Selling Second Hand Goods Online

September 24, 2012

Over the past year i’ve sold about 20 items online. The stuff i’ve sold ranges from kids toys to furniture to home decor items. Practically all were second hand but a few were unused new items – naughty me! Anyhow here are my tips on how to sell online.

  • Patience gets the best price. It’s more important to me to get a good price than a quick sale. I typically sell stuff for a quarter of it’s original purchase price but at that price it can take anywhere up to 4 months to get so i post things well before i’m sick of the sight of it.
  • Quote the original or current purchase price of the item. It saves them having to google it.
  • Post up items when people are most likely to be buying them. Post toys in the run-up to christmas. Old sports gear in the run-up to a new term.
  • Use multiple terms in title and description, i.e ballet leotard and ballet uniform. That way your item will be found if either are searched for.
  • Put the model number of the item in the title and description. If someone is searching for a new one online they might find your post for a second hand one. 
  • Pick the most appropriate forum to sell your item. I typically use the free advertising option on and for most things but if it’s a very expensive item i find that they sell better on and gumtree don’t charge at all while ebay charge 10% off the sale price and if you use paypal to process payment they charge 10% too. Facebook groups/pages can be a good place to sell clothes too. Two that focus on kids stuff is Not just for twins.
  • Always upload good-quality photos. I tend to use the product photos by the manufacturers. I think people are drawn to these photographs more then my best effort of a digital shot. I also include photos of damaged areas; that way the only people serious about buying contact me.
  • Include a link to manufacturers spec sheet. If the item is still listed on a manufacturers or retailers website i’ll include a link in the description. It helps people make an educated decision on the products suitability.
  • I always offer the opportunity to look at the goods before taking them. People have always purchased but i think they’re more likely to buy an item if they don’t feel pressurised to take it.



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