I’ve always gifted friends lots of baby clothes and equipment and subsequently toddler items when we no longer needed them. I also make numerous donations to charity. However, I have developed a bit of an obsession with selling things online.
It all started when I bought a cheap little car for my husband when he was learning to drive. He passed his test, and shortly after I discovered I was expecting twins. My lovely sporty saloon wasn’t going to be any good for three car seats, so we had to buy a sensible family car. That meant we had three cars, which was ridiculous. We hadn’t decided whether to keep my car, but one thing was certain: the little car had to go.
I’d never sold anything online before but as the car was old and not worth that much, I thought it was the best way. I chose to list it on Gumtree as a few friends had mentioned that they’d bought things off the site. I was inundated with responses and was able to go with someone who was offering very close to my asking price. I was bitten by the bug.
I had some wedding shoes that I used for trying on with my wedding dress, but weren’t the actual shoes I ended up having for the day. They had no sentimental value so I thought I’d get rid. I did a search for a similar item to help me with my pricing and I came across the Preloved site. It seemed more targeted at women than Gumtree and my immediate impression was that it would be better suited for selling clothes and shoes. I sold the shoes quite quickly. I was surprised as I wasn’t convinced that someone would buy their wedding shoes online. This spurred me on. I then started to simultaneously list things on the two sites.
So in addition to the car and the shoes, I have also sold:
- Medela Pump In Style Advanced breast pump
- Harmony Duo Twin Feeding Cushion
- iCandy Peach Blossom
- Silver Cross 3D Pram System
- Maxi Cosi car seats and the FamilyFix system
- Maternity wear
The breast pump was expensive to buy new, but I’d spoken to a few mums that had bought them second hand, so I thought there was probably a market for mine once I was done with it. Similarly the feeding cushion is pretty pricy. This is the only item that I have bought secondhand. I then re-sold it afterwards.
- Good pictures are vital
- Be realistic, if you price too high you’ll put people off
- That said, don’t go too low as you might be bartered even lower
- Descriptions should be informative but succinct
- For something like a buggy, people will want the instruction manuals, without these you can’t expect to get as high a price
- Regionalised ads are good as if someone can come to pick items up it saves a lot of faffing
- Be prepared for time wasters and learn how to spot them
- If you are sending items by post, don’t buy posting and packaging until you have received payment (or at least a deposit)
- If someone is coming to pay in cash for a larger item and requests you take it off the market, then you need to get a deposit
- If you’re not doing a face-to-face transaction, then PayPal is the way to go