Facebook Gifts expands to all U.S. users

Facebook today completed the rollout of Facebook Gifts to all U.S. users, enabling people to send physical gifts to their friends.

Gifts includes products from hundreds of merchants that have partnered with Facebook. Users can choose an item for a friend, select a virtual card, write a message and send it through Facebook. The recipient is notified about the gift, and after reading the card and seeing a preview of the item, he or she enters a mailing address. This makes it so that the gift-giver doesn’t need to know where to have the package sent. Facebook handles the shipping and uses notifications to help users track the progress of the delivery.

Users can send gifts directly from birthday reminders or from friends’ timelines, either on desktop or mobile. They can post a preview of the gift on a friend’s timeline or send it privately.

The social network gradually released Gifts to groups of users over the past 10 weeks since the product launched. Facebook has not publicly talked about plans to expand internationally. However, last month the company added a job listing for a customs and trade manager, which is likely related to making Gifts available more globally.

Facebook hasn’t revealed what percentage of sales it is taking from Gifts, but it apparently varies by partner or item. In exchange, Facebook helps promote the goods, photographing the products, writing copy and displaying them on site. Facebook also provides merchants with packaging materials and helps with tracking shipping and customer service. Much of this process and infrastructure seems to have come from Karma, the mobile gift company that Facebook acquired in May.

Facebook had a gift shop from 2007 to 2010, which mostly offered virtual gifts that users share on each other’s walls, however the company experimented with physical goods on a limited scale in 2009. That gift shop allowed users to buy schedule gifts that wouldn’t be shared with a friend until their birthday, for instance. This isn’t supported in the current version of Facebook Gifts, but would be helpful, especially during the holidays when people are doing shopping ahead of time. We’d also like to see Facebook eventually support group buying so users can pool together and buy a larger gift for a friend.

Current partners for Facebook Gifts range from Starbucks, iTunes, babyGap, Robert Mondavi Winery, Brookstone, L’Occitane, Mrs. Fields, Fab.com and more. Users can also make charitable donations in a friend’s name.

More about Facebook Gifts:
Has Facebook cracked f-commerce?

Facebook Marketing

Mediabistro Event

Facebook Marketing

Starting January 13, work with the group marketing manager of social media at Microsoft/BingAds to grow your business on Facebook! In this course, you’ll learn how to set up your company page, understand Facebook best practices, and execute a monthly content strategy. Register now!


Leave a Reply

One Response to “Facebook Gifts expands to all U.S. users”

  1. New 8thBridge social commerce study: Pinterest has highest adoption, but lowest sales conversions says:

    [...] Pinterest’s e-commerce limitations. Compare these issues to Facebook that, just earlier today, rolled out its Facebook Gifts app to all U.S. users, enabling friends to easily send physical [...]

Get the latest news in your inbox
interested in advertising with inside facebook?

Social Media Jobs
of the Day

Business Technology Editor

Washington, DC

Assistant Editor

8 Inc.
New York, NY

Editorial Manager

Air Age Media
Wilton, CT

Featured Company

Join leading companies like this one and recruit from the nation's top media job seekers on the Mediabistro Job Board. Every job post comes with our satisfaction guarantee. Learn More

Our Sponsors

Mediabistro A division of Prometheus Global Media home | site map | advertising/sponsorships | careers | contact us | help courses | browse jobs | freelancers | content | member benefits | reprints & permissions terms of use | privacy policy Copyright © 2014 Mediabistro Inc. call (212) 389-2000 or email us