In recent times, there have been a few companies offering solutions that enable users to make payments across blogs, websites and social media services such as Facebook and twitter. BuyReply, Chirpify and Gumroad are some of the startups in this category. Another company operating in this space is Ribbon, a platform that enables users to sell their product inside Facebook, Youtube, Twitter or on their own website.
Ribbon was co founded by Hany Rashwan (CEO) and James Elkins (Lead Engineer) in July 2012. The company has received a total funding of $1.75 Mn through investors including AngelPad, Sierra Ventures, InterWest Partners, Draper Associates, Siemer Ventures, Emil Michael, Naguib Sawiris, Winston Ibrahim and Microventures.
Ribbon enables the user to buy from merchants online or via social media like Youtube payments, Twitter “in-stream” payment option that allows user to enjoy the experience of payments by staying on the twitter page. It makes online payment simpler and by this the user can easily accept payment through their website.
Ribbon realizes the need of customers who wanted a direct way to monitise the social media platforms like Facebook & Twitter .Traditionally whenever user wants to sell something the traffic is redirected to various online payment gateways like paypal and marketplace websites like Amazon and EBay. On the other hand Ribbon gives the power to the customers by generating an easy to use link which is directed to the support platforms themselves.
This is a video giving an overview of Ribbon:
With Ribbon customers can now do the following things:
- Create: It allows customers to add their product which can be physical, digital and service .Then user will receive their unique checkout link.
- Paste: It gives the customer freedom by which user can either embed their link into a button or can simply paste it online.
- Sell: It takes orders with their beautiful checkout whereby the customer needs to enter the payment details like card number, Expiration and email address.
Ribbon charges a fee of 2.9% + 30 cents per transaction. The user is only required to pay when a sale is made. There is no fees for setup and no monthly fees for usage.
The company has made deals with various credit card companies like Visa MasterCard, Amex, and discover payments. What makes Ribbon unique is that it understands from which social platform user is coming from like Facebook, Twitter and accordingly it generate the result accordingly.
Other companies operating in the same space include Chirpify and BuyReply. Chirpify allows its users to buy through hashtags with a simple Tweet on Twitter. A brand displays an advertisement on TV or online with instructions to #Buy #Lays, for example. Then a customer simply posts that campaign tag to their social network and Chirpify processes the order through credit and debit cards, PayPal and ACH payments, charging a flat fee of 2.9%. The payment system is preconfigured with the user’s account at Chirpify.
To complement their merchant service, Ribbon has been developing a Customer facing version of its platform which is due to arrive early in 2014. “For the last few months, we've been working on a new version of Ribbon that takes the technology and ideas that we've already built, and uses them in a different way. We're not ready to fully announce the new Ribbon, but are excited for people to use a payment system built for +today's age and technology.” said Hany Rashwan, CEO of Ribbon.
As of October 2013, there were 10,000 merchants using Ribbons product and counted 150,000 unique visits to their checkout pages. The company also recently added Target as a partner. Target utilized Ribbon as part of a facebook campaign.