Starting January next year, on January 30, 2023 - Facebook will remove all vehicle Marketplace listings posted by car dealers. That is everything, regardless if you're doing it manually right now or if you have an automation service; it doesn't matter - they're getting rid of it.
All of these listings will be gone on January 30, 2023. To top things off, they're also removing all vehicle listing tabs from your Pages and your ability to manage your inventory on Facebook.
So, all connections to your dealership page will be gone.
Why are they doing this now?
Not that any of us care why Facebook does anything, because sometimes they need to learn, given how they've handled the entire Marketplace since the beginning with dealers, feeds, and providers.
But this time, they're saying it's to cut down inaccurate spam listings.
All dealers will be removed from the Marketplace, as well as inventory from the dealership pages.
They will continue to offer vehicle listings on Marketplace if you're posting from a personal profile. That means a scammer with a personal profile can list hundreds of vehicles, but dealers with legitimate businesses cannot.
Still trying to figure out how this helps, but let's move on.
That also means that dealers can list as many vehicles as they want on Marketplace with a personal profile because there is no limit to how much you can list on Marketplace from a personal profile.
Now that's interesting because right now, they're not charging anyone to list on Marketplace if it's coming from a personal profile.
So, here's what they're going to do.
They're going to take a copy-paste playbook directly from Craigslist, and, over time, begin charging everyone for Marketplace listings for cars, real estate, and rentals.
All right, so enough of the whys; let's get into what you can do.
Your ability to advertise vehicles with paid ads on Craigslist, and Instagram, even Marketplace, will not be affected. So, naturally, you can continue to run your vehicle ads on Facebook, and you're doing some of that already. But this has me thinking; is this a plan to boost more ad revenues?
But, no, Facebook wouldn't do that... Would they?
All kidding aside, you should be running some Facebook ads because it allows you to target people who have visited your website and discover some actual leads and opportunities, but only if this is done correctly. So for those not doing it already, set a small budget for retargeting ads for people who have been on your site in the last 30 days.
Those are the freshest leads. Run ad campaigns specific to your area, buyers, and price ranges, and only advertise vehicles you have for sale. Unless you have a huge budget, then go ahead and run some branding campaigns.
But that's usually reserved for branding, not direct vehicle sales on a VIN level with what you have in inventory if that makes sense.
So, it's crucial to have an agency run these ads with a forensic approach, not just another playbook, copy-paste, plug-and-play system.
So if you're going to do this, get somebody who knows how to do it.
Ultimately, you can publish your vehicles on the Marketplace from your profile, but that will only work if you have ten cars on the lot or, I don't know, two salespeople.
Otherwise, it's a waste of your time.
Now let's get into what you shouldn't be doing. Forget about looking for workarounds. You'll have your usual software providers coming in and saying, "hey, look, here's a loophole," "...This is how we can trick the system..." Blah, blah, blah.
This is everything that's happened over the last year. Listen, if Facebook decided to put an end to this, they would put an end to it. They will ban Pages and profiles; it's not worth it. Spend a few hundred bucks on a Facebook campaign, a smaller budget, and it'll give you much more value.
So, to wrap this up, our industry has been changing so fast since COVID began. First, we can't get inventory; then, we're paying retail at auction. But that's OK because we have a ton of leads who are willing to pay, and we don't care about marketing at that point.
And then, the leads start to dry up as inflation, and interest rates go through the roof, which has us scratching our heads, like, OK, what do we do now?
Do we go back into marketing? Is there something new? I don't have to repeat what most of you already know.
This has become a digital business post frontline, at least. Ten years ago, the commission was guaranteed as long as the buy was decent. You guys know that...
Today we work for everybody else mechanics, auctions, and customers trading in vehicles. Now is not the time for shortcuts. It's time to invest in what works, verify it, and continue to improve it.
Find somebody who gets it. Find an agency, a dealer facebook AIA marketing professional
who gets it, who understands it, and who delivers.
We'll keep you updated on anything new regarding Facebook, among other news.
But in the meantime, buy right and sell fast.