Anyone who knows me knows how much I like to spring clean. I spring clean in summer, I spring clean in winter, I spring clean in fall…and you better believe I spring clean in spring!
Like every organized spring cleaner, at the end of the purge I have my four piles – KEEP, REPAIR, DONATE and SELL.
SELL piles can be tricky. Do you have a garage sale, put up a flyer at work, ask family and friends?
My go-to way to move that SELL pile? Online. For me that’s always been eBay. For over a decade I’ve used it to sell clothes, furniture, trinkets gadgets and more. Because it’s true – what is your trash can definitely be someone else’s treasure.
So from my 10+ years experience, here are my top 7 tips for selling online and on eBay.
1. REEVALUATE YOUR SELL & DONATE PILES
Before you even contemplate selling on eBay or online, first think about what your time is worth.
If you have a couple of old tea towels, a worn pair of tennis shoes and a box set of The Hills with one DVD missing, you’re probably better off transferring them to the donation box.
To sell things on eBay you have to photograph them, list and describe them. Then you have to liaise with buyers, answer their questions and should you be lucky to sell, you then need to organize payment and postage. This all takes time.
So if you think you’re only going to make a few dollars, work out if that is really worth your time.
2. KNOW YOUR WORTH
Before listing anything on eBay have a quick click around to see what the product is you’re selling is listed for on eBay and other sites like Amazon, Net-A-Porter etc. If an online discount store is selling that Weekend At Bernie’s poster for $9.99, there’s no use in you listing yours for the $50 you think it’s worth.
On the other hand if you have a unique or collectible item you can really name your price. Rumor has it a teenage Kim Kardashian made over $12,000 buying up rare designer shoes and selling them for a premium on eBay.
Brand names always work well, so don’t be scared to price your reserve at a fair number.
3. SELL SEASONALLY
Got some winter boots that you don’t need anymore? Or a summer kaftan you never used? Try and sell them at the start of the season.
As a general rule, people will be looking for winter items in fall/winter and summer items in spring/summer.
Same goes for the holidays – if you’ve got decorations and gift items try and get in early for Halloween, Christmas etc so people know their goodies will arrive in time.
4. THINK ABOUT WHY YOU BOUGHT IT!
When writing the description about the product you’re selling, think back to why you originally bought it.
If it’s clothing - did it give you a slimmer silhouette? Or was it a piece of jewelry that went with everything? Was it a desk chair that was super comfy?
Whatever it is, your description should not only list WHAT the product is, but WHY people will love it.
5. TAKE GOOD PHOTOS
A good photo can make or break your listing.
Make sure clothing is freshly ironed, shoes are cleaned, other products are dusted and in their best condition. Try to ensure the photo shows the product’s true size, colors and detail.
There’s nothing worse than buying something online only to find out it looks nothing like the photo.
Photograph on a plain background in natural light and ensure the final shot is in focus. Try to get details shots where possible so people can see exactly what they’re buying.
6. BE HONEST
If the lining has a tear, the wood finish is scratched or the shoes are scuffed – be honest about it and include it in your description. Trying to hide defects will always come back to bite you and will cost you more time and trouble in the end.
If you don’t want to list a photo of the defect, that’s ok. But always have one on standby so if someone asks you for it you can email it straight away.
If you’re upfront about any defects people will trust you and be more likely to buy from you.
7. PACKAGE IT UP PRETTY
The last step is a small point, but an important one.
If you’ve been lucky enough to sell your item, finish the transaction on a high note. Package your item up safely in tissue paper (and bubble wrap if it’s breakable) for a nice touch, and always post your item out on time.
It’s these little details that will make people give you positive feedback and maybe they’ll even become return customers if you list again!
So now over to you! What do you do with your unwanted items after a clean up?
"I am Serena Faber Nelson, a television producer, writer and fluffy dog owner. Obsessed with home décor, fashion, lifestyle and dogs – I set about creating Pretty Fluffy as a go-to guide for the modern pet owner. Featuring a range of stylish products, celebrity pooches, DIY projects and handy hints, Pretty Fluffy is a daily stop for smiles and inspiration, giving readers the tools they need to enjoy full and happy lives with their furry friends. My greatest loves include fresh peonies, Dirty Dancing (Nobody puts Baby in a corner), Banoffe Pie, spending waaay too much time on Pinterest, and hugging random dogs at the park. I currently live in Sydney, Australia with my husband, Andy, and my 11 year old Border Collie, Soda. As a long time fan, I am super excited to be joining the IHeart Organizing Team!"