September 23, 2014

Ways to be a Good Online Yard Sale Seller

My last post (here) was about what to do to be a good buyer on online yard sales. It goes both ways, though. You've got to be a good seller, too. Here are some of the things I've come up with to be a good seller. I'd love for you to chime in with a comment about what you'd add to this list or with a story. Stories are always fun to read.
  1. List the price and size. Don't make people ask, you'll probably lose buyers because they don't want to waste their time trying to find out. Also, don't lie about the size. It doesn't even make sense to and there's no reason for it.
  2. Include/offer pictures or price accordingly. When you sell online, people are buying stuff sight unseen. At least post, or offer, pictures so people have an idea what they're getting. If you're not going to give pictures, such as saying, "here's a big bag of random clothes!" at least offer a good, honest, description and price it lower since people have no idea what in the world is really in that bag.
  3. Be honest. If something is horribly stained, broken or damaged, don't sell it. Don't try to pass something off as being in better condition than it is. If you're selling a huge bunch of clothes, for example, and a couple have little stains price it lower. When someone asks a question about an item, tell the truth! Also, if an item is cross posted, say so in your ad. I doubt you'd want to buy a toaster that doesn't even heat up. I really don't think your buyer will want to, either.
  4. Show up/don't back out last minute. When you set a time and place to meet, show up. Don't make the buyer wait 10, 15, 20 minutes for you, either. The buyer is taking their time to meet you, don't waste their time by flaking out on them. If you're not going to be able to meet, don't tell the buyer you can. If there's a chance you can't meet, tell the buyer up front so they can decide if they want to bother with it. Don't waste their time. If an emergency does come up and you can't meet the buyer, tell them right away. Apologize and offer to meet at another time that is convenient for them. Try to make it right. There have been a few times that I've gone to buy an item and the seller wasn't there, didn't notify me and never even bothered to answer my message asking what had happened. 
  5. List the pickup location. If you're not willing to drive to wherever your seller is, say up front in your ad where pickup is. That way you're not wasting a buyer's time, getting them excited about an item, only for them to find out it's way too far to drive. It'll also save you the hassle of having to answer a million questions about the location. If you don't list the location, you pretty much deserve those million questions.
  6. Be upfront about meeting times. When you're at the point of setting up a time and place to meet, tell the buyer the days and times you're available. Don't make them suggest a million different times that you're just going to shoot down. 
  7. Get back to people. If an item has already sold, tell the person. If they're next in line, let them know that. If their offer is way too low, tell them (nicely!) what price you can do. Get back to them in a timely manner as well. Don't make them wait days. If you do, you'll probably also lose the sale along with being rude. Also remember to delete your ad once something sells, then you won't have to worry about getting back to someone.
  8. If you say it must be gone ASAP, be more flexible. If you want an item gone right away, be willing to meet buyers right away. Don't turn around and tell them you can't meet for a week after you said the item has to be gone NOW.
  9. Bring change or tell the buyer exact cash only. Don't expect buyers to always have exact change. Not everyone has dominations for every combination hanging about their wallet. If you need exact cash, tell the buyer so. Before you meet them. Don't cause an awkward situation when you meet by not having change.
  10. If an item needs a dolly, large vehicle, someone to lift it, say so. When you sell a large item, let people know how big it is in the ad, what type of vehicle they'll need, and if they need to lift it. It's annoying for you both if they show up only to find out they can't meet these requirements because you didn't tell them. Staring at a coach that won't fit in the buyer's SUV just makes them see red and you're not going to see the green.
  11. Send a reminder. The day before you're scheduled to meet the buyer, send them a nice reminder/confirmation of pickup day, time, location along with the item and agreed price. People are busy and it shouldn't be the buyer's job to track you down to confirm.
  12. Be fair. Give the buyer a fair amount of time to pick up the items. Try to work with them on pickup day/time. Don't commit to one buyer and dump them if another offers more money. Go in the order of people who expressed interest and give them a chance to respond to you. Don't skip Sally because you like Debbie's name better. Being fair also means pricing items reasonably. Don't try to sell something that's worth $5 for $10. It just annoys everyone and you aren't going to be able to sell it anyway.
And, as with buying, Treat others how you want to be treated. Consider things from the buyer's side. I doubt you'd want a buyer to not show up, cancel last minute, ignore your messages, be rude to you, etc. I also doubt you'd want to buy something just to find out it's not useable or not what was in the picture. Don't do it to someone else.

Visit Top Mommy Blogs To Vote For Me!


  1. I know some people who have had major issues, so these tips should help :)

  2. Thanks for this! I have been wondering how to sell online more effectively.

  3. I start a little higher since I know someone is going to ask less. If I start out at $5, then it will sell for like $3

  4. These are some great tips. I especially liked being honest, fair and getting back to people. Thanks for this list!

  5. Nice tips to become a Good Online Yard Sale Seller... Thanks for sharing great post!!

  6. Those are some great pointers. We recently had a yard sale and hardly sold anything, very disappointing.

  7. When you're selling, I see how impatience on getting rid of items could happen. I usually just want it GONE.

  8. Number one is my pet peeve. I hate not being able to know the price. Great tips here.


Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment. As a busy mom, I'm not always able to respond to each one, though I read and appreciate them all.