Twitter works on improving social commerce with new acquisition

CardSpring is purchased by the massively popular social networking service.

Twitter has announced that it has bought CardSpring – an application platform with a simple API that enables developers to connect digital apps to debit or credit cards – and the social networking giant believes that the payments company will help it provide card-linked offers to consumers, which could help boost its social commerce.

CardSpring is well known for its easy-to-use application programming interface (API).

Commenting on the recent acquisition, CardSpring stated in a blog post that “At Twitter, we will continue to grow the adoption of our platform and work with our publisher, financial, and retail partners to create new, innovative commerce experiences for consumers.”

Twitter has previously provided its users with the ability to obtain discounts and deals. According to Twitter, users can already “surprise someone with a coffee, or even add items to their online shopping cart – all directly from a Tweet.” The company stated that as they work on its commerce future, they are confident that CardSpring and the technology it has developed will be a “great fit”.

Social Commerce - TwitterThere are different ways that Twitter could use CardSpring. As an example, it could use it to allow card-linked offers. For instance, a user could receive a tweet from a merchant containing a discount, which would ask the user to enter their credit card number. Later, when the user makes a purchase from this merchant either in-store or online, CardSpring would recognize the credit card number and automatically apply the discount.

At the same time, it would provide the merchant with performance analytics of their offer. Thus, these types of promotions could increase Twitter’s relevancy to local businesses interested in boosting their in-store sales and not just their follows and retweets.

The recent acquisition could lead to a brighter social commerce future for Twitter over Facebook.

Prior to Twitter’s announcement, Facebook revealed it had begun testing its Buy button, which allows online shoppers to buy goods and services directly from their News Feed. However, the one major social commerce advantage that Twitter may have over its competitor is its retweet feature. On Facebook, users can click “Like” on a post and they can also “Share” it, but a retweet immediately shares a message to all of that user’s followers. In other words, it gives merchants a much greater chance of growing their customer base because retweets are likely to reach more users and re-sharing is a huge part of the Twitter culture.

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