Last weekend as I was out and about running errands with my friend Annie in Philadelphia, I simultaneously sold a playground-set at one of our rental properties up in Binghamton. The buyer and I coordinated everything via Facebook – he even paid us via Facebook! It was in that moment that I felt SO grateful for Facebook Marketplace. I did a little mini “woot woot” in Annie’s car and she suggested I do an LTRE about this!
So, as we do, let’s talk Real Estate, let’s talk UTILIZING FACEBOOK MARKETPLACE FOR YOUR BUSINESS…
Facebook is one of those platforms that I feel is in a weird space. From a “social” perspective it seems as though it has really taken a step back from platforms like Instagram and Snapchat over the past few years. YET, every time I go onto Facebook Marketplace, I seem to meet and work with genuine people! I feel as though, at least for my generation, Facebook is really transforming into a true place of business vs a platform to share personal photos or life updates as we once used to do. Again, that is 100% my PERSONAL opinion.
Over the past year, I have used Facebook Marketplace in so many different ways!
I have found properties, brought in tenants, sold furniture, donated Booker’s puppy crate to a group down in Puerto Rico… the list goes on! So I want to quickly share what I do in order to make these transactions happen!
HOW DO I SELL SOMETHING ON FACEBOOK MARKETPLACE?
Luckily it is pretty self explanatory on the Marketplace site!
1. Go to Facebook.com
2. Select Marketplace in the left hand column
3. Select Sell Something
From here Facebook will give you 3 categories of items to sell
A. Items for Sale
B. Vehicles for Sale
C. Homes for Rent
4. There will be plenty of subcategories to choose from beyond the 3 main groups listed above! Add as much detail as possible to your listing!! The only time I do not add ALL of the detail is when it is a home for rent. I will add photos, and the zip code in which it is located but I never add the address and this is mainly because I do not want anyone breaking into the home since they know it is vacant. I cannot say for sure that they won’t figure out the address BUT anything I can do to prevent any such thing from happening I will!
Once your item is posted you want to make sure it is seen by the right people!
TIPS FOR POSTING YOUR PRODUCTS
1. Take your own photos
2. Write a full and honest description
3. Make sure the price is fair
HOW CAN I ENSURE THE RIGHT CONSUMERS ARE SEEING MY PRODUCTS & OFFERINGS?!
Join Market Groups
I live in NYC and invest in Binghamton, NY and Philadelphia, PA so I have joined groups in all three locations!
For example, I am a member of “Binghamton Off Campus Housing” and also “NYC Garage Sale”
Tag a location
If you tag the zip code, it should attract others “near your location”.
Once your product is up and running, you will start to receive inquiries via Facebook Messenger – ANSWER ALL OF THEM. You never know who will end up being the right buyer or tenant so it is important to answer everyone who reaches out!
OKAY I FOUND MY “BUYER”. NOW WHAT?!
1. Mark your item as SOLD on the Marketplace
2. Transfer over the goods
HOW DO I PROPERLY SEND THE ITEMS TO THE END BUYER?
Depends on the product and your personal preference! Facebook does not mandate how you must transfer the products over to the end user.
For rental properties we typically advertise an open house on Facebook! People will inquire via Facebook Messenger, we send them an application and open house details and meet them at the property! The first time we did this I handled the pre-open house communication via FB Messenger, my partner KF met the tenant at the open house, and after she moved in, I took back over the communication! Woot woot for teamwork! We actually still talk to this tenant via FB Messenger!
We did this again recently for the newest place up in Binghamton. We posted the open house in the Marketplace one week before the open gouse was scheduled and had 6 applications submitted for the place within 24 hours – it was awesome!
You have a few options here depending on the size of your item!
(1) Meet in Person
Since I always try to market my products to the community in which the product is located I can always meet them in person to transfer it over. For example, I posted the Binghamton playground-set to the Binghamton Facebook Community. The buyer met my property supervisor at the property, picked it up, and paid us for it via Facebook Messenger (you can connect your Paypal account!). It was super simple!
I also once sold a vest and met a woman a few blocks away from my house to give it to her. She paid cash for that. I know that sounds sketchy… do not worry I had my husband secretly stand across the street and watch the whole exchange!
If your buyer does not live near you OR you are not comfortable meeting them in person you can always mail the item! Just make sure to negotiate that into your final price!
THIS SEEMS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE. ARE THERE ANY PRODUCTS I CAN’T SELL ON FACEBOOK MARKETPLACE?
Yes – there are a few products that cannot be sold on here.
- Digital products or subscriptions
- Weapons, ammunition or explosives
- Illegal, prescription or recreational drugs
- Tobacco products and related products
- Unsafe supplements
- Adult products and services
- Gambling services
- Real, virtual or fake currency
- Counterfeit, illegal or stolen items
- Event tickets: You can’t sell event tickets without prior written permission from Facebook
- Gift cards: You can’t sell digital or physical gift cards without prior written permission from Facebook
SAFETY TIPS FOR ENGAGING IN MARKETPLACE TRANSACTIONS
(1) View the person’s profile and rating if you plan to work with them.
(2) Protect your privacy.
Don’t ever give out your personal financial information, including bank account login information, account and routing numbers or answers to security questions.
(3) Meet in a safe location.
Consider meeting in a public place to complete the transaction. Don’t travel to an address you aren’t familiar with and don’t give out your personal address if you’re not comfortable doing so.
(4) Use safe payment methods.
Cash, Messenger or PayPal are all valid payment methods.
(5) Review Facebook’s Commerce Policies.
If you’re concerned that you might be selling or buying an item that is not allowed on Marketplace, take a minute to review their Commerce Policies before completing the transaction.
(6) Verify the legitimacy of the item.
Meet in person to show a potential buyer the item they are interested in purchasing from you. If you are not able to meet in person, you can offer a certificate of authenticity or proof of purchase for some high-value items such as jewelry or luxury bags.
(7) Don’t sell recalled items.
As a seller, it’s your responsibility to know whether the items you want to sell have been recalled for safety risk reasons. This is especially the case with vehicles, toys, car seats and other childcare equipment.
(8) Be cautious when buying or selling vehicles.
If you’re selling a vehicle, be careful of bounced checks from buyers or paying for fake transportation or insurance costs for your vehicle.
(9) Trust your gut
If you feel uncomfortable about the buyer or seller, the suggested location, the offer, the suggested method of payment or anything else—don’t move forward with the transaction.
I know this week’s post may seem super simple but my goal was to share the power of Facebook Marketplace – WHICH IS FREE FOR ALL OF US! Do any of YOU use Facebook Marketplace?! Share your stories with the rest of us!
Feel free to comment on the blog post HERE and let us know what YOU think!
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