Advertising in Facebook marketplace placement [how to setup a marketplace campaign] – Expert tips for beginners

Advertising in Facebook marketplace placement [how to setup a marketplace campaign] - Expert tips for beginners

Introduction to Facebook Marketplace

Facebook are always looking in to new ways of advertising and therefore also new ways of doing ad placements. Facebook recently started to roll-out a new placement for Facebook marketplace. Facebook marketplace is now one of the main features of the Facebook app itself, where it’s placed right in the middle, ready for promotion.

Facebook first announced the marketplace back in 2016, but did wait some time before they were ready for displaying ads. Mary Ku, product director of Facebook says the marketplace is used to “connect in another ways: buying and selling with each other” just like the Facebook groups do already as well as Ebay and Craigslist. However selling in the Facebook group might still work, but my guess is that most people switched to Facebook marketplace, if they still want to resell items on Facebook, because it’s way easier.

Facebook marketplace placement for ads - optimize facebook ad placements

This should be a “convenient destination to discover, buy and sell items with people in your community“, however most of you might already know and/or use marketplace. It’s not something new in terms of reselling used items, but it’s new on Facebook and let’s get started!

By the time of writing this post, over 800 million people are already using Facebook marketplace, and essentially is just as good/bad as Ebay, Craigslist or any other similar platform. 🌍

When you browse through your marketplace feed, you might already have seen some ads popping up. For the time being, a lot of businesses still use pictures/photos for their ad copy, even though video often tend to convert better and have lower CPM’s.

An example of ad copy in Facebook marketplace:

Facebook marketplace placement for ads - optimize facebook ad placements

NOTE: Marketplace as an ad placement is currently not available to everyone. There is no officially “release date” for when every ad account should be able to utilize this feature. However we have tested this out in our business as well as for some of our clients.

As you can see, this is still a new ad feature Facebook is testing. As we always recommend, if you’re able to use the placement, test it out. A/B test the marketplace against you other placements.

If you’re an e-commerce store this might be really profitable for you. 💰 If you’re generating content or have an SAAS business, this might not be the right placement for you. However we can’t tell for sure until you have tested it.

Facebook marketplace placement for ads - optimize facebook ad placements

How to create an ad for marketplace:

#1 Creating a campaign with applicable campaign objective

Go to your business manager account.

Go to “ads manager” and select create new campaign.

facebook business manager

When creating a new campaign you would only be able to use marketplace if you choose one of the following campaign objectives:

  • Traffic (drive traffic to your website, app, landingpage or messenger)
  • Conversions (optimizing for conversions, sales, leads etc. by using Facebook pixel)
  • Catalog Sales (showing catalog items based on your target audience and pixel)
  • Reach (maximizing the number of people you want to reach)
  • Video views (showing your ad to people who are most likely to watch your video at the lowest cost)

Facebook ad campaign objectives - business manager

You can learn more about how to create and optimize Facebook ads from our other similar posts here:

Facebook business manager – a complete walkthrough + 7 bonus tips

How to make a Facebook ad – Easy guide

Facebook ad creative and format comparison – How to optimize and improve your ROAS


#2 Choosing the marketplace placement

Once you have chosen your campaign objective, go and do your targeting as usual. Targeting doesn’t have any effect on the placement you do. You can do detailed targeting, flex targeting, use custom audiences, LLA audiences, other Facebook pixel data or whatever you prefer.

When you do your ad placements, keep in mind your will only be able to choose Facebook marketplace if you advertise on mobile as you can see below. At the time of writing this, you won’t be able to advertise on desktop for this placement. Maybe and hopefully Facebook will add desktop later on.

Go and change “automatic placements” to “edit placements“, then you will be able to select the different placements as you like.

Mobile placement options:

facebook business manager - ad placements

Desktop placement options:facebook business manager - ad placements

NOTE: You won’t be able to run an ad on marketplace as the only placement. You should select the regular feed as minimum when you want to choose the marketplace placement for your ad. This means that your ad copy has to run in the Facebook feed as well as the marketplace, since you can’t go for the marketplace alone. Facebook ad placement - marketplace

#3 Creating the ad copy

When you create the ad copy, it is the same procedure as when you create a copy for Facebook newsfeed. The recommend specs are the same, which are the following:

  • Single recommended image size: 1,200 x 628 pixels. Image ratio: 1.9:1.
  • Carousel recommended by Facebook. Image size: 600 x 600 pixels. Image ratio: 1:1

You won’t be able to create or crop unique ad creatives for the marketplace, so the copy you choose for the marketplace would be identical to the one running in the newsfeed.

When you create your ad copy you could either choose to go for a single image with a 1.9:1 scale ratio (recommended) or carousel with 1:1 image ratio, or you could go for video ad. As we know, video ad tend to have higher engagement and lower CPM (when done correctly).

However it’s not always the case, but we have seen really good results with video ads, especially also with the marketplace placement.

When you advertise on Facebook and social media in general, you will have to grab the users attention. Often you want to sell them something, just after they watched a video with a cute cat or a picture of some friends of theirs.

Social media marketing are getting more competitive every day, and the attention span of the users are getting shorter and shorter, and the banner blindness bigger and bigger.

Because of this you will need to have an ad that stands out (that’s obvious right?..) but when you’re doing marketplace ads, the user have totally different intends. Then they aren’t browsing for funny cat videos any longer, now they’re looking to buy something, which can be way more interesting and profitable for you as a business and marketer.

Try using both picture and videos as your copy, however we don’t think that you need to warm up your audience on marketplace because the placement and mindset is so different compared to some of the other ones available. As I wrote earlier, we don’t think content marketing would be a good fit for marketplace, but of course this is something you can try out.🤓

View & Measure marketplace performance

Once you have setup your campaign, ad set and ad copies you will need to gather some data before making any conclusions on the performance of marketplace.

In order to view the performance and statistics of the different placements, for example newsfeed + marketplace click on the “breakdown” menu on the right side, when you’re in Facebook ads manager. You can do this on either campaign level, ad set or ad copy.

Breakdown -> By delivery -> Placements

Next click “placement”.

facebook business manager - ad placement breakdown

If you are used to running ads with automatic placements, chances are you might already have tried marketplace, especially if you’re from the US. Either way, this is a good way of comparing the different placements or age, gender etc or whatever filter you like.

When you have chosen “marketplace” as a placement, it would show up in the filter just like the other placements as shown below. The ad we ran below was a conversion campaign, where we tested both newsfeed, marketplace and Instagram feed.

We use daily budgets for most of our campaigns, because this are the easiest way for us when we want to scale. So far we had a pretty good CPA (cost per acquisition) on marketplace, but let’s assume all placements are equal. It depends. We have tried to get good results with pretty much any placement, it really depends on your product/service and your audience.

Facebook marketplace placement for ads - optimize facebook ad placements

3 quick tips for marketplace placement

 #1 Test, test and test.

We say this often here on the blog and to our clients, but there is a good reason for this. Remember to test this it for your business. Because this work or doesn’t work for other businesses doesn’t mean this would be the same for yours. Also the performance and ROI can be very different from placement to placement but also when you change campaign objective.

#2 Use conversions 

So far we have had the best results with conversion objective, which also make a lot of sense for the this placement. Traffic and reach might also work well for you, but conversion can be really optimized when your audience are in the “shopping mood”.

#3 Use video ad creative

When you make different ad creatives, make sure to test at least 1 video creative. It might not be better, but sometimes you would be surprised by the performance of video ads compared to picture or carousel. In our research we found mostly picture ad creatives compared to video in the marketplace, but this might change, however you will have an advantage over your competition if you decided to go for video instead.

Final thoughts

What do you think? Are you able to to utilize the marketplace and have you tried it yet? What kind of results are you getting?

We think it’s good news for marketers and social media nerds like ourselves, because this offer more ad inventory, more customisation and hopefully some good results when running ads on marketplace.

However as mentioned earlier, people are looking to buy stuff when they visit marketplace, is a big deal. The different mindset might have some positive impact on the ads performance, but we don’t know for sure. A lot of our clients have already tried out marketplace but with very different results, some bad and some really amazing ROAS.

Remember you’re still reaching the same audience but just on another placement when you use Facebook marketplace. It’s not like you can find some people who use marketplace but don’t use the Facebook feed, also because you need to advertise on the Facebook feed as minimum.


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