Sketched out by Craigslist? Overwhelmed by eBay? Try Facebook instead.
On Tuesday, the social media site expanded its functionality once again, and has now dipped its toe into the waters of digital commerce. Meet Marketplace, a new feature within the Android and iOS Facebook app that is described as “a convenient destination to discover, buy, and sell items with people in your community.” Think of it as a yard sale in the palm of your hand.
As Facebook’s Director of Product Management Mary Ku wrote in a blog post announcing the new feature, buying and selling has been taking place on the social network for years, with more than 450 million people taking to the site to barter and trade each month. So now, Facebook is attempting to streamline those processes. “Marketplace makes it easy to find new things you’ll love, and find a new home for the things you’re ready part with,” Ku wrote. “We’ll continue to build new options and features to make this the best experience for people.”
So how does it work? When you open the Facebook app on your phone, you should now see a shop icon at the bottom. When you tap on the icon, you’ll find photos of items for sale, and you can filter your results by location, category, and price. Much like other online marketplaces, you can further simplify your results by selecting categories like Household, Electronics, and Apparel. And if you don’t want to search in just your neighborhood, you can use the location tool to switch to a different region.
Once something has caught your eye, simply tap on the image for details like a product description, name and profile photo of the seller, and its location. If you’re ready to take the plunge, you can send the seller a direct message from Marketplace to make an offer. From there, you’re on your own — “Facebook does not facilitate the payment or delivery of items in Marketplace,” Ku noted.
Marketplace will soon be available to all Facebook users over the age of 18 in the U.S., U.K., Australia, and New Zealand. Next up is the expansion of the feature across more of the world, as well as its introduction on desktop. So if you’re looking to start off fall by cleaning out your closet (or restocking it), Marketplace may be the place to go.