To capitalize, kind of almost literally, on the fact that none of you bums can be bothered to pull your faces away from your Facebook apps and Google searches, the two internet titans have developed new “virtual storefronts” that will let you purchase crap directly from their sites. Since you won’t have to leave your precious social media or search sites/apps to buy Buy BUY BUY NOW!, Facebook and Google can also maintain their captive audiences, which will probably lead to additional purchases. Can’t beat a good ol’ vicious cycle, amirite?
Waste Time & Money Simultaneously!
In much the same way that Amazon wants to get its grubby mitts into everything in your home, Google and Facebook are shooting to be a one-stop shop for your whole friggin’ life. You can “hang out” with your “friends,” get the news and weather, and, now, buy pretty much whatever you want right from those sites.
Because the new features turn adverts into a way for consumers to make purchases right then and there, virtual storefronts will likely be quite appealing to advertisers. Because they allow consumers to be even lazier than they already are (“I’d love to buy this product, but Amazon is all the way over there”), there’s a good chance this will catch on like wildfire.
Neither of these giant corporations is aiming to replace the King of Ecommerce, Amazon. That would be an exercise in futility. But, they don’t really need to—so many people use Google and Amazon in a given day, the law of averages pretty much guarantees that they’ll make enough sales through their new features that it will be well worth the trouble.
And, of course, in-app purchasing makes it even easier for Facebook, Google, whomever to track your interests and tailor your internet experience to your likes/wants/needs/etc. Or, if you’re a realist, it allows them to track your personal information and fill your screen full of more targeted adverts that will follow you around until you or the internet dies.