Marketplace: Facebook’s latest online commerce venture

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Is Marketplace, Facebook’s latest online commerce venture, finally f-commerce?

Facebook is making another attempt to get into the online commerce business. On the back of its not-so-successful earlier attempts — online classifieds and stores, Facebook Gifts, Buy buttons in newsfeed ads — and with the jury still out on Facebook Messenger commerce chatbots, it remains to be seen if the social network giant, which is so successful in other areas, has finally cracked the online commerce nut with Marketplace.

Social Selling, Social Commerce

Facebook’s latest venture is designed to increase social buying and selling — peer-to-peer transactions between members of Facebook Groups (which already see almost 500 million monthly visits). Facebook — for the moment anyway — won’t be involved in payments and won’t charge for listing items for sale, but it doesn’t provide any protection for buyer or seller either.

Local Selling, Local Commerce

Marketplace is pitched at local commerce, within 100 miles or so of the seller’ location, and so could emerge as a threat to eBay, Gumtree, Leboncoin and Craigslist and maybe eventually to Amazon. If you’re selling locally, it’s worth checking out.

Tips for Selling on Facebook Marketplace

1. List each item separately. It’s a photo-based market, you only get one photo to grab potential buyers’ attention.

2. Buff up your profile/company page. It’s linked to your Facebook profile, so make sure it’s looking good (and check your privacy settings).

3. Be prepared for potential buyers to negotiate, via the Make Offer button or PM.


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