Facebook has been working to significantly monetize itself. On the one hand, they are already on their way to becoming a force to be reckoned with when it comes to , but Facebook isn’t content to follow the same path to profit as Google: they are now rolling out a virtual currency which they hope will eventually turn into a multi-billion dollar business.
Facebook has been testing its currency, called , for more than a year, but Farmville andMafia Wars creators Zynga have just given Credits a major new push: they have made Credits the exclusive payment method for most of their games.
This isn’t a small deal. Thanks to the deal with Zynga, which will push Credits into the mainstream of Facebook social interactions, analysts expect Credits to be almost a billion dollar industry in and of itself by the end of the year. Target stores now sell Credits gift cards.
And it won’t end there. Eventually, the goal for Credits seems to be to expand it past the virtual goods market and beyond Facebook to encompass other forms of throughFacebook Connect… a move that could see Facebook competing with the likes of Amazon, eBay,Google and PayPal.
Watch out. In a couple of years, you might find yourself being paid through Facebook.