Sell Things Online

How To Sell Things Online

It’s that time of the year when you decide that half of your clothes don’t fit, you’ll never watch that David Bowie DVD again and your aquarium, which killed all your fish, is taking up too much space so might as well throw all that junk out- but why would you when you can sell things online? One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and there is somebody out there who urgently needs a functioning aquarium but doesn’t have the money to get a shiny new one from the store. So why not turn your spring-cleaning into a lucrative business idea?


The first thing to do is to collect all the things that you don’t want to keep, anything at all. Boring books on utopian theories, ugly candle holders, mother’s old blanket with a tasteless 70’s design and of course that bright orange kettle that you bought years ago when you were a poor student.

Look at all the things and inspect their condition because you can certainly not sell a book that is missing 20 pages, and you can also not sell a TV that exploded last year. But whatever is in a decent condition can be sold online. The next step is to describe the item, including what is wrong with it such as scratches, defects etc. This is very important because you want to be honest and fair.

Once the items are sorted out, inspected and described you can go online and watch the magic happen. The best way to start off and learn about online selling is on eBay. This virtual marketplace enables you to either sell things online or buy from other private sellers. EBay has a help function where you can find out how to join and how the system works. Signing up is free, but as a seller you will have to pay eBay a small percentage of the selling price. As a buyer you only have to pay postage fees which are stated in the product description.


When you are logged on and want to start selling, you have to create a product description. Ideally you have taken a digital picture of the item which you can upload and show to potential buyers. Then you enter a detailed description of the item, stating what it is, why you are selling it, what kind of condition it is in and how fast you can send the item out. While honesty is important, it is alright to make the item sound a little more interesting than it may seem to you personally. Replace ‘old’ with ‘vintage’, replace ‘ugly’ with ‘extraordinary’ and use words such as ‘retro’, ‘colourful’ and ‘unusual’. You will find that you sell things online successfully by spicing up the description just a little.

You also have the option to get buyers to pick it up from your home and you can even ship it internationally which increases the interest and chances to sell.

The price depends on your personal expectations and before you sell things online you should have an idea. If you want to state a fixed price make sure it is fair to the item’s condition. Alternatively, buyers can bid on your item while the starting bid is chosen by you. You can start from as little as $0.99 and watch the price rise to whatever buyers are willing to pay. It is certainly possible that nobody bids or that the final price remains $0.99 but this is the chance you take.

You will see that there is a retro-fan in New York who would love to buy that 70’s blanket because it matches her 70’s wallpaper. Similarly, that orange kettle fits perfectly into the red kitchen of a student from France, while the ugly candleholder is pure treasure for the church community in Santo Domingo. David Bowie fans worldwide can’t wait to grab that vintage DVD that has sold out years ago. And the weird utopia book? Well, that crazy professor from Vienna was looking for it all over Austria and has finally found it online!