How to Buy and Sell Safely on Facebook Marketplace- If you’re looking for holiday buyers or thinking of selling some old things to finance a shopping spree, the Facebook marketplace is a great alternative to courtyard sales and flea markets.
The business, like any other Internet trade, attracts its fair share of swindlers and scammers (and others in the real world as well). As a result, here are a few pointers for turning the Facebook marketplace into a source of joy rather than cheating.
What’s the Marketplace for Facebook?
Facebook launched the market in October 2016, with over 18 million products sold in the United States alone by May 2017. It has since spread to other countries, with over 550 million searchers taking part in groups for buying and selling monthly search volume on the Marketplace table since early 2017.
The definition is straightforward: Facebook displays a variety of items for sale in your area based on information from your profile and your location. They plan to contact the seller through Facebook Messenger and close the deal if a buyer purchases the item. Using messaging allows traders to conduct business without sharing addresses or phone numbers, and Facebook does not charge service fees.
The marketplace is easy to use. Click the Marketplace button at the bottom of the Facebook mobile app or in the left column of your home page. A variety of item images will be shown, along with costs. Browse or use the filters to narrow down your quest by item type, price, and so on. If you want to sell something, press the blue ‘Sell something’ button and fill out the form. It saves you time by selling the application by allowing you to snap and add an image to the list without saving and uploading files.
How to Buy and Sell Safely on Facebook Marketplace
Here are five pointers to ensure a positive and safe Facebook market experience:
- For all purchases, use a credit card or a secure e-payment service. Since there is no built-in payment system in the marketplace, payments must be arranged directly in a contract with the other party. Uncritical sellers may insist on cash, gift cards, or other untraceable forms of payment, and shady buyers may offer worthless gift cards. As a purchaser, wallet processors and card issuers such as PayPal will investigate fraud allegations on your behalf, but not its sister Venmo application. Respectable market traders would welcome the use of secure facilities, which would support lawfully purchased and sold goods.
- Stop any transactions involving local buyers/sellers that are not involved. In general, Facebook just shows you, potential buyers and sellers within your industry. ( If a vendor tells you that they will ship an item from a greater distance, the risk is that the order will never arrive or will be incorrect. (You can choose an order that is as near as two kilometers or as far as 100 miles away, but the default is 40 miles.) And if a buyer asks you to ship a long-distance product, particularly internationally, take a simple step: the buyer has a scam to cancel the payment once the item is in transit and you cannot retrieve it.
- Examine buyer/seller profiles.”
When you click on an item for sale, look at the seller profile under “seller info.” Check Facebook to see if you have any mutual friends, and make sure it is in your city. If you’ve only been on Facebook for a short time or have a small number of contacts, this might be a red flag.
- Examine it before making a payment. Before making payment for an object, make sure to “see the items” and bring an expert who can verify its worth, whether the item is a jewel or a collectible.
- Some police departments encourage people to complete transfers in their station lobbies or parking lots; otherwise, choose a public location such as a coffee shop or restaurant. Bring a friend with you, and if it becomes tedious, film a video or take some snapshots of a conversation so that if you disagree later, you can easily identify the opposing viewpoint.
When something is wrong
There is no greater or lesser risk of encountering shady characters if you conduct business through Facebook Marketplace or buy and sell merchandise through eBay and Craigslist services than there is in the real world. Continue to be cautious and walk away if anything doesn’t feel right.
However, if you become a victim of a fraud, you should and should take the following steps:
- If you suspect a Facebook Marketplace scammer, please report them to Facebook as described here.
- Notify law enforcement if you believe you have been duped. Inform the local police, and consider filing a report with the FBI Complaint Center for Internet Crime (IC3). The FBI does not promise to follow up in either case, but registering scams helps uncover trends and patterns of fraud that can help thwart cyber-crooks.
The marketplace can be an entertaining and competitive source of deals. If you are as cautious about possible fraud as you are about the industry, you will most likely be well-versed in the market. Okay, I’m ready to buy!
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