Who couldn’t use some extra money, right?
Maybe you have some unexpected expenses coming up and your zero-based budget can’t accommodate it. Or perhaps there is someone in your life that could use a few extra bucks and you want to help. Chances are you’re sitting on a gold mine of unwanted things right in your own house. These could quickly and easily earn you some cash all while decluttering your home too!
We’ve probably all seen bloggers and the like touting extra cash sources like eBay and Craigslist. But both of these marketplaces have some pretty serious drawbacks. With eBay you’re likely to run into shipping fees that not only gouge your margin, but also bring extra costs for packing materials and time to drive to your favorite shipping store. These are both extra costs that you’ll need to factor into your selling price, or simply absorb to get the sale. And let’s not forget that eBay takes a few from your listings when they sell.
Craigslist is free for most listings, and you can arrange local pickups to eliminate the shipping costs, but the truth is, with Craigslist it is hard to know who you are dealing with. You don’t have to search long on your social network to see who’s come across a shady deal on Craigslist before. I know I’ve come across my share! So that is a major drawback to Craigslist, it is too anonymous.
This brings us to Facebook Marketplace. Facebook Marketplace is quickly becoming my preferred place to sell some of my favorite items I haven’t looked at in a few years. On Facebook you can look at a person’s profile and get an idea if it’s someone you want to work with. Facebook Marketplace also gives you the ability to privately message with people interested but who may have questions. That kind of engagement really helps the sale go through quickly. Facebook also allows you to rate the person, similar to the feedback profile on eBay which further helps you and others to know you are are dealing with.
Another way to think of it is like a cross between a yard sale and eBay. It’s local and without commissions or listing fees, which means your dealing with people in your community, just as if you were having a yard sale. You can post your items for free and arrange for the buyer to pick them up at your home, or you can meet them somewhere locally. There are no listing fees and no shipping costs like you would have if you post items on eBay, but you have the convenience of reaching a large potential customer base quickly through the use of Facebook’s online platform.
How to Sell on Facebook Marketplace
Listing items is unbelievably easy with the use of your cell phone. You simply take a few photos of the item that you want to sell, open the Facebook app on your cell phone and navigate to the marketplace by clicking on the store icon at the bottom of the screen.
When you get to the marketplace you will be asked what you want to sell. Just click there and Facebook will guide you through a series of questions about the item. You’ll put a title (name of the item), a description and a price. You’ll also be prompted to upload some photos of the item. Try to take photos that really show the item and it is always good to put in any caveats about the item so there aren’t any last minute surprises if someone wants to buy it.
That’s it! Your item is now live and people who live nearby can see it when they browse the Facebook Marketplace. If you want to get some additional exposure you can do a search for Yard Sale Facebook groups in your area. When you become a member of those groups, Facebook will give you the option of also posting to those groups when you are listing your item. Once your item is listed for sale, just kick back and wait for an interested customer. They will be able to send you a message through Facebook Messenger inquiring about if the item is still for sale. You will be able to respond to their questions and arrange to meet and make the sale!
Facebook Marketplace fast and easy, and quite frankly, a lot less hassle. Here’s a real life example: last weekend I was helping my mother move from her home of 50 years to a downsized apartment. She had two fairly new air conditioners, but the new apartment had better HVAC. I listed the air conditioners on Facebook Marketplace and within an hour I had a buyer. They came to the house, removed the air conditioner and paid me cash. That would never happen on eBay or Craigslist.
If you’re looking for some extra money to shore up your budget or save for a rainy day, I highly recommend trying the Facebook Marketplace! Happy Selling!