In the first few days that I started selling items on Facebook Marketplace, I made over $300 in just 3 days! (I made over $700 in my first 2 weeks selling on FB Marketplace.)
You can too — I’ll show you how.
The biggest reason that I like selling on Facebook Marketplace is the fact that it’s a very simple 3-step process.
Below, I’ll walk you through each of those 3 steps and share my best tips for newbies who want to know how to sell on Facebook Marketplace and get the most money for your items!…
Facebook Buy Sell Trade vs. Facebook Marketplace
I thought everyone knew it by its official name “Facebook Marketplace” or “FB Marketplace” — but it turns out many people don’t.
Lots of people call it “Facebook Buy Sell Trade” — they’re actually the same thing.
I think the confusion on the name arises because some people are only active on one or more buy/sell/trade groups WITHIN the Facebook Marketplace platform — so they think those Facebook buy sell trade groups are the main place to sell things.
That, or they’ve only bought items so far — and don’t realize that the buy/sell/trade groups they’re buying from actually reside within the FB Marketplace.
Whatever — it is what it is. Just something I’ve noticed.
Now my tips for selling on Facebook Marketplace…
How To Sell On Facebook Marketplace
The wording & layout of the items in each of the following steps appears slightly differently on your computer vs. on your phone.
STEP 1: Open Facebook Marketplace, click “sell,” then select “sell an item.”
- Select the best category for this type of item — See my tips for choosing categories below.
- Under “what are you selling” say exactly what the item is (100 characters max) — Don’t include adjectives (like “beautiful” or “cute”), and only mention the brand name here if it’s super popular and makes the item more valuable.
- List the price — The lowest price you are willing to accept.
- Add location — The city where the item can be picked up (either your work or home city).
- Describe the item — This is where you include all the details about the item you’re selling. In as few words as possible, be as thorough as possible. Mention size, dimension, used/new, why you like this item, and why you’re selling it. If there are any obvious flaws, be sure to mention them — honesty and transparency are the key to selling more items at higher prices!
- Upload photos of the item (10 max) — Include pictures of the front, back, and sides, plus any original boxes, tags, etc.
STEP 3: Select which audience(s) on Facebook you want to see this item. “Marketplace” is already checked for you by default. That’s a good start. Eventually, you’ll want to select additional Facebook Buy Sell Trade groups as well. (To find some, simply search for “Buy Sell Trade [and your town’s name]” on Facebook. You can join as many as you like — they’ll show up here after you’ve joined.)
Okay, so that’s how you sell on Facebook Marketplace. Next are some things I’ve learned firsthand that will help you get the most money for your items…
My Best Tips For Selling On Facebook Marketplace
These are some of the things that I’ve learned firsthand after selling on Facebook Marketplace for awhile:
Tip #1 – Initially, I thought selling items on Facebook would be like yard-saling — where people always try to “bargain” and get you to drop the price down really low, but they don’t.
At first, I posted my items $2 to $5 higher than the price I was actually willing to let the item go for. However, it turns out that very few (hardly any people) actually try to talk you down on the price. That, or my pricing is spot-on — I’m not sure which.
I’m just happy that I don’t have to negotiate back & forth about pricing every time I sell things on Facebook Marketplace.
Tip #2 – The biggest issue for me when selling on Facebook Marketplace is staying safe. I’ve never had any issues — but that may be because I take a lot of extra precautions.
These are my best tips to stay safe when selling items on Facebook:
- Never post personal details about your house or your phone number in your item listing. Only give those types of details in private messages (PM) when you’re responding to individual buyers’ questions.
- Always check the person’s Facebook profile before responding a potential buyer. If someone looks questionable, or their “friends” look questionable, or their “groups” look questionable… then just don’t reply. You need to have a good feeling about the person before you go meet them or invite them to pick up the item on your porch.
- Pick a very public place that is near your home where you would feel comfortable getting out of your car to exchange the item for their money. Some ideas:
- A restaurant parking lot (fast-food restaurants are great because people are always coming and going… so you won’t stand out like a sore thumb, but you will be noticed if anything goes wrong)
- A major store‘s parking lot like Target or Walmart (though it’s usually harder to decide where to park and more difficult to “find” the person you’re meeting up with — since these parking lots are so large and so busy)
- A gas station (people are always coming & going and constantly entering the store to buy items… so you won’t stand out like a sore thumb, but you will be noticed if anything goes wrong)
Ideally, the spot you choose to meet a buyer will be super close to your home or job and have more than one way that you can leave to go back to your house or office. (I let the other person “leave” first — that way, they won’t know which way I’m going to go and can’t follow me.)
If heavy traffic is an issue in your area, then pick a spot that is easiest for YOU to get in and out of (not them) — because if you’re inconvenienced in any way, then it’s just not worth it to sell items on Facebook Marketplace.
If you’re really nervous about safety, then take another person with you to the meet up location.
BONUS TIP: If you ever feel that you’re being followed after a sale, don’t go home. Instead, go to the drive-thru window at a nearby restaurant and order something, or go to a police station, fire department, or other public service building where you can park for awhile — or get help if you need it.
Tip #3 – Keep in mind, whatever you’ve posted as ‘public’ on your personal Facebook profile page can be seen by people who are interested in buying your items.
Tip #4 – I’ve found that people from many miles away will sometimes chime in and ask if the item is still available.
Personally, if I think they’re too far away and it wouldn’t be worth their while to travel to my town to pick up a low-value and low-priced item, then I just won’t respond to their questions (because once you start the conversation, it could go on for awhile and it’s just not worth your time).
In order to avoid getting into a round of back & forth messages with someone, I’ve found that the best option is simply to not reply at all. That way, they will generally assume the item has been sold and you simply forgot to mark it as sold.
With high-value high-priced items however… I know that people will drive from many miles away to get a good deal on an item that would otherwise be expensive to buy. So I answer those questions promptly.
Tip #5 – If you’ve posted your item on one or more Facebook groups, people in those groups will voice their interest in your items directly on that group’s page (in the comments) — rather than via Facebook Messenger (the default for Facebook Marketplace).
As long as you have notifications turned on, Facebook will notify you every time someone comments or inquires about your item — whether they did so via a group page or via FB Marketplace.
BONUS TIP: Instead of going back & forth “publicly” with each individual who inquires on the group’s (public) page, I always reply to questions on the group page this way:
“Hi Lisa, I’ll PM you.”
Then I immediately click “message” next to that person’s name and be as detailed as I want to be with that person privately on Facebook –– instead of publicly. (You don’t have to be “friends” on Facebook to do this.)
Tip #6 – The default message that you receive whenever someone clicks the “Ask For Details” button on Facebook Marketplace is: “Good evening, is this item still available?”
Rather than just replying “Yes” and then going back & forth in a chain of messages with the same person, say something like this: “Yes. Can you pickup at XYZ location today?”
That way, you’re:
- Reminding them that they may have to go out of their way to pick up the item; and
- Getting right to the point and closing the deal on the sale — rather than giving them an opportunity to think about whether or not they really need/want this item.
In my experience, when you reply to their very first question this way, the person almost always says they’ll leave right away to pick up the item (or at least within the same day) — because when you relay a sense of urgency, people naturally feel compelled to act quickly. It really works!
Tip #7 – I absolutely love the fact that you can post a single item for sale to several different Facebook groups all within one single listing. (It’s the 3rd and final step when posting an item for sale on Facebook Marketplace — shown above.)
That means you don’t have to write a separate listing for it to appear on each group’s page.
This makes it a breeze to get your item seen by the biggest number of people… quickly… and with a single click!
Tip #8 – “Porch pick up” (or PPU) might sound like a convenient way to get your money and put the item in the buyer’s hands without having any personal contact… but it’s really not the best option.
Why not? Because many people who say they’ll come pick up the item never actually show up.
It’s hard to blame them — because we’re all busy, get distracted, work late, or have kids’ activities that arise, etc. I’ve had people tell me several days in a row that they’d be here… yet they never showed.
But the biggest reason you don’t want to delay closing the deal and getting your money in person is because the majority of people doing porch pickups simply change their minds about the item!
“I don’t want to drive all the way over there.”
“I don’t really need it that bad.”
“Someone else probably got there before me and picked it up already… I don’t feel like checking.”
Even when I tell someone that they are the only person that I’m holding an item for on the porch — 9 times out of 10, they still don’t show.
So the bottom line is… when there’s absolutely no commitment on the buyer’s part, they will have more reasons not to show up than reasons that they should go out of their way to show up. And that’s why I usually don’t recommend porch pickup — despite how effortless it is on your part, as a seller.
Trust me, it’s worth it to spend 10 minutes meeting someone at a safe, public parking lot near your home — because you’re able to assure that the deal will be closed, the item will be out of your house once and for all, and the money will be in your hands.
Tip #9 – While I don’t normally recommend porch pickup when you’re selling items on Facebook Marketplace, there are a few times when porch pickup makes the most sense:
- When an item is only being sold for $5, $10, or $15 — it may not make sense to interrupt your day to drive a short distance in order to get those items into the hands of your buyers. (But honestly, I still prefer to meet in person to “guarantee the sale”.)
- If you don’t live near a practical safe meeting spot, then it may not be worth driving to the nearest safe spot to deliver such a low-priced item. (Fortunately, I do live near several “safe locations”.)
The bottom line…
It needs to be worth your time (and your gas) to go out of your way to deliver an item to someone. If your return on an item isn’t that great, then porch pickup may be your best option.
As long as you can rationalize that it would be okay if, in the unlikely event that someone picks up your low-priced item but doesn’t leave any money, then porch pickup would be fine for that item — in my opinion.
BONUS TIP: On the rare occasion that I do allow a porch pick up for an item, here is how I package it:
Tip #10 – Look around your house (and garage… and attic… and basement) for larger, more valuable items that you could sell.
Larger, more-valuable items bring big dollars faster.
Smaller, less-valuable items aren’t as popular among buyers. Plus, you have to sell a bunch of low-value items just to feel like Facebook Marketplace is worth your time.
On the other hand, a single high-quality item typically sells very quickly and brings the big bucks — which means immediate satisfaction!
Tip #11 – Personally, I think Home & Garden is the most popular category on Facebook Marketplace and the best place to sell *most* items.
I even think it’s better than the Miscellaneous category when you’re not sure where to list a certain item. Since Miscellaneous is mostly just a catch-all category — you have to sift through a lot of unusual items just to find something that you’re even familiar with. It’s very hard to find many meaningful items that you would truly be interested in buying. (For me, Miscellaneous is a “junk” category.)
On the other hand, the types of things found for sale in the Home & Garden category tend to include anything that’s used inside of, outside of, and around the house. Home & Garden includes household items of all types — from appliances, furniture, and decorations to gardening supplies, sporting goods, pet supplies, and outdoor living items. Home & Garden items are generally better quality and higher priced than items found in the Miscellaneous category.
Other popular categories on Facebook Marketplace are:
- Clothing & Accessories – this category is broken down by men’s and women’s (but there’s no category for kids clothes). This category also includes jewelry, bags, and luggage.
- Electronics – modern gadgets like cameras, computers, voice-controlled speakers, gps units, etc. seem to sell the best. Unfortunately, outdated gadgets that no one uses anymore are the ones most often listed for sale. (TIP: Speaking of electronics… Surprisingly, I don’t think phone accessories sell very well on FB Marketplace.)
- Health & Beauty – many things that are posted here also appear in the Home & Garden category. Of the 2 categories, I think this is the weaker one. More people would see your item for sale if it’s posted in the Home & Garden category — in my opinion.
- Pet Supplies – people are always spending money on their pets, so when they find a good deal on pet items on Facebook Marketplace, they jump on it! I’ve sold a number of high-quality dog items this way.
Tip #12 – Facebook Marketplace pricing is very similar to yard sale pricing — so don’t expect to get “top dollar” for things!
I see people all the time pricing their items way too high on FB Marketplace.
Yes, $xyz might be what the item is truly worth. But if you really want to get rid of the item, then you’ll need to price it lower than it’s worth.
Trust me on this. Otherwise, you’ll just be wasting the time you spent listing the item… and you’ll still have the item in your possession because it will not sell!
I usually price Facebook Marketplace items for sale this way:
- Anything in “excellent condition” (non-used, brand new, or only used once or twice) — 1/2 the price that they could buy it on Amazon.
- Anything in “used but good condition” — 1/4 the price that they could buy it on Amazon.
Here are some examples of items that I’ve sold on FB Marketplace and their prices:
- Winter coats (adults) – $20 or $25. If it’s leather OR has a removable zip-out liner, then $30 or $35 because it’s like getting 2 jackets in one. (I sold a Harley Davidson leather jacket with removable H-D hoodie for $80 — Harley items cost more to buy, so they sell for more as well.)
- XL Dog bed – $15 fits in XL dog crate.
- Shoes (adults) – $15 to $20, but only if they’re brand new or hardly worn at all.
- Robot vacuum – $55 for a no-name brand that works great.
- Dog toys – $15 for 4 large dog toys in good shape.
- Jeans (adults) – 3 pairs of the same “style” (Levi’s 505’s, for example) – $20. Or 4 pairs of the same “style” (Levi’s Curvy 529’s, for example) – $25.
BONUS TIP: My general feeling is that clothing just doesn’t sell well on Facebook Marketplace unless it’s got a unique/valuable logo (like Harley-Davidson, North Face, etc.). For that reason, it’s best to sell 2, 3, or 4 of an identical clothing item for a really low price — like the Levi’s mentioned above. Anyone who’s even mildly interested will usually bite on that kind of a deal on clothing.
If you don’t like these pricing guidelines and you want higher prices for your items, then consider selling them on other sites — like eBay or Craigslist — instead.
Tip #13 – You’ll get more money for your items if you have the original box that the item came in.
Be sure to show the item — both inside and outside of that box — in a couple of your pictures.
BONUS TIP: The same is true if the item still has its original tags from the day you purchased it.
Tip #14 – Post as many pictures as possible.
I notice that many people only post 1 or maybe 2 photos for each item.
Heck, post as many photos that will adequately show every angle of the item. (You’re allowed to post up to 10 pictures per listing.)
- What the front looks like
- What the back looks like
- How thick or thin the item is
- All parts and pieces that are included
- Original box and tags, if available
- Any pockets, nooks, or crannies that would otherwise be hard to see
- The item’s dimensions (whenever possible, lay a measuring tape over the item’s various angles — so buyers can see the actual measurements in your photos)
You can post up to 10 photos per item. Once uploaded, drag each photo right or left to change the order that it appears in your listing. Be sure to put the “best” one in the very first position (far left).
BONUS TIPS: Zoom in close on the item. Include your hand holding the item whenever possible — because people relate more to “people” than “things.” (Pictures of just “things” are very cold. Pictures with some part of a person in them make it easier for potential buyers to picture themselves in relation to that item.) Also, don’t include any items in the photo that are NOT included in the sale of this item. Otherwise, the buyer will balk, claiming that they thought they also got the other item(s) that appeared in the same picture.
Tip #15 – In the product description, always try to tell a very short but very personal story about how you used this item… and why you’re selling it.
People pay more for honesty.
When you’re able to relay your own personal attachment to the item (without going overboard) — how much you’ve enjoyed and cared for this item — potential buyers appreciate that and they tend to place a higher value on that item.
BONUS TIP: If your item is from a non-smoking home and/or a pet-free home, be sure to state that in your description as well.
Tip #16 – Don’t list several different items for sale in a single listing.
That’s just lazy! Plus, your items won’t show up when people use the Facebook Marketplace ‘search’ feature.
People don’t want to dig through everything you’re selling in one long listing and try to make sense of the way you’ve chosen to photograph and list each of the individual items’ prices.
If you have 2 or more of the exact same item for sale, then yes — include those in the same posting. But the best rule of thumb IF you really want to sell your items is to post a separate listing for each and every different item you’re selling.
Tip #17 – The majority of your inquiries will come on the first day that you post the item for sale — in fact, within the first few minutes of posting it.
Hardly anyone will find your item the next day and onward unless you:
- Pay close attention to the words you use to describe it in your listing
- Choose words that people tend to use when searching for such an item online
That’s because after the first day, your item will become buried among all of the other items that were listed after yours.
The newest items always appear first in the Facebook Marketplace stream. So if your item no longer appears toward the top of the list, people will have to manually search for that specific type of item in order to find your listing.
BONUS TIP: If you change anything in your listing (wording or price), it gets bumped up in the feed — as if it’s a new listing. For that reason, I constantly tweak my listings if I’m not getting many interested buyers. Another way to bump your listing to the top is to “renew after 7 days”. You can do this a total of 4 times (keeping the same item listed for 4 weeks) without changing the wording or price.
Tip #18 – For what it’s worth, I’ve found that it’s best to post your Facebook Marketplace listing on a Thursday, Friday, or Saturday.
I think it’s because more people are willing to go out of their way to pick up an item on weekends.
Tip #19 – If you happen to “delete” (instead of “mark as sold”) any of the items you’re selling in the Facebook Marketplace, remember to remove those items from the individual group pages as well.
Items marked as “sold” are automatically removed from the group pages, but items that are “deleted” are not always removed from the group pages.
Another Facebook Marketplace Seller’s Opinion
I asked my friend, a first-time mom, (who also sells a lot of items on Facebook Marketplace) if she had any tips to share. Here are a few of her best ideas for selling items on Facebook:
- I buy quite a bit of my son’s toys off Facebook Marketplace — and I can almost always resell them for what I paid for them. It works great because we can essentially try the item for free until we’re ready for something different!
- I’ve bought some baby clothes off of Facebook Marketplace too — simply because they grow out of the clothes so fast. (I’ve had outfits that he never even got to wear with the tags still on them.) But I tend to give away most of the clothes he grows out of because they are kind of hard to sell (not worth the effort) once they are toddler size. His baby clothes — newborn to 6 months — sold fast though.
- A good gauge to see if you have an item priced right is how fast your phone blows up with Facebook Marketplace notifications. If you don’t get any responses, then it’s obviously priced too high. But don’t be afraid to let an item sit on there for awhile too. I put a garage door opener on FB Marketplace months ago… and it finally sold today.
- To keep a handle on clutter in the house… I firmly believe that a person really needs to get rid of 3 things for every new item brought into the house. And Facebook Marketplace helps me do that!
I like to help people find unique ways to do things in order to save time & money — so I write about “outside the box” ideas that most wouldn’t think of. As a lifelong dog owner, I often share my best tips for living with and training dogs. I worked in Higher Ed over 10 years before switching gears to pursue activities that I’m truly passionate about. I’ve worked at a vet, in a photo lab, and at a zoo — to name a few. I enjoy the outdoors via bicycle, motorcycle, Jeep, or RV. You can always find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun & helpful websites).