Facebook quietly launched Marketplace in 2016, and as of 2018 it now lets brands run ads through this placement.

 In this article you'll learn how Facebook Marketplace works and what types of ads you can run.

What is Facebook Marketplace?            

Facebook Marketplace is Facebook's answer to Craiglist. Facebook users can list items they want to sell without paying a fee, and anyone in the local area can view their items by going to the Marketplace.

If you view Facebook on mobile, you'll see the Marketplace icon in the top-right corner of your screen. For desktop users, it will appear in the top-left corner underneath your profile photo.

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When listing an item organically, you have the following options

  • Name
  • Price
  • Location
  • Category (15+ to choose from)
  • Description (long form)
  • Photos (10+)

These options are only available if you want to list an item originally. If running ads, they will appear like they would in the news feed.

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How to run ads on Facebook Marketplace

To make use of the Marketplace placement, you need to choose any of the following objectives:

  • Reach
  • Traffic
  • Conversion
  • Catalog Sales
  • Video Views

Ads that are served in the Marketplace will also be served on the news feed. You cannot run ads using only the Marketplace placement. Like all other Facebook ads, you'll be able to track conversions using your Facebook pixel and receive metrics on how ads performed in the Marketplace placement.

As of this moment in time (August 2018), you cannot run video ads within this placement – only single image or carousel ads. You can find the Marketplace option in the Placements section of an ad set.

Note: Currently, you can only use this placement when targeting audiences in the US. If you choose another country, you'll be presented with the following message that you cannot use it:

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Is the Marketplace worth using?

Facebook said that over 550 million people visit Facebook groups (not Marketplace) to buy and sell goods, with over 18 million items posted for sale in the Marketplace for the month of May alone.

FacebookMarketplaceData

What this tells me is that people are using Facebook as a way to discover products and to purchase products.

If I were to run ads using the Marketplace placement, I would run the following test campaigns:

DPA ads to cold audiences – People who visit the Facebook Marketplace are actively shopping. Using Facebook's broad audience targeting with DPAs could prove to be successful with the items and creatives.

Try organic posting – The upsides to organic posting is that you can use the default listing options which give you plenty of space to sell, and you can even link them back to your Facebook Page to connect through Messenger. If you ship items nationwide, post your items in the most densely populated locations to get more eyes on your listings.

The downside is that you cannot boost these posts, and scaling can be difficult as someone needs to manually upload each post.

Are you using Marketplace?

The data isn't out yet, but I have a feeling that conversion-type ads will perform best on Marketplace simply because the user is actively searching for products, whereas on the news feed they may be just simply be keeping up to date with their social circle.

Have you run ads on Marketplace yet? If so, leave a comment below to let me know how you got on and share any tips you may have.