17 May 2021
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Making money on Marketplace

Thea McLachlan
4 May 2021

With the change of season, many people will be sifting through their wardrobes and belongings, making a pile of things that are no longer wanted or needed. These piles of unwanted items could easily become cash with the many avenues we have for selling second hand items in 2021.

According to Gumtree’s 2020 Second Hand Economy Report, 85% of Aussies have unwanted items they could sell, and there is approximately $5,800 worth of unwanted items in every household. The second-hand economy in Australia is worth $46 billion dollars. In the last year, 54% of Aussies have sold a second-hand item.

Recently, I decided to stop procrastinating and finally listed some (basically new) household items and clothes that I no longer needed on Facebook Marketplace. I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it is to list an item and how quickly I had interested buyers.  The whole process was fairly painless and I ended up with cash for items that I otherwise would have given away for free or just never used.

Here are some tips for selling second-hand items:

1.Find the right place to list

You might find it easier to sell clothes on Facebook Marketplace and Depop rather than Gumtree. But you might get more views on your listing for your car on Carsales.com or Gumtree than Facebook Marketplace. It doesn’t hurt to list your item on multiple sites, but make sure you keep on top of all enquiries and take down the listing on all sites once you sell.

2. Take high quality photos

These days our phones have great cameras, so there’s no reason to invest in a fancy digital camera. Find the best lighting, use a plain background that doesn’t give away any details as to where you might live. Include multiple photos and post close ups to show details. Show photos of any damage so buyers know about any faults upfront and don’t waste your time inspecting it and then finding the damage themselves.

3. Be descriptive

include the item’s brand name if it’s significant, describe its features and include a brief history of its use and the reason you are selling. The more information the better!

4. Interact with buyers

increase your chances of selling by having notifications turned on for messages and replying promptly. Add a bit of personality in your responses to stand out from other buyers.

5. Trade safely

When meeting up with someone to make a sale, try to meet in a public area and make sure you have a friend or family member with you or alert them to where you are. If you are posting your items, make sure you receive payment before you send the goods.

6. Think ahead

When you buy a new item, think about whether you might have a need or reason to re-sell it, try to preserve the quality of the item and if possible, keep its original packaging and receipt. This will add huge value when you resell.

7. List what is in demand

If you are selling clothes, think about the season, it might not be a good idea to sell a coat in the middle of summer. If your item is from a well-known brand name, be sure to include that in listing’s name.

According to Gumtree’s Second Hand Economy Report the most popular items that Australians would consider buying second hand from an online marketplace are; home décor & furniture (48%), cars (39%), textbooks (39%), sporting equipment (32%) and electronic goods (31%).

The most recent data from Gumtree shows that the most searched items in March 2021(not including cars, boats & caravans) were:

  1. Fridge
  2. Ride on mower
  3. Surfboard
  4. Mountain bike
  5. Dining table
  6. Desk
  7. Lounge
  8. iPhone
  9. Lego
  10. Kayak

So what are you waiting for? Start listing your pre-loved items that are only collecting dust and see what money you can make from them. You’ve got nothing to lose!

This article was originally published on Tilly Money, an educational platform aiming to close the gender wealth gap and provide accessible and educational content.

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