Facebook Rolls Out Facebook Cards, A Universal Gift Card

February 1, 2013 0

Los Angeles – Are you searching for something special to get your Facebook friend as a gift? Well! In a surprising move, Facebook Inc., the most popular social network on Thursday unveiled the Facebook Card, which it dubbed as “a new type of gift card,” a reusable gift card that can be used at Jamba Juice, Olive Garden, Sephora, and Target.

So, how about a delicious fruit smoothie from Jamba Juice or a few new beauty products from Sephora? Interested? Here is how it works: Cards are like regular, plastic gift cards, except that they work at a wide range of retailers. (For the initial rollout, the partners Facebook is nominating are Jamba Juice, Olive Garden, Sephora, and Target. Company reps were tight-lipped on what partners may or may not be signing up for Cards in the near future.)

The ability to send a Facebook Card is rolling out “gradually” to those in the U.S., Facebook said in a news release.

The Facebook Card is basically a reusable gift card that can be loaded with money for multiple retail stores. Facebook members can purchase and send the multitasking gift card, accessible from the “Gift Cards and Digital” category within Facebook Gifts, to their social-network friends.

“We are starting this early rollout as another way for people to instantly send their friends gifts through Facebook,” a company spokesperson told CNET. “Each gift is a set value at a particular retailer, chosen by the sender.”

The process for sending a Facebook Card is fairly intuitive: just select a gift for your friend from the Gift Cards & Digital section on the site, and choose a value. Once the order is complete, your friend will be notified instantly on Facebook about the gift, and will also receive a physical Facebook Card in the mail a few days later.

Currently, you can only select from just four retailers: Jamba Juice, Olive Garden, Sephora, and Target. However, you can choose to divide your gift up between retailers, meaning you can give a friend a Facebook Card loaded with, say, $50 for Olive Garden and $100 for Sephora, so they can shop and eat.

Facebook Card

“Facebook Cards are reusable,” the social network explained. And when you have used up the value of the gift card, do not throw out the plastic; the next time anyone sends you a Facebook Card, that gift’s value will be added automatically to your existing gift card.

It is like Facebook is getting into the land of prepaid credit cards via Gifts. It is all very interesting stuff. In fact, you can view your gift balances in your account settings on Facebook from your phone or desktop. The social media hub will alert you when balances change by sending a real-time notification to your phone.

The Facebook Card (Credit: Facebook)

Facebook initially launched Gifts in September, and it allows users to send their friends real gifts through the social network. By December, Facebook rolled out its Gifts products to everyone in the U.S.

Lastly, Facebook refused to reveal the terms of its alliance with participating retailers or share whether it plans to add additional businesses to the Facebook Card experience.