I’ve been using Fancy for sometime now and for the most part I really like it as a discover tool particularly for fashion. Essentially it is a Pinterest competitor. Fancy touted its integration with one click buying as being the major difference between it and Pinterest and other “Pin” board copies.
While that might be true or at least true to an extent (Pinterest is catching up fast), there is an intrinsic problem with this type of user generated content. Veracity. Without sufficient moderation, either from the community or from Fancy themselves the community will quickly deteriorate and I believe we are already seeing signs of this happening.
The biggest sign that I have seen of this decline is the use of $15 price tags as a “default”. I reached out to Fancy for clarification about this but they didn’t respond. It could be that there is a bug in the system or it could simply be that people have realized that items with a price tag get more view. However, often the price of the item is not $15, it is either higher or even, bizarrely, lower. Take a look at the screenshots below:
the image on the left is a screenshot from the app, showing a Gold Medal bottle opener – timely with the Olympics starting in a few weeks. On the left is the site that you are taken to if you click “where to buy”. As you can see in Fancy the product is listed as $15 on the website it is listed as $9.95. Yes sure perhaps the merchant reduced the price since the product was added to Fancy or any number of other reasons why there is a price discrepancy. But for the user, especially when the price is much higher this can leave a feeling of bait and switch.
If users don’t trust Fancy then they will stop using it for anything other than picture aggregation, which reduces the ability for both marketers and Fancy to monetize from the platform. Afterall would you use a source you knew users didn’t trust to market your products?
Social aggregation and it’s potential for social commerce is still a relatively untapped area. Pinterest, Fancy, Gentlemint and others are all vying to be the first to really show that they can drive sales value from their platforms, but until they manage to tackle the veracity issue I think we are still some way off from seeing the change in consumer behavior that they promise.
Have you marketed any of your products through these platforms? Have you bought any products from them? Let me know in the comments.