How to sell on Facebook. For most businesses, whether big or small, selling on Facebook is no longer an option but rather a necessity. Even social media skeptics agree that the role of Facebook as an eCommerce driver is undeniable.
Facebook’s important role in eCommerce is further verified by the available statistics. The statistics show that over 60 million businesses have a Facebook page and that 39% of users follow or like a Facebook page.
Clearly, you cannot ignore Facebook if you desire to reach a wider audience. Here is a comprehensive step by step guide on how to sell on Facebook.
The guide covers two major aspects crucial to selling on Facebook: setting up the shop and marketing and advertising.
In Order To Sell on Facebook You Need a Business Page
Setting up a business page is the foundation for selling on Facebook. Unless you have a business page, you cannot set up a shop, list your item or have access to the various advertising features Facebook offers.
We will look at the advantages of a business page, but first, let us briefly see how to set up a business page.
- From your Facebook personal account, click on pages on the left side of the navigation panel.
- You will be guided through the set-up process which will require your business name, a short blurb about your business, a cover photo that best represents your business and a call to action that tells people what to do once they visit your page, for instance, visit your website.
- With that done, you are free to publish your page and start posting on it immediately.
Now that the business page is up, it is time to explore how this page helps you sell on Facebook. There are three key ways.
- A Facebook business page allows you to set up a Facebook shop. A Facebook shop is a tab you can create on your page that allows you to list the products you are selling. With a Facebook shop, you can add the product, the product description, the price, and payment options.
- A Facebook page offers free marketing opportunities such as promoting your products and interacting with customers and potential customers.
iii. A Facebook page gives you access to advertising tools such as boosting your posts.
We will look at each in depth and ultimately how they all work together to ensure your eCommerce venture thrives.
1. Setting Up a Facebook Shop and Understanding the Two Main Retail Options
Setting up the actual shop is the easy part. Simply select the Shop tab on your page, then read through the terms and check the box to agree to them.
With that done, comes the slightly complicated part: determining which retail option suits you best. By retail option I mean,
- How you will populate your shop with the product.
- How you will process the payments once a purchase is complete.
Facebook allows two retail options.
I. A Self-contained Facebook Shop Complete with Checkout and Payment Options
With this option, Facebook guides you through uploading your products and filling in the required product information. Once you are done, the next step is setting up a payment process that allows a buyer to pay for the product they have chosen without leaving the Facebook app.
Facebook allows you to connect two payment options: PayPal and Stripe. That means your customers can only pay you via PayPal or Stripe.
The biggest benefit of this selling option is that you can upload as many items as you desire and it will cost you nothing. It is free to set up the shop and connect the payment process. Also, this retail option means your customer can have the full shopping experience without leaving the Facebook app. They browse the items in your Facebook shop, select the item of choice and pay for it all within Facebook.
The downside, however, is that you have to manually manage the orders yourself. That means logging in to Facebook, processing the order and marking an item shipped or sold. Another key downside is that you are limited to Facebook. You cannot connect your store to other social media platforms.
II. Use an eCommerce Platform That You Then Link to the Facebook Shop
An eCommerce platform is a website builder that allows you to build an eCommerce site complete with checkout options with only a couple of clicks.
eCommerce platforms abound in the market, from paid ones like Shopify and BigCommerce or free ones such as Spreesy.
Once the site is set-up, with whatever eCommerce platform you choose, it is time to connect it with your Facebook shop. Here is how you do it with the Shopify eCommerce platform.
- First, populate the site with products complete with product details and price.
- Next set up a Facebook sales channel.
- You do this by adding a Facebook sales channel in your Shopify admin.
- Wait until Facebook approves your shop.
- When Facebook approves, then you are ready to start selling and customers will automatically use Shopify checkout after purchasing something from your Facebook shop.
You should note is that the process for connecting your eCommerce site to your Facebook shop is largely similar among all the main platforms.
Another key thing to note is that even with an eCommerce platform, you can still choose to have your customers checkout directly from Facebook instead of your eCommerce site.
Using an eCommerce platform has a couple of benefits.
- First, an eCommerce platform offers you tools that automate your order processing. The tools include order and shipping management and item listing. That means you do not have to process an order manually.
- Second, whenever you update your product list on your site, your Facebook page is automatically updated.
- Finally, you can sell anywhere on an eCommerce platform: Amazon, eBay, your own website and of course other social media platforms such as Pinterest.
Of course, an eCommerce platform carries some downsides, too. The key downside of an eCommerce platform is that it is not free. You not only have to register a domain which costs about $14 on Shopify, you also have to pay monthly for your account. Shopify charges $29 for the most basic account. Prices on other eCommerce platforms have similar price ranges.
Check out this blog post for more information: Shopify Costs | How much do you need?
What Is the Verdict? Which Retail Option Should You Choose?
Ultimately, that is a very personal decision. You now know the benefits and downsides of each retail option. However, for a small business, a self-contained Facebook shop might be a good place to start.
Whatever your decision, you need to remember there is another aspect to selling on Facebook. Listing your products is fine and good, but it proves moot if Facebook users do not see your product.
As mentioned above, marketing and advertising are two more benefits offered by a Facebook business page. That is the next huge consideration when selling on Facebook.
2. Utilizing The Numerous Marketing and Advertising Tools Facebook Offers
It is impossible to list all the advertising tools Facebook offers that enable you to advertise your product and reach a wider audience. We will explore two of them to give you an idea.
I. Boosting Posts
Boosting a post is rather straightforward. It simply means boosting your post so that it can get more exposure. The process is simple.
- From your business page, select the post you want to boost. It could be an old one or a newly created one complete with various HD photos of your product.
- At the bottom of the post, click boost post and Facebook will automatically create an advert from your post.
- You will then be directed to choose the audience you intend to target. If you sell women’s shoes, then it follows your target audience is women. Similarly, if you sell men’s attire then your target audience is men. Options go beyond gender as you can choose the age, location,and even interests.
- Finally, you get to choose your budget. You can spend as little as five dollars or as much as forty dollars. The more you spend, the greater the visibility. For twenty dollars, for instance, you get to reach between 4,000 and 11,000 people.
- With that done, your post will be boosted for one day but there are options for more days.
II. Language Optimization
Yet another Facebook advertising tool that allows you to advertise to a multilingual audience. You can optimize one post with up to six different languages allowing you to reach people who only understand specific languages.
Very beneficial for a business whose target location is multilingual.
There is more to Facebook marketing and advertising other than what is mentioned above. The key is going through your Facebook business page to determine all the tools Facebook offers.
Once you do that, and considering you now have all the information on how to set up a shop then you are ready to leverage Facebook for more sales for your business. You are ready to start selling on Facebook.
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