Facebook’s Black Friday Missed Opportunity

Facebook's Black Friday Missed Opportunity Offers

This coming Thursday, millions of Americans will be staking out their favorite retail stores. Others will log in to those same brands’ websites. All in search of the next “big deal.”

But they won’t be shopping on Facebook.

This is a strange change of pace, actually. Facebook is a big part of the lives of 1 Billion people. It’s the greatest time suck on the planet. It’s where brands go to communicate with their customers. But users will abandon it to find their deals.

Sure, some deals will be made on Facebook. But the difference is that the deals will find us. We’ll notice an ad in the sidebar. Maybe a friend will claim a Facebook Offer.

But there’s a major disconnect that is preventing Facebook from being the source of Black Friday commerce: You can’t search for the best deals on Facebook.

Facebook Offers Search

Facebook Offers present an amazing opportunity for brands. Many are taking advantage of them. They are a piece of cake to create and even easier for users to claim.

But users don’t find Offers. Offers find us. We see them only when brands decide to show them to us or when friends claim them.

Imagine this for a moment…

You know that brands create great Offers on Facebook. But you want to find the best ones. More specifically, you want to find the best Facebook Offers on flatscreen TV’s that are close to you.

You go to this hypothetical and effective Facebook Search. You filter by “Facebook Offers.” You filter by “Electronics.” You filter by results “Within 50 miles” of your home. Maybe you even provide keywords for “Sony” or “Toshiba” or “46 inch flatscreen.”

You hit “Search”…

Dozens of results. Sorted by lowest price or distance. It’s also clear within each item whether the Offer can be redeemed online, offline or both.

What if you not only received all of the results, but also info on which Offers were claimed by friends? That’s where social proof leads to revenue.

It’s Not Just for Black Friday

Wouldn’t this be great? Wouldn’t this be the best, most comprehensive way to view and compare deals in one place?

And wouldn’t this then make Facebook a booming e-commerce hub? Finding deals would become exponentially easier and more fun. More Offers would be claimed. More Offers would be seen in the News Feeds. Brands would then create more and more Offers…

This is the power of Facebook data. It’s why Search in general could be an enormous money maker for Facebook. And it’s why such a feature could make business on Facebook infinitely more effective for brands — particularly retailers.

Currently, if I’m in the market for something, I’ll do one or all of the following:

  • Search Google
  • Search Amazon
  • Search Ebay

I never think to check Facebook because it’s too much work. I’d have to search out each individual brand Page and then filter through their Timelines to see if they’ve made the product I want available.

That’s just ridiculous.

But if Facebook builds search with Offers in mind? Huge.

This would be huge not only for Facebook but for brands. Facebook wouldn’t need to take a chunk of profits. Simply making e-commerce searchable on Facebook would give brands more reason to create Offers and promote them. Everyone wins.

It’s gotta be coming. It’s a shame it’s not here already. Maybe next year… right?

What do you think? Would you search by Offers on Facebook? Let me know in the comments below!

  • http://profiles.google.com/witt.cassie Cassie Witt

    Brilliant as usual! But you and I both know that Facebook Search sucks! In fact it’s so bad, people don’t even realize how bad it is! I have to remind businesses all the time that just because they have a Facebook Page, doesn’t mean that people can find that page in search. It’s a sad, sad fact.

    A better Facebook search would allow people to find businesses, offers, groups, and even people easier.

    Oh, and I would totally use it to search for offers. That would be amazing! I hope they’re reading this, because it would be a brilliant move for them. :)

    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      Thanks, Cassie! Oh, I complete agree. Facebook search in its current form is useless. But it certainly sounds like Facebook is up to something, so it will be interesting to see what they come up with.

      Although I outline a “perfect world” scenario above for Offers, simply adding the ability to filter by Offers could add significant value — even if the results continue to suck.

      Not sure if you read my post on the potential of Facebook Search a while back, but check it out…


      Thanks for reading!

  • http://www.radicalmustache.com/ Mikel Zaremba

    This post really gets the mind working!

    Imagine if they dedicated a page to just search. Let you pick your category proximity and search term.Then they factor in a search algo and display current/relevant results. You could then filter results by news, pages, groups, etc.

    Or if you entered in a keyword and it spit out pages that related to it, that’d be nice.

    Sometimes I can’t even get the dang search to return an event that I created!

    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      Absolutely, Mikel. Even if they didn’t do all of these things, just a couple could significantly enhance Facebook Search.

      Thanks for your comments!

  • http://www.facebook.com/nikki.culverwell Nikki ‘Bridget Jones’ Culverwe

    I think this would be a great idea, I have just joined an amazing company who have promote through personal fb pages, this would make life easier and reach a bigger target audience!

    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      One day, Nikki. One day. Thanks for reading!