With more than 500 million active users, Facebook is quickly becoming an integral part of the world of shopping. From coupons and special offers to select deals through Facebook Places, the social networking site is a treasure trove of discounts.
Deals go fast, though, and the best way to find them is to “Like” a retailer's page on Facebook. But do you really want to like a whole slew of stores, and feel like you are getting spammed every time they want to announce a new promotion? You've got to narrow your choices and be selective.
Here are 10 that have proven themselves to be worth the time:
Gap has been having great promotions on Facebook lately. In early-November, the store's Facebook page gave away 10,000 pair of jeans to the first people to check in at any Men’s and Women’s Gap using Facebook places. Those who were too late were still rewarded with 40% off any regularly priced item. Expect more promotions during the holidays.
In mid-November, any customer who checked in to any of the more than 1,100 JCPenney locations using Foursquare, Brightkite or Facebook Places got a $10 discount off a $50 purchase delivered directly to their phone. One recent wall post included a coupon for 20% off.
- American Eagle
Customers who check in with Facebook Places at any American Eagle Outfitters, 77kids or aerie store can get American Eagle coupons, like 20% off their entire purchase simply by showing their phone to an associate at the counter.
Sears is now offering a new hidden deal every day on its Facebook page. Once enough people "Like" the page, they will unlock the deal. You have to authorize and use the "wishtogether" app to access your profile and see the deal.
- Radio Shack
RadioShack started promoting deals on its Facebook page on December 6. It is part of its "Holiday Hero" campaign which is also offering deals on Foursquare and can include up to 20% off on select in-store purchases.
In early-November, Macy’s offered up to 20% off select merchandise to customers who checked in at any Macy’s store with Facebook Places. They’re also offering regular deals through their Facebook page, including the Macy’s Friends & Family promotion which offered an extra 25% off plus free shipping for online orders.
- Sports Authority
The popular sporting goods retailer is featuring 21 days of deals on their Facebook. “Like” Sports Authority on Facebook for a chance to win each day’s deal. The promotion runs through December 20.
"Like" mega-online retailer Amazon on Facebook and get the scoop on hot deals on everything from books and DVDs to televisions and cameras. Recent offers included codes for free MP3 downloads and a free Move game with the purchase of a PlayStation Move Starter Bundle.
- Toys “R” Us
The popular toy store ran special promotions on Thanksgiving night and on December 4 on Foursquare and Facebook Places. They’re also offering sneak previews of sale flyers on their Facebook page. Like them for more deals and offers over the holidays.
- Best Buy
Best Buy has a lot of Facebook chatter from fans, so you’ll have to dig deep for the deals (or just filter out the Best Buy only wall posts). But they’re there. A recent “Walk in for your chance to win” promotion gave out over 13,000 prizes to Android and iPhone users through shopkick. You can also get updates on their Deal of the Day.
Agree with our choices? Don't agree? Continue the discussion on our Facebook page.
Craig Guillot is a freelance journalist based in New Orleans. His work has appeared in the Washington Post, Miami Herland, Bankrate and other publications. Follow him on Twitter &mdash @CGuillot.
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