If Marie Kondo has inspired you to tidy up, you may find yourself purging a number of unwanted items from your closet. While donating your goods is always a great option, you may want to consider sparking some joy in your wallet and selling your items instead. (That’s especially true if that tax refund you were hoping for isn’t happening this year!) Years ago, our best option for profiting off an old outfit or accessory might have been a neighborhood consignment store, or even Craigslist. But these days online sales platforms have made it easier than ever to make a sale without ever leaving your home.
And while you don’t have to be a marketing or retail expert to successfully sell your items, having an attractive listing is essential no matter which platform you choose. Listings that bring in the most money will feature multiple photos that show complete views of the front, sides and back of the item, explains Trae Bodge, smart shopping expert at truetrae.com. If you’re unsure exactly how to style your photos, she recommends taking a look around the platform and seeing what some of the top sellers are doing right. “See why the seller has been successful, and try to follow their lead,” Bodge says. Once you know exactly what you want to sell, it’s time to choose where to sell it.
Here’s a look at some of the online sales platforms you may want to consider.
For Clothing (If You Don’t Mind Posting Yourself): Poshmark
Poshmark allows users to easily set up a listing via mobile phone—just snap a photo, put in a description and post to the site. When you sell something on Poshmark, the company provides a prepaid, pre-addressed label. You can elect to either have your item picked up from your home for free, or drop it off at a USPS mailbox. If you’re a frequent seller, Poshmark allows you to keep track of your top-selling categories and track your earnings over time.
How much you make: For sales under $15, Poshmark takes a flat commission of $2.95. For sales of $15 or more, Poshmark takes a 20% commission.
What sells the best: The company says that women’s teddy coats and men’s Nike Air Force 1 sneakers have seen an increase in purchases in recent months. Some of the more sought-after women’s accessories include acrylic earrings, Gucci Marmont Belts and crossbody bags. Hot men’s items include puffer jackets and chelsea boots, and interestingly, fanny packs saw a 354% increase in purchases in 2018. Hmmm.
For Clothing (If You’d Rather The Site Do The Work): thredUP
If creating a listing and shipping an item to a buyer doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, thredUP may be the right platform for you. When you sign up to be a seller, the company will send you a “Clean Out” bag that you’ll fill with your unwanted items and then ship back to the company for free. Once the bag is processed, you can choose to get an upfront payout for what you’ve sent in, or you can list your items on consignment, in which case you’ll be paid after they sell. ThredUP will then do all the work—evaluating, pricing, photographing and listing your items, and eventually shipping to the buyer.
How much you make: ThredUP offers a sliding payout scale that’s based on the selling price of the item. For example, for items under $14.99, thredUP pays sellers just 5%, but for items over $300, sellers can look forward to an 80% payout.
What sells the best: The company says that some of their consistently best-selling brands are Lululemon, Everlane, J. Crew, Vince and Kate Spade. Top categories include leather handbags, ankle boots, cashmere cardigans and dark-wash jeans. Allbirds shoes, Patagonia fleeces and Free People dresses have also been trending on thredUp 2019. If you’re selling luxury goods, the company says that Gucci shoes, Prada handbags, Burberry dresses and Louis Vuitton handbags are usually a big hit.
For Furniture And Other Big Items: letgo
If you find you’d rather sell your chest of drawers than the items in it, then letgo might be the right platform for you: Just snap a photo of your item and post it to the site. Letgo’s technology knows what you’re selling just from the photo you upload and will automatically suggest a title, price and category. Unlike other platforms, letgo is designed to connect buyers and sellers who live in the same neighborhood, or at least within driving distance of one another, since larger, un-shippable items are often sold. In the letgo app, users chat with one another and agree to meet in person to complete transactions. The company recommends meeting up at busy public places like coffee shops, malls or grocery stores.
How much you make: It’s completely free to download letgo and sell something. For a small fee, you can choose to promote your listing (so that more people see it) but that’s optional.
What sells the best: The company says that electronics, furniture and home decor are the top sellers, though almost everything imaginable can be listed, including things like jewelry or snow skiing equipment.
For Technology: decluttr
If you’re selling tech or electronics, take a look at decluttr. With decluttr, you aren’t selling to a buyer, you’re selling directly to decluttr, which will then refurbish your item and sell it via its own decluttr storefront. When you’re ready to sell items, you can request a free prepaid shipping label from the company, and as soon as they receive your items in the mail, you get paid. You can elect to be paid via PayPal, bank transfer, check or you can make a donation to charity.
How much you make: You make 100% of the amount decluttr offers for your item. They don’t charge auction or listing fees. (The company makes its money by reselling your item at a higher cost, after it’s been refurbished.)
What sells the best: iPhones (right now, the iPhone 7 is the most popular), Samsung Galaxy phones, iPads, MacBooks, gaming consoles, and Apple watches
For Everything: eBay
Of all of the online sales platform on the market today, eBay may be the one you’re most familiar with. Not only is it the oldest, it also boasts a community of 179 million active users. As with other platforms, users can snap a photo from their phones and quickly upload a title and description to the app to start selling instantly. Because there are so many users on the site, pricing can get competitive. eBay says the price of your item should be determined based on condition, brand and scarcity. If you’re looking for more guidance, just search for an item similar to the one you’re selling and filter the results by “sold items,” and you’ll be able to see what other users have been willing to pay.
How much you make: Sellers can post up to 50 items for free every month. Beyond that, eBay charges around $0.35 per listing. Sellers determine their own shipping costs—if you plan to offer free shipping (which can be more attractive to buyers) make sure to price your item slightly higher so that your shipping costs don’t unexpectedly eat into your profits.
What sells the best: The company says that trending items are always a big hit on its platform. For example, after the Kardashians were seen wearing a certain type of bike shorts, sales for that style spiked 27%. Beyond that, luxury handbags, watches, electronics and sneakers are always hot with eBay buyers.
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