Facebook Collections Unveils Plan to Battle Pinterest While Linking Facebook Use To Purchase Intent

Just when you thought Facebook shared all its October updates – there’s another one that came through yesterday that has the potential to be HUGE.

Facebook is taking a gigantic step-forward in connecting Brand Pages to purchase intent – while also making a play for the link/referral traffic that Pinterest has been lauded for previously: Facebook is currently testing a new functionality called “Collections” which adds purchase ability to the standard Photo Album. User will be able to indicate that they WANT or want to COLLECT the items pictured – and be able to follow a link within the collection to the brand website for purchase.

Collections will be visible both from the newsfeed and the brand page. The “Want” button adds a product to a Timeline section called “Wishlist” visible to friends of friends, the “Collect” button saves to to a Collection called “Products” that’s visible to friends only,  and a special version of the “Like” button will also add to “Products” which will be visible to friends of friends. There are currently three different versions being A/B tested to users.

Pages included in the test consist of: Pottery Barn, Wayfair, Victoria’s Secret, Michael Kors, Neiman Marcus, Smith Optics and Fab.com. There’s no news of now when this functionality will be available for general use – and retailers are not being charged to use the Collections feature.

A Facebook spokesperson notes:
We’ve seen that businesses often use Pages to share information about their products through photo albums. Today, we are beginning a small test in which a few select businesses will be able to share information about their products through a feature called Collections.  Collections can be discovered in News Feed, and people will be able to engage with these collections and share things they are interested in with their friends. People can click through and buy these items off of Facebook.

More info about the Collections functionality can be found at AllFacebook.com<http://allfacebook.com/facebook-collections_b101558&gt;.