If you have been storing home furniture that you no longer need or want, now is an opportune time to declutter and sell those items online.
Instead of simply discarding that old sofa or antique dresser, it’s worth considering the potential resale value they hold.
Selling unwanted furniture and decor online presents a convenient method to earn some additional money while creating more space in your home.
According to a recent report from Mercari, an online resale marketplace, the average household possesses over $4,500 worth of unused items that could be resold. To successfully sell your furniture and decor online, follow these tips, starting with selecting the right platform for your resale needs.
The process to Sell Your Stuff Online Efficiently
Selecting the Right Platform for Selling Your Items.
Choosing the appropriate platform is crucial for successfully selling your belongings online.
With numerous options available, each offering a range of features, the ideal platform for you will depend on your preferred retail style and the type of items you intend to sell. If your primary goal is to simply get rid of things, consider using a site that takes care of the entire selling process on your behalf.
These platforms determine the selling price and charge a higher commission. On the other hand, if you aim to maximize your earnings, opt for a platform where you have control over every aspect of the sale, albeit with a lower commission.
Keep in mind that you will need to store the items until they are sold.
Here is a list of some of the top online platforms for selling furniture, apparel, and decor.
Curated Home Sources To discover unique furnishings, explore curated secondhand sites that offer a targeted selection of vintage, antique, and gently used contemporary items.
These platforms also assist in managing the logistics of transporting the goods to or from your location.
To begin selling on Chairish, create an online listing and submit it for review.
Chairish will optimize the listing for better search results, enhance the lead image, and post it on the platform. In return, Chairish takes a 30% commission.
For buyers, Chairish offers the “View in Your Space” app, allowing them to use augmented reality to visualize how an item would look in their home. Chairish is known for its high-quality vintage pieces and trendy items, such as velvet upholstered sofas or cane-back dining chairs.
While Chairish operates nationwide, AptDeco takes a more localized approach and provides services in parts of Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Delaware, and the San Francisco Bay Area.
Buyers can search for items by category or brand. Creating listings on AptDeco is easy, and the platform enhances your photos before posting them.
AptDeco charges a commission ranging from 19% to 38%.
Full-Service Fashion If you’re ready to clear out your belongings without being concerned about the earnings, consider using platforms that handle the entire process for you.
These platforms inspect, photograph, price, and list your items.
Specializing in new to like-new designer fashion, The RealReal is an excellent platform for selling that designer dresses you no longer wear while also being a great place to find deals.
Prices on The RealReal are typically highest for the first 30 days, after which discounts are applied. Fees range from 15% to 60% of the item’s value, and opting for store credit can earn you more.
Whether it’s Gap or Gucci, every brand has potential buyers on ThredUp.
The online payout estimator gives sellers an idea of their earning potential. ThredUp sends you a bag to fill with your items and pays you as they sell.
Any unsold items are recycled. Buyers can save searches, and the platform will notify them when a matching item becomes available for sale.
Self-Service Fashion On peer-to-peer platforms, sellers have complete control over the entire sales process, including photographing, listing, and shipping items.
Listing an item is usually straightforward: upload a picture, write a title and description, set the price, and post it via the platform’s app or website.
Poshmark focuses on providing a social experience for users.
Buyers can follow, like, comment, and share listings, which helps sellers gain more visibility and establish connections with like-minded shoppers. Often, followers become repeat buyers.
For sales below $15, Poshmark charges a flat fee of $2. 95.
For sales of $15 or more, the commission is 20%.
Catering exclusively to women’s fashion, Tradesy enables users to sell everything from T-shirts to luxury handbags.
Tradesy offers a free image-cleaning service that removes distracting backgrounds from pictures, ensuring faster sales. The pricing suggestions on Tradesy take into account the brand, condition, and category of the item.
Tradesy charges $7. 50 for items under $50 and 19.
8% for items above that price.
Kids’ Apparel and Gear The secondhand market for kids’ clothing and gear is always active since children tend to outgrow their belongings quickly.
Kidizen fosters a genuine community feel, where sellers provide advice to each other, share listings, and promote sales.
This peer-to-peer platform allows you to set your own price and ship items to buyers using prepaid shipping labels (payment can be handled by the buyer or seller through the app). Kidizen charges a 12% commission plus a 50-cent fee on each order after it sells.
In select states, Kidizen also offers a full-service option.
Local Sales Craiglist, OfferUp, Facebook Marketplace.
These platforms function as free classified ads, connecting local buyers and sellers.
Provide as much detail as possible and research similar items to determine the appropriate price, whether it’s a fixed amount or accepting the best offer. Sales are typically conducted in person, and cash is the preferred payment method, so prioritize safety.
Craigslist is great for quick sales at bargain prices, while OfferUp allows you to easily post listings for local delivery or pickup, as well as nationwide shipping directly from your phone. Facebook Marketplace is ideal for local listings and is easily accessible through your Facebook account.
Anything Goes While curated sites offer a shopping experience akin to browsing a store, selling on larger platforms can be likened to searching for hidden treasures in flea markets.
These platforms accommodate the sale of various items, including clothing, decor, electronics, memorabilia, and more.
EBay appeals to buyers in search of specific, rare, or collectible items.
Buyers have access to over a billion listings at any given time. Creating a listing on eBay is user-friendly, allowing you to choose between the “Buy It Now” feature for immediate purchases or an auction format for competitive bidding.
eBay offers a limited number of free listings per month, with a small listing fee applicable after that, capped at 12. 85%.
Certain categories may have exceptions to the fee structure.
Etsy is a popular platform for selling homemade goods as well as secondhand decor, including artwork, rugs, and furniture.
Publishing a listing on Etsy’s marketplace costs 20 cents, and each listing remains active for four months or until the item is sold. Etsy also charges a 5% transaction fee based on the sale price.
Mercari has gained popularity among those seeking yard sale-type deals.
The platform uses the seller’s images and data to recommend prices based on similar listings. Mercari charges a 10% commission on sales, without any listing fees.
This is particularly advantageous for sellers who want to list a large number of items or refresh and repost stale listings to attract buyers. Virtually anything that can be shipped is sellable on Mercari, and the platform provides pickup services where a driver collects and delivers the item locally.
If you are new to selling items online, start by listing one item on a single platform to gauge its effectiveness.
If the process goes smoothly, proceed with listing the rest of your items. However, if you encounter difficulties, consider switching to a different site that better suits your needs.
Clean or Repair the Item As Needed.
Before listing an item online, ensure that it is clean and presentable.
Take the time to remove any dust or cobwebs and Treat Stains on rugs or upholstered items. Consider conducting minor repairs, such as reattaching a broken sofa leg or getting an old lamp rewired, to enhance the item’s functionality and appeal to potential buyers.
Applying a fresh coat of paint or giving the item a new wood finish can also make it look more appealing and revitalized.
Buyers on online platforms are highly visual, and they are more likely to engage with listings that catch their eye.
Therefore, it is crucial to include several accurate and high-quality photos of the item from different angles in your listing. Capture full views of the front and sides, as well as close-up shots of any important details or areas that may have damage.
It is best to take photos in natural light, without adding filters, against a neutral background free of clutter. This will give your listing a more professional appearance and provide buyers with a clear understanding of the item’s condition and appearance.
Write a Detailed and Informative Description.
The description of your item should anticipate and address any questions that potential buyers may have.
Including relevant keywords in your description, such as the color, brand, style, dimensions, or any interesting stories related to the item, can help improve its visibility in searches on the platform. If your item resembles popular brand styles, such as those from Pottery Barn or West Elm, be sure to mention that as well.
It is crucial, to be honest about the item’s condition and to mention any dents, scratches, or damaged areas.
Disclosing this information upfront will help avoid potential issues if the buyer discovers them later. Additionally, consider including delivery or pickup arrangements in your description.
Sellers who offer more flexible options, such as meeting or delivering the item, tend to have quicker sales than those who only offer pickup. Lastly, make sure your description is well-written with proper spelling, grammar, and punctuation, as this will enhance readability and professionalism.
Price the Item Strategically.
Before determining a price for your item, conduct research to gauge its value and understand what buyers might be willing to pay.
While it is essential to consider the original purchase price, keep in mind that most shoppers expect a discount when purchasing secondhand items. According to the Mercari report, secondhand shoppers typically anticipate at least a 25% discount off the retail price, even for items that are new with tags.
Consider factors such as the item’s age, level of wear, and brand when setting a fair price. As a general guideline, pricing gently used items at 40% off the original retail price is often effective.
If your primary goal is to maximize earnings, browse similar listings to see what other sellers are asking for comparable items.
To accommodate potential negotiations, you may want to set your price slightly higher than the lowest price you are willing to accept. On the other hand, if your objective is to sell the item quickly, consider listing it at a lower price compared to similar listings.
This can help attract buyers and expedite the selling process.
Prioritize Safe Delivery or Pickup.
When selling furniture and decor online, it is important to prioritize safety to protect yourself and your personal information.
Take precautionary measures such as reviewing the buyer’s profile before proceeding with a sale. Be cautious if the buyer has poor ratings or reviews from previous transactions.
Use the platform’s messaging system to communicate with the buyer, as it allows for easy reporting of any issues that may arise. Avoid sharing personal information, such as phone numbers, email addresses, passwords, or banking details.
Before finalizing the sale, discuss the details with the buyer, including the price and preferred method of payment.
When conducting transactions online, utilize the integrated payment methods provided by the platform. If you are meeting the buyer in person, opt for cash payment or use a secure payment service like PayPal.
It is advisable to meet in a well-lit public place, such as a shopping center or police station parking lot, rather than inviting the buyer to your home. If meeting elsewhere is not feasible, only share your address once the buyer has committed to purchasing the item.
Consider moving the item to your garage or driveway to prevent the buyer from entering your home. It is also a good practice to have someone accompany you during the meeting or inform a trusted individual about your plans.
Given the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, it is recommended to opt for contact-free delivery or pickup whenever possible.
For local buyers, porch pickups (where the buyer picks up the item from your doorstep) or dropping off the item at their location can limit personal interaction. For small and non-fragile items, shipping may be the safest option.
Choose a trackable shipping service and consider purchasing insurance for added protection against claims of non-delivery. Regardless of the chosen delivery method, make sure to clean and disinfect the item to the best of your ability before sending it off to ensure it arrives in the best possible condition.
By following these best practices, you can simplify the process of selling your belongings online.
Now, it’s time to clear out that clutter and make some successful sales!
*The information is for reference only.