Since 2011, Facebook has allowed you to create stores and sell products on its platform.
Selling on Facebook provides a way for people like you to make money online through an online marketplace.
You’ll need to jump through a few hoops before you can start selling products on Facebook.
This will include setting up a business page, deciding whether to connect to an e-commerce platform, listing your products, and promoting your Facebook Shop.
If you’re already selling goods online — perhaps in coordination with a monetized blog — hooking up your e-commerce platform is relatively easy.
If you don’t already sell anything online, we’ll show you how you can get started by selling products on Facebook.
Facebook Marketplace vs. a Facebook Shop
Before we get started, it’s important to understand the differences between two popular ways to sell things online with Facebook: Facebook Marketplace and Facebook Shop.
Facebook Marketplace is a place where anyone can sell items on Facebook.
This is more like a Craigslist platform than a true e-commerce platform.
You can think of Marketplace listings as personal ads where you can find and sell goods in your local area.
With Facebook Marketplace, payment processing doesn’t occur through Facebook.
People can simply find one another, exchange goods, and provide payment based on their agreed to terms.
This could be in the form of cash or checks in person or money sent through a payment app, like a PayPal account.
Like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace is designed more for person-to-person sales than for small businesses.
It’s a great option if you’re cleaning out your home and want to sell your old things.
Facebook Shop, on the other hand, is an e-commerce platform where businesses can upload many products to sell to people online.
Think of this as an online store rather than a place where people can exchange goods.
With a Facebook Shop, you can have your payment transactions supported through Facebook.
You can also opt to send customers to a preexisting, third-party e-commerce site that you already have set up.
Whether or not you choose to sell directly on Facebook or through your own e-commerce platform will be up to you.
But either way, you’ll need to get setup with the platform.
Let’s take the first steps to launching your Facebook Shop.
1. Create a Facebook Business Page
Before you can start selling on Facebook, you need to have a Facebook Business Page.
This part can cause a lot of confusion as many think you only need to have a Facebook account to start selling.
Facebook Business Pages aren’t the same as personal Facebook Pages.
These pages are specifically used for business purposes.
Instead of seeing your name at the top of the page, you’ll see your business’s name and brand imagery.
You’ll still need to have a personal account and be signed in to serve as the admin who handles the page behind the scenes.
To create a Business page, log in to your personal account, head to the top of your screen and tap the “Create” button.
Then select “Page” within the drop-down menu.
You can choose between creating a business or brand page, or a community or public figure page.
Choose to create a business page.
Then type the name and business category you fit into.
After that, you can start giving your business page some flair.
Add a nice profile picture, a cover photo, and any descriptive details that will bring your company’s Facebook presence to life.
And just like that, you have a business page.
The next step is setting up your Facebook Shop.
2. Choose How to Sell on Facebook
To start selling, you need to tap the blue “Add a Button” at the top of your page.
Select “Shop Now” and tap next.
Your next decision will be figuring out how you want to sell on Facebook.
You’ll have two options.
The first option is selling directly on Facebook’s shop section without sending customers off your Facebook page.
The second option is redirecting customers to a third-party e-commerce page that you already have set up.
Let’s first look at selling directly on Facebook.
Using Only Facebook
Selling directly on Facebook is a nice option for those who are new to the game and don’t sell a lot of products.
While it’s easy to set up, it isn’t entirely user-friendly if you begin selling a large number of goods.
Facebook allows you to upload and sell products for free.
It provides clear directions to set up your store, including selecting payment method details and choosing how you load your product details onto the platform.
However, with a Facebook Shop, you can only sell on this social media site.
With an e-commerce platform attached to your Facebook Shop, you can sell anywhere on the web.
Facebook Shop also makes it difficult to manage orders.
For every order you make, you’ll need to manually go in and update the order’s status.
This includes manually updating when a customer completes a checkout, when the order ships to the customer, and when the order is complete.
Using an E-commerce Platform
An e-commerce platform is much more user-friendly for companies who expect to scale their online sales operations.
Third-party e-commerce websites provide greater sales functionalities and allow you to sell your goods in multiple sales channels online rather than only to Facebook users.
E-commerce platforms also allow you to automate steps throughout the sales process and save you a ton of time.
This includes expanded product listing features, automated order tracking, and shipping management tools that make things quick and easy.
These platforms also provide customers with a better shopping experience than a Facebook Shop.
The catch is that all these added functionalities come with a price attached.
E-commerce platforms charge more on a monthly basis compared to the free option of selling only on Facebook.
However, if you expect to sell multiple products per week, the cost is likely worth it, especially since you’ll be able to sell on more than one platform outside of Facebook.
Some of the more popular e-commerce platforms out there include Shopify, BigCommerce, and Squarespace.
Shopify is one of the most popular e-commerce platforms out there today.
It’s a great option for new businesses as well as ones that have hundreds of sales per month.
BigCommerce is a fitting choice for companies that have many sales per month.
With great inventory management features, you can handle an extensive inventory with ease.
Squarespace is another e-commerce platform that’s geared toward beginner sellers.
If you have an extensive store, we’d recommend the previous two platforms.
But if you’re new to selling and want to get your feet wet with a cheap option, give Squarespace a shot.
3. List Your Products
Once you’ve decided which platform you want to use to sell, you’ll need to upload your product listings and your store information.
This process will be different depending on which platform you choose, but we’ll go over some general information you should include in your store.
For each one of your product listings, you should be prepared to include all of the following details.
- High-quality images of your product
- A detailed product description
- Size and weight information
- An inventory SKU number
After you’ve uploaded your product listings, it’s time to provide detailed store information.
Providing your customers with details about your store will build trust and help them confidently purchase your products.
You should include the following details on your store’s page.
- Contact information
- Customer service information
- Shipping rates and store policies
- “About Us” store information
If you decided to go with a third-party e-commerce platform, you’ll need to take the necessary steps to connect your store to your Facebook page.
Your e-commerce platform should be able to sync up with your Facebook page.
This process may take anywhere from 24 to 48 hours.
Once your store has been approved, your products will automatically be listed in your Facebook Store.
After you list items and build out your store with all of the information above, you can adjust your store’s settings, start promoting your products, and begin making money online.
4. Start Promoting and Selling
There are several ways you can promote your products on Facebook.
Three popular ways businesses promote their products are through boosted posts, Facebook ads, and online giveaways.
Boosted posts are paid posts that can reach a larger audience.
If you create a post about a product you’re selling, you can decide to promote this post for a small fee.
In a way this is like an ad, except it will show up in your customers’ news feed rather than in an ad slot.
Facebook ads, on the other hand, are advertising campaigns you can create to promote your products throughout Facebook.
These are the typical ad placements you see on Facebook that allow you to reach a target audience.
Lastly, you can run product giveaways that can attract potential customers to your store.
Offers and contest giveaways drum up buzz around your store and can get potential buyers in the door.
Start Selling on Facebook
Selling your products on Facebook will give you access to millions of customers online.
If you already have an e-commerce platform, we highly recommend expanding your online presence to Facebook.
If you’re still new to the game, then Facebook is a great place to get some experience selling online.
Best of luck getting your Facebook Shop up and running.