February 20, 2012

F-Commerce and Customer Data

2 minute read

An increasing number of brands are taking their online stores into the realm of Facebook in the hope of increasing sales and word of mouth recommendations. We’ve been thinking about the impact this has on customer data.

As many predicted, F-Commerce is fast becoming one of the ‘next big things’ this year. A number of brands, including Lynx, Heinz and Domino’s, have used this tool to sell various items over the last couple of months with great success. However these brands have only used Facebook to sell small numbers of new or limited edition products to devoted fans who have ‘Liked’ their pages.

If a Facebook user wants to make use of a brand’s Facebook shop then they have to allow that page to access their personal information. This gives that organisation access to a wide range of personal details about that individual. Most of the brands are upfront about exactly which details they will be using in return for access to the online store and only use what they will need.

This has been a hot topic in the Quant office over the past few weeks as we are building applications to allow customers to register for our clients’ loyalty programmes through Facebook. We know how important good quality customer data is to a business and as a result we have been debating how much of an advantage Facebook data can actually offer.

We’ve come to the conclusion that using more than the essentials turns customers off the idea of purchasing through Facebook, especially when they can just go direct to the regular e-commerce site. This is why Lynx, Heinz and Domino’s have only been offering something special which cannot be bought anywhere else in exchange for this more detailed personal data. Consumers also have a problem when it comes to the security of F-Commerce. A recent survey found that only 26% of respondents think Facebook is safe against fraud when buying through the site.

We believe that although Facebook is effective when building brand awareness and perception, when it comes to collecting good quality data that can be used for modelling, strategy and targeted communications it is best to utilise data gained through a method which is taken more seriously such as the initial sign-up form or incentivised surveys.

Posted by Quant Marketing

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F-Commerce and Customer Data

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