I am about five weeks deep (official start date July 1st 2017) into this closet purge, no buying new clothes thing. So far so good….no hard shopping cravings. Probably because this resale thing has got me on lock down…as in, I am too busy with my day job, traveling, blogging, and my resale efforts to go anywhere tempting!
After a closet purge I usually just drop everything off at a consignment shop (and donate what they do not take) and wait for the check. This go around I decided to test the waters and hopefully up my resale game. After all with the standard consignment take of 60/40 I know I could be making more and adding to that savings pot!
Lets talk about eBay. I signed up with them first and quickly realized with the amount of “stuff” available for purchase (new and used) you DEFINTELY have to take the time to create a solid listing. Their website is shall I say….not the easiest to navigate. Mostly everything I need can be accessed from the app but the website is SOOO much more expansive. There is just so much going on and they have so many options! (which is good just a little overwhelming for first time users like this gal)
So first thing first, we all know GREAT photos are gold right? Once clear photos are taken you will be ready to create the listing. eBay asks for categories, descriptions (with many level of optional details) and also has quite a few shipping and pricing options (some are free and some you pay a small fee for). Basically I used all the free options to post my listings. eBay suggests setting (what seemed to me) REALLY LOW starting prices. I like to search the site for comparable items and then set a competitive price but ALSO one that I am ok accepting. Let me stress this point…be 100% positive you are willing to part with the item at the price you set (don’t forget to take into account commissions and shipping costs). Hate buyers remorse? Then you will definitely hate sellers remorse! Once someone bids on the item it is a guaranteed sell (but not guaranteed payment) and it is just bad form to pull out of the sale then (as it is bad form to not pay for the item your bid won). Once an item sells a buyer has 48 hours to pay and once paid the seller has 3 business day to ship…OR ELSE! (I really do not know what happens..maybe a bad review? and too many bad reviews get you blacklisted? I hope!)
I eventually posted about 20 listings all under the 7 day auction style purchasing format. Over a 3 week period I had tremendous results, drum roll please……..SIKE! All of my clothing options expired through the auction format with no bids and few (if any) “watchers!” whaaaat! I was a little surprised and super disappointed.
some of what didn’t sell or even budge….
eBay allows you to “watch” an item that you are interested in. Most use this feature to watch who else is watching before they decide to bid….usually in the last few minutes to prevent anyone from out bidding. ZERO watchers on everything apparel. Even though my clothing options were not a hit I had better luck with some accessories I listed…sunglasses, purses, hats, jewelry and a few belts. As of now almost all of my non-clothing options have sold (about $300.00 without deducting fees and shipping costs). As far as fees on eBay the site takes about 10% of each sale (and other fees depending on how you list). Mostly everyone uses the Pay Pal option which also takes a fee when you accept payment from selling a good. It is 2.9% of the transaction and then an additional $0.30 cents a transaction. Yes fees are annoying but the combined Pay Pal and eBay fees are not too bad especially when compared to the consignment take (usually 40%) but items may not sell for as much as consignment boutiques. Not to mention the listing and shipping thing is a good amount of work…is it worth it?
Poshmark is set up like Instagram or Pinterest format. It is clearly run as more of a “community” of followers with likes and sharing between “Poshers.” I created an account and overnight I had almost 400 followers with out a single post! It has got to be an automated computerized thing…kinda annoying (turned off notifications on that one real quick). This site does have some creative features like Posh Parties. These are themed fashion events that happen throughout each day to allow Poshers to interact, shop and share in real time discussing like brands. I have not participated in one yet but it sounds promising! Poshmark takes about $3.00-20% of a listing sale price, requires an automatic $6.49 flat rate for shipping (buyer pays) and offers NO returns (unless you were scammed). They also allow buyers to offer a price or buy outright.
I listed 7 items about two weeks ago. I had one low-ball offer on a bag that I did not want to accept and a few likes on some dresses. The listings do not expire but it is obvious you have to create some buzz around your items to gain some interest…I am thinking I don’t have as much time as I need for that….Did I mention the resale game is not that easy?
Lastly I chose to sign up for Tradesy, another resale site/app pretty much the same as Poshmark (what came first the Posh or the Trade?) with some different options. This site doesn’t lend its self to “interaction” as well as Poshmark does but it sure does look pretty. Perhaps higher end items are more the focus. A great feature is they edit your photos (or at least the cover one) to make your listing much more attractive. They also suggest prices that are much higher than eBay and Posh…but if noting sells that doesn’t really matter! They offer online site credit for returns (I like this option as a seller. Nothing worse than having to wait weeks to finally close a transaction and finally get paid) and take $7.50-14.9% of each transaction. I listed four items on this one but no real interest again. I am not sure how to build interest here. It would be great to get your items featured but again, more commitment and time.
One other site I thought about (and browse from time to time) is The Real Real. This one is an online consignment boutique where they list and price your items for you. The Real is designer/luxury consignment…I am not that fancy so didn’t really have anything to consign with them. They will come to you (in 20 cities) and raid your closet or you can ship items FREE of charge to them. They say you have the potential to earn up to 70% per listing and they take care of all the returns and shipping.
Overall after a month of online resale with so so results….I am thinking I’ll jump back in to the brick and mortar consignment world. Some are really successful with online resale business but like anything else you have to commit and focus to get it right. I should mention most of these online resale boutiques do have a “valet” selling option where (with a bit more commission) you ship everything to them and they list and sell it for you…this could be a time saving option but shipping annoys me too…it is just not convenient for me..ha. Since I am not trying to open up an online selling boutique in the future I should focus my time on the many other things I have already committed to……but I encourage everyone to give on line re-selling a try. Who knows you may strike gold! (BTW am I spelling that right? re-sale? re-sell? yikes!) Happy Selling!
Have any online resale tips or great consignment boutique options? I’d love to hear!