How to stand out and sell fast...
Perhaps you saw Richard Branson in space and thought, 'that should be me!' Or maybe you got inspired by last night's episode of Dragon's Den. Maybe you had a nightmare that Alan Sugar was pointing his notorious finger at you and it’s filled you with motivation wanting to prove him wrong...
In any case, you’re looking to unleash the entrepreneur inside by starting selling second-hand stuff online. With the gig economy continuing to grow, it’s proved that everyone can make a full time living with opportunities online.
You may just be looking to declutter. In which case the money is just a bonus! Not to mention the environmental benefit. Less new things = less waste. Less waste = a happy Mother Nature.
Already an experienced online seller? Great! These tips will help take your operation to the next level...
The best place to sell second-hand goods are online marketplaces. They offer easy access to thousands of customers and a very low barrier to entry.
But how do you make sure you’re not wasting your time? How do you stand out to make sure your items fly off the shelves? Or, more importantly, out of your wardrobe?
We put together our top 5 tips for selling second-hand stuff online. Nail all of these and you’ll be halfway to Jeff Bezos. Seriously though, ticking all these off will make a big difference in your sales speed and volume. Let’s gooo!
1. Great photos go a long way
It may seem obvious, but this is the most common fault we see with listings. The pictures you choose can make or break your listing. Bright, eye-catching photos make your item much more appealing to buyers, even if it’s been used.
Check out this example we made with an Oculus. Which photo do you think will get more clicks and, ultimately, sell faster? The one on the right.
Use natural light from a window and organise your item so it looks neat. If you can, add something interesting in the background like a plant to make it stand out. Don’t overcomplicate it though. Make sure the surrounding environment looks clean and sanitary - think of the type of place you would prefer to buy from.
We don’t recommend highly editing your photos with filters as it can distract from the listing. It can also make your item appear differently from how it looks in person - which can only lead to one thing. Unhappy customers. Not what we’re looking for.
That being said, a few tweaks can go a long way. Use your phone’s editing options or download an app if you want to get fancy. In this case, we increased the exposure, brilliance, and highlights slightly to brighten the image. Have a play with some of the other options to see what you can do. Sometimes just using auto adjust is all you need!
2. Tell it like it is!
As we mentioned earlier, unhappy customers are not something we are looking for. A sure-fire way to a bad review is to describe an item as something it’s not.
A detailed, accurate description is what we’re looking for.
You don’t have to write a novel, but make sure they know they know what’s up. If there’s a scratch on the back, mention it. If there’s a stain from some unidentified green liquid, let 'em know. If the shoes have holes in the bottom and still smell from your last training session then... well, maybe don’t sell those ones actually. But you get the picture. Make sure they know the faults before they receive the item to ensure a smooth transaction.
When it comes to listing a lot of items, batching can be a super effective way of speeding up the process. Gather all your items up and photograph them at the same time. If some need cleaning before, do all of those at the same time. Then list all of them at the same time.
Batching means you can get in the flow of the task at hand instead of constantly switching between. It also helps your stay organised as grouping your items together means none are left out.
If you’re going to use batching and upload all your items on the same day, we recommend listing on Sundays. This is the day we see the most traction for both buyers and sellers, so could increase your chances of a speedy sale!
4. Make it personal
People buying from marketplaces are looking to buy from other people. This makes it vital your account reflects you and shows a bit of personality. You want to stand out whilst also appearing trustworthy. Make sure to complete all verification steps so their confirmation icons appear on your profile. This lets people know you’re a real person, not a bot looking to steal their hard-earned cash.
Choose a clear and eye-catching profile picture. When creating your account try to avoid long complicated usernames and handles. Try “Joey sells stuff” instead of “joey21898374". Which one seems like someone you would rather buy from? A little bit of time and creativity can go a long way here.
A little bit of time and creativity can go a long way here...
If you want to create your own brand to sell behind that then that’s absolutely fine. Just make sure you have a flattering logo and not a blank profile!
5. Share it
Once you’ve got your items listed and made your profile presentable, it’s time to tell the world. Share your profile wherever you can. The more people that know, the higher chance of finding your perfect customer. Sure, you will get some organic traffic from your platform of choice. But the best sellers know that a little bit of self-promotion can go a long way.
Try social media; Instagram, Facebook, TikTok. Post about your items or your selling journey and it will defiantly stir some intrigue. You could even go old school with leaflets or posters. Get a design from a website like Canva and have them printed locally or online.
And that’s a wrap!
So, there it is. Our top 5 tips for selling online. If you’re looking for the best place to buy, sell, & swap online - check out the Paperclip marketplace. We are biased, but we think it’s great and so does our community. We’re proud to say it takes less than 60 seconds to list an item, so armed with your new knowledge there should be nothing stopping you from running Amazon out of business.