Facebook Marketplace can now be accessed in Indian cities like Mumbai, Delhi, and Bengaluru in selective circles, even though option for marketplace is currently available to select users.
In November 2017, Facebook Marketplace had began its India journey via pilot in Mumbai. On reaching out, a Facebook Spokesperson said, “In November 2017, we started a small test of Marketplace in Mumbai, India. We are committed to learning about how people everywhere use our product and make sure Facebook works for them.”
At present, Facebook Marketplace is available in 46 countries around the world.
As claimed by the company, more than 550 Mn people already visit Facebook groups globally that have items to buy and sell each month, making up for a quarter of its 2 Bn active monthly users. In May 2017, over 18 Mn new items were posted for sale in US Marketplace.
Facebook Marketplace works as a platform for users to discover, buy and sell products without any fees. The platform aims enable the trade of second-hand goods, where Facebook doesn’t involve itself in the payment and delivery of the products. In the US markets, the company allows mostly pre-owned goods, whereas in Asia it’s a combination of used and new products.
To secure a user’s information and exposure, Facebook is working on Machine Learning to ensure space isn’t used for products like alcohol or guns.
Quikr with its presence in 1000 cities in India has spread its verticals across domains like grocery, home rentals, beauty services as well as online recruitment. The company acquired online recruitment site Babajob and local services startup Zimmber in 2017.
On the other hand, Naspers-backed Olx, had reported a 58% jump in revenues to $14.5 Mn (INR 92.5 Cr) in FY17, while its profits surged by 31% to $1.2 Mn (INR 8 Cr).
While on one side there are players like Olx, Quikr etc are luring people to sell their old goods online, be it cars, clothes, utility, furnishing products, etc on the other there are players like Greendust, JustLikeNew, Blubirch, Cashify etc who are engaged in refurbishing activities.
Overall, the scope and opportunities combining all these sub-segments of used product goods are immensely high in the price-sensitive Indian market.
With Facebook’s undisputed wide reach and base in India, the launch of Facebook Marketplace will surely receive an overwhelming response. But the real test would be how it entices people to use the Facebook Marketplace and stick to it.