Have you ever tried to sell your products on Facebook? Nope? Well, maybe you should. Where there are people there are sales!
The first thing to do is get a business fan page. It is very easy to set up and will serve as your showcase to the world. Now, unlike eBay, you don’t have specific listings (although it’s possible), so you really have to push your products and services and sell yourself. I find this both exciting and challenging as you need to search for leads that should result in sales.
Once you have your page, you can start making it look attractive and enticing to potential buyers. There are plenty of third-party apps that will do this for you (usually free) and I’ve tried a few, but probably my favorite is one called Pagemondo, which lets you have a fancy landing page for new Likes to see where you can stand out. products and display your logo etc. This, like an eBay template, can give your Facebook presence an air of professionalism.
The next step is to get followers/likes, and this is the hard part! Obviously the first place to start is your friends and family who are already your Facebook connections and it’s amazing how many more fans you can get if you send a pleading message to all your friends asking them to invite their friends who in turn invite his friends. friends, etc, etc, a bit like a pyramid scheme!! It works even better if you offer a small prize for the friend who sends the most likes to your page. Another good way to build a following is to get existing customers of your website or eBay sales to sign up by sending out flyers with each sale asking them to join the group to stay in touch with new products and special offers. I often get good repeat orders just by posting an update on my page.
Once you’ve exhausted your immediate circle of acquaintances and past clients, it’s time to start attracting members of the public to your page. There are a few ways to do this. The fastest and easiest way is to use a site like Twiends, which is basically a massive fan chain, an exchange program. You like other people’s pages, and in turn, they like you too. However, I don’t have much faith in these systems as you’re not getting a targeted following, especially if you’re selling niche products. If you’re selling something universal, like electronics or books, you may have some success with this method. There are also a number of Facebook Pages set up specifically to gain followers. Here are some of them…
One method I’ve used to get likes is to use pages that are targeted to my demographic. For example, Facebook pages like ‘Mums Who Make’ is a page dedicated to stay-at-home moms who make and make and then sell on Facebook. Pointing to this page works well for me as many of these moms have kids and subsequently need toys for parties etc. Also, many of them take existing products like Santa bags, personalize them and sell them. Selling to these people has been very lucrative in recent weeks. Now, of course, it depends on what you’re selling, but I’m sure if you spend a little time browsing through the pages, you could find similar pages that fit your niche. Find groups and pages that are relevant to your business and join them. Some will allow you to promote your business, others won’t, but the more groups you join the better. If a business finds your page and likes it, then it’s common Facebook etiquette to like them back, even if it has nothing to do with your business sector. Making virtual friends or acquaintances is a big part of progressing your Facebook profile. I make sure that I like every toy, party, bouncy castle, Christmas and Halloween page I can find like never before you who may need my services!
Once you have a good fan base, you need to promote, promote, promote! The more you update your page, the more sales you get, and as mentioned above, some may not see this as a good use of your time if you only get a couple of sales a week, but you have to do it for a long time. – if you build it, they will come (points if you get that random 80s movie quote!). Every time you have a new product or news post it on your page as someone, somewhere will see it and the law of averages says that someone will buy it! Also, be creative. Run contests, promotions and special offers, interact with your customers and try to pique their interest. I picture myself owning a market stall and trying to grab passers-by who really don’t want to get caught!
Another way to get sales is to link your Facebook page to your eBay account. There are some good guides on Google that explain how you can do this.
There are also ways to get an eBay-style ‘shop’ on Facebook. Companies like Buegle will charge you for this, but to be honest I’m skeptical about paying for services like this as I don’t think the returns are currently available to make this financially viable. Especially when I managed to do it for free!!
The website I use for Risus Wholesale has a built-in feature that allows me to export all of my wholesale toy listings to shopmania, who will in turn list all of their items directly on Facebook and after running it for a year or so. now i am doing some good selling and enquiries.
I hope this guide helps some people. Selling on Facebook isn’t for everyone, but I honestly think it’s worth a try if you have the time and energy to do so.