The covid19 pandemic was a huge blow to my business. I am a toy manufacturer, a small business owner, having started my company “Hippy Toys For All Inc.” in 2019. With no way to physically reach my customers during the pandemic and the expenses of maintaining an online presence, I was on the brink of shutting shop. That is until Facebook unveiled their new e-commerce feature, Facebook Shops, which for me, was a godsend.
What are Facebook Shops?
Facebook shops is a new e-commerce platform where sellers can directly sell to customers without setting up a website. It’s completely free-to-use. With Facebook shops, customers can see your products, add items to their shopping cart, make payment, and place the order right on Facebook. They don’t ever leave the app. This makes the entire purchase process seamless.
Setting-up your Facebook Shop
- Log into your Facebook business page. If you don’t have a Facebook business page, you’ll need to create one. This detailed video gives step-by-step instructions on how to create a Facebook business page.
- Once you have your business page ready, select the “Shop” feature on the left-hand side menu bar of your Facebook business page.
- A pop-up will appear, introducing you to the features of Facebook Shops. Click on the “Go to Commerce Manager” option.
- You will be directed to another Facebook page – the Set-up page. Here, you will need to fill in all the following details to set-up your Facebook Shop.
- Business Information
- Click on the “Set Up” button.
- You will be asked to name your Facebook shop/commerce account. This name should match your public business name. Click on the “Next” button at the bottom.
- Next, you must link your Facebook shop to your existing Facebook business page. To do this, select the first option on the page (i.e., the option containing the name of your Facebook business page). If you don’t want to link your Facebook shop to your current business page, you can select the second option - “Create a new page” – to create a different business page. Select “Next.”
- Now, you’ll be asked to connect your Facebook Shop with your Business Manager. This is a tool that allows you to control all of your business assets, such as product lines, apps, documents, FB ad accounts, and so on, in a single place. This really helpful tutorial will show you how to set-up your Business Manager Account.
- Once your business manager account is set-up, it will become visible when you’re setting up your Facebook Shop. Just select the business manager account and click “Finish Setup.”
- Products and settings
- In the “Add Your Products” page, select the “Create A New Catalog” option, and click “Next.”
- You’ll be directed to the “Set Your Delivery Options” page. You can choose between Standard, Expedited, and Express delivery. You can choose all three or just one. Click on the “Add” option, corresponding to the delivery you want to offer. A pop-up will appear, where you can specify the delivery time frame, price of delivery for one or multiple products, and the minimum basket value/price for free delivery. Click “Save.”
- You will be directed back to the “Set Your Delivery Options” page, where you need to select “Next.”
- Now, you will be directed to the “Your Return Policy” page. Here, you’ll need to set the number of days your product will be eligible for returns. You also need to update your customer service email address that buyers can use to contact you. Once you’re done, select “Save.”
- Payouts - Please be very careful when filling this section since you will not be allowed to edit/change the payment information once it’s saved.
- Fill-in your business physical/registered address and your registered corporate email address. Select “Next.”
- You will be directed to the “What Do You Sell?” page. Here, you will need to select the nature of your business from the drop-down menu. Click “Next” to move ahead.
- The next page is the “Where Do You Do Business?” Here, you need to fill in your country-of-business details and provide your state tax registration number for each state you have a physical presence in. Select “Next” to complete this section. If you don’t have a state tax registration number or don’t operate your store physically, you can select the “Skip For Now” option.
- Next, you will be directed to the “Tax and Representation” page, where you need to provide the details of the person/people representing your company publicly, for legal purposes. Click on “Next” to go ahead.
- Finally, on the “Link Your Bank” page, you will need to provide the bank account details where you will be receiving customer payments and from where the refunds will be made. Click on “Finish Setup.”
Facebook Shops Guide
With Facebook shops, customers can see your products, add items to their shopping cart, make payment, and place the order right on Facebook.Get started
- Set-up your product catalog
- Click on the “Go to Commerce Manager” button at the top of the Set-Up page. Here you’ll be able to see and manage all of your back-end operations. Complete the “Security Check,” which is located at the top of the page.
- Next, select the “Set Up” button in the “Set Up Your Catalog” section. This will take you to the Catalog Manager.
- Select the “Add Products” button. You can select one of three upload methods – Manual upload (perfect for small businesses with small catalogs), Bulk upload (done through Google Sheets and perfect for large businesses with a vast catalog), and Pixel upload (to automatically update your product catalog based on the browsing history of each shop visitor). Click “Next.”
- Let’s explore the Manual Upload. Choose a photo or drag-and-drop the image of your product. You can add as many additional images as you want.
- Name your product and provide a detailed product description. If you have a website, you can paste the link to the product page here.
- Input the sale price of the product and choose the currency in which you want the price displayed. Enable product visibility and stock availability settings as needed.
- Provide the product condition details, along with the brand name.
- Select the delivery option you wish to offer and complete the return policy details.
- If you have multiple variants of your product, click on the “Add Variants” button and upload the photo, name, and description of each variant.
- Select the “Add Product” button. You will be directed back to the catalog manager, where you can either “Add Another Product” by following the same steps as mentioned above, or you can click “Done” to finish the product catalog set-up.
Once you do this, you’ll be taken to your completed product catalog. To see how your catalog looks like, just click on the product name, and a pop-up with product details will be visible. If you want to make any changes to the product catalog, you can edit the details right here.
This product catalog will be visible on your associated Facebook Business Page, where the customer can directly click on the product they want and place the order. If your product shows “Out Of Stock,” they can message you through your catalog for information.
- Make your shop easily accessible to customers
- Select the “Add Page Button” feature on the top right-hand corner of your Facebook business page and choose the “Shop Now” drop-down menu. Select the “Shop Now” button. Click “Next.”
- Choose the “Shop On Your Page” option to link the button to your Facebook Shop. Select “Finish” to complete the linking. Now, when your customers click on the “Shop Now” button, they’ll be taken to your Facebook Shop.
You can edit these details any time you want
The best part about Facebook Shop is how user-friendly it is. You have the “Manage Shop” button on the top menu of your Facebook Business Page. Click that, and you’ll be directed to your Commerce Manager Dashboard, where you can make the changes you need.
It’s that simple.
I’ve been using Facebook Shop for a few months now, and I’ve seen my business soar. In fact, I find Facebook Shop a much better way to connect with customers than websites, which customers may never visit or fully browse through.
So, give it a try and see how amazing Facebook Shops really is for small businesses.