If you’ve ever watched Cash in the Attic on HGTV, you know that lots of people have a surprising amount of old stuff they can sell and make money from. In fact, Tim Luke, one of the show’s stars, says he’s convinced the average American household has anywhere from $1,000 to $2,000 hanging around their house in the form of old stuff that they don’t use and could sell – a pretty nice return on investment for spending some time spring cleaning this year.
But it’s not as simple as merely cleaning up and setting stuff aside to net you some much-needed summer vacation cash. If you’re going to make the most off of those used (and now unused) possessions, you’ve got to know what you’re doing to sell used stuff online.
WOW! Remember Words Matter!!! When listing an item or items for sale, it’s important that you think like a buyer and picture yourself looking through dozens or even hundreds of items for sale. Obviously, you want your listing to catch people’s eye and make them click on it, but don’t fall for the trap of believing that intensity will automatically translate into attention. Filling your title with exclamation points, dollar signs, or ALL CAPS is a nice way to turn potential buyers off instead of reeling them in. And “excitable” words can be just as bad, because far too many people opt for the lazy route of selling with words like “wow,” and “amazing” instead of providing useful details about what they’re offering.
Show, Don’t Tell. You can write up the best product description anyone has ever seen and swear up and down your used first edition Spider-Man comic is in fantastic condition, but if you can’t back those words up with an image, why should people believe you? And actually, it goes further than that – a huge percentage of people probably won’t even get the option of believing you or not because they’ll filter out any results that don’t include a picture. Do yourself a favor and show everyone what they’re getting with the best photograph that you can take – in fact, take several, because the more people see of your actual product, the more comfortable you’re going to make them feel about it.
Pay attention to the time. You hear everywhere about how we’re all constantly connected to the web and we live in an “always-on” world, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t still better times to sell used stuff online than others. If you want to put your for-sale items in front of the most people possible, set them to post between 7 and 9 at night or on the weekend, when more people are surfing the web. Sunday is particularly busy, so starting and ending your sale on that day can be a huge boon.
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