Facebook mulls addition of a “want” button

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It seems that Facebook’s popular “like” button could soon find a new companion. Dubbed the “want” button, the feature now under development would allow members to share desired items with friends, according to media sources.

In a report dated 24 July, analyst Gene Munster said this new button “could be Facebook’s first true product to directly impact commerce on the site.”

“Offering a want button and enabling users to tell friends and Facebook what products they want would give Facebook data closer to what Google has when users type an explicit commerce-related search query,” noted Munster.

The speculation about the want button began in June when a Web developer named Tom Waddington came upon the code for a disabled variant of the button and exposed it on his blog.

According to Waddington, this indicates that Facebook has “big plans for social commerce” because the wants and purchases that users submit will be displayed just like the other contents on the site.

With Facebook’s eagerly anticipated Q2 earnings report due on Thursday, a foray into social commerce could be beneficial to the company following its disastrous IPO. Additionally, investors want to know how Facebook plans to diversify.

Laura Martin of Needham & Co. explained that it’s a sensible option for Facebook, since many of its investors are questioning how it can capitalise on its 900 million users.

Ken Sena, an Analyst at Evercore Partners, added that the implementation of a want button is a logical move for the social media giant because information about products sought after by Facebook users is important to advertisers.


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