Facebook is undoubtedly one of the most influential social media channels today. It started out as a place where friends could stay in touch, but now it has turned into a global business channel.
As such, it is important that every business has a presence on Facebook. This allows you to advertise. But the better way to do it is to build your shop on Facebook itself.
Today, we will take you to the different steps you need to take to create a Facebook shop.
The process is the same with building a Facebook page, but the shop allows you to display your items for sale, not as solo posts or shout outs, but like a store.
Is there really a need for a Facebook Shop?
While you might think that this is added work, or that Facebook is already full of competition, it still makes sense to make a Facebook Shop because it has millions of users worldwide. In your country alone, it is likely that more than half of your population has a Facebook account.
And since people spend a lot of time in it, you get free foot traffic, if only you market your Facebook shop properly.
On average, a person spends 40 minutes on Facebook per day. While they are busy looking at what is trending, or what their friends posted for the day, you can use this opportunity to show them your items and make a sale.
Also, creating a Facebook shop is free. You do not need to pay for anything, like a web hosting service. The only thing you will pay for is the advertising cost.
If you put up a Facebook shop, you can:
- Add as many products as you want
- Create product pages and collection pages
- View an analysis of how your shop is performing
- Reach to millions of Facebook user in your country
With these advantages, you may now look at Facebook under a different light. You really have nothing to lose.
Things to Prepare Before Creating a Facebook Shop
Facebook has different rules for different countries. This is why there are some features that you cannot use. Since it is a US-based company, most of its policies are related to US laws. However, Facebook has the right to apply the same requirements to users from other countries.
Whether you are from the United States or not, prepare the following so you can create your Facebook shop without hassles.
Facebook profile – this is the profile that is attached to a person; this is the first thing that any Facebook user can do. Once you sign up for your account, you use your legal name.
If your Facebook account is a dummy, the Facebook security team will find out may suspend your account.
Facebook business page – a business page comes in two forms. These are the business and brand/personality page.
The difference between the two is that the profile is personal and that the profile is the person that manages the business pages. Also, you cannot advertise or sell on Facebook to promote your profile page; you can only advertise and promote your business/brand page.
For US users, you need to prepare your bank account number, routing number, and other important details. You also have to be ready to provide your Tax details or employer identification number.
In other countries, these details may not be asked.
Here are the steps to create a Facebook shop as your online store.
STEP 1: Create a Facebook Page and Shop
To begin, you must first set up a Facebook page. This is not your regular profile page, as this is a business-oriented Facebook account. Before you can create a page, you must create a Facebook account.
The account owner who creates the Facebook Page is going to be the administrator. It would be difficult to do this on a phone or tablet, so it is highly suggested that you do this on a computer.
See this screenshot to be able to create a page.
Upon clicking Create Page, you will be taken to an area where you just need to fill up some details and choose if your page is for a personality or a business. Complete the registration, and fill up your business name, address, and others.
Now, on the home page of your FB page, you have to go to the left-hand side and click on the SHOP button as shown below.
Once you click that, you will see a pop-up. Just click GET STARTED.
Before we proceed, you may experience a problem where you cannot locate the SHOP button. If it is not there, follow these steps:
- Click on Settings
- Click on Templates and Tabs
- Scroll to the bottom and click ADD TABS
- Look for Shop then add it; then it will now show on your Home page.
Now, we can continue setting up the shop. Once you click GET STARTED, you must check the box to agree to the Merchant Terms and Conditions. Then, click Continue. Next, choose how you want your customer to check out.
You can choose between Message to Buy and Check Out on Another Website. Upon clicking Continue, there is another pop-up where you have to choose the currency. Now, click SAVE.
Now, you will see your shop, and then you can start adding products.
It is important to note here that Facebook would ask different questions depending on your residence and the type of business you selected.
If you are in the US, you may be asked to prepare your Tax Identification number. If you are building an online store, you will also need to fill out your Shipping Policy, Refunds, and Shipping options.
Facebook has rules that you should know.
Examples of these are:
- You must ship the order within three days after the order has been placed.
- The customer has to receive the item no longer than 10 days after the day the order was placed.
- Shipping should have a tracking number.
- You cannot ship internationally; you must only sell in your country.
STEP 2: Add Products
The second step in creating a Facebook Shop is to add your products. On your shop page, just click on the ADD PRODUCT button and you will be able to post your items.
You can upload photos or videos, and you need to add the name, price, and product description.
If your product comes in different variants like sizes and colors, just click on the EDIT OPTIONS at the bottom, then click on ADD OPTIONS.
If you do this, you can start adding categories like sizes or colors and then put a price for each. You have to move the button to indicate if the product has stocks or if you are out of inventory.
Once you have added a product, Facebook will give you a new option of adding a collection page.
A collection is a group of items in the same category. For example, you can create a collection called Jeans. Inside this collection are different types of jeans. It is completely up to you to create your collection, and this depends on how big your inventory is.
The benefit of adding a collection is that it makes it easy or a customer to browse a product that he is looking for, instead of browsing through all your products.
STEP 3: Add Payment Method
This may not be available to all countries, and Facebook usually accepts Stripe only. If you are from the US, you can link a bank account where customers can place a deposit.
In some countries, you can link your PayPal account.
Integrating a payment method is simple, as you only have to provide your log-in credentials on a pop-up. Once you have successfully added your PayPal or Stripe account, your customer will have the option to pay you instantly via these methods.
If a payment method is available in your country, Facebook will automatically ask you to set it up. If you cannot find a link to add a payment method, then it means Facebook has restrictions on this feature in your country.
If you add a payment method via bank payments, Facebook will ask you for the following information:
- Tax details
- Employer Identification number
- Your legal first and last name
- Bank routing number
- Bank account number
- Name on the bank account
Make sure you fill all of these accurately, as you cannot edit these details later.
STEP 4: Managing Orders
On the left-hand panel of your shop, you need to scroll down to see the orders and the pending orders as shown below.
If you cannot see these buttons, you have to go the Publishing tools. Sometimes, the Publishing tools button will not show, so just click on MORE and look for it.
Upon clicking orders and pending orders, you will see a page that has the order details per customer per product. This is the area where you have to mark it as fulfilled or use it to ask your customer for some information, in case you need anything else.
Facebook will automatically send you a notification once an order comes in. Since it is difficult to stay on your computer all the time, you have to download the Facebook app to your mobile phone, so you can hear the notification.
STEP 5: Promote Your Shop
The easiest method to promote your Facebook shop is to invite your friends and family to like your store. Ask them to share your Facebook page with their friends. It is free and easy.
The other method is to go to Facebook groups and post your products there. Find groups that share the same interest as you do, and try to help them with some problems. Then, promote your page.
There are also groups in FB dedicated to online businesses. On these groups, you are free to post links to your products for people to see.
You can do the same if you go to other forums such as Reddit. The thing is, many forum sites are strict about promotions.
What you have to do first is to give value to their readers by helping them solve some problems. After a while, you can add links to your FB shop that readers can click.
The most effective method to promote your shop is through advertising. Facebook has several ways to do this, such as boosting an existing post or creating a new advertising video or campaign. The cost is negligible, as you can control your advertising budget.
In fact, you can advertise for as low as $5 per day. The great thing about FB advertising is that you can choose where to advertise, to what age group or gender, and you can also select who the advertisement will be shown to according to interest.
Here, you can choose people who are interested in electronics, if your product or store has something to do with phones or other gadgets. If you do this, Facebook will only show your product to these people, so your advertising expenses are targeted.
How to Set Up your Facebook Shop via Shopify
If you already have a Shopify store, you do not have to create a Facebook shop. All you have to do is to create a Facebook page for that store, and then integrate Shopify with Facebook.
If you do this, all the products on your Shopify store will show on your Facebook page. However, you still have the option to show all or just a few collections. You can toggle these in your Shopify Settings page.
In Shopify, you also have the option to show your Facebook store on the Facebook chat app called Messenger. If you integrate the two, what’s going to happen is that a customer can scroll through your products on Messenger, and then proceed to ask you questions.
IMPORTANT: If you already have a Facebook Shop, and then you integrate your Shopify to it, all the products on Facebook will be replaced with the contents of Shopify.
The exception is if you create a NEW Facebook page that is dedicated to your Shopify store.
To integrate your Shopify and Facebook Page, follow these steps:
- Log in to your Shopify admin page
- Look for the + button found under or beside the Sales Channels section
- Click on Add Channel, and then select Facebook; click on Add Chanel once Facebook is selected
- A pop-up will show, and you need to log in to your Facebook profile page
- Next, you have to choose which page you want to link to your Shopify store
- Click that page and Facebook will review your store
Typically, Facebook will only take 48 hours or less to review your store. Once your application is approved, the products in your Shopify store will automatically show on your Facebook shop.
If your store was rejected, it is likely that you are violating one of Facebook’s terms. For example, sales of harmful chemicals, adult materials, and violent items are prohibited.
If you think you are not in violation of any of the terms and conditions on Facebook, you can write an appeal to Facebook, not Shopify.
Frequently Asked Questions
Now that you have built your Facebook shop, it is time that we attempt to answer the most common questions that people ask.
Are there ideal image sizes and rules about photos?
Yes, Facebook recommends ideal image sizes for your cover photo, your profile photo, and for your product post uploads.
In addition to its size, Facebook imposes several rules about decency. For example, nude and vulgar pictures are not allowed, unless if it qualifies as art. You also cannot post pictures of violence or things related to violence like guns.
If you upload products, you must upload at least one image, and that image must be of the product itself, not something else. For example, if the name of the item is shoes, you cannot post a picture of a dress.
The product uploads do not automatically get released. They will all go through an inspection by Facebook for approval prior to public release.
Also, you cannot post misleading pictures. The product photo must show the whole product, and the resolution must at least be 1024 x 1024 in square form.
In some cases, Facebook may ask you to upload the photo if the product as it is used in real life. This rule exists to prevent scams, like showing something that seems huge but turns out to be a tiny replica product.
Facebook may also require white backgrounds, but this is case to case and not always necessary.
It is also important that your product phot does not contain a call to action like “call us now!” or “order now!”
Promo codes and offensive texts are not allowed, like discounts and violent languages. Facebook will also not accept photos that have a brand watermark.
Can customers buy several products or add their orders on the FB Shopping cart?
It depends. The Facebook shopping cart is not available in all countries. And if this happens, your only option is to:
- Have the customer contact you via Messenger
- Redirect the customer to another website if he clicks a product on your Facebook shop
If the shopping cart is available in your country, then your customers can definitely buy many products at the same time, and then pay you directly. But without this, the Facebook shop is a mere catalog and not a fully functional shopping site.
Without a cart, how will you make a sale?
If Facebook does not offer a payment method in your country, the customer can message you, and you can ask him to pay a deposit.
There are many ways to do this. Examples are:
- Direct bank deposit
- e-Wallets like PayPal, Skrill, and Neteller
- Western Union
- Wire Transfer
- Personal meet-up
If the customer agrees, you can wait for the payment to clear, and then you can ship the item, or you can meet the customer in person to deliver the purchased goods.
What are the rules about products that are allowed?
In Facebook, you can only sell physical goods. What this means is that you cannot sell downloadable content like MP3, eBooks, or online courses.
There are many prohibitions here, such as alcohol, tobacco, drugs, animals, ammunition, guns, explosives, and other weapons.
You also cannot sell adult materials such as pornographic magazines. Food supplements and other products that will make you look good are also banned. In fact, you are not even allowed to sell products that show “before and after” photos.
What does this mean? Most of the time, people post a before and after photo of the same man or woman how took a diet pill. This is a common marketing approach to show consumers how effective the diet pill works.
Facebook does not like this, as it is misleading.
You also cannot sell anything related to gambling. You cannot promote these activities, too. This means that you cannot sell tickets to poker events or things similar to that. You also cannot sell lottery tickets.
Subscriptions and memberships are not allowed. Earlier, we mentioned that you could not sell a digital product. If your product has something to do with building a website or enrolling on a course, it is not allowed.
Are products manually added?
Yes, products are manually added to the Facebook shop. If you have thousands of items to sell, the only way to go around this is to integrate your Facebook shop with an existing online store, which supports Facebook integration.
An example of this is Shopify, and the instructions to do this are discussed earlier.
If you do not have an online store, and you only rely on the Facebook shop to sell online, you have to sweat it ad work really hard to upload your products. This method is not new, as this is how it is done in many sites like eBay, Amazon, or Walmart.
You also need to change your prices manually, in case you made a mistake or miscalculated them. In Facebook, you do not need to re-upload a product after selling an item. It is still there, but you just need to kind of reactivate it by toggling the option that says “in stock”.
Creating a Facebook shop is a great alternative if you do not want to build your own website. You can create many Facebook ships for your different businesses, and you can manage these shops in just one platform.
It is highly beneficial since you do not have to spend any amount of money. It is a simple shop, and straight to the point, which customers will love.
However, you cannot use Facebook if you are looking for all the bells and whistles of an online store. For example, you cannot create coupon codes here. You also cannot create games like spin-the-wheel.
Facebook is ideal if you want a simple shop to let people know about your products. However, there is still a lot left to be desired, considering that there are few payment options available for you as a merchant.
The good news is that Facebook is likely to be working on it, and is taking one step at a time to make sure it does things right. If you think about it, Amazon started out once as a book store. Now, it is one of the biggest, if not the biggest online store, in the world.