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How to Tap into Facebook Marketplace to Grow Your Business

By George Pliakes on Aug 27, 2021

Facebook Marketplace is Facebook’s buy and sell feature.  You may have written it off as unnecessary for your business. However, the feature has evolved over the years into much more than just a Craigslist imitator. Today, it’s a powerful channel to explore.

At last count in 2018, Facebook reported 800 million Marketplace users per month in over 70 countries worldwide according to CNET. To take advantage of this opportunity, of course you can use Umbrella Local Facebook marketing services. But here’s how to approach your own Facebook Marketplace strategy to tap into those prospective customers.

Create Your First Listing

The first step to optimizing Facebook Marketplace it to create your first product listing. This is how your products will show up in search, and believe it or not, it’s free! Facebook has a great walkthrough for the basic process here, so we’ll skip ahead to some specific tips about how to polish your listing.

Anticipate Questions in Your Description

One critical element of your product listing is the description. In addition to adding all the basic elements of a normal product description (size, color, key features, etc.), try to anticipate any questions your Facebook Marketplace audience might have.

Think about it this way: If you came across this product on Marketplace, what would you want to know before making a purchase? Consider adding details like shipping and return information, measurements and dimensions, and even your own favorite features or use cases for your product. You may also want to include care instructions when applicable—especially for clothing or furniture items.

The more (relevant!) information you put into your description, the easier it will be for viewers to gain confidence in your listing.

Nail the Photo Section

Next, make sure to nail the photo section of the listing. You can add up to ten photos per product, and you should take advantage of all ten slots whenever possible. Capture multiple angles, variations of styling for your product (if applicable), and even photos of the tag or other admin-style info about the piece.

The first photo you add will be the “cover photo” for the listing, which is how Marketplace customers will first come across your product in their feeds. Put some extra time and thought into that image to make sure it will stand out on a crowded page alongside similar products.

Respond to Customer Requests

Responding to customer requests is also critical for your Marketplace business. Facebook actually tracks your response rate, which it turns into a metric that customers can see before deciding to engage with your products. If you have a poor response rate, your prospective customers might assume it will take too long to hear back from you and purchase from a competitor instead.

To save time on this step, you may want to create a document where you write out answers to common questions you receive about your products or your payment and shipping processes. By taking that step up-front, you can then copy and paste your response and make small tweaks for each customer. While you won’t be able to anticipate every possible question, this will definitely simplify your support process. Keep in mind, you can also always save a lot of time by hiring a good marketing agency to handle your Facebook marketing services.

Focus on Customer Service 

Speaking of customers, providing great customer service is essential, especially if you’re just getting your Marketplace business off the ground. Your customer rating is shown publicly on your Marketplace shop, so anything less than a stellar reputation can tank your business in the short and long term.

As you’re building up Marketplace sales, take more care than usual to delight every single customer. If you make even a small mistake, go out of your way to make it right. Your first few reviews carry disproportionate weight in your Marketplace fate, so make sure they send prospective customers the right quality signal.

Pick the Right Category

One often overlooked element of Facebook Marketplace is the category feature. There are 18 primary categories for products in Facebook Marketplace, and each category is broken down into a number of subcategories.

You get to pick the category and subcategory where you list your products, and getting the placement right is important. In some cases, this will be simple. If your product is straightforward or aligns perfectly with a particular subcategory, you’ll know exactly what to do. But many products areambiguous and may seem to fit into a few subcategories.

Our advice? Take a look at what other products people are listing in each of your potential subcategories, and pick the one that seems to fit your product best. If you’re still not sure if you made the right decision, leave the category alone for a few weeks, monitor engagement and sales results, and then swap categories to compare outcomes. Whichever one performs better is likely where your product should be tagged in the future.

Run a Paid Ad Campaign

Because Marketplace is a feature within Facebook, you can use Facebook’s ad landscape to create paid campaigns that will show up in the main news feed or in Marketplace itself. Play around with this option to try to build traction for slower products or to give extra momentum to products that are already selling well.

Ads in Marketplace will look like regular products with a “Sponsored” label, and they can really help to lift sales for the products you highlight and your shop as a whole. After all, when one product starts to take off, you’re likely to see increased traffic to your shop’s other listings too.

Monitor Results

Last, as with all sales and marketing channels for your business, monitor your results over time and adapt based on what’s working and what’s not working. If sales for a particular product drop off, consider tweaking the description or lowering the price just slightly.

If one listing is overperforming, try to apply those findings to boost the results of other products. By tracking your results over time, you can optimize each listing to perform at its best.

We Can Help

We hope these steps empower you to get Facebook Marketplace up and running for your business. Since it’s a free platform, there’s nothing to lose and a whole lot to gain. Apply the recommendations above to set yourself up for success!  Or contact Umbrella Local to discuss Facebook marketing services with a local Facebook advertising agency.

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