Back in 2016, the social media site expanded its functionality, dipping its toe into the waters of digital commerce. It did this via Marketplace, a feature within the Android and iOS Facebook app that is described as “a convenient destination to discover, buy, and sell items with people in your community.” Initially, we described it as a yard sale in the palm of your hand, but now, it’s much more than that. The latest offering from Marketplace comes in the form of a home services feature for U.S. users. Now, you can hire a plumber, a cleaner, an electrician, or anything else you need for home improvement straight from the social network.
In order to launch this new feature, Facebook has formed partnerships with service providers like Handy, HomeAdvisor, and Porch. Already, thousands of professionals are available for hire.
“More people ask for recommendations related to home services on Facebook in the U.S. than any other topic,” said Deb Liu, vice president of Marketplace, in a statement. And now, Facebook is providing answers. Marketplace also gives users the option to receive a quick quote for services requested, as well as the ability to send out your project details to several professionals at once. And of course, when you’re connected to a potential service provider, you can chat via Messenger.
Using the feature should be pretty straightforward. From the Marketplace menu, you’ll need to scroll over to Marketplace Services, and select the service you need. Facebook will then ask a number of questions to provide the most helpful potential match. You’ll then enter your zip code, and Facebook will show you the people available for the task. You can browse profiles to see more information about a company or individual, with ratings and reviews to boot. The feature has begun rolling out today and will be made widely available across the nation in the next few weeks.
And this isn’t all that Facebook Marketplace offers. Not so long ago, the social network added apartment listings to Marketplace, and there’s also an automobile selection if you’re looking to make a different kind of major purpose.
Facebook’s Director of Product Management Mary Ku previously noted, buying and selling has been taking place on the social network for years, with more than 450 million people taking to the site to barter and trade each month. Marketplace is Facebook’s attempt at streamlining those processes. “Marketplace makes it easy to find new things you’ll love, and find a new home for the things you’re ready to part with,” Ku wrote. “We’ll continue to build new options and features to make this the best experience for people.”
Facebook Marketplace has steadily expanded over the last couple years, slowly moving away from just another version of Craigslist to a more reputable network of buyers and sellers. Marketplace is also showing job postings, and Facebook has added ticket sales as well as products from other retailers’ shopping pages.
“We’ll kind of look and see what’s popular, what people want to engage with,” Deb Liu, the Facebook VP who oversees Marketplace told Recode. “So if people are searching or looking for something, we want to make that available to them.”
So how do you access Marketplace? When you open the Facebook app on your phone, you should now see a shop icon at the bottom. When you tap on the icon, you’ll find photos of items for sale, and you can filter your results by location, category, and price. Much like other online marketplaces, you can further simplify your results by selecting categories like Household, Electronics, and Apparel. And if you don’t want to search in just your neighborhood, you can use the location tool to switch to a different region.
Once something has caught your eye, simply tap on the image for details, such as a product description, name and profile photo of the seller, and its location. If you’re ready to take the plunge, you can send the seller a direct message from Marketplace to make an offer. From there, you’re on your own — “Facebook does not facilitate the payment or delivery of items in Marketplace,” Ku noted.
Update: Facebook Marketplace now offers home services.