Sure, we hear it all the time now — big brands are closing up their Facebook storefronts as the particular retail channel fails to take off. However, that defeat hasn’t applied to everybody. For some individuals, using the social media outlet as their sole source of e-commerce has actually been the starting point of real success.
The Sydney Morning Herald highlights a vintage shop, founded on and run entirely out of Facebook. Kate Perkins and Jai Spence launched Vintage Marketplace with 10 finds, posting pictures and asking buyers to claim what they wanted by writing “sold” under the piece. Their first crop of goods sold out in 15 minutes. To complete their transactions, Perkins and Spence send along a unique code and banking information. Buyers need to pay within 24 hours in order to hang on to their finds.
The pair cite viral traffic as a reason for their continued success — friends see what other friends have claimed when it shows up in their newsfeeds. Then they check out the source. There’s certainly something appealing about buying by commenting — writing “sold!” on a one-of-a-kind item floating in your newsfeed plays to impulse purchasing. While Gap to Gamestop have opened and closed Facebook stores, maybe more grassroots, peer-to-peer e-commerce is where the social media site’s selling utility lies. After all, Facebook was about people before it was about brands.