Thrive in our connected world

Social Commerce Platform Overview: Payvment Turns Facebook Into a Virtual Shopping Mall

Payvment’s mission is very clear:

“Payvment is the #1 social commerce platform on Facebook. Our goal is simple: to connect people, products, and conversations in new ways to reinvent online shopping.”

The San Francisco, CA-based company fulfills its mission by providing an f-commerce shopping cart solution suitable for both SME’s and enterprise use. Payvment also offers a free version of the platform, as well.

Large retailers should not let Payvment’s willingness to scale up and down the ecommerce spectrum from SME to enterprise dissuade them from taking a closer look, for the platform has much to offer. In fact, its many features – social sharing, analytics, product management, order/payment/shipping management and store setup – cause it to bear a close resemblance to traditional ecommerce shopping carts – certainly the closest of any Facebook shopping cart I’ve seen to date.

With that in mind, here is a short list of some of its most salient features:

  • Social sharing through Facebook, Twitter and email
  • Products listed in Payvment’s Facebook Shopping Mall
  • Scheduled Wall and Twitter Posts
  • Product-specific coupon codes with automated posting
  • Built-in sales tracking
  • Analyze data by store, category, or timeframe
  • CSV Catalog import
  • Shipping discounts for multiple purchases
  • Automated inventory control for one-off items
  • Buyers can use Visa, Mastercard, American Express, or Discover card, checking account, or PayPal balance to make purchases
  • Automatic shipping integration from the USPS, UPS, and FedEx
  • Support for multiple sales and tax regions
  • Receipts and sales notifications via email or Payvment instant payment notification
  • Real-time inventory management
  • Unlimited products and custom categories
  • Check-out without leaving Facebook
  • TRUSTe secure commerce certification

Administrative Dashboard

All administrative functions are housed in within a unified dashboard. Here are a screenshots displaying some of them:

Payvment dashboard merchant promotions tab
Payvment administrative dashboard merchant promotions tab.
Payvment dashboard feedback management
Merchants can manage customer feedback via the administrative dashboard.
Payvment dashboard order processing
Manage order processing via the administrative dashboard.
Payvment dashboard analytics component
Payvment's analytics component helps merchants understand the value of "Likes."

Payvment’s Analytics component is one of the features that set the platform apart from competitors. “The analytics are much more robust than previous versions of the platform. They help merchants better understand the value of user interactions such as Likes and comments in terms of their effect on sales,” said Christian Taylor, Payvment CEO.

Payvment Social Shopping Mall

Payvment is not content with becoming the leading f-commerce shopping cart provider. By aggregating the over 2 million products carried by its 60K sellers, the company is intent on turning Facebook into a virtual shopping mall and, in the process, is building its own social graph where likes and recommendations continually become more and more relevant. Purchases can be made from across multiple stores, collected in the shopping cart and each merchant is credited for the amount owed.

Payvment social shopping mall

Wants, Likes and Wish Lists

Payvment will soon be integrating new features that allow users to “Want” an item, the result being a story appearing in his or her News Feed saying something like, ““Jane wants a Falling Waters Mini Fountain at the Shopping Mall on Facebook.”  In addition to “Want,” users can click either “Own” or “Like” buttons related to products, as well.

The company also recently announced that it will be introducing Wish Lists for shoppers to add to their Facebook profiles.  When Payvment shoppers click on “Want” on a product, the Wish List item will be featured on their profile. Payvment plans to further customize this feature to enable creation of wedding and baby registries, holiday and birthday wish lists and more.

Payvment Clients

With over 60,000 sellers, Payvment claims to be the largest ecommerce platform on Facebook. Its most elite clients include Gibson Guitar, home decor company Chiasso, fashionista Vivienne Westwood and a number of other established retail and entertainment brands.

Here are some screen shots from the Gibson Guitar Facebook store:

Gibson Guitar Payvment shopping cart

Gibson Guitar Payvment store product detail page

Payvment Gibson Guitar Facebook store checkout process

Payvment Funding

Payvment is funded by BlueRun Ventures, Sierra Ventures and 500 Startups. In 2010, the company has received two rounds of funding, totaling about 8 million dollars.

Management Team

Christian Taylor is the founder and CEO of Payvment, Inc. From April 2002 to January 2007, Taylor was President of Xcreative Interactive, a successful, interactive media and web development firm that helped media and entertainment clients build their brands on Facebook and engage audiences.

Jim Stoneham is Chief Operating Officer of Payvment, Inc., having joined the company from Yahoo!, where he led the Communities business (Flickr, Answers, Groups, Delicious) as well as key parts of Yahoo’s overall social offering, including the integrations of Facebook and Twitter into Yahoo products.

Joelle Musante is Chief Brand Officer and a co-founder. She helps retailers and brands with their digital strategies for product discovery, promotion and merchandising in the social world.

Product Costs

The cost to use Payvment spans three tiers: Free, $29.95 per month for the SME version, and custom pricing for enterprise users.

Payvment pricing matrix
Payvment pricing matrix.

Contact Information

Oddly enough, Payvment does not include address or telephone information on the website, which makes contacting the company rather difficult. However, here is contact information I was able to glean:

650 5th Street, Suite 303
San Francisco, CA 94107
Phone: 415-882-7700
Twitter: @Payvment

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