For the most part, Facebook Marketplace is a magical, if bizarre land. It’s a place you can find houses and cars being sold alongside Anzac Day commemorative painted saws and terrifying dolls that look like possessed toddlers (a bargain for just $1000). But there’s something about going on Marketplace that seems to make people forget their manners.
Like many people, my family has been clearing out stuff we no longer use and passing it on to other people on Facebook to make space for new stuff we may or may not use. This has meant that I’ve gotten to interact with people who I’m not quite sure are ready to be a part of society. And so, here I offer some advice, an etiquette guide, if you will, to make this experience better for everyone.
1. Speak in full sentences.
This goes for almost any interaction with a stranger, but goes doubly when you’re wanting a bargain. I recently sold a decent bike for $50, and had someone message me “negotiable”. No question mark, no “hello”, no “hi, this looks like a great bike, but $50 is a little outside my budget at the moment. Is the price negotiable at all?” Just “negotiable”. This did not endear me to this bargain-hunter, and the answer was a firm no.
2. Be polite.
Again, this goes for pretty much any time you strike up a conversation with anyone. But if you’re trying to negotiate a deal, being rude won’t get you very far. Same goes for wording in the ads. If you’re trying to sell something, opening with a hostile “YES IT’S STILL AVAILABLE, NO TIMEWASTERS” in all caps has literally never deterred a time-waster. What it has deterred is many people who might have wanted your item, but don’t want to deal with the energy you’re putting out there. That said…
3. No time wasters.
Please, for the love of all that is bartering, read the item description. I promise you at least 90 per cent of the information you want is written in the description. Yes, the item is still available.