How many times have you seen someone promote something they are selling on Facebook? Maybe a friend is selling their old cell phone or a pair of shoes that didn’t fit well. You may have also seen a friend ask Facebook do they know anyone who is selling a particular item. Or maybe you have done these things yourself. Facebook has always been the place where people connect for all types of reasons; selling items on the site is not a new thing at all. It was only a matter of time before Facebook re-launched Marketplace, a peer-to-peer selling tool through the app.
As you may be thinking, Marketplace should become a strong competitor for sites such as eBay and Craigslist, allowing users to sell in real-time and see user profiles before deciding to make a transaction. Customer safety has always been a concern for peer-to-peer buyers and sellers. The level of transparency Facebook brings in comparison to their competitors may lift this concern.
Replacing the messenger button on the bottom of the app screen, Marketplace will be a lot more impulsive than eBay or Craigslist since people spend so much more time on the app than on these sites.
Facebook Marketplace is certainly not perfect. There isn’t a checkout option and Facebook does not take responsibility for any scammy transactions. Also, there is no rating system as of yet. Ratings and reviews are well known for helping buyers make purchase decisions.
Lastly, although Facebook does present guidelines prohibiting selling certain products such as drugs and weapons on Marketplace, they have not been effective in taking down these offers. As a result of the weird things people have been seeing on sale lately, Facebook has suspended the rollout of Marketplace temporarily for fixes.
Only time will tell whether or not Facebook Marketplace will have a significant impact on competitor sites. Let us know what you think!