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Trying to make a few extra bucks? Sell your old items online: 9 ways to guarantee you’ll profit, and quickly – WDIV ClickOnDetroit

Posted: September 16, 2020 at 3:56 am

For many people, 2020 has been a financially uncertain time. There has been job loss, furlough, and still, plenty of unknowns swirl about the future.

For anyone looking to make some extra money or replenish that pocketbook, have you considered selling your old items online?

It might be a good time to go through some of the things youre no longer using -- check your closets, garages, kitchens and more -- and see what you might be able to off-load. Beyond just the few extra bucks you can make, it might feel really great to downsize.

On the flip side, as a buyer, social media and online communities are a fantastic place to look when youre scouting for something new but you dont want to pay top dollar. So before you splurge on a new KitchenAid stand mixer or a fully loaded baby stroller, itd probably be worth your time to peruse your local groups. Facebook Marketplace, by the way, is one of the easiest places to navigate. For the rest of this article, well largely be talking about how to operate in that space.

Heres how to do it:

Even if theyre in used condition and youre selling them as such, youll still want to make them look attractive to potential buyers. So make that bike or curling iron shine!

If an item has been sitting in the basement, dust it off, make sure it works, of course, or if this a baby item, take it outside and give it a thorough rinse-down or a full bath with the hose.

This is especially important during COVID-19 -- and with so many hang-ups surrounding germs. Disinfect your stuff! Offer contact-less pick-up. Make your things look pretty for the photos youre about to take. Speaking of those, lets chat pictures next.

This is worth your time, 100%.

Put shirts on a hanger, have outdoor items actually outside (and shot in good lighting), framed reasonably well, in focus and zoomed in.

If youre selling clothes, include a shot of what the item looks like on. You can blur your face if you dont want it out there for the world. And if youre selling kids stuff, upload a photo of your kids actually in the clothes (again, blur faces if youre worried about privacy!) Kids are so cute. Use them as models. Sometimes well see dresses or pants just like, on a pile on the ground, or in a bag, and who would buy that?

But a cute Christmas dress for a little girl, advertised by a 4-year-old all done up in matching shoes and fancy hair? We might be able to envision our own daughters in the same look.

Overcommunicate when it comes to the details. Size, age-level, brand, when you bought the item, how much youve used it, and personal information really makes for a nice touch, as well.

Some examples:

And if your item has a shortcoming? Say it. Youd much rather tell the potential buyer up front, rather than waste someones time, having that person come out to look at it, or get mad after the fact. Transparency is good. More information is important. Write your sales post in a friendly, engaging and helpful way.

Think you can get $50? Fine, list it for $50 (you can always drop the price after a week), but if youre really looking to offload your stuff, mark that potential $50 kiddie pool for $35. You dont want to wait around. It takes time and effort to go back and forth over Messenger. Get it done!

Oh, and people tend to come QUICK when they see a great buy. Editors note: I too, as a buyer, am ready to hop in my car on a moments notice for a steal of a deal. So, with all that said, just think to yourself: Whats the lowest number Id take for this dining room set? Theres your price.

Do you know what we mean when we say groups? You can post your belongings on Marketplace just with a few clicks, but it would also serve you well to look into specific selling communities that might be in your local area. For example, garage sale-type groups, moms groups or sport-specific groups.

Usually, when youre finishing up your post, Facebook will ask if you want to put this listing anywhere else. Say YES, and youll likely have much better success having your post get seen and shared.

Just be sure to watch for any specific group rules -- some allow holds, for example, and some dont.

(And so on!) And if theres an abbreviation or an acronym youre not sure about, just ask or Google it.

Dont just post this stuff and then turn off your phone or go out of town. Respond quickly to all reasonable inquiries. Get ready for serious buyers too, who will want to know everything. If youre selling a dresser, for example, be prepared to provide all dimensions, weight, info about moving it, etc.

This goes for writing your sales post especially: What does this buyer need to know? What would you have wanted to know right before you bought the item?

Just write the post as if youre explaining the table or TV to a friend. If youre selling a couch, how big is it? If theres a tiny ding on your end table, communicate that -- even if its just saying, Theres a little mark, but no one will even notice it.

Overcommunicate. If the item is heavy, advise that the buyer might need to bring some friends and a truck.

We briefly touched on this earlier, but youre going to encounter some angry buyers if you lie about a products condition or sell something thats just junk.

Dont be that person. You wouldnt want to get duped or buy something busted. Dont do it to others. Its bad karma, its dishonest, and its likely to get you banned, blocked or reported.

Cash is always the go-to, but how about SquareCash, PayPal, Venmo, Google Wallet or Zelle? These payment apps are becoming more and more popular.

Editors note: Ive had people who couldnt come grab the item right away, but who were willing to pay me for it ahead of time, using one of these apps. The money was in my pocket faster and I had time to make sure the payment was legitimate. Win-win!

It is better to do a transaction like this ahead of time or face to face, just to make sure youre exchanging money with the correct person, but otherwise, this should be pretty safe.

What makes us the experts?

As the author of this story, Ive made hundreds, if not more than $1,000, over the past few years, going through spurts of selling my old stuff.

Now you tell us: Any tips we forgot? What has helped you sell your stuff online? Be sure to let us know in the comments.

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Trying to make a few extra bucks? Sell your old items online: 9 ways to guarantee you'll profit, and quickly - WDIV ClickOnDetroit

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