Two years after its creation in the United States, the Facebook marketplace is enriched with new features supported by Artificial Intelligence. It also reinforces its housing rental offer to compete with Le Bon Coin. Let’s discover how this marketplace, which already drains a third of Facebook users, intends to retain its community, improve the experience of its users and position itself against the heavyweights of the market.
Facebook Marketplace: some “historic” reminders
Launched in France in 2017, the Facebook marketplace aims to connect sellers and buyers in the social network from their profile, via a model of classified ads. Individuals and businesses may advertise products or services in the marketplace. More than 800 million people connect to the platform each month (Facebook data)!
And the catalog is already wide: millions of products classified in ten categories, from vehicles to clothing, through real estate, entertainment or electronics. Riding the proximity, the marketplace uses geolocation to offer the most suitable ads to potential buyers, who can refine their location and search parameters based on products or categories.
The linking and transactions are managed freely and freely by the users. The platform does not charge any commission, nor does it manage the payment or delivery. Note however that since 2018, sellers have the opportunity to sponsor their ads through different options of visibility and advertising: a business model to generate revenue without puncturing sales and which joins that of a marketplace renowned on the sector.
The positioning of Facebook Marketplace suggests, rightly, that the firm of Marc Zuckerberg wants to take shares in giants such as E-bay, The Good Corner, and Craiglist, his American counterpart. As such, the platform is now endowed with major means to confirm its status as a reference on the sector.
A more complete real estate offer for the market place
Like the United States where the firm has been working with Zumper and Apartment List for more than a year, the French version of the platform has concretized partnerships with real estate professionals, such as ParuVendu, BoxImmo or Ubiflow. What expands and credibility of its offer, through the aggregation of ads real estate agencies, brokers and other property managers. And also improve the search through the contribution of features already in place at these actors and which users are used to as filters that allow a search based on location, price, surface or viewing on a map…
Regarding the economic model, it remains unchanged – for the moment in any case – in the sense that no commission is charged to professionals. However, as in the US, it is likely that the monetization of the platform through the sponsorship of ads.
The Facebook Marketplace, a recognized player on the rental housing market in France? Given the frontal competition displayed about Bon Coin, in particular, the competition promises to be sporty!
AI at the service of a smarter marketplace
Facebook Marketplace is not new to Artificial Intelligence, as it already uses 3 AI solutions that work synergistically:
- Lumos: an image recognition platform that improves the quality of visuals
- Deeptext: an understanding engine that translates Messenger descriptions and conversations for users who do not speak the same language
- “M”: a tool that offers adapted sentences to facilitate and accelerate communication
Optimization of the notorious user experience but below the potential that AI can offer! Also, to maximize its conversion rate, better control its costs and facilitate more search users, the marketplace intends to go further, like a third of e-merchants.
By the way, in October 2018, only two years after its creation, Facebook Marketplace announced new features in the United States driven by Artificial Intelligence. Tools that extend the possibilities:
- Automatic indexing of ads in the most relevant categories based on a picture or description, even if lexically poor
- The suggestion of prices to sellers when putting new products online, based on similar products
- Recommendation to buyers, similar products on sale on the platform, from a simple photo of the desired article: practical in case of out of stock!
- Analysis of data such as sex, age or the location of potential buyers to offer tailored ads
- Securing exchanges and moderating content to federate a reliable community: thanks to image, text and context analysis, ads that are inappropriate, malicious or non-compliant with the rules of the social network are more easily identified. As such, a rating system and advice on issues such as reliability or responsiveness should be put in place soon.
It is therefore for Facebook to offer a wide-angle and intelligent accompaniment to sellers and buyers.
The marketplace does not stop there: it is indeed planned, to use Artificial Intelligence to recommend products in a completely surprising and innovative way! Indeed, from a simple photo, Facebook Marketplace will allow giving clothes between them or a piece of furniture with the style, layout, and surface of a room! The field of possibilities seems to be infinite …
By diversifying its activity by opening an eponymous marketplace to users of its social network, Facebook has hit a big blow! If one can easily imagine the disruption of online shopping habits related to AI, especially with the advent of image recognition which is one of the important issues, it is clear that the platform wanted to quickly position itself at the heart. of this change! Moreover, we note + 100% commitment from consumers in two years, vis-à-vis Facebook Marketplace, thanks to the only automatic indexing service. By attacking Bon Coin frontally with a relevant real estate offer, it’s a safe bet that the market will soon have to rely on an additional major player!
For further emphasis on charges for facebook marketing:
The platform does not charge any commission, nor does it manage the payment or delivery. Note however that since 2018, sellers have the opportunity to sponsor their ads through different options of visibility and advertising: a business model to generate revenue without puncturing sales and which joins that of a marketplace renowned on the sector.