Can I let you in on a little secret? Your stuff used to be money.
All the stuff in your house that collects dust? Money.
Your kids’ toys? Money.
Those sweaters in your closet that still have tags on them? Yup, those used to be money too.
Whether you’re on a Marie Kondo-inspired decluttering spree or you are in desperate need for cash, there is someone out there somewhere that wants to buy your stuff. The key is letting people know your stuff is for sale.
Depending on your personality type, there is a selling platform out there made just for you. These are my personal favorites.
The Collector: eBay
eBay is the OG reselling platform. Everything from a grilled cheese sandwich with a Virgin Mary imprint to used basketball shoes have been known to sell on eBay.
eBay is a great platform to sell on if you have unique or rare collectibles. Since I moved back home to my parents’ house back in January, I’ve been helping them go through a pre-retirement purge of all their junk. To date, I’ve sold more than $3,500 worth of their random stuff on eBay.
One of the best pieces I sold is my dad’s GI Joe collection. It included three dolls and over 100 pieces of gear. I had no idea how much it was worth so I listed it as a 7-day auction. In the last minute the price jumped from $428 to $555!
eBay is a low barrier to entry platform, but it is a bit old-school. It’s very SEO-dependent where writing the right title can make the difference in getting a sale. Additionally, the algorithm and fee structure doesn’t benefit new sellers. It will require a bit of patience to get started, but after a few sales, it becomes easier to get the hang of.
The Fashionista: Poshmark
If you love fashion and are on top of the latest trends, Poshmark is for you. Poshmark is primarily known as the social selling app. When you sign up for Poshmark you create a closet from which other shoppers can buy from.
If you have an overflowing closet of in-demand brands, Poshmark is the app for you. While it does help to have a good eye for photography, it isn’t totally essential. If you got Lululemons, someone will buy it, even if the lighting on your pic isn’t perfect.
From the closet of one of my favorite Poshers
Poshmark has two key selling benefits:
- Poshmark’s commission tops out at 20% which means you don’t have to worry about a potentially confusing variable fee structure.
- Poshmark sales come with a pre-paid shipping label. Simply print and ship.
As I mentioned Poshmark is a social app which means you need to regularly engage with other Poshers by sharing items in their closet, welcoming newbies, and participating in daily “parties.” It’s not an app where you can list and forget.
The Visual Designer: Depop
Like Poshmark, Depop is also a social selling platform targeting younger buyers with more eclectic tastes. If you tend to shop in vintage stores, Depop could be the platform for you.
One of the main attributes of Depop is how well designed and photographed closets are. Sellers go to great lengths to create iconic images or videos of their items. You feel like you’re shopping for a style or personal brand on Depop, not secondhand clothes.
Because of the emphasis on visual design, if you’re not good with photography, like me, Depop can be a bit overwhelming. For you TikTok savvy Gen Zers, Depop is your platform.
When you compare Depop to Poshmark, Depop wins in terms of fee structure. With a flat commission of 10% plus PayPal’s miniscule processing fee, you’ll wind up getting more bang for your buck. Plus, Depop gives you an easy print-to-ship option too.
The Newbie: Mercari
I’ve been selling on eBay since the ripe old age of 12 but I gotta be honest, I LOVE Mercari. Why? It’s the easiest platform to list on for newbies just getting started.
Snap a few photos, come up with a title, provide a description, add a few more data points like size or brand, set your price and you’re done. If you have a lot of stuff you want to get listed, don’t skim past Mercari.
Mercari has two key attributes I like:
- Mercari has the one of the lowest platform commissions out there at a flat 10% with an easy click-to-print shipping option.
- Mercari also tells you what’s recently sold and what it sold for. This is huge when it comes to figuring out what to sell and how to price your stuff.
While you can list all your stuff to your heart’s content, you still have to find a buyer to obviously buy your item. While not as data-rich as eBay, Mercari’s user-friendly interface gives you an idea what’s hot on the market.
The Declutterer: Facebook Marketplace
Facebook, my friends, has come a looooong way. In case you missed it, Facebook is moving hard on ecommerce. Within the past few months they’ve revamped Facebook Marketplace, offering in-platform payment and shipping options. If you’re an old-hand at reselling, keep an eye on Facebook.
For those of you who dread the idea of listing stuff online or packing stuff up to ship, Facebook is the new Craigslist. I’ve sold everything from a used foot spa to a box of binders using the porch pick-up method. Just like it sounds, I coordinate a sale, leave the item on the porch with an envelope, and instruct the buyer to leave the envelope — with cash — in the door. Knock on wood, I’ve yet to be stiffed.
I took this right out out of the kitchen, listed it on Facebook, and sold it within minutes.
Facebook Marketplace is best for the cheap stuff you’d probably take to Goodwill. An average Facebook Marketplace sale for me is about $10. This is great for the junk in your closet that isn’t worth the time or effort to ship through eBay.
If you’re looking to declutter quickly — and make some easy cash — Facebook is your best bet.
The Data Analyst: Amazon FBA
Did you know the majority of stuff you buy on Amazon isn’t actually sold by Amazon? Fulfilled by Amazon — or FBA — is Amazon’s flagship third-party seller program. That means random people like you or I can — and do — make millions selling stuff on Amazon.
Now, before you run off to YouTube to watch a video put out by a 7-figure Amazon seller, let me warn you, Amazon is not easy. Many of the most profitable categories are restricted and based on the time of year, fees can skyrocket eating at your profit margin. This, of course, is on top of all the returns that Amazon buyers make that you’ll find yourself responsible for.
Learn more about how to use a program like Jungle Scout here.
If you are a data nerd, love crunching numbers, and don’t mind playing the Amazon game, this is a very lucrative platform to sell on. I personally started flipping books on Amazon. I love how easy it is to ship all my stuff into an Amazon warehouse and let them handle the rest. Because Amazon is the most popular ecommerce site in the world, I don’t mind that I might only see 10% of my sales. Amazon does the hard work of getting traffic to their site, so it’s the price I’m willing to pay.
To get started on Amazon, use a database like Jungle Scout to scope out profitable items or enroll in a course Book Flipper University to learn how to sell books on Amazon. Like I said, Amazon is not for the faint of heart. You’ll definitely want to take some sort of training before you dive in.
The Trend Setter: StockX
Were you keeping tabs on the limited release Ben & Jerry’s Nike collab? If so, you need to be on StockX like yesterday.
StockX is completely different from any other platform out there. It started in shoes but is branching out into more streetwear categories, high-end handbags, and sports cards. What sets StockX apart from everyone else is it’s stock-market like ticker system. You can turn your sneakers or sports cards into an investment-like portfolio and play the market just like you would on Wall Street.
Originally sold for $100, the Ben & Jerry’s collab is now reselling for $1,800+ on StockX.
Like Amazon, StockX is very data-intensive. You can’t just sell your old pair of running shoes on StockX. Because of the value of some of the sneakers sold on the platform, all shipments go through a validation center to be authenticated. If you sell in a niche where products are frequently counterfeited — like sneakers — this type of service is worth its weight in gold.
Before getting started on StockX make an account and play with the interface to build a portfolio around things you already own. Consider taking a short online course like this one to help you learn how the platform works and some strategies you can adopt to make killer sales.
These aren’t the only selling platforms out there but they are some of the best. Since I started selling back in 2003 the reselling market has EXPLODED. Gone are the days of only selling on eBay.
If you’re still skeptical about selling stuff here’s why you need to be a little less skeptical: ecommerce-based thrift store, ThredUp, puts out an annual report highlighting the resale market. Guess what? The secondhand market is growing at an unprecedented rate.
From ThredUp’s recent report.
If you have old bell-bottom jeans, vintage Nirvana band shirts, or your childhood toys stuffed away in an attic somewhere, now is the time to start selling your stuff. In a few months I’ve sold $4,000 worth of literal junk in my parents basement. Aside from that one-off GI Joe eBay sale, the average price of things I’ve sold is less than $20. Image the value of all the stuff that’s just collecting dust in your house.
With so many options, you can sell on whatever platform works best for you. My recommendation for anyone getting started in the reselling game is to figure out how involved you want to get in the selling process. Poshmark, Depop, and Mercari are very user friendly but lack a lot of essential data that you would need to analyze to scale into a full-fledged reselling business. Facebook is great for local sales but is still working out the kinks for shipping. eBay is admittedly old-school, but the most established platform in the game.
Figure what works for you and start selling.