Monday, February 23, 2015

10 Tips for Selling Children's Used Clothes on Ebay

At this time of the year many of us are decluttering, reorganizing, and getting ready for Spring cleaning! If your children are anything like my boys, they grow quickly leaving lots of outgrown clothes behind. What are you going to do with all those (barely) used items of clothing?

You could always throw them away, hand them down to the next child in line, or donate them to charity. But in today’s post, I want to share with you some helpful tips for selling your children’s used clothing on ebay.

While I was expecting Little Brother, I did a major overhaul of all Big Brother’s outgrown clothing spanning several years back! Using only my smartphone and the ebay and PayPal apps, I was able to get rid of basically all of the accumulated outgrown clothing clutter in about 2 months! I did not make a fortune, but what I did make was enough to buy him some new clothes that fit.

In case for whatever reason you don’t know, ebay is an online auction site. You can post basically any item up for auction. People have a set amount of time (usually 7 days) to bid on your item. The highest bidder wins, you get paid via PayPal, and you then ship the item to the buyer. The setup is pretty simple, and relatively safe.

While I have pretty much specialized in selling used children’s clothing, these tips will be applicable to any items you might want to offer for auction on ebay.

1. You will first need to sign up for both an ebay account and a PayPal account. This is very fast and easy to do.

2. Pull out all the outgrown clothes your children have and look them over. If you have some that are in pretty bad shape (holes, big stains, rips, buttons or zippers missing, etc.), just trash them. But give the items that are in Excellent or Gently Used condition a wash & dry. All clothes you sell on ebay must be clean.

3. Sort the clothing by gender and size. I used a notebook to keep track of what all I had. Plan to sell outfits and matching sets together. If you see you have several similar items of the same size (such as 5 pairs of size 6 boy’s blue jeans), you might do well to list those as a lot instead of individually.

4. Iron the clothing items and get them ready to take pictures. Natural lighting is best. You can post up to 12 free photos per auction, so take several pictures of your items from various angles. Get close up shots of brand names, tags, writing or graphics on the clothing, etc. Crop your pictures well. I did this all with my smartphone and the ebay app, but if you have a nice camera available to you feel free to use it!

5. Create a good searchable title for your auction item. Do not just call it “Boy’s Pajamas” but instead be as specific as possible. “Carter’s Size 3T Toddler Boy’s Long Sleeved Puppy Dog Pajamas Blue” would get a lot more views! Use as many keywords as you can possibly fit that you think someone might use to search for similar items.

6. Give plenty of details in your item description. Size, color, brand, condition, and any other pertinent information you can possibly think of to include. Be as specific as you can.

7. Set your prices carefully. Be especially careful when setting your shipping price. Be sure you will get enough to cover the cost of packaging and shipping your item. Set your starting bid at the lowest price you would be willing to accept for the item. You can then set a “Buy It Now” price that is a bit higher. A lot of people will choose this option just to get the item right away instead of having to wait until the auction closes. And remember that both ebay and PayPal will charge you a small percentage of the final total selling cost, so take care not to sell yourself short and end up in the hole!

8. Answer questions from potential buyers promptly and courteously.

9. Always ship items at least within 2 business days, and take great care in how you package the item. Include an invoice and a note of thanks. You want your buyers to leave you good feedback as this will help your reputation on ebay.

10. If you have items that don’t sell the first time you list them, perhaps try again with better pictures, a more specific title, slightly lower price, or a better description. If any item I list does not sell after a couple tries, it goes to Goodwill! Remember the goal is to clear clutter!

Here are some of the childrens clothing items I have had the most success with on ebay:

* Pajama sets (especially Carter’s brand or anything featuring popular characters)

* Pairs of shoes (Tennis shoes and dress shoes)

* LOTS of similarly sized shirts (play shirts and dress shirts)

*LOTS of similarly sized jeans/pants

* Dressy outfits

I hope you have found this post helpful! What do you do with your children’s old clothes? Have you tried ebay? How did it work out for you? Do you have any other tips you could share?

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