How to sell on Facebook Marketplace
Selling on Facebook Marketplace isn't just easy, it's cheap too. We've pooled our experience to put together the definitive guide to making the most money on your sales.
In the market for something new, or looking to shift something you already own? Facebook Marketplace is the place to go. Not only can you list things to sell, you can also buy stuff too, and the whole process is super quick and easy.
So if you're keen to get involved but have such burning questions as "how does Facebook Marketplace work?" or "does Facebook Marketplace charge fees?", you're in the right place!
We've got answers for everything, as well as the best tips for selling on Facebook Marketplace and getting the best possible price for your item.
How to use Facebook Marketplace
Here's everything you need to know about selling on Facebook Marketplace:
How to post on Facebook Marketplace
To post your item on Facebook Marketplace, head to the 'Marketplace' section of Facebook and then click 'Create New Listing'.
Once you've chosen your listing type, you're ready to enter all relevant details. You'll need a title for your item and a price you'd like for it, as well as stating its condition and providing a description. This will include its full name and product specification, as well as the colour and any other relevant details.
For a successful sale, put yourself in the shoes of a potential buyer and ensure that you've given all the information that you would want if you were buying from a retailer online. This level of detail will make buyers more interested than if you just listed the product's name and condition.
Once you've gone through haggling, make sure to close your deal with the buyer on Facebook Messenger to ensure you've come to an agreement on the price of the item and where you'll be meeting.
If you're having trouble selling, you can also join Facebook selling groups for your area, which makes it a lot easier to find the right person for your item.
Does Facebook Marketplace charge fees?
One of the best things about Facebook Marketplace is that it's mostly free to use. There are no listing fees and, in most cases, Facebook won't take a cut of your sale.
However, as of January 2022, there is now one exception to this. If you choose to send items directly by post via Facebook Marketplace, rather than exchanging the products in person, you'll have to pay a 2% fee.
This is calculated as a percentage of the total cost of the item plus postage. So, if you sold something for £10 and delivery cost £2, you'd pay 2% of £12 (24p). And note that this rule still applies regardless of whether it's you or the customer actually paying for delivery.
Facebook says that the introduction of this fee will ensure that sellers can reach more potential buyers, and will help fund customer support and purchase protection. But if you'd rather not pay, you can still avoid the fee by using the collection-only option when selling.
Facebook Marketplace rules
As with any site like this, there are some restrictions. Here's what can't be sold on Facebook Marketplace, as well as other rules to consider:
- You can't sell things that aren't 'real items' (physical products). This means you can't list jobs, for example.
- You're also unable to list services, such as cleaning.
- You must ensure that the photo matches the title and description of that item, otherwise your listing may be removed.
- You can't sell animals on Facebook Marketplace (or list any for adoption).
- Any listings about healthcare-related items are not allowed. So, don't list your first aid kit or any extra packets of paracetamol.
- Listings that contain before and after photos (such as fitness/weight loss) will also be removed from Facebook Marketplace.
Take good photos of your products
Making sure you have good photos on your listing is one of the key factors in being able to sell quickly and at a higher price.
First off, if your phone has a good camera, we suggest using this.
But it's not just about quality – quantity is just as important. When it comes to Facebook Marketplace, it's very much a case of the more photos, the better. Try to capture your item from multiple angles so the buyer can see exactly what they're getting if they choose to buy it.
Natural lighting looks great too. We've found that placing the product in the light from a nearby window works, and you could even create a backdrop with other products that show the piece in a real-life situation.
For example, when we were trying to sell a vase, we put some dried flowers in it and placed a few plant pots and decorations nearby, all the while keeping the focus on the main item.
Lastly, we've found it can help to edit the photo afterwards to give it the final finishing touches. We're not saying you should put a Snapchat filter on it, but play around with things like the brightness of the image.
Most smartphones should have a feature for this on your photo application but, if not, try downloading a free app from your app store to help. Or, upload your photos to your computer and use one of these pieces of free photo editing software.
Research what price to sell for
If you're looking to get the best possible price for your item, do a little bit of research beforehand.
The first thing we'd suggest is to look for how much the item sells for brand new, and then compare this price with the condition of your item. It's worth having a think about how much you would pay for it online.
Afterwards, take a look at what other people are selling this item for online, both on eBay and Facebook Marketplace. This should give you a good idea of the kind of price you should be charging for your item.
List your item at a higher price
We'd always suggest listing your item for a slightly higher price than you're actually willing to sell for, just to give yourself some wiggle room.
For example, if you want £15 for your item, try listing it for £20. That way, if someone actually buys it for £20, then great – you've made more money! But, in the likely event that the buyer tries to haggle, you can still receive the amount you actually wanted.
In our experience, the bidding generally occurs in £5 increments – so, to use the same example, if you've listed your product for £20, they may go straight in and offer you the £15 you secretly wanted.
This is a win-win situation as you'll receive the money you actually hoped for, AND the buyer feels as though they've haggled for a bargain.Our eBay bidding tips could help you bag a big bargain.
Not local? Send your items by post
Facebook Marketplace has made its name as somewhere to buy and sell items in your local area. However, you may find that some buyers will ask if you're able to post it to them if they can't get to you. Depending on how you want to play it, you may say yes.
If you do, you must take payment before sending. We recommend either giving your PayPal details or bank details for a transfer. This is separate from Facebook Marketplace's own delivery system and is completely at your own risk.
Please do note that exchanging for cash, in person, is usually a lot safer as you'll know for a fact whether you've been paid or not. Scammers will often send fake PayPal emails that 'confirm' your account has received the money, and will then ask you to send the item ASAP. By the time you've realised they haven't actually paid, you may have already sent the item.
It's then up to you if you charge for postage on top – but generally, buyers are prepared for this. Make sure to check the Royal Mail website for letter and parcel prices so you're able to accurately charge the seller.
Selling online does come with its risks, especially if the buyer doesn't receive the item (or claims not to!). The best practice here is to get proof of postage when you send the parcel – this way, if you have any issues with delivery or need to track the item, you'll be able to.
Plus, if Royal Mail loses your item on a standard service, you may be able to claim up to £20 for it (on standard delivery).
Take a friend for safety
Meeting up with a local buyer can often be a scary experience, as you never really know who is on the other end of a Facebook profile.
For safety, try and make the meeting place public and, ideally, away from where you live. Take a friend along for extra safety and make sure they give you the right amount of cash (if they've not already transferred the money to you in advance).
On your way back home, ensure your surroundings are safe! We're not here to scare you, and hopefully the whole experience goes smoothly, but it's still worth doing what you can to ensure the transaction is as safe as possible, in an open space.Facebook Marketplace could be the ideal place to make a profit from your homemade goods – take a look at our guide on the best things to make and sell.
Compare Facebook Marketplace with other selling sites
If Facebook Marketplace isn't quite working out for you, there are plenty of other selling sites you can use to make money online.
Just note that if you decide to sell on eBay, there are some fees attached. So, although your item may sell for a little more on eBay, you'll need to account for the seller's fee and the postage (and hassle of taking it to the Post Office) – at the end of it, you may only make a few quid.
That said, we've found that eBay sometimes runs promotions offering £1 sellers fees or even completely free listings. You can activate it on your account but, usually, eBay will promote it on a banner on their homepage. Or, just keep an eye out on the Student Deals section of our website, as we tend to feature these offers!
If you're into selling your old CDs and DVDs, it may be easier to sell them to a site like MusicMagpie. You likely won't get as much of a return but it will cut out all the hassle – check out our guide to selling CDs, DVDs and games online for more info.
Finally, if you're looking to sell handmade items, you may be better off selling them on Etsy.
Donate on Freecycle
If your item has been listed on Facebook Marketplace (or any other site) and it's not selling as quickly as you'd like, consider donating it on Freecycle.
Freecycle is a site where anyone can list any item they want gone quickly, and you'll receive messages from people nearby who can come and take it off your hands for free. Better than going to a landfill site, that's for sure!
Need help clearing out your wardrobe? These are the best sites for selling your clothes online.