How to sell on Facebook Marketplace for beginners
In the U.S., more than one in three people use Facebook Marketplace to buy and sell things every month. The prominent social media platform offers a plethora of opportunities for entrepreneurs and small business owners looking to add an additional eCommerce avenue to their repertoire.
Wix users can take even further advantage of Facebook with Wix multichannel campaigns. Simply connect your online store to your Facebook business page or Facebook Shop (where you can add Marketplace as a sales channel), and manage everything seamlessly from one place—including ads.
To help you succeed, we’ll guide you through everything you need to know about how to sell on Facebook Marketplace for beginners. From choosing what to sell to creating listings and offering tips for successful selling, we've got you covered.
How does Facebook Marketplace work?
Facebook Marketplace is quite easy to use, even for those who are brand new to starting a business. Just like posting a status or photo, you can post an item that you want to sell on the marketplace as either a private Facebook user or business account. You just need to provide details like what the item is, its price and your location. When you're done, Facebook will show your listing to consumers in your area.
People can browse your items and send you a direct message for more information. Once you agree on terms, you can arrange for pick-up or delivery.
Is Facebook Marketplace right for you?
For many beginner entrepreneurs, selling on Facebook Marketplace is an attractive, simple way to start multichannel selling. Before you invest time and resources into the platform, consider these factors to see if it’s also a good fit for your eCommerce growth strategy:
Audience: If you're looking to target local customers, Facebook Marketplace is an excellent choice. However, you’ll want to make sure your target audience is actually active on Facebook. Facebook is the preferred social media platform for people ages 35 to 44, with waning popularity among Gen-Z users. If your customer base is largely comprised of young people, Facebook may not be the best option.
Product category: Facebook Marketplace caters to a wide range of physical items, including clothing, electronics, furniture and more. Some categories may perform better than others. If you're selling unique or vintage items, or niche products that don't fit into other online marketplaces, then Facebook Marketplace might be a good choice.
Seller requirements: To sell on Facebook Marketplace, you just need a personal Facebook account, though U.S.-based business accounts with a Facebook Shop can also manage Marketplace listings through their Commerce Manager dashboard. To avoid having your account suspended while selling on Facebook Marketplace, it's essential to adhere to Facebook’s commerce policies to maintain a positive selling experience.
Costs: Meta recently changed its fee structure on Facebook Marketplace. Local sales used to have zero charges, while shipped orders incurred a 5% fee of the sale price. Now, all orders will only be subject to payment processing fees ranging from 2.9% to 3.49%.
If Facebook Marketplace sounds like the right fit for you, let’s dive into how to list and sell items on the platform.
How to sell items on Facebook Marketplace
01. Set up a Facebook Marketplace account
To set up your Facebook Marketplace account, simply log into your personal Facebook account and click on the Marketplace icon. If you don't see it immediately, try clicking on the “See More” option from the menu bar to find it. From there, you’re ready to create a listing.
Alternatively, if you feel you need a more comprehensive eCommerce experience, create a Facebook Shop. You’ll need a business Facebook page to create a Shop account, which provides a dedicated online storefront that you can customize to your liking. Facebook Shops can also utilize Facebook Marketplace as a sales channel through the platform’s Commerce Manager tool. This gives your customers the option to purchase from your business in three different ways: through Facebook Marketplace, your Facebook Shop or your online store.
If you’re a Wix user, you can create and manage a Facebook Shop directly from your Wix dashboard. Wix simplifies the process by letting you build listings and manage orders simultaneously across multiple eCommerce platforms. This is an easy way to organize and streamline your overall strategy, as managing multiple sales channels individually can be a huge time sink.
02. Create a compelling listing
When you sell on Facebook Marketplace, it’s crucial that you capture the attention of your potential buyers with a compelling listing. To get started, first click on “Marketplace” from the left-hand sidebar. Then, click “Create new listing.”
You’ll need to select from one of three types of listings:
Item for Sale
Vehicle for Sale
Property for Sale or Rent
From here, you’ll be prompted to fill in the details of your Marketplace listing. Your listing should include a clear, concise title and description. You should also use relevant keywords in your copy to improve your chances of getting seen. To gather intel here, put yourself in the buyer’s shoes and mimic their search behaviors. Take note of the listings that appear first in relevant search results, including the keywords used in the titles and descriptions.
In addition, post high-quality photos and/or videos of the item for sale. Potential buyers are more likely to click on listings with clear, detailed images.
03. Set your delivery method
Before you can publish your listing, you’ll need to choose from one of several delivery methods:
Shipping only: You, the seller, will be responsible for shipping items directly to your buyers within 10 business names of receiving the order. Note that many purchases that are completed with checkout on Facebook are covered by Purchase Protection.
Local pick-up only: You will need to arrange an in-person pick-up with your buyer, though you can use an existing store location as a drop-off/pick-up location.
Shipping and local pick-up: Buyers can choose between pick-up or shipping; whichever is most convenient for them.
03. Promote your listings
Posting something on Facebook Marketplace does not guarantee that it will be seen by potential customers. Therefore, you’ll want to invest some energy (and potentially some money) into promoting your listings. There are several ways to reach more potential buyers on Facebook Marketplace.
Tap the locals: Join local buying and selling groups by using the groups feature on Facebook. You’ll find many customers looking for a good deal or other sellers wanting to make money through arbitrage, so it’s worth joining a few groups related to your niche.
Cross-promote your listings: Post your listings on your other social media channels, like Instagram.
Leverage Facebook Ads: Create ads that put your listings front and center when people are scrolling through Marketplace or other Meta-owned channels (like Instagram, Messenger and the Meta Audience network). Wix users can take advantage of fully integrated Facebook and Instagram ads directly from their site dashboard.
04. Communicate with buyers and finalize the sale
Effective communication with potential buyers is key to ensuring a smooth transaction and finalizing the sale. The Facebook Messenger tool is an easy way to do this right from the Facebook app; use it to answer any questions customers may have about your listing, negotiate prices and arrange pick-up or delivery details.
Payment methods vary on Facebook Marketplace. You can arrange for local transactions for in-person deliveries, or enable online checkout to accept credit cards, debit cards, PayPal or Meta Pay.
Tips for selling on Facebook Marketplace
For any eCommerce endeavor, building your online presence and consumer trust is crucial. There are a few key things you can do to ensure a successful experience selling on Facebook Marketplace.
Build consumer trust
To gain the trust of potential buyers on Facebook Marketplace, it's important to treat your listings like a storefront. Here are three things you can do to build consumer trust:
Complete your profile: Fill out the details in your personal profile, like having a bio, profile picture and cover photo. A fleshed out profile will help you seem like an actual human user on the platform. If you’re selling in a more professional capacity, you’ll want to make sure your profile, business page or Shop looks the part and is in good standing.
Be responsive and communicative: Respond promptly to questions from potential buyers, be honest about any flaws or issues with your items and keep buyers updated throughout the sales process. If you can’t answer questions immediately, let buyers know what the expected turnaround time is with automated messaging or in your bio.
Be honest in the item’s description: It’s important to accurately describe your products’ features and attributes. This prevents disputes and an overall negative customer experience.
As you continue to sell products on Facebook Marketplace, remember that building consumer trust is an ongoing process. Treat every transaction with the same level of care and dedication to excellent customer support. This will help you build a strong reputation on the platform.
Choose the right time to post your listing
Timing is key if you want to increase your chances of selling your items on Facebook Marketplace. While it may be difficult to pinpoint exactly when your audience is most active, a recent survey showed that the best time to post on Facebook is between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Wednesdays. Use that as a starting point, and adjust as you see fit.
Encourage positive reviews and ratings
Research has shown that potential customers spend more time reading negative reviews compared to positive reviews. That’s why you should spend time managing your reputation as a seller.
One way to do that is by reaching out to previous customers and asking them to leave a review. While it might seem like there’s a low chance of success, surveys by BrightLocal indicate that 65% of customers would leave a review if prompted by a business.
You can increase your chances of earning positive ratings by providing excellent customer service and responding quickly to inquiries—bonus points if you manage to turn negative experiences into positive ones. BrightLocal also found that 79% of customers were more likely to leave a positive review when a business resolved an issue.
Research your competitors
Researching your competitors when selling on Facebook Marketplace is helpful for a few reasons.
Gain insider insight: Researching your competition’s pricing and product offerings helps you identify gaps in the market and differentiate your own offerings.
Gauge customer preferences: Taking note of customer experiences and expectations will help you to tailor your products and services accordingly.
Inspire your marketing efforts: Looking at competitor marketing tactics and promotional campaigns can provide ideas for improving your own sales approach.
Understand Facebook Marketplace algorithms
To increase your visibility and reach potential buyers on Facebook Marketplace, you'll need to understand how the platform's algorithms work.
The algorithm considers various factors when determining which listings to display, including relevance, engagement and seller reputation.
Relevance: This is determined by the information included in the listing, such as product details and keywords.
Engagement: This refers to how many users interact with the listing through likes, comments and shares.
Seller reputation: This takes into account feedback from previous transactions and overall activity on Marketplace.
Boost your listings with Facebook Ads
Finally, one of the most effective ways to increase your online visibility is to utilize Facebook Ads to drive website traffic, or traffic to your Marketplace listing.
If you know who your target audience is, you can target those potential customers with ads based on their interest. You’ll need to set specific ad parameters to increase the chances of your listings appearing in front of the right people, such as location, interests and demographics.
Facebook Ads are a highly cost-effective advertising method and yield the highest ROI compared to other social media platforms. They’re also easily managed with online commerce platforms, such as those offered within Facebook Ads by Wix. That being said, poorly optimized ads could lead to a lower conversion rate and fewer sales. Understanding the best practices of Facebook Ads could turn Facebook Marketplace into a significant sales channel.
Here are some effective ways to increase the chances of of customers clicking on your ads:
Include a call-to-action (CTA): Let customers know what you want them to do after seeing the ad. CTAs create a sense of urgency and direct customers where to go to learn more about your product.
Share what you’re selling: The description must provide enough information on what you’re selling and why it’s better than similar products on the marketplace.
Ensure it’s error-free: To encourage potential customers to engage with your ads, the copy should have no typos and proper grammar. Consider using a free grammar checker like Grammarly to double check your copy before launching your ad.
The benefits of selling on Facebook Marketplace
Facebook Marketplace offers numerous benefits for sellers, making it a popular platform for decluttering, earning extra income and reaching a wide audience. Here are some key advantages of selling on Facebook Marketplace:
Vast audience: With over 2.91 billion monthly active users, Facebook provides an extensive potential customer base for your items.
Local reach: Marketplace prioritizes listings based on proximity, allowing you to target buyers within your local community.
Free listings: Posting items for sale on Marketplace is free, eliminating upfront costs and maximizing your profit margin.
Direct communication: Connect directly with potential buyers through Facebook Messenger, facilitating negotiations and arrangements.
Simplified transactions: Marketplace streamlines the selling process, allowing you to arrange meetups and handle payments directly with buyers.
Variety of products: Sell a wide range of items, from furniture and electronics to clothing and vehicles, catering to diverse interests.
Brand recognition: Facebook's brand recognition and reputation add a layer of trust and familiarity for buyers.
Mobile accessibility: Manage your listings and communicate with buyers on the go using the Facebook mobile app.
Community engagement: Connect with buyers in your local community, fostering a sense of connection and trust.
Sustainable practices: Contribute to a circular economy by giving new life to pre-owned items and reducing waste.
Rules for selling on Facebook marketplace
Facebook Marketplace has established guidelines to ensure a safe and compliant experience for both buyers and sellers. Here are some key rules to follow when selling on Facebook Marketplace:
Prohibited items: Avoid listing items that are illegal, dangerous or violate Facebook's Community Standards. This includes items like drugs, weapons, counterfeit goods and regulated products.
Accurate representation: Provide accurate and truthful descriptions of your items, including their condition, features and any flaws. Use clear and high-quality photos that accurately represent the items.
Responsible pricing: Set fair and competitive prices for your items. Avoid misleading pricing tactics or price gouging.
Respectful communication: Communicate politely and professionally with potential buyers. Avoid discriminatory or offensive language.
Safe transactions: Arrange meetups in public places with good lighting and visibility. Consider bringing a friend or family member along for added safety.
Payment methods: Decide on acceptable payment methods, such as cash or electronic transfers. Be cautious about accepting checks or money orders.
Protect personal information: Avoid sharing personal information like your home address or phone number with strangers. Use Facebook Messenger for communication.
Report suspicious activity: If you encounter suspicious behavior or potential scams, report them to Facebook and avoid engaging with those individuals.
Stay vigilant: Be aware of potential scams and avoid unrealistic offers or requests for personal information. Trust your instincts and don't hesitate to walk away from a deal if it feels unsafe.
Community guidelines: Adhere to Facebook's Community Guidelines and avoid engaging in prohibited activities, such as harassment, bullying or hate speech.
By following these rules and exercising caution, you can minimize risks and ensure a positive selling experience on Facebook Marketplace.
How to sell on Facebook Marketplace FAQ
Is it worth selling on Facebook marketplace?
Whether or not it's worth selling on Facebook Marketplace depends on various factors, including the type of products you are selling, your target audience, and your overall business goals. Selling on Facebook can be a good choice if your target audience is active on Facebook as using Facebook Marketplace can be a valuable way to reach potential customers directly. It is also particularly beneficial for selling to a local audience, as it prioritizes nearby buyers. Unlike some other online marketplaces, Facebook Marketplace generally does not charge listing fees, making it cost-effective for sellers. At the same time listing products on Facebook Marketplace is relatively straightforward, making it accessible for sellers without extensive e-commerce experience.
What are the disadvantages of selling on Facebook?
Facebook Marketplace offers several benefits for sellers, but there are also some disadvantages to consider. Unlike dedicated e-Commerce platforms, Facebook Marketplace has limited targeting capabilities. Sellers may find it challenging to reach specific or niche audiences. At the same time due to the vast number of users and sellers on Facebook Marketplace, competition can be high, making it challenging to stand out and gain visibility for your products. Facebook Marketplace does not provide structured buyer protection or dispute resolution processes. This can lead to potential issues with fraudulent buyers or disputes over transactions. The user experience on Facebook Marketplace can vary significantly based on individual users' preferences and interactions. Some buyers may be less comfortable purchasing through this platform, affecting conversion rates and brand trust.