Facebook launches Home Service but young people are leaving

Facebook launches Home Service but young people are leaving

Similar to eBay and now competing against Amazon, Google and Craiglist: those who have already taken a look at Facebook marketplace will already know that this section, opened last year, is a sort of “suq”, a macro-market where you can buy and sell basically everything, from second-hand cars to fake shoes, golden jewels and so on. However, if variety is not a problem, until some time ago, something was still missing: on-call home services. Users looking for a plumber, a decorator, a gardener or in need for some maintenance works can now browse the social network to find the right person and ask for a quotation.

This brand new service, currently available only in the United States, and  developed in partnership with Handy, HomeAdvisor and Porch, has been developed following a specific analysis of users’ frequent requests for specific advice and recommendations  about professionals to be employed for home services (Facebook Marketplace expands into home services).

So now inside this marketplace you can find several categories based not on general topicalized lists ( home, gardening, etc. ) but directly on activities such as “cleaning your house thoroughly” or “preparing your garden for summer”. By selecting one of these categories users will be able to find professionals, check their references and credentials and read other users’ reviews. Searches can also be refined by adding some more filters and details such as the frequency of the service required or the size of the house. As an alternative, you can also post a specific request and wait for the professionals’ answers and quotations. Negotiations will, instead, be made via Messenger.

In short, everything happens inside the social platform, except the actual services.  Adults meet, negotiate, decide and create a social environment definitely over 25 (to be good!). A social network for old people, as GenZ members would call it.

As a result, teenagers – who are definitely little interested in how to have their dining room redecorated, and who use social media for fun and for escaping their parents’ control – are loving Facebook less and less.

According to the latest data emerged from the Social Media Use in 2018 survey by Pew Research Center, dating back to last April, only 51% of teenagers aged between 13 and 17 are still using Facebook, against 71% of 2015. Most of them, as anticipated in the article entitled “Facebook is losing its appeal: young people prefer Snapchat and Instagram”, prefer its two competitors, perceived as more dynamic and cooler, and  85% of them choose YouTube as their favorite and most frequently visited destination. And if until 3 years ago, youngsters used to be digitally “non-migratory”, now they tend to use more  platforms at the same time, and they are likely to do it using their smartphones, considering that 95% of them claim to have one. In 2015 only 73% of them used to have one (50% of teenagers are leaving Facebook).

Maybe Facebook will soon have only adult users, or maybe not. However, if they don’t want to see their audience getting older and older, they will have to invent something to take young people back.

Why do you or don’t you use Facebook? Tweet @agostinellialdo.

To find out more about the digital world, you may read my latest book entitled: “People Are Media” 

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