around christmas. Here is a way to send that cousin you know nothing about a present. Or that family member you really cant stand a gift. This has the chance to rake in some serious capital for FB. My concern would be if the children get on FB and start sending their freinds Teddy Bears ect.

Guest said:

Come on now, this is pathetic. But there a lot of people out there that will "like" this feature. It's their money. Wow, I'm so glad I got off the fakebook bandwagon. I really would hate to be sent a gift(and I use that term loosely) via a social site. I would rather receive a sharp stick in the eye.

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