You have to hand it to Best Buy, they are trail blazing in the social media space.

A Social Suggestion Board over at Best Buy IdeaX, a Twitter powered pre-sales and customer support service over at Twelpforce, and now a social commerce web app, Giftag, a universal wishlist that allows you to quickly and easily bookmark stuff you like from anywhere on the Web, and then share it with others.

Giftag is easy to use – simply drag a bookmarklet to your browser bookmark bar, and you’re all set (there’s a Firefox plugin as well).  Just click on the bookmarklet when you see something you like on the Web and GiftTag will create a personal webpage for you and start a annotatable wishlist.  You can then add items to your wishlist, create new lists and share/syndicate your list with people though Facebook, Twitter or email. (See into video below)

What is refreshing about Giftag is that it is merchant agnostic – it works everywhere – and there is no intrusive Best Buy promotion going on.  Just a subtle “A Best Buy App” moniker. But it’s Giftag is a smart branding activity for Best Buy (branding = creating choice-shaping associations in the mind of the customer) in the social space, as by creating something of value to the user Best Buy are building those choice-shaping associations.  I’ve long been a fan of branded utility as an effective social media solution for brands, but Best Buy’s sponsored Giftag app is one of the first I’ve seen in the social commerce space.

So want to know how to do brand-building with social commerce (as opposed to driving e-sales)?  Giftag may just be the answer.

GiftTag lacks some of the polish of Best Buy IdeaX, which is arguably the gold standard in Social Suggestion Boards (compare to Dell’s IdeaStorm, MyStarbucksIdea or Google’s strangely named Suggestion Board app, Moderator), both in terms of functionality and design.

In terms of functionality, the Giftag app is calling out for a price comparison engine, or for pulling in shopper reviews (PowerReviews, Bazaarvoice?).  It would also be smart if lists could become personal stores, from which you or friends could buy directly (integration issues, I know, I know).

And from a design perspective, what’s a wishlist app without personalised “themes”/color schemes?  Best Buy colors are not to everybody’s taste…and offering simple themes/color schemes/custom backgrounds would be simple to implement, and make use of the app significantly more appealing.  Overall, from a design point of view, GiftTag has a rushed out feel to it; perhaps Best Buy were anxious to get the app out for the holiday season.  Hopefully, we’ll see an update soon.

Giftag promo video below…