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The Complete Guide to Facebook Marketplace for your Business

By Hephzy Asaolu | No Comments | 12th November 2020

Facebook Marketplace, created in October 2016, is an online marketplace where users can buy and sell new and used products locally. The Facebook Marketplace is used in 70 countries of the world by 800 million people every month to buy or sell products. This makes it a viable platform for marketers to boost conversions and sales of products. However, if you are a marketer and have not started using the Facebook marketplace for your business, now is the right time to start.

This article is an in-depth tutorial on the Facebook Marketplace for businesses.

What is Facebook Marketplace?
Why Facebook Marketplace is a great opportunity for Businesses?
What to sell on Facebook Marketplace
Facebook Marketplace categories
How does Facebook Marketplace work?
How to list products on Facebook Marketplace
How to advertise on the Facebook Marketplace
How to maximize Facebook Marketplace ads for your business
How to use the Facebook Marketplace
5 Tips for selling on Facebook Marketplace
Conclusion

What is Facebook Marketplace?

Facebook Marketplace

Before the launch of the Facebook Marketplace, users sell and buy things on Facebook buy and sell groups. It is more or less a Facebook group but with the option to list items for sale, search items to buy, and mark items as sold. The Facebook marketplace on the other hand has a complete shop-like feature that connects users directly with the product they want to buy or sell. It is like social Craigslist.  However, Facebook does not facilitate sales transactions but provides a place for sellers to advertise their products without getting involved in price and shipping processes between the buyer and seller.

With the Facebook Marketplace, businesses can:

a.         Display different retail items such as vehicles and homes.

b.         Advertise store items on the marketplace to sell more products

c.         Show new or used items from the Facebook page shop for free 

Who can sell on Facebook Marketplace?

The Facebook marketplace is available only to users who are 18 years old and above. They are the age group that may access the Facebook Marketplace on their devices. It is also opened to businesses in the automotive, real estate, and e-commerce sectors.

Why Facebook Marketplace is a great opportunity for Businesses?

With Facebook’s 2.7 billion monthly users, Facebook Marketplace presents an enormous market opportunity for businesses. More so, Facebook Marketplace has 1.79 million active users. This is an added advantage for small businesses with less than 2,000 sessions a month on their websites. It opens up businesses to a large global audience.

Availability of different marketing tools

The Facebook Marketplace provides different tools for businesses on the platform. An example of this is the merchant selling feature. Businesses can also use marketing automation tools to create automatic replies to users’ inquiries or chatbots to provide answers to popular questions.

Sell directly to prospects one on one

With the Facebook Marketplace, businesses can sell directly to buyers one on one through the Facebook messenger. Prospective buyers can ask questions directly and you can answer them in real-time. This helps you to give them the needed product information before they lose interest. Also, it makes prospects feel comfortable and confident when making buying decisions.

Use the payment processor of your choice

Facebook does not offer sales transaction services in the marketplace. Therefore, businesses are free to use any payment method of their choices such as Paypal, bank transfer, Shopify, and Bigcommerce payment processors. You can also collect payment in cash, which is the best option.

List products for free and boost sales

Facebook Marketplace is free for all businesses to use for listing and managing products. You can literally list your products in minutes and start selling. This helps you to streamline the conversion process and boost sales. If you already have a Facebook shop, link it directly with your Marketplace to further increase conversion.

Now that you know the benefits of selling on Facebook Marketplace, below is what you can sell on the platform.

What to sell on Facebook Marketplace

Not every product can be sold on the Facebook Marketplace. First, you need to ensure that your product or service is not on the list of unwanted items on the Facebook Marketplace. Below are the items you cannot sell on the Facebook marketplace as listed on Facebook.

  1. Adult products
  2. Alcohol
  3. Animals
  4. Body parts and fluids
  5. Digital media and electronic devices
  6. Documents, currency, and financial instruments
  7. Gambling
  8. Hazardous goods and materials
  9. Human exploitation and sexual services
  10. Ingestible supplements
  11. Jobs
  12. Medical and healthcare products
  13. Prescription products, drugs, and drug paraphernalia
  14. Products with overtly sexualized positioning
  15. Recalled products
  16. Services
  17. Stolen goods
  18. Digital products and subscriptions
  19. Tobacco products and related paraphernalia
  20. Weapons, ammunition, and explosives

Having cleared that out of the way, you can sell any product that is not listed above such as eCommerce products, automobiles, and houses. Users on Facebook Marketplace search for deals and want to pay for products with cash.

Now that you know what to sell and what not to sell, there are different categories to list your products. Choosing the best categories makes it easy for people to find your product. Below are the categories.

Facebook Marketplace categories

Businesses can list their product in the categories below

  1.     Deals
  2.     Clothing & Accessories
  3.     Classifieds
  4.     Electronic
  5.     Entertainment
  6.     Family
  7.     Hobbies
  8.     Housing
  9.     Home & Garden
  10.     Vehicles
  11.     Home sales

How does Facebook Marketplace work?

Facebook marketplace uses a simple concept. Sellers can list their products for sale in their locations. When users search for products, it picks users’ information from their profiles to know where they are located. Next, it displays different items for sale in their locations. The prospective buyer chooses the item they want to buy and contact the seller through Facebook messenger. The two parties agree on how to make payment and deliver the item at a specified location or through shipping.  Find an example below.

An automobile dealer (EchoPark Automotive) listed their cars for sale on the Marketplace. A prospective buyer made a choice of the vehicle he/she wants (The 2013 Honda Fit Sport Hatchback) and arranged to meet with the dealer. Seamless, isn’t it?

Facebook Marketplace

Facebook Messenger is a free service that makes it easy for businesses to carry out transactions without exchanging addresses or phone numbers.

How to list products on Facebook Marketplace

To sell on the Facebook Marketplace as a business owner, you first need to have a personal or business Facebook account. If you don’t have one, you can create it. Otherwise, use your existing Facebook account for the marketplace. Second, list your products so that users can see it on the Marketplace, News Feed, and other relevant places on Facebook.

Note: The marketplace product list needs to follow the instructions listed here. Also, you need to read the community standards governing the Marketplace.

Below is the step-by-step process to list products on Facebook Marketplace.

1. On the News Feed, click on Marketplace.

2. Click on sell something or create a new listing from the left-hand side under the marketplace.

Facebook marketplace 5

3. Select the product you want to list from the three options provided i.e. Items for sale, vehicle for sale, and home for rent. Here we will use the “item for sale” option.

Facebook Marketplace

4. On the next page, select the category of your product, fill in what you want to sell, set the price, location, provide a product description and add up to 10 product images.

Click next to proceed when you are done.

Facebook Marketplace

5. Click on post to publish the listing in the marketplace.

Facebook Marketplace

Congratulations! Your products are now listed on the Facebook Marketplace. It is time to sell them. You can access your store through the shop tab on your Facebook business page.

Listing your products will make it accessible for prospective buyers, and it is possible to get sales. However, you can speed up the process and get more eyeballs on your products by using Facebook ads. Below is how to advertise your products on Facebook Marketplace.

How to advertise on the Facebook Marketplace

Facebook Marketplace

Now that your products are listed on the Facebook Marketplace, it is time to reach more people so you can get more conversions. Facebook Marketplace ads give you access to the local market, bring users to your offline and online store, and helps them to engage with your brand on Facebook. The most important thing about Facebook Marketplace ads is that ads are shown to people who are interested in your products. This helps to increase sales because they are likely to make purchases.

Below are the step-by-step process of setting up an ad for the Facebook marketplace.

1. Go to the Ads Manager and select your objective. This can be to create awareness, consideration, or conversion for your product. Here, select the conversion objective and click continue. This will help to display ads to people who are most likely to buy.

Facebook camp 1

2. Type in the campaign name, select the campaign budget optimization, and click on Next.

Facebook Marketplace

3. Give a name to the new ad set and choose the conversion event location. Here you can use the messenger tool. Set the conversion event by selecting the add to cart option.

Facebook Marketplace

4. Set the budget. Choose the budget i.e. daily or lifetime budget and specify the amount. Choose the start and end date for the ads to run.

Facebook Marketplace

5. Select your audience. Here you can use a new audience or an existing audience. Choose as appropriate.

Facebook Marketplace

6. Select automatic placement to get your ads shown to many people at affordable costs.

Facebook Marketplace

7. Select your Facebook page or Instagram account. Choose the ad set up. It’s either you use a single image, video, or carousel.

Facebook Marketplace

8. Choose the ad creative format. The media can be a slideshow or video.  Under the text, tell people about the product you are advertising. Type in a suitable headline and add an appropriate description for your product. Last, create a click-worthy call to action for the ad.

Facebook Marketplace

9. Create a message template. This is where you can encourage people to talk with you after they click on the ad. Here you can start a conversation, generate leads, or define a custom experience for users.

Facebook Marketplace

10. Select the conversion tracking i.e. the Facebook pixel or app events.

11.   Click publish. Your ads will be in the review, and Facebook will approve it if it meets the regulation. After that, people will see your ads as they browse through the marketplace.

Below is an example of a Facebook Marketplace ad.

Facebook Marketplace

How to maximize Facebook Marketplace ads for your business

Creating an ad for your products on Marketplace does not always guarantee success, but you can maximize your ad ROI by using the two strategies below.

1. Integrate your Facebook marketplace ads with your favorite CRM or Autoresponders

First, integrate Facebook Marketplace ads with different CRM, autoresponders, and emails through Leadsbridge. This includes MailChimp, ActiveCampaign, HubSpot, etc.

Facebook Marketplace

This will help you funnel your leads directly to your CRM or autoresponder, where you can quickly communicate with them before they turn cold.

2. Create Facebook Custom Audience and Lookalike Audience for precise targeting

The second way to maximize your ROI is to create a Facebook custom audience from your customers’ list on the CRM or autoresponder and integrate it with Facebook Marketplace through Leadsbridge. From there you can create a Custom audience and a Lookalike audience to target users who have an interest in your product, have purchased from your store before, or follow your Facebook page.

Facebook Marketplace

The lookalike audience is a set of people that share similar traits with your prospects and customers. This helps you to get the best conversion from your ads. Read a detailed blog post on the Facebook Lookalike audience to know how it works.

How to use the Facebook Marketplace

Facebook Marketplace is a great platform for businesses to find new customers and build lasting relationships. There are different ways to use Facebook Marketplace as a business. They are:

1. Use Facebook Marketplace to know the popular product that sells

All products are different and perform differently on various platforms. For instance, a product that sells on Shopify may not do well on Facebook Marketplace. One thing you can do is to first research the products that sell well on Facebook. You can do this by visiting other product sellers in your niche and checking out their product categories. Top selling products are always at the top called “top picks”.

Facebook Marketplace

Once, you discover a selling product that is similar to what you want to sell, create ads for it to expand the reach on the platform and make it sell faster.

The second way to discover popular products that sell on Facebook is by going to business pages similar to yours. The top-performing items are always listed at the top of the page. Check out an example below from an Electronic Gadgets Facebook Page.

Facebook Marketplace

One of the most popular products in the shop is pinned to the top so that more people will see and buy it. If you are selling watches, it gives you an idea that the apple watch sells more.  You can list it in the marketplace and probably create an ad for it.

3. Use Facebook Marketplace to test new products

Do you plan on launching a new product for your business? Facebook Marketplace is an excellent platform to test out new products. Facebook helps you to target the best audience to help you know the products your audience prefers to buy. All that is required is to create a listing and Facebook will take care of the rest. Besides this, you can also carry out experiments to know the best price to sell your product by using discounts and increasing the prices.

Facebook Marketplace

4. Boost discoverability and awareness

Facebook Marketplace is a great place for users to discover products. When they are aware of your products, it is likely they consider it when making buying decisions. These are users who are already interested in your product and not cold audiences.  To increase your visibility in the marketplace, use the right categories. There are up to 11 categories with each of them having subcategories.

Facebook Marketplace

Placing your products in the right category will help you attract the right audience. You can also boost product discovery by creating excellent descriptions for your products.

5. Use the Facebook Marketplace to build trust with your audience

Once your audience can discover your products, it is time to build trust with them. Fortunately, Facebook Marketplace has tools that help to foster trust with prospects. The first is the messenger tool. The messenger app was originally designed as a messaging app.

Facebook Marketplace

But today, it is much more. Among its many uses, today are to share photos & videos, stories, location, and connect with businesses. Use the messenger tool to converse with your prospect one on one. Do you know that Facebook Messenger messages have an open rate of 50-80%?.

Second, the store page also allows you to answer questions and provide more useful information about your products.

The Facebook Marketplace app

The Facebook Marketplace app makes it easy for businesses to sell their products and buyers to make purchases. Sellers can upload their products directly through the marketplace app. The product is visible to buyers who search for the item through the search box or check categories for the product they want to buy.

Facebook Marketplace

The Facebook Marketplace app is available on iPhone, Android Phones, iPad, and computers. It is located on the Facebook app at the base of the Facebook page on the computers. You can find it at the top of your iOS and Android device. It has an icon that looks like a shop as shown below,

Facebook Marketplace

Once you clicked on the icon, it shows the Facebook Marketplace page where you can upload products to sell.

5 Tips for selling on Facebook Marketplace

1. Know what product you can sell on Facebook Marketplace

The first tip you need to sell successfully on the Facebook Marketplace is to know what to sell in the marketplace. As you read above, not all products are allowed for listing in the marketplace. Items such as alcohol, drugs, weapons, animals, counterfeits, Tobacco, and get rich quick schemes are prohibited. Read the full list of prohibited items here. If you list prohibited items in the marketplace, your Facebook account could be blocked.

Items that sell well in the marketplace include refurbished or newly painted furniture, toys, maternity clothes, cabinets, shoes, bags, etc.

Facebook Marketplace

Now that you know what to sell and what not to on Facebook Marketplace, the next tip is for you to take a clear picture of the product.

2. Use quality photos to show the product from different angles

Uploading a clear picture of the product is very important. This is because it is an online sale. Users need to see how the product looks like in real life to make a buying decision. Don’t use stock photos to represent your product as it is fraudulent. The good news is that you need not be a professional photographer to take pictures of your product. All you need is a good smartphone. Ensure you show all the details of your products, including the defects and the warranty information. Take the pictures on a white or black background to avoid distractions.

Facebook Marketplace

Use good lighting and take at least three different photos from various angles that show close and complete shots of the product.  All these will show the buyer you are honest and they will be more willing to do business with you.

Now that you have the right images for your product, it is time to decide on the price.

3. Set the right price for your products

It is recommended that you carry out product research on other marketplaces such as eBay to know the pricing of products. This will give you an idea of the right price to sell your product and readily prevents overpricing and underpricing of products.

Facebook Marketplace

Second, check for similar items on local Facebook groups or the Facebook Marketplace itself to see the prices of items you want to sell. When setting the price for your items, set the price a bit high to give room for haggling. When people haggle on such prices, they will literally arrive at the actual price of the product and they will feel satisfied that they have gotten the right bargain for the product. Another side of the coin to this tactic is that buyers may not even haggle, but pay the asking price directly. With this, you make more money than what you asked for.

After setting the price, ensure you describe exactly how the product looks like. This includes the defects and the good sides too. The words should be around 50 to 60. Find a great marketplace product description below.

Facebook Marketplace

The next thing is to sell the product.

4. Complete the deal through the Facebook messenger chatbox

Once a prospect indicates their interest to buy your product, check their Facebook profile to know more about them. If you feel comfortable selling, then proceed, if not decline it.

Facebook Marketplace

You should complete the deal through the Facebook messenger chatbox. Here, discuss details of the product such as the price, condition, delivery details, payment methods, etc. Ensure you deliver the product directly to the buyer. You could meet in public places and not in your home. This could be the grocery store, gas stations, police stations, etc. If you cannot deliver the products, you could ship it through USPS or other delivery services. For the shipping option, you may need to add the shipping price to the product price in order not to run at a loss.  If you wish to allow buyers to come into your home to pick up the product, ensure you are not alone at home. If possible, deliver the product on the doorstep and have a mobile phone with you. Make sure you are safe always.

5. Take cash to prevent scam

The best payment method for products on the Facebook Marketplace is cash. It is safer than using PayPal, cheque, or bank transfer.

Facebook Marketplace

If you disclose your banking details to prospects, they can use it for fraudulent purposes. Cheques can also bounce. If you accept payment through Paypal, they can use fake emails for payment. They can also use chargeback to claim that they did not authorize the transaction and the card issuer can reverse the transaction.

Conclusion

Facebook Marketplace is great for businesses that want to sell their products. Its massive audience makes it a place where you can find lots of people to sell to. It is free and easy to set up and as such, you don’t need to pay before listing your product. You can use ads to sell quickly and expose your product to more people.

What makes it more interesting is the possibilities for businesses to integrate with their favorite tools such as CRMs and Autoresponders. This will open up opportunities to get leads, nurture, and turn them into customers who will patronize your business again and again.

Facebook marketplace is available on iOS, Android, and desktop devices.

 

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Hephzy Asaolu

Hephzy is a Professional writer and blogger with over 9 years of experience in writing digital marketing content that gains social media attention and increases search engine visibility.

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