Facebook announced today a formal buy and sell platform called Marketplace, which is likely perceived by Craigslist and eBay as a new hugely powerful competitor nudging into their space. There has always been some buying and selling via Facebook Groups, but this is the first time that Facebook has focused this activity into a single feature. At launch, the goods available to buy and sell will only be viewable to people in your local geographic area.
Although Marketplace is free (at least initially), it's not hard to imagine that over time Facebook will add payment and shipping features that make it an eCommerce competitor to eBay. With Facebook's tremendous reach and the massive amount of buying and selling already happening in Facebook Groups, it already is a competitor with Craigslist and classifieds. Facebook says that more than 450 million people visit buy and sell groups each month worldwide.
Marketplace will be part of the Facebook mobile app, easily accessible by tapping on the shop icon at the bottom of the screen.
How To Buy Stuff via Facebook Marketplace
Both selling and buying items on Facebook Marketplace is very easy. "Marketplace opens with photos of items that people near you have listed for sale," notes Mary Ku, Director of Product Management, in a blog announcement. "To find something specific, search at the top and filter your results by location, category or price. You can also browse what’s available in a variety of categories such as Household, Electronics and Apparel. Use the built-in location tool to adjust the region you’re looking in, or switch to a different city altogether."
Once you find something you want, you simply send the seller a direct message right from the Marketplace feature and make an offer. All further negotiation takes place via DM and you will have to work out payment logistics.
How To Sell Stuff via Facebook Marketplace
Facebook provided this list of how to sell::
- Take a photo of your item, or add it from your camera roll
- Enter a product name, description and price
- Confirm your location and select a category
Rolling Out to 4 Countries
Marketplace is launching in US, UK, Australia, and New Zealand on the Facebook app for iPhone and Android. "We will continue expanding to additional countries and make Marketplace available on the desktop version of Facebook in the coming months," says Ku.