With nearly 3 billion monthly visitors from around the world, Facebook is an excellent sales platform for businesses that want to expand their online presence and reach a wide customer base at little cost. Facebook Marketplace offers a convenient, accessible, and inexpensive opportunity to start a business from scratch or run a side business. In this guide, you’ll learn how to get started selling on Facebook Marketplace and gain some insights on how to maximize your selling potential with this channel.
What is Facebook Marketplace?
Facebook Marketplace is an ecommerce tool built on Facebook’s wildly popular social media platform, where users can buy and sell products. Sellers list the items they want to sell and customers can browse and set filters to find the products they are interested in. While Facebook Marketplace supports sales within a local community (similar to Craigslist), it also allows nationwide shipping.
Like other ecommerce tools based on social media platforms, both the seller and the buyer must have a Facebook account to interact with Facebook Marketplace. There are no other real requirements or prerequisites for selling on this channel. However, sellers should be aware of Facebook’s Commerce Policies, which apply to Facebook Marketplace and determine what can and cannot be sold on this platform.
For items sold locally, Facebook Marketplace is completely free. For shipped items, which are paid for using Meta Pay, sellers must pay a transaction fee of 5% of the sales price (or $0.40 minimum per order, whichever is highest).
Why sell on Facebook Marketplace?
There are a number of compelling reasons to sell on Facebook Marketplace.
First and foremost, Facebook has a massive customer base and over 2 billion daily active users. This gives sellers a great opportunity to market their products on a platform where customers already spend their time.
Additionally, there’s very little risk or effort involved when selling on Facebook Marketplace. Unlike Etsy and Amazon, there are no fees associated with listing a product. Sellers only pay a fee when they make a sale. Adding a listing is fast and easy, and only requires a Facebook account to get started.
Facebook also offers more peace-of-mind and social engagement opportunities than competitors like Craigslist. Buyers and sellers can easily validate that they are speaking to a real person, since a Facebook account is a prerequisite for Facebook Marketplace’s use, and all communication can happen through Facebook Messenger.
How to set up your Facebook Marketplace account
Selling on Facebook Marketplace only requires a Facebook account, which you can set up quickly by following these steps:
- Go to Facebook.com.
- Click Create new account.
- Enter your name, email, password, and a few personal details.
- Click Sign Up.
Once you have created a Facebook account, you can also create a page specifically for your business. Note that to prevent scams and fraudulent activity, Facebook does not allow brand new accounts to participate in shipping and checkout through Facebook Marketplace right away. Contact Facebook support for more information.
How to create an attractive listing
As with any ecommerce or marketplace platform, it’s important to spend time creating an attractive listing with eye-catching visuals and compelling, clear content. In this section, we’ll cover everything you need to know to create a great Facebook Marketplace listing.
When logged into your Facebook account, you can create a Facebook Marketplace listing on your desktop computer by following the steps below:
- Select Marketplace from the Facebook menu.
- In the Marketplace menu, click + Create listing, and then choose whether to list one or multiple products.
- Choose your listing type. For this listing, we’re selling an item.
- Enter details about your item, including photos, price, category, and condition. You can preview your listing to see how it will appear to potential buyers. Click Next when you’re happy with the listing appearance and content.
- Determine your delivery method. If you want to only offer this for local pickup, you can proceed without making any changes. For this listing, we’re going to offer shipping.
To offer shipping, click Set up shipping. You’ll be asked to provide your legal name, birthdate, address, banking information, and tax information (including your social security number or tax identification number).
Click Next when you’re ready to continue.
- Determine the shipping cost by using your own shipping method or by selecting a prepaid shipping label, which will base your shipping costs on the weight of your packaged item. Click Next to continue.
- Decide if you want to list your product in local selling groups in addition to the general Marketplace.
- Take a final look at your listing preview and then click Publish when you’re ready to go live.
Do product research to set up the price
Setting the right price for your products is a very important step in any listing process. Charge too little, and you won’t be able to cover your costs and you risk cheapening your customer's perception of your products. Charge too much, and you’ll turn off customers who can find a more affordable option elsewhere.
The best way to choose the right price is to conduct product research. Check similar listings on Facebook Marketplace and other platforms (like Etsy or Amazon) to establish an average market price for your product. Be sure to consider specific factors about your product, such as the item’s condition. Your goal is to set a price that is competitive with similar products while ensuring that you make a profit.
Create accurate product descriptions
When creating your listing, write a thorough, detailed description that tells potential buyers everything they need to know about your product. Be sure to include basic details like dimensions, brand, model, and color. For used products, describe any damage or wear-and-tear accurately to avoid returns and customer complaints. It’s important to build trust with your potential buyers and avoid negative reviews, which can impact your seller rating and damage your reputation on Facebook Marketplace.
Get reviews to boost your profile
Positive reviews can boost your seller profile and help potential buyers feel more comfortable purchasing from you. Buyers can rate sellers after making a purchase or after communicating via Facebook messages, so the quality of both your products and your communication can have an impact on your rating.
Encourage positive reviews through fast responses to messages, accurate product descriptions, and timely shipping. Get enough positive reviews, and you can earn a Facebook seller badge that will encourage more customers to work with you.
Use Ads / Boost
You can boost your Marketplace listing to turn it into an advertisement so that you can market your product to a broader audience. Boosts are easy to set up and don’t require any additional creative assets — they’ll use the images and description from your listing. To boost a listing:
- Go to Marketplace and click Selling.
- Find the listing you want to boost and click Boost listing.
- Set your total budget by choosing a preset duration for your boost campaign.
- Choose the audience you want to target. You can target potential buyers based on location, age, and interests.
- Click Promote Now to start your boost campaign.
Take attractive and descriptive photos of the product
High-quality photos can help capture the interest of a potential buyer by showcasing your product at its best.
You don’t need professional camera equipment or photography classes to take great product photos — you can take relatively good pictures with your smartphone’s camera and a few pro tips:
- Take pictures of your products that are well-lit by natural light (not a camera flash).
- Capture your product from multiple angles.
- Take pictures of your product while it's in use so that buyers can see how a product works or looks in its typical context.
- If you’re selling a used product, don’t use stock photography that might misrepresent the condition of your product. You want your product to look its best, but the images still need to be accurate.
Choose a payment method that works for you
When selling on Facebook Marketplace, the available payment methods are based on the product’s delivery method.
If you are selling a product for local pickup, buyers and sellers can work together to determine the payment method, which can range from cash to cashier’s check to PayPal.
If you’re selling products that you will ship to customers, your customers will pay for your product via Meta Pay (previously called Facebook Pay). Meta Pay supports all major credit / debit cards and PayPal.
Use shipping or pickup
When listing your items, you can offer shipping or local pickup. Offering shipping lets you reach a broader audience of customers, but comes with additional costs (the 5% sales fee and the cost of shipping your product). Note that Facebook Marketplace requires that you ship items within three days of purchase, but for the best reviews from your buyers, you should try to turn around your shipments as quickly as possible.
Local pickup, conversely, may be cheaper but comes with its own challenges, since your product can only be viewed by customers within a certain radius of your location and requires you to coordinate payment and pickup times with the customer.
How to manage a local sale
If you’re planning to sell products locally, here are a few best practices for how to manage your local sales:
- Arrange safe, public meeting places. If your buyer would like to see the product before completing the purchase or if you plan to hand off the product in-person, be sure to choose a safe, public place to meet. Consider bringing a friend and invite the buyer to do the same. This ensures everyone’s safety and comfort during the interaction.
- Request secure payment methods. When selling locally, you as the buyer are responsible for coordinating payments — this won’t be facilitated online like a typical ecommerce sale. Ask for payment in a secure, reliable method, such as cash or a cashier’s check. You might also consider a digital option like PayPal or Venmo, which you can complete during your in-person product handoff. Avoid methods that open you to scam-related risks (such as personal checks, which can easily be canceled by an untrustworthy buyer).
- Consider asynchronous delivery. If meeting at the same time isn’t something required for this transaction, you might consider scheduling a porch drop-off or some other form of asynchronous delivery. If you feel confident your buyer will follow through on payment (and you may want to ask for a deposit beforehand), this can be a convenient option for both schedules.
Sell as an individual or sell as a business
Facebook Marketplace is a versatile platform that can support both individuals selling their used couch and businesses that are selling handmade goods or practicing retail arbitrage. This versatility means it's also a great option for individuals who are looking to turn their side hustle into a small business by expanding their reach to more customers.
For small businesses looking to operate on Facebook Marketplace and related platforms, consider utilizing a centralized platform like GoDaddy Marketplaces. This type of platform will help small businesses grow with tools to effectively control inventory, quickly process orders, and analyze sales and growth across every sales channel.
What to sell on Facebook
You can sell goods from a wide range of categories on Facebook Marketplace, but there are some limits.
What you can sell
Some popular items to sell on Facebook Marketplace include:
- Clothing and accessories
- Electronics and gadgets
- Furniture and home decor
- Sporting goods, toys, and games
- Baby products and children’s items
- Vehicles and automotive parts
What you can’t sell
Facebook only allows merchants to sell physical goods on its platform — you can’t sell services (like personal training classes) or access to content (like online courses). There are also prohibited categories, which include (but are not limited to):
- Adult products or sexual services
- Hazardous materials
- Alcohol, tobacco, drugs, or related paraphernalia
- Healthcare products or supplements
- Weapons, ammunition, or explosives
For a complete list of prohibited and restricted content, please review Facebook’s Commerce Policies.
Pro tips on selling on Facebook Marketplace
Now that you understand the basics of selling on Facebook Marketplace, let’s explore some tips and strategies for how to excel on this platform.
Do your research
Trends are continually changing, so it’s important to keep a close eye on what products are in highest demand on Facebook Marketplace and other selling platforms. This will help you understand market trends so that you can adjust your selling strategies accordingly.
One smart area to check often is the “Today’s picks” section of Facebook Marketplace. You’ll see this when you first land on the Marketplace main page. For example, in the listings below you can see that furniture products are looking quite popular at the moment.
You should also take stock of your direct competitors — this can be tricky to do since all marketplace items are listed together, but you can use the category filters and search function to find products in your niche. By monitoring competing listings, you can keep tabs on strategies that you might want to adopt or improve upon in your own listings.
Respond quickly to messages
Promptly responding to messages from your potential buyers increases your chances of making a sale — take too long to respond, and the buyer might move on to another item from a different seller.
If you’re quick to respond, though, you can earn the “Very Responsive” badge, which acts as a form of social proof to encourage buyers to reach out to you. Making a good impression on your first sale can also lead to repeat sales from buyers whose trust you’ve earned through fast responses.
Build a trustworthy seller profile
One of the benefits to using Facebook Marketplace as a buyer is the ability to check out the seller’s profile. Because of this, you’ll want to ensure your profile makes a positive impression on your buyers. Beyond encouraging positive reviews, be sure to also add a clear profile and cover photo to your Facebook profile, since buyers might not trust an account without a profile picture.
Create an online storefront
While an online store is not required to sell on Facebook Marketplace, it can help potential buyers feel more secure purchasing your products. Listing your storefront’s website in your Facebook profile or even on your product listings can give buyers peace of mind — and it might help them find some other products that they’d like to purchase!
An online storefront can also help you grow beyond Facebook Marketplace and support customers on other channels. To get started with an online store, look for a website builder that makes it easy to connect with your preferred sales channels, such as Facebook.
Use free delivery
Free delivery can be a very attractive perk to customers, and it is becoming increasingly expected thanks to popular marketplaces like Amazon Prime. Experiment with incorporating the cost of shipping into your product price and then offering free shipping to see how this can impact the success of your listings.
Selling a product at a discount helps customers feel that they’re getting a good deal. You can set product discounts when editing existing listings. If you’re struggling to sell a product, consider editing the listing to lower the price (instead of creating a completely new listing) to create that sense of excitement in your potential buyers.
Use Facebook groups
When creating a listing, you can choose to market your product in commerce-oriented Facebook groups that are located near you. Even if you offer shipping, this is a great way to market your listing to potential buyers who, as members of these groups, are interested in finding great deals on products like yours. Products sold without shipping do not incur a sales fee, so this can be a really smart way to earn some extra income on your listings.
Renew your post
Every seven days, you can renew your listing to return them to the top of relevant search results. Consider renewing your listings on a regular basis to keep them fresh and accessible for potential buyers. If you’re struggling to sell an item, try offering a discount or doing more research to see if you should update your product description, categories, or pictures.
Sell at any size on Facebook Marketplace
Facebook Marketplace is easy to use, quick to set up, and supports a vast user base, making it an attractive sales platform for small businesses, solopreneurs, and individuals looking to make a little extra cash. To do well on this platform, you’ll need to research your competition, write compelling listings, and offer great customer service. Following the instructions and tips featured in this guide is a great starting place for success on Facebook Marketplace.
FAQ — Selling on Facebook Marketplace
How much does it cost to sell on FB Marketplace?
It’s free to create listings on Facebook Marketplace, and there are no fees associated with local sales. However, if you sell an item on Marketplace with shipping and checkout supported by Facebook, you will be charged a transaction fee for 5% of the sales price (or $0.40 minimum per order, whichever is higher).
How do you get paid on Facebook Marketplace?
If you are selling a product locally (i.e. without shipping), the seller and buyer are responsible for agreeing on a payment method and timeline that satisfies both parties.
If you are selling something that is shipped, your customer will pay with Meta Pay. As the seller, you will receive your payout (minus the transaction fee) either:
- 15-20 days after marking the item as shipped and entering the shipment’s tracking information, OR
- 5 days after the item is delivered, if a delivery confirmation is received.
Click here for more information about getting paid for selling shipped items on Marketplace.
What is the safest way to sell on Facebook Marketplace?
When selling shipped items, your payment will be secured via Meta Pay.
When selling locally, however, you should take a few extra steps to ensure your safety, including:
- Use a secure payment method such as cash or a person-to-person payment site (like PayPal or Venmo).
- Meet in a public, well-lit place such as a grocery store or police station parking lot.
How do I sell privately on Facebook Marketplace?
When creating a listing on Facebook Marketplace, you can choose to hide the listing from your friends by using the “Hide from friends” toggle:
This will not make the listing entirely private, but will hide it from your friends on Facebook and Messenger.
What should I avoid selling on Facebook Marketplace?
Facebook Marketplace is subject to Facebook’s Commerce Policies, which limit the types of products that can be sold on this platform. These restrictions include (but are not limited to) firearms, tobacco products, alcohol, drugs, pharmaceuticals, and animals.
Review these policies in full for a comprehensive list of what you should not attempt to sell on Facebook Marketplace.