Facebook To Test Out Social Buying Service

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Add Facebook to the list of sites you go to in order to find a good deal. The social network announced that it will be launching an online deal service that will cater to their over 500 million users.

“We will test a new feature for our Deals product that allows people to buy deals on Facebook and share them with their friends. Local businesses will be able to sign up to use this feature soon and people will be able to find Deals in the coming weeks,” a Facebook spokesperson tells Techland by email.

So why is Facebook following the Groupon game? According to consulting firm BIA/Kelsey, daily deals will generate $3.93 billion by 2015. While some might roll their eyes at yet another social buying scheme, remember all these deals mean that we can save money – if we decide to cash in.

Facebook’s social buying offerings will start out in San Francisco, Calif., San Diego, Calif., Dallas, Tex., Atlanta, Geor. and Austin, Tex. It will expand on Facebook’s Deals program, which works together with their Places function to let businesses offer discounts similar to Foursquare’s Special Deals. The company will be working with Gilt City, Home Run, OpenTable, Pop Sugar City, Tippr, KGB Deals, Plum District, Reach Local and Zozi, as well as their own sales team to provide the discounts. 

Facebook testing showed that people were more likely to buy a deal if one of their friends bought it first. It makes perfect sense: Getting that great deal on dinner for one just isn’t as fun if you can’t share it with others.