The decision by high-profile merchants Gamestop, Gap Inc., J.C. Penney and Nordstrom to close Facebook storefronts has some questioning whether so-called f-commerce sites have a future.
"We just didn't get the return on investment we needed from the Facebook market, so we shut it down pretty quickly," Ashley Sheetz, vice president of marketing and strategy for Gamestop, told Bloomberg News. "For us, it's been a way we communicate with customers on deals, not a place to sell."
Wade Gerten, chief executive officer at 8thBridge, which developed the very first Facebook store for 1-800-FLOWERS, wrote on Forbes.com, "The best way to monetize social media is to empower people to promote products to their friends not for brands to spam you on Facebook. Online shopping experiences are better when they're social. ... Almost 90 percent of the shopping activity we've tracked on Facebook over the last six+ months has been between friends sharing things with other friends."
Are you more or less optimistic about the use of social media as a sales channel today than you were a year ago?