Putting down payment info online is the biggest turn-off for new social gamers… so Facebook has begun testing out a “pay later” option to get them into buying virtual goods.
We have seen other Facebook efforts to get you into virtual spending before: first they let you obtain Credits by exchanging gifts or checking into places, and they even gave out free virtual Credits earlier this year. Now this new “pay later” option has been quietly added to some games, in an effort to keep capitalizing on this increasingly crucial source of revenue.
Although we do not yet know what the limit for this kind of credit is, Facebook is now letting some users in some games click on a “Pay Later for…?” option, which should ease up new gamers into buying virtual goods when they play casual games. According to InsideFacebook, after you accumulate your first virtual debt you will see your existing balance highlighted in red. Also, you will be given the option to “repay” said debt every time you buy a new item. And if that wasn’t enough of a reminder for you, there is a handy “Unpaid Order History” tab to check the totality of your debt:
But, like we said, there doesn’t seem to be a limit to the amount of debt you can accumulate, and you are not required to pay off your debt before continuing to purchase. We’d love to hear from you if you’re one of those new gamers being lured into buying virtual goods through this novel payment method!
I’m especially interested in seeing whether Facebook will at some point roll out this feature for all of their 500 millions users. That should be interesting. Will people begin to abuse the system and accumulate exorbitant amounts of virtual debt? Will Facebook charge extra fees for those who don’t pay “in time”? Stay tuned, world!