How to Sell on Facebook Marketplace

Have you been struggling to sell things successfully on Facebook Marketplace, tired of reposting the same listing over and over again with no new interested buyers?

Then stick with me until the end of this video, because I’ll tell you a few ways that you can improve your Facebook Marketplace listings to sell things faster. I’ve used this exact method in order to get more views, more buyers reaching out, and more deals closed.

In my last article, I went over how to snag a great deal on Facebook. And over the years I’ve also done my fair share of being on the other side of the aisle as a seller whether it’s a small item or a several hundred dollar items, I’ve been able to get rid of pretty much anything I want using Facebook Marketplace.

Step 1: Take stock of what you’re going to list and the condition of the item.

The first step is to take stock of the items you’re selling and the condition that they’re meant to do. So you’re going to need to take several pictures of those items from multiple angles, I recommend that you don’t use stock photos just because it comes off as less authentic as those that are natural pictures of the actual item you have in your possession. You can use any camera that you have available. The important thing to keep in mind is that when you’re taking pictures, I want you to think about it from the lens of the buyer, the item that you’re selling should be the central point of whatever you’re taking pictures of.

When I sold my Weber grill last summer, one of the key pictures that I included was a picture of the inside. And the reason why was because this is what any buyer of a grill would use most often. And so giving that to the buyer or the prospective buyer is super important so that I can reduce the number of questions that I get about that and also so that it’s an honest listing and that they know what they’re getting into when they buy my item.

The most commonly used conditions of different items are new, like new, excellent, good and used. Be sure that you’re honest in your assessment because it’s not cool to mislead buyers. And in either situation they might walk away later on in the deal if you lie to them.

If for example, you only used an item once or twice, then it’s probably in like new condition. If you have a few cosmetic scratches here and there, that it might be in good condition. And if you just had normal wear and tear, but it still looks very close to like new, then it’s probably something like excellent condition. Understanding what to list it as in terms of the condition also will impact how you can price your item when you’re listing it on Facebook marketplace.

Step 2: Evaluate existing listings and online prices.

The second step is to evaluate similar listings and how the item sells in other online marketplaces. Look at comparable listings in your area. How are people pricing the item? How long have their listings been up? If their listings have been up for too long, such as two plus weeks, then they’ve probably priced the item a little high. The exception to that rule is if they’re selling a high ticket items such as a camera or another electronic.

Ask yourself if it’s the same thing are other sellers listing too high just right or too low. In the case where they’re selling it too low, those will be out of the market in no time, so you don’t have to worry about those lasting very long. However, in the case of it being too high, you want to make sure that you’re not going to be at that same price because you’re going to be caught in the same situation as that seller. Finding that optimal range of price will allow you to list with confidence when it comes to your own listing.

The last thing to consider is how does this item sell online? My general rule of thumb is if something is in high demand, and it’s worth the time it takes for you to prep and ship that item to a buyer, then you might as well go listed online. That being said, remember that if you use eBay or Amazon you generally will pay anywhere between 8 to 15% fees off your final price. So for example, if you’re selling something for $100, you’re only going to actually make $85 upwards of $92 to depending on what platform you’re on.

Keep these fees in mind so that you are well aware of what you can get for the items that you’re selling. Now let’s jump into step number three.

Step 3: Write a clear listing that you can reuse for other platforms like Craigslist and Letgo.

The third step is to write a clear listing. I recommend that you do this in a Word document or a Notes app so that you can easily repost it to multiple places, whether that’s Facebook Marketplace, Letgo, Craigslist, etc. Aside from selling something that nobody wants, the number one reason why people struggle when it comes to selling on Facebook Marketplace, is because they don’t make it easy for people to buy things.

Let’s go over a few must haves when it comes to listing.

  1. The first one is a keyword optimized title. You’re going to want to include a few key things here, for example, proper capitalization and specificity. If you don’t know the specific brand of what you’re selling, describe the item that you’re selling, include things such as the color, the condition, as well as a benefit of that item in your listing. For example, it’s way better to use a title like Black IKEA three seater couch – excellent condition, than it is to just say, black couch.
  2. The second thing that you must have is your desired pricing as well as the terms of that pricing. Be sure to clearly state how much you want for the item and whether or not you’re open to best offer or not open to negotiation. What I like to do, is I like to look at the marketplace and then figure out what I believe the item I have is in terms of the fair market value, then I price anywhere between the lower to middle end of the price range. The reason why I do this is because I sell to get rid of things because I don’t like having them around, but in the case where you’re trying to optimize for return, then you might want to list something in between the middle to higher end of the range.
  3. Aside from the pricing, you’re going to want to make sure that you also have very clear high quality photos, make sure that you show everything that you are selling as well as any potential blemishes, or concerns that a buyer might have, if they were to buy that particular Item. For example, if you’re selling a shirt, and it’s got a little stain on the inside or something like that, you’re going to want to make sure that you include that in your pictures, in your listing so that you aren’t deceiving your buyers. Facebook Marketplace has some helpful tools to help you enhance your listing. You can use those tools to do things like adding text, for example, if you wanted to know what the dimensions of an item are like furniture. But personally what I like to usually do is I use my iPhone and I take a picture then I click the edit button and tap that one hit magic wand button which essentially will auto enhance my image. You can do this on your own phone, in a comparable phone or in any photo editing software that you may have.
  4. The fourth thing that you want to make sure you include is the condition of the item. You can refer to earlier in the video for reference on how to think about that.
  5. The fifth thing to include in your listings are the clear benefits to the buyer. Taking my grill for example, one thing that I included was something along the lines of enjoy the summer sign while you’re grilling steaks to celebrate the fourth with this grill. The reason why I do something like this is because it allows my prospective buyers to start visualizing how they might use this item, and specifically reasons for why they might want to buy this item. If you can give clear benefits to your potential buyers, they can get more emotional about their purchase, and then be more compelled to buy you item.
  6. Another thing to help entice your buyer is to share the percentage savings that they stand to gain from buying your item as opposed to a new item retail. As a quick math refresher, the easiest way for you to figure out the percentage savings for your prospective buyer is to take one minus the current price over the retail price and multiply that by a 100. This is also a super effective technique when you are bundling items together. For example, if you’re selling a camera with things like a tripod and lenses and things like that, you can just total what the retail is for all those items and provide what seems to be a very great deal for anybody that’s looking at your listing.
  7. The last two things to include in your listing are the preferred payment method, for example, Venmo, PayPal, cash, etc. And then also the desired pickup times throughout the week. So for example, Monday through Friday after 4pm, or Saturday and Sunday only so on. Be sure to be specific on that so that you can make coordination of logistics super simple.

A pro tip that I can give to you if you want to limit the number of hagglers that come to your listing is to be sure to include in your description that you are not open to negotiation because this is one of the most competitive prices they’ll find online. This will help limit those that just lowball you and throw you offers that waste your time.

The other thing that you can keep in mind is that you can always use this listing again in other marketplaces. For example, Letgo. Craigslist and so on. It’s totally up to you in terms of your motivation. Personally, I usually just listings on Facebook marketplace these days because it’s super fast and it’s something in which the messenger of capability is way better than the old school email method of Craigslist.

Step 4: Follow up with all your leads.

The fourth step when it comes to selling effectively on Facebook Marketplace is to follow up with all of your leads. In general, the worst leads are the ones that use that generic, is this available question message and send that your way. But aside from that, what you need to be doing as the seller is you need to be testing the potential buyers on their true interest towards your item. The key to filtering out bad leads from good leads is to be direct and cordial in your communication.

You want to quickly be talking about two or three times that could work for both of you to meet up and exchange the item. The reason why is because people that aren’t super interested in your item are just going to flake right then and there when you ask them that question and people that are more interested in your item are going to start talking about potential days and times and places that they can meet to pick up the item.

Don’t be afraid to have backups to your top potential buyer. The reason why I say this is because my stance on Facebook Marketplace is that, a deal isn’t done until the deal is actually done. Until that actual item has been exchanged with the buyer and I received payment, I’m free to talk to as many potential buyers as I’d like, because it’s no different on the other side of the market. The potential buyers are able to talk to as many sellers as they’d like and negotiate with all of those sellers in order to get the best deal for themselves. So because of that, there’s tons of flaking, there’s tons of wishy washy people, and so what you want to do is you want to get the logistics in place to make a deal happen and get the best deal for your product.

One of the big advantages to selling on Facebook Marketplace versus an old school garage sale or other method of reselling a used product is that you get to actually decide when and when you don’t want to sell your item.

From my experiences, there are three common traits about great Facebook Marketplace buyers.

The first one is that they always talk really early on about logistics. They want to settle on when and where they’re going to be able to meet up with you in order to get the product off their hands.

The second thing that they often are, is super responsive. In other words, if you send them a message, they respond back really quickly. People that are flaky tend to take days between responses and they’re not really that great to work with when it comes to selling things.

The third thing that’s commonly the case is that these people also offer alternatives, in the situation where the time and place that you propose doesn’t work for them.

So looking for these three traits can be a really effective way for you to weed out those that are interested from those who are not. The key thing that I want you to remember about this fourth step is that you are on Facebook Marketplace to sell your things and go about your day. You are not there to make friends. So feel free to play the field as you’d need to in order to sell your listing. Let’s go ahead and jump into step number five.

Step 5: Reach an agreement, schedule the meet up, and close the deal.

The fifth and final step when it comes to selling effectively on Facebook Marketplace, is to reach an agreement, set on the meetup and close the deal.

The first thing you’re gonna want to do is you’re going to want to check their profile and make sure that there’s nothing sketchy. What I mean by that is there’s sometimes fake profiles, or they’re sketchy profiles that you might not want to necessarily risk your personal safety for in order to make that deal happen.

The other thing you’re going to want to settle on are the payment methods as well as the meetup times and places. So when it comes to payment methods, personally, I recommend Venmo for digital payments. The reason why is because once somebody sends you a Venmo payment, they can’t just claw it back. And the other thing is that it’s super convenient, and it’s easy to use. However, alternatives that people often use in the Facebook Marketplace include PayPal, Zelle, as well as just straight up cash. When it comes to the meetup location, I recommend a public place, so examples could be a Starbucks, a local library, post office, work building, etc. The key thing is that there are other people around so that is a public occurrence that’s happening in the actual exchange. In the case where you want the buyer to come to you, I personally recommend that you give a cross street that is close to you and then meet up with the buyer at that point. That way, you don’t have to give away your exact location.

In the hours leading up to the meetup, I recommend that you send a quick message just to confirm that everything is still on. Sometimes buyers have to stay late for work, or something comes up that prevents them from being able to meet up with you today. In that case, no worries, but what you should do is that if they don’t respond to you within an hour or so, you should start hitting up all the other potential buyers that you have in your queue from your leads, so that you can potentially still make a sale that day.

Something else to keep in mind is that in the case where something doesn’t sell, don’t be afraid to just click the repost button and relist that item. This is often the case for high ticket items or for out of season items. For example, with my grill, I actually had to list it several times because initially, I was listing it towards the end of winter when nobody was thinking about grilling. However, as this spring came around and the summer came around, it became so much easier to sell that item.

Big takeaways

If you take nothing else from this video, I hope you remember two things.

  1. The first one is to make sure that you position your listing from the lens of the buyer, write the benefits and help them visualize how their life might look like with your item.
  2. And the second thing is to make sure that you follow up with all of your leads. Anybody that reaches out to you is better than every other user on Facebook that didn’t reach out to you. So make sure that you capitalize on every potential opportunity for you to sell your item.

That’s it for this time, though. I’ll see you guys next time when I go over how to improve your Facebook Marketplace listings.

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