Social Selling at the heart of Facebook Marketplace

Welcome to the Internet : the land of Marketplaces ! We all know Amazon marketplace, Asos Marketplace, or many other platforms dedicated to peer-to-peer selling. For a lot of people, the Internet is the best place to sell products (new or vintage) to other people. It’s as easy as 1,2,3 ; just find a popular platform like Craigslist or Leboncoin for our french readers, and post the most convincing image (sometimes even adding some filters to beautify it), with a short description and a price tag. And wait.. until someone makes the move. To try and boost the sale of an old couch, people share their posts on social media. Who knows, maybe one of our Facebook friends has a cousin who needs a vintage couch, right? Now Facebook, that social network we use ‘all day everyday’ is launching its own Marketplace. In this article, we’ll go through the basics of that new Facebook feature.

Don’t hesitate to give us your opinion.

Selling your old couch? Photo by Mia Tawilé
Selling your old couch?
Photo by Mia Tawilé

Facebook Marketplace: All about social selling

First things first. For those of you who do not know what social selling is (not everyone is a geek), let me explain it briefly. Social selling is the process of making the best out of your social media platform, to find potential clients to target, communicate with them, build trust and credibility. All this is done, of course, to end up with a sale.

Facebook noticed that people use its platform to boost the sale of their old couch, so, as they love to do, they created a special platform for it. Facebook is known for trying dominate your Internet usage, by creating a video platform (to replace Youtube), or a instant messaging app (to replace Whatsapp or WeChat), instant articles, trending topics, and now buy-and-sell platform known as Facebook Marketplace.

Facebook wants us to be connected to its platform whenever we are connected to the Internet, and never leave; basically it is centralising everything to reach that ultimate goal.

Facebook Marketplace: Main features

This new Marketplace has three main features: Browsing, selling, and searching surroundings. In all three, Facebook puts in action all its other apps like Messenger for example.

Browsing allows you to look around on the app. You guessed right, the relevancy of the listing is based on an artificial intelligence. Yes, Facebook knows what pages you like, and what items might attract you. And that is exactly how items are displayed. As we said previously, the aim of social selling is leading to a sale. To encourage you even more to close that couch deal,

To sell an old coat, couch, or coffee machine you just need to post a picture, a description and a price. Users already are Facebook members, so no need to create a new profile.

Why would people choose to buy or sell on Facebook?

Firstly, and obviously, because people (including myself) spend half their day on Facebook. To be precise, last time I read studies about this, I found that people used Facebook 1 hour per day in total. But it makes it easier for them to stay on that platform they are very familiar with, and spontaneously decide to check who is selling vintage items.

Trust is also important when buying items online from individuals. Why ? First because you need to know if the image they are posting is real, or they just added too many filtres to sell it. Second, because you will probably need to meet this person to get the item. And third, because you will pay this person to get the item. Facebook took advantage of the social part of its platform to build trust between peers. It even pre-wrote messages like ‘Is this item still available?’ or ‘What condition is this item in?’

I don’t like the fact that Facebook follows our every move, and builds its algorithm around it. But who am I to stop it? Everyone does that on the Internet. So, I’ll get used to it. In the meantime, Facebook Marketplace is a great idea because it is convenient, trustworthy, and encourages spontaneous shopping. Perfect for social selling. 

Mia Tawile
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Mia Tawile

Mia is a junior web marketing consultant at Visionary Marketing. She works on content creation, digital transformation and innovation missions as well as community management and blog development.
Mia Tawile
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