ISA 2011: Facebook Announces Buy With Friends and Frictionless Micropayments

Today at our Inside Social Apps InFocus 2011 conference, Deb Liu of Facebook Commerce Product Marketing announced that the company would soon roll out two new ways to use its virtual currency Facebook Credits — Buy With Friends and Frictionless Credits Micropayments.

Buy With Friends will allow users to share that they’ve made an in-app purchase to their stream. Friends can then make the same purchase using Credits, sometimes at a discount, in-line from the news feed. Developers will be able to set the discount level and which items trigger the sharing feature.

Over the last few months, it has been testing these systems with the aim of making spending virtual currency a social, seamless part of the Facebook experience.

For instance, if a user bought monster food for a certain number of Credits, their friends who play the game would be given the option to buy the same monster food at 40% off. When prompted to Buy With Friends, 50% of users chose to share the news of their in-app purchase with friends.

The Frictionless Credits micro-payments system will allow users to make purchases of up to 20 or 30 Credits without having to go through an approval and success step. This allows them to spend currency without interrupting the game. Without the approval or success step, spending Credits is much faster and less distracting, and users are more likely to convert.

Frictionless micropayments will be especially helpful when users are just a few Credits short of making a larger purchase, and might decide not to buy if they had to stop the game action to go through the traditional Credits purchase flow.

Liu says these new features will continue being tested over the next few weeks. Frictionless micropayments is already live in OMGPOP’s Draw My Thing.

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9 Responses to “ISA 2011: Facebook Announces Buy With Friends and Frictionless Micropayments”

  1. patwon's me2day says:

    마이크의 생각…

    Facebook Announces Buy With Friends and Frictionless Micropayments 피쳐가 의미있는지를 떠나서, 붙여보고 잘되면 키우고 아니면 접고..하는 빠른 대응은 분명히 소셜서비스에서 의미있는 어프로치이다……

  2. Facebook Encourages You to Buy with Friends says:

    [...] Liu of Facebook Commerce Product Marketing announced the roll out of the new program at the Inside Social Apps InFocus 2011 [...]

  3. Facebookbiz Abendschau: Facebook Bubble, Privacy, Credits, Mini Shops & CMOs says:

    [...] to spend money on virtual goods. At the Inside Social Apps conference a couple days ago, Facebook announced new features to help grease the wheels of its budding virtual [...]

  4. Facebook Announces Buy With Friends and Frictionless Payment | Socialtrakr says:

    [...] Facebook tried to solve this issue, and at the Inside Social Apps conference in San Francisco, she announced that the company is soon going to introduce two new incentives for the developers — [...]

  5. הדילים של פייסבוק באירופה: היכונו לגרופון של צוקרברג | חורים ברשת says:

    [...] הודיעה שתיישם תכונה חדשה בשם “קנו עם חברים” (Buy With Friends) המעודדת משתמשים “לשחרר” (unlock) דילים ולשתף אותם [...]

  6. Lolapps and Zynga Add TrialPay’s Credits Shortcut, Implement “Frictionless Credits” says:

    [...] Lolapps is apparently on better terms with Facebook since almost all its existing games had their viral channels blocked for six months starting in October. Facebook offers incentives for developers who exclusively use Credits, including the opportunity to beta test new products. The company has exclusively used Facebook Credits since March 2010, qualifying for the beta program of Frictionless Credits. [...]

  7. George says:

    Okay, so let me understand “Frictionless Payments.”

    Say I’m playing a game like Farmville with Farmville Cash. Right now, I can buy a nice new house with a single click. This is a frictionless payment.

    Facebook is duplicating this feature, but putting it against Credits versus Farmville Cash?

    Let’s set this in context. This is getting closer to market parity with what we can already do with our own games.

    It also sounds a little manipulative to users. What other payment method in the real (not virtual) world has no notification to ensure consumer intent? How are unscrupulous developers prevented from charging a couple credits here and there? This danger here is analogous to the corner store being able to make unapproved, (but small!) charges against my card. Where do I sign up?

  8. Josh Constine says:

    @George: I believe paying in cash in the physical world is similar to Frictionless Payments, in that if you hand you are holding $3 worth of food and you hand the clerk $3, they won’t ask you if you’re sure. Frictionless Payments still requires user actions, so applications can not make charges on a user’s behalf. Of greater concern might be if “buy” buttons are not clearly labeled, or are transparently rendered within the app so users don’t realize they’re clicking them.

  9. Facebook Posts Implementation Details for Frictionless Payments and Buy With Friends says:

    [...] and Buy With Friends — two new ways to spend its virtual currency Facebook Credits that it announced out our Inside Social Apps 2011 conference last week. Buy With Friends stories will only appear to users who play the game hosting the deal, [...]

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