Facebook pages will soon have access to a new free story type that allows page owners to post offers that users can collect from News Feed or ad units. Unlike check-in deals, which required users to first visit a physical location, offers can be redeemed in-store or online. The social network plans to remove check-in deals in the coming weeks.
Offers will be created directly from the page publisher and do not require approval from Facebook before going live. Check-in deals, on the other hand, were available through a hard-to-find dashboard and needed to be reviewed by Facebook. Starting today, no new check-in deals will be approved, but Facebook hasn’t provided exact timing for when these deals will be removed from the site completely.
For users, getting offers is frictionless. One click (or tap on mobile) sends the offer to a user’s email account. From there, they can use the voucher at a brick and mortar location or enter a coupon code into an e-commerce site. When users get an offer, a story is available to be shown on Timeline and in their friends’ News Feeds, increasing the viral reach of the promotion.
Creating an offer is free for page owners, just like making any other post. Companies, however, can pay to boost the unit into a Sponsored Story by using the self-serve ad tool, or turn it into a premium homepage ad by working directly with Facebook.
We first saw Facebook testing offers in December. At the time they were called coupons. The company has since tweaked the wording and design of how offers display in News Feed and in Sponsored Stories.
Pages will get this feature in the next few weeks. We have not yet seen the interface for creating offers, but will provide details on how to create them when it is available.