Facebook plans to let small businesses in emerging markets sell to customers through their Pages for free, the company announced, in an effort to engage potential advertisers in regions of high growth.
Last year Facebook launched a service allowing select merchants to sell items through paid items. This service will be free, however, and the ecommerce occurs directly on a company’s page, not through an ad.
The social media company wants sellers to become more reliant on Facebook, hoping it will be able to later convert some of them into paying advertisers.
The social media platform’s recent Q2 earnings beat expectations on both earnings and revenue, with earnings of 97 cents per share and revenue of $6.44 billion. Analysts predicted earnings of 81 cents per share and $6 billion in revenue. Facebook also added 60 million new users, bringing its total to 1.71 billion users, compared to analyst predictions of 1.69 billion.
“Our business is growing at a healthy rate,” Facebook founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg told a conference call, noting that the company has strategic plans for the next five and 10 years. “Our results show our progress in our goal of making the world more open and connected.”