Facebook Doesn't Let You Forget Valentine's Day

Most users probably received a prominent ad at the top of their News Feed today asking if they want to buy a loved one a gift for Valentine's Day -- perhaps chocolate-covered Oreos or chocolate-dipped strawberries?

Facebook Gifts launched in December, just before Christmas to likely capitalize on the busy holiday season. However, Valentine's Day is also very gift-friendly holiday, and the social network decided to remind everyone early today to send their loved one a special gift, according to the Wall Street Journal.

On Thursday, Facebook suggested I give my significant other chocolate-covered Oreos -- because it knows I have a significant other the same way it knows my birthday, because I gave it the information. When I clicked on the link to Facebook Gifts it gave me three choices to send: chocolate-dipped strawberries, chocolate bars or chocolate salted caramels. 

Those who have been monitoring Facebook lately can also see that on birthdays, users will also be prompted to give the birthday boy or girl a Facebook Gift. We and the WSJ figure that this will become a staple of Facebook life now. Gifts on birthdays, Christmas, Valentine's Day, Mother's Day and other holidays.

As Facebook chief financial officer David Ebersman said in the latest earnings call: 

The focus right now is trying to figure out what the right product is. Gifts, if done well, can be a very natural and positive part of the Facebook experience. Figuring out how the products need to work, what the selection of products is, all of that stuff is what we’re going to have to optimize. We’re gonna try to do that.

Facebook now makes much more money from sponsored posts, but selling gifts will diversify its e-commerce base. The social network may also be counting on that if users do it once, they may be repeat customers. Even if Facebook is only making a pennies per transactions (and we doubt it is) that number is still pretty large when multiplied by 800 million.
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