Wednesday 01 May 2019
I’ve always considered myself to be an all or nothing kind of gal.
If I order a pizza, you can bet your life I’ll devour every last slice. If there’s a party, you know I’m the last to leave. And if there’s a new TV series on Netflix, guess who’s binging it all weekend long.
So when I say I dedicated this month to selling my clothes online, you better buckle up.
With last month’s unexpected trip home setting me back by $400, I knew I had to get back in the metaphorical saddle, so I started brainstorming easy ways I could make some extra cash on the side. I still kept up with my weekend tutoring, but I knew there was more I could do.
And then it hit me.
I had a wardrobe full of unworn clothes - some still with tags on them!
So I got to work by posting random pieces of clothing in the Facebook Marketplace and I’m not gonna lie, those first few days were rough.
I was dealing with pros who could haggle until they turned blue in the face and then there those who played hard to get and dropped off the face of the Earth after expressing an interest in an item I had for sale.
Once I took a step to reevaluate my strategy, I realised I had gotten too big for my boots and was pricing items too high. So I switched to a more realistic mindset (and pricetag) and sure enough, I had a bunch of people interested. In the first week alone, I had managed to make $100 just by selling a dress and a pair of shorts. I even started selling books that I hadn’t read in years and topped it off by finally getting rid of a brand new pair of shoes that I never wore.
I was addicted to selling.
By the end of the month, I had an extra $350 to add to my piggy bank.
This month I learnt that there is a massive amount of people willing to pay top dollar for pre-loved items. But I also picked up a few handy tips that helped me seal the deal.
Tip #1 - Know your audience
We all know that almost everyone has Facebook account, so you’re guaranteed to catch someone’s eye if you’ve got something for sale. But what’s even better is that a lot of people are a part of different groups, like shoe fanatics or active wear lovers. So before you post an item in the general marketplace, do a quick search to see if there are any groups dedicated to what you’re selling. Of course if Facebook doesn’t tickle your fancy, there are heaps of other sites you can use to sell your stuff, like eBay, DPOP or Gumtree.
Just a heads up, before joining some of these groups, I had to pass a test. Before I was allowed into a sneakerhead group, I had to name a previous brand ambassador for Nike, so shoutout to Google for that one.
Tip #2 - Take a good photo
Think your mum can’t take a decent photo? You should check out some of the stuff that’s listed for sale online. I’m telling you, it’s like Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 3, you can’t see anything. Now I’m not saying you’ve got to act like a professional photographer, but for the love of God switch the lights on - your customers need to be able to clearly see the product. The better the photo, the more legit you look.
Tip #3 - Price fairly
I get it, you want to make as much bank as possible, but you’ve also gotta be realistic. People who buy second hand items are looking to bag a bargain, not pay full price. If you can, try to find the same or similar item listed by someone else and how much they’re selling it for. This will give you an idea of how much you should be charging. Otherwise, just like me, you’ll end up with a sad, lonely listing that no one wants to touch, not even the spam accounts.
But if there’s one massive lesson I took away from clearing out my wardrobe, it’s that all items - whether old or brand new - can have a purpose.