Facebook Marketplace has been officially launched in New Zealand as well as Australia, the UK and the USA.
Facebook Marketplace is here, providing the perfect place to buy and sell items to people within your community. It makes it easy to find new items that you will love and a perfect way to find a new home for items you are ready to part with. The concept originated from Facebook groups been set up locally for buy and sell meet ups. The success of these groups led Facebook to launching a specific page for buying and selling.
What is Facebook Marketplace:
The brand-new Facebook marketplace is a free classified listings feature for buying and selling items between people. It follows a similar concept to other e-commerce sites such as Trade Me and eBay. The benefit of Marketplace over other e-commerce websites is that there are no fees and looser regulations. It can simply be accessed by tapping a highly visible shopping bag icon at the bottom of the Facebook app on your mobile phone.
Marketplace is available to anyone over the age of 18 years old in New Zealand, UK, Australia and USA and is currently only available on the Facebook app for iPhone and Android. Facebook have hinted that a desktop version of Marketplace is in the pipeline and currently only available to personal Facebook pages. Businesses are not involved in the initial set up but may be added in the future updates.
The main attraction of Facebook Marketplace is that Individuals can list items for sale and to advertise local services free of charge. It is cutting out the middle man when looking for products or services and following the Facebook community feel by letting Facebook users promote their offerings.
When opening marketplace, photos of items for sale around your area will pop up on the screen. To look for something specifically, you can filter your results by location, category or price. The in-built location tool can be adjusted to the region you’re in or you can search in other areas or cities.
When you see something you like, tap on the image and more details from the seller will show up. A much more detailed description of the sale item, name and profile photo of the seller and their general location. Items can also be saved to look back on later.
Once you see something you like, send the seller a message from Marketplace and make an offer. The seller can accept or reject the offer. It is important to bear in mind that Facebook does not facilitate payments or delivery of items that are sold on marketplace (however, it looks like this is not too far away as Facebook is currently testing Facebook Messenger Payments in the US!).
How to post an item for sale:
Facebook has made it very simple to start selling items on Marketplace:
- Take a Photo of the item for sale
- Add a product name, description and price
- Select location
Marketplace is a sign that Facebook sees smartphone-based e-commerce as the future of retail and peer to peer sales. With messenger integration, it is possible to ask questions, clarify details and haggle on the price. This can all be done in real time and allow for quicker decision making.
At this stage it is unclear just how far Facebook will take its new Marketplace feature, but with 1.4 billion Facebook users’ worldwide there is a big chance that that this could seriously change the way we buy and sell online.