Facebook has announced it is launching a user-to-user e-commerce “Marketplace” feature that will allow users to buy and sell items with everyone in their local community. The Marketplace tab will take the place of the Messenger tab in the social network’s apps.
Facebook is where people connect, and in recent years more people have been using Facebook to connect in another way: buying and selling with each other. This activity started in Facebook Groups and has grown substantially. More than 450 million people visit buy and sell groups each month — from families in a local neighborhood to collectors around the world.
To help people make more of these connections, today we’re introducing Marketplace, a convenient destination to discover, buy and sell items with people in your community.
While you’d think this would be an excellent opportunity for Facebook to wet its beak and get involved in the transactions, perhaps offering payment options and such, while taking a percentage of the action for themselves, that’s not how it will work.
Decided that you want [to buy something]? Send the seller a direct message from Marketplace to tell them you’re interested and make an offer. From that point on, you and the seller can work out the details in any way you choose. Facebook does not facilitate the payment or delivery of items in Marketplace.
Steps for selling an item are as follows:
- Take a photo of your item, or add it from your camera roll
- Enter a product name, description and price
- Confirm your location and select a category
As could be expected, there are limits on what you’re allowed to sell via the popular social network. The following items are NOT allowed to be sold. (Or purchased, for that matter.):
- Illegal, prescription or recreational drugs;
- Tobacco items and related paraphernalia;
- Unsafe supplements;
- Weapons, ammunition or explosives;
- Adult items or services;
- Adult health items;
- Real money gambling services;
- Goods, items or posts that we determine may be or are fraudulent, misleading, deceptive or offensive;
- Items or products with overtly sexualized positioning;
- Non-physical items are prohibited on Facebook Marketplace, including but not limited to services, subscriptions, digital products, or rentals.
Over the next few days, Marketplace will be rolling out to everyone over 18 years old in the US, UK, Australia, and New Zealand on the Facebook app for iPhone and Android. The feature will continue to expand to additional countries, and Marketplace will also become available on the desktop version of Facebook in the coming months.
Facebook rolls these types of things out fairly slowly, so you might not see the Marketplace tab right off. You’ll know it’s available to you when you see little shop icon in the app’s bottom tab menu.