At this point in its development, few people probably have heard of the tiny social ecommerce site called Fancy or, to some, The Fancy. Fancy is an online social networking website that allows users to create a catalog of things from the web and put them onto the website for other users to browse.
It is very, very similar to Pinterest in that it essentially enables users to create an online scrapbook of sorts — a list of items from around the web that they can share with other users. The key difference between the two being that Fancy focuses on stuff that people can buy — clothes, shoes, or maybe even furniture — whereas Pinterest enables users to pin just about anything web-related.
And beyond that, Fancy also allows users to purchase items that others have posted directly on the website, unlike Pinterest. Or, in their words, create an atmosphere that isn’t, “just about discovery and self expression, [but is] also a fully functioning marketplace.” And now, with nearly 1 million users and growing, Fancy is quickly becoming the platform to use for fashionistas and shoppers-to-be that want to view and share their favorite products from around the web.
But with its latest feature, Fancy looks to be changing the future of ecommerce for the better.
Rewarding Users for Sharing
Social media is predicated upon the notion that the more connected that users are, the more willing they will be to share content with one another. Unfortunately, as Fancy founder Joseph Einhorn recognizes, often even the most influential users don’t necessarily benefit from their sharing, especially when it can generally result in sales for from the users that those people influence. That means that although users will naturally ‘share’ things, they aren’t really encouraged to do so aside from the notion that it helps keep them more connected with their friends, or users.
The solution that Fancy has come up with? Allow those users to make money with their influence.
How the system works is that each time a user shares an item — say, in this case, a pair of Adidas shoes — they get a unique referral link. Now, anytime that a user clicks through that link and ends up buying that pair of shoes — through Twitter, Facebook or whatever medium that user is sharing through — the user who shared that link will receive a two percent cut on whatever the sale price of that item was.
It’s a brilliant model not only because it finally rewards influential users, but also because it encourages the sharing of items, stores and even brands more-so than any other ecommerce model to date.
The Beginning of Something Huge for Ecommerce Sites
And this model could change the world of ecommerce — and online marketing in general — for forever, assuming it catches on. Think about it. If other massive ecommerce retailers like Amazon or Newegg were to begin using a similar model, they could exponentially increase the number of individuals that share things through Twitter or Facebook after purchasing or viewing those products.
Though Amazon has already had social media integration on their website for a while now, encouraging people to actually share those items — particularly when shopping is often already a highly personal experience — would appear far more difficult.
But ultimately, this could change the way that social media and ecommerce inevitably work together. As opposed to simply passively encouraging users to share their shopping experiences and favorite items with their friends, those same users will be given monetary incentive in order to do so, and chances are that they will feel much more compelled to do just that.
Although, for the most part, this won’t necessarily encourage the everyday user to share every item that they’ve ever come across, the influential power users on platforms like Facebook and Twitter will certainly begin to place much more emphasis on sharing that content with their followers.
Beyond that, this should certainly help these online marketplaces better track which users end up converting the greatest number of sales, and could certainly provide for some interesting scenarios down the road. Maybe in a few months from now, the best users will earn particular rewards for maintaining a threshold of say a few thousand dollars in sale a year. Who knows?
Needless to say, Fancy’s model could be a huge step in the world of ecommerce. Ecommerce has had a seemingly difficult time integrating with social media simply because people don’t necessarily want or even care about sharing their purchases with others after they have already made them.
But Fancy might change that in a huge way.
Have you used Fancy? What are your thoughts on the platform?
Source: MSM DesignZ, Inc. is a Westchester NY web design firm specializing in SEO, social media, web and graphic design and much more.