Strategy

Facebook Cancels Dealer Inventory Feeds to Marketplace

Post by
Wiz Poster

Facebook vehicle leads coming from Marketplace have become a lifeline for thousands of small and mid-sized independent car dealers in the US and Canada, but their new policy change is about to make it much more expensive to get leads from Facebook Marketplace.

Facebook is banning both vehicle and home listings that are coming from provider feeds as of September, 13, 2021.

What does this mean for car dealers?

Facebook is shutting down the automated import feature for vehicle marketplace, but dealers can still post vehicles manually to marketplace.

As you may imagine, the thought of manually adding and keeping inventory updated will require a full-time position, or better put - paid ads, which is the goal with this policy change.

Moreover, since Facebook does not allow new vehicle listings on Marketplace - it's primarily independent dealers who will be impacted.

Why is Facebook doing this?

As usual, the explanation is vague and indirect:

As we evolve and build for the future, we continue to invest heavily in solutions for the auto industry, creating products and surfaces that help auto advertisers reach more potential car buyers while improving the consumer experience throughout the shopping journey. At the same time, we need to cater for a wide range of potential buyers and sellers on our platform. On Marketplace we’ve seen increased usage and demand for shipped goods with onsite checkout. So, to meet that demand, and best serve the people and businesses who use our services, at this moment we are shifting our product resources from supporting distribution of vehicles and rentals listings via partner catalogs on Marketplace, to expanding our offerings and features for shipped goods with onsite checkout.

Bottom line, if you want to continue receiving Facebook leads, you'll need to start advertising your vehicles directly on Facebook Marketplace. This will benefit dealers with the best optimized Facebook Ad campaigns.

What will happen after the changes take place?

While Facebook will discontinue Marketplace distribution for listings provided via partner catalogs, the feeds themselves will continue to be active and available for use with other existing and new Facebook products. They will continue to offer support and grow other functions of the vehicle catalog as outlined below:

  • Vehicles tab - Vehicle tab is a customized auto tab created on the business page where dealers can organically showcase their inventory. Dealers can also create and manage their inventory via the “manage inventory” tab. In addition to manual listings, the vehicle catalog can be used to list inventory on the Vehicle tab.
  • Automotive inventory ads (AIA) - you can leverage your catalog to run automotive inventory ads to reach more active car shoppers in a scaled way. Marketplace will continue to be an available placement for Automotive ads. In addition, you can continue to leverage the On-facebook destination, a mobile-optimized shopping experience on the Facebook platform.
  • Simple setup for automotive inventory ads - they will continue to offer and grow the option for dealers to use the simple AIA set offered via the dealership page. You can continue using any vehicle inventory catalog.
  • Manual listings on Marketplace - automotive businesses can still list their inventory on marketplace manually

Final thoughts and tips...

  • Don't wait for the change to happen before taking action. Leverage your catalog and begin running a small Ad Campaign on Facebook, so before everyone else get's on the band wagon, you'll have enough data to make decisions which will optimize your budget and get you more leads for a lower cost per lead.
  • Don't use your Facebook Dealer page to launch ads. This process is over-simplified and dealers are forced to depend how Facebook believes your vehicles should be advertised. Instead, create a Facebook Ads account for your dealership today. If you find this process confusing, work with an agency to make it happed - it'll pay off.
  • Take this time to understand your real cost-per-lead. For example, do you know how much each unique website, call or SMS lead costs you from Cargurus vs. Craigslist vs. Facebook? If you don't, this is a must. Our CRM metrics offer this in real-time.
  • Consider or re-consider Craigslist Ads using a powerful dealer craigslist poster, our data shows that Craigslist leads are more expensive that Facebook Ads leads, BUT the quality of the lead is much more likely to convert to a deal.

Any questions regarding Facebook Marketplace changes or Craigslist ads, we can help :)

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