What are ya buyin'?: Facebook bots can now be shopkeepers

facebook bots

Facebook Messenger has received another update, this time giving users the ability to make purchases without ever leaving the app.

According to Facebook, since the Messenger platform launched 6 months ago, millions of people the world over have been engaging with businesses in "new and exciting ways."

In an effort to make it easier for brands and businesses to attract the attention of its users, Facebook has begun to make it possible for advertisers to open a Messenger conversation thread when "Shop Now" or "Learn more" buttons are clicked on News Feed ads.

No more redirects

Before Facebook Messenger version 1.2, users trying to make purchases from brand bots through the app would have to move to the browser or another app to complete their payment.

Now, by storing their payment information on Facebook, users will be able to go through the purchase process from start to finish in a messenger thread, making the process of throwing your money at things you want smoother than ever.

Check it out in action here.

Facebook is also making it easier for users to share the bots they've discovered by giving them them option to share direct links to open a bot conversation.

In an official blogpost, Facebook revealed that businesses have built over 30,000 bots for Messenger and there are more than 34,000 developers working to increase this number so you'll find plenty of chatbots to engage with and share.

These new payment features are currently available to developers in a closed beta, but it's expected that they'll be rolled out more broadly later this year. Facebook is certainly well on its way to becoming a competitive e-commerce platform.

Emma Boyle

Emma Boyle is TechRadar’s ex-Gaming Editor, and is now a content developer and freelance journalist. She has written for magazines and websites including T3, Stuff and The Independent. Emma currently works as a Content Developer in Edinburgh.