Today I took part in the Thrifty Style Team, which is a group of talented ladies who get together once a month to bring you thrifty DIY projects and decor inspiration that won’t break the bank! Thrifty Style Team is hosted by my awesome and talented friend Julie at Redhead Can Decorate!
This month I’m sharing 5 tips for thrifting on Facebook Marketplace! Facebook Marketplace has grown a lot since its inception and is now a robust buying and selling platform comparable to eBay. You may be surprised at how easy it is to thrift on Facebook Marketplace!
The Basics of Shopping on Facebook Marketplace
I’m going to share a brief overview for shopping and buying on Facebook Marketplace. As I mentioned before, Facebook Marketplace is very robust and offers a lot of handy features for both buyers and sellers. I will keep the focus on shopping/buying because selling is beyond the scope of this post. For the same reason, I will give a brief overview of the features, but I will not dive deeply into each of them. I encourage you to explore each feature on your own as Facebook has gone to great lengths to add user friendly tools to make your shopping and buying experience easy.
The screenshots of the Facebook Marketplace are from the Facebook app on my Apple iPhone 8 plus. Your view of Facebook Marketplace may be slightly different depending on the device you use, but you should be able to get the jist of how Facebook Marketplace works.
In your Facebook app, click/tap the “Marketplace” icon which will bring you to the Marketplace home screen. Here you will see “Today’s Picks”, which if you’ve used Marketplace before, will show you sales posts based on your recent search history. As you can see, I search for antiques a lot!
You will also see the Sell, Categories, user and search buttons. We will be covering those buttons (except the Sell button) in a bit.
Note the map pointer with “Sacramento 40 mi” in the upper right of the screen. If you have location settings turned on in Facebook, it will show you your location and the maximum distance of the location of the sellers of local sales listings.
Click/tap on your location to bring you to the Select Location screen. Click/tap on the map and drag your finger/pointer to choose the location if you want a location other than your current one. (I set my location to Sacramento for the purpose of this post.) Click/tap the “Suggested Radius” radio button to allow Facebook to see local sales listings from the default radius of 50 miles. If you would like local sales listings from a bigger or smaller area, click the “Custom Radius” radio button and then click/tap and drag the slider bar to choose a radius between 1 and 100 miles. Click/tap “Apply” to save your location and search radius and return to the Marketplace home screen.
Although I recommend sales listings that offer over local pickup in my tips, it’s handy to know how to shop locally if that option will work better for you. All sales listings that offer shipping are available nationwide unless otherwise noted in the listing.
Click/tap the “Categories” button on the Marketplace home screen to see all the sales categories available. Scroll down on the Categories screen to see a more detailed breakdown of each category.
Click on the user (gray head and shoulders) icon on the Marketplace home screen to see your Marketplace settings. If you would like to learn more than what I covered here, scroll down on the settings screen and click/tap “Get Help on Marketplace” to learn about these settings.
Now that you have the basics of shopping and buying, let’s get into the 5 tips for thrifting on Facebook Marketplace!
1. Use the search keywords alert.
Click/tap the search button on the Marketplace home screen to search for the item you’re looking for. Type in the item you’re looking for in the “Search Marketplace” text bar and then click/tap “search.”
For this example, I decided to search for “vintage crocks.” I got some nice looking crocks in my search results.
Here is where the thrifting magic happens! Click/tap the filter button to adjust your Delivery Options (local and/or shipping), Item condition, Sort by, Price, and Date listed. Type in the amounts for the minimum and maximum you want to spend, then click/tap the “See Listings” button.
If this returns an item you like with the price you want, great! If not, click the bell button and then click/tap “Create Alert” to be notified when the item in the price range you want becomes available. The beauty of this is that you don’t have to check back for the item in the price range you want in fear that you might miss it once it gets listed – you’ll be notified right away! The only thing I don’t like about the alerts is that at this writing you can’t choose between local and/or shipped listings as part of the saved criteria. I’m hoping Facebook will add this soon as I prefer shipping for reasons I’ll get into in tip #3.
2. Use the Buy Now option.
I always favor the listings with the Buy Now option available because it saves me a lot of time since I don’t have to communicate directly with the seller to ask if the items in the listing are still available and then work out payment details. All I have to do is click/tap the Buy Now button and then pay for the item using whatever payment service the seller uses (almost always PayPal or Venmo).
When I bought the milk glass vases below through the Marketplace, I literally never exchanged any communication with the seller because there was no need to. I clicked the Buy Now button on the seller’s listing, paid for the vases, the seller shipped them to me, and everyone was happy.
3. Use the shipping option.
I am self employed, so for me time = money. I’d rather pay for shipping than take the time to drive to the seller’s location to pick it up. Second, unless they are in the next town over, it is cheaper for me to pay to have the items shipped than it is for the gas it would take for me to go pick them up. Of course, if the seller lives quite a ways away local pickup isn’t an option anyways. The point is that don’t automatically assume that picking the items up from the seller will be cheaper than having the seller ship it to you.
4. Buy it “as is”.
If you’re willing to do a little repair or clean up on items, it’s a thrifty way so save yourself some money. Like I said before, time = money, but that can work both ways… if you have the time to repair or clean up on items in listings, it’s a great way to keep some cash in your pocket.
Even with shipping, I got a great deal on these milk glass vases that were otherwise in great condition other than being dirty. Even if they were clean when they arrived, I would have washed them so it really didn’t take up any more of my time to wash them because I had to. And as you can see in the pictures below, they cleaned up beautifully!
5. Buy listings of multiples of the same item.
I also saved money by buying the milk glass vase in a lot. When I searched for these vases, I used “milk glass vases lot” with the important keyword being “lot”. Sellers will often list multiples of the same item as “Lot of <Items>” or “<Items> lot”.
If you don’t find what you’re looking for using “lot” in your keywords, do the search again without it because not all sellers use it when they are selling multiples of the same item. It’s just faster to use the keyword first to save yourself the time of having to sift through a ton of listings looking for multiples of a certain item that may or may not be there.
I hope these tips will help you score some great deals on Facebook Marketplace!
Here’s the this month’s entire lineup of great thrifty DIY projects and decor inspiration from the rest of the talented ladies of the Thrifty Style Team!
Redhead Can Decorate – Clever Bathroom Tissue Dispenser Ideas
The Painted Hinge – 5 Tips for Thrifting on Facebook Marketplace
DIY Beautify – Curbside Pink Table
2 Bees In A Pod – 10 Thrifty Decorating Ideas for Spring
The How To Home – DIY Yarn Boho Wall Hanging
The Tattered Pew – 25 Budget Friendly Home Decor Projects
What Meegan Makes – Spring Vintage Bicycle Rime Wreath
Cottage At The Crossroads – Farmhouse Lazy Susan with Wood Beads
Lora B. Create & Ponder – Fun Ways to Use Vintage Finds in your Outdoor Decorating
White Arrows Home – DIY Vintage Inspired First Aid Kit Box
Our Crafty Mom – Soy Teacup Candles DIY
Chas’ Crazy Creations – Acrylic Paint Ideas DIY Mug Rack
Cottage On Bunker Hill – Vintage Spring Porch Decorating Ideas