Who doesn’t love a good bargain? I know I sure do. Facebook Marketplace is a great place to score awesome deals on items new and used. I have found everything from cars to toys, and have sold everything from furniture to refrigerators on there. It’s usually the first stop for me when I’m looking for a specific item that I don’t mind having secondhand. Through the years and some trial and error, I have learned a lot about what to do and what not to do when buying and selling on Facebook Marketplace. Here are my top tips for buying and selling on Facebook Marketplace.
Tips for Buying on Facebook Marketplace
Customize Your Message
Facebook Marketplace has the message to send to buyers set as something like, “Hi Meg, is this still available?” This is fine, but I have found I have better luck getting a response from sellers if I customize my message. I usually like to tell them how much I would like to buy what they’re selling. Sometimes I include a smiley face, too.
Offer to Pay Before Pickup
This is not always an option, but I do try to offer to pay for the item before I pick it up via Venmo or a similar app. If you are not comfortable with this, skip this tip.
If there’s something that you are wanting to buy from a seller, respond to their messages as quickly as possible which will up your chances of securing the item.
Let Someone Know Where You Are (or Bring a Friend)
Once you have a time and place set to pick up your items, make sure you let someone you know and trust know where you will be. You don’t need to be paranoid, but it never hurts to be safe. Better yet, bring a friend/partner/parent along with you to pick up. Editor’s Note: Meet somewhere safe, like a police department’s parking lot.
Tips for Selling on Facebook Marketplace
Take Good Photos
This seems like an obvious tip, but one that I see poorly executed quite a bit. Sometimes you can get away with a low-quality photo if it’s a popular or big-ticket item, but often, you’ll want quality photos. Here are a few tips to create great marketplace photos:
- Natural light is a great way to ensure your items are shown in “the best light,” so to speak.
- Take pictures of all angles possible.
- Remove distractions from the background.
Trust me on this one, people will ask you this question even it seems obvious. List the measurements so that you can avoid answering a jillion messages with that question.
Add as Many Details as Possible
Again, people will most likely ask you more about the details so you’re better off listing the details in the description.
Mark Item as “Pending” When You Have a Meet Time
I have had this happen to me so many times; I will message someone about an item I see as still “available” on marketplace and when I message the seller to see if I can buy it they will tell me “it’s pending pickup.” Do potential buyers favor and mark it as pending when you have someone planning to come to get it.
Again, much like with buying, be responsive to people who are interested in purchasing an item you have listed for sale.
This should go without saying, but just be nice to people.
Don’t Give out Your Address If You Don’t Feel Comfortable
It may be a pain to meet at a gas station or grocery store parking lot, but if you don’t feel comfortable giving out your address to someone you haven’t met on the internet, use your best judgment and take someone when you’re dropping off an item you’re selling, too.
Screenshot Buyer/Seller’s Profile
This is not necessary, but I do this just in case we lose the chat or anything of the like.
Be Safe and Use Your Best Judgement
Buying and selling off the internet has its fair share of bad press, but for the most part, I have had positive experiences and never dealt with anything that has been unsafe. Please always do what you deem to be safe and follow best practices: let someone know where you’ll be or that someone is swinging by to pick up an item, have your phone sufficiently charged in the event of an emergency, bring someone with you, etc.
Those are my top tips for buying and selling on Facebook Marketplace. Do you have any that you would add to this list? I would love to hear them since I’m always looking for tips on the best ways to get a deal!
For other great secondhand shopping and selling tips, check out these posts from other Collin County Moms!