Extra stuff = extra cash

This month, I went a little out of my comfort zone when a client of mine had me manage selling extra gadgets she had sitting around, wasting space. We discussed selling online and the argument came up – via eBay or Craigslist. I had never sold on either, only bought, so I was excited to learn from this. She had a handle of items, some small, some heavy, so I got to researching and got to listing. Some surprises, frustrations and success were the results.

If you’re looking for ways to make extra cash, here are the biggest pros and cons with both platforms, all learned first hand!

Craigslist – Pros
* Completely free, no listing or selling fees
* Great for local sales. Perfect if you’re in music city like NYC or Nashville.
* Best for large, heavy items (speakers, pedals, instruments, etc.)
* No shipping estimates or hassle.

Craigslist – Cons
* Less serious buyers, with some not even showing up.
* Last minute negotiations.
* Haggling very likely.
* Lower offers.
* Less credibility and no sense of how much of a sure thing buyers are.

My tips:
Things like furniture or large items that would be very expensive to ship. Clothing, accessories or books are not best sold through Craigslist.
Never give your personal email, use the email through Craigslist.
Plan ahead to meet in public place near you if at all possible.
Cash only!

Ebay – Pros
* Clothing, accessories, household items and collectibles sell really well on eBay.
* You can reach more buyers – nationwide, even worldwide.
* You can do an auction or list a price at Buy it Now, allowing possibility to earn more than expected.
* Free relisting option up to 2 times so you don’t have to manually update it.

Ebay – Cons
* Listing fees (10% of sold price) and payment fees (2-3% with PayPal) do apply.
* If you are estimating shipping, it’s difficult to estimate accurately.
* Possibility of getting negative feedback on your profile if you rub the wrong person the wrong way.

My tips:
Things like beauty products, jewelry, books sell really well.
Be sure to list your correct PayPal email and make sure it’s set up to receive payments to expedite payments.
Skip the hassle of estimating shipping and decide on a price with free shipping for your item with the fees considered. Free shipping attracts more buyers!

So for example, you want to get $100 from a watch? Set the price at $125, allowing $10-$15 for eBay and PayPal fees and $10 for shipping. You can also use this handy dandy fee calculator (http://www.fees.ebay.com/feeweb/feecalculator) from eBay. Remember to add on PayPal processing.
My experience? I went in thinking eBay was the better option, being that it is secure and protected, but unclear fees and unexpected shipping caused a frustrating experience. However, we successfully sold more items on eBay than Craigslist right away, so, with knowing the fees involved, I’d be happy to list more on eBay than Craigslist. Which is exactly why I wanted to share with you a) how you can use these sights to make extra revenue and b) what to expect and c) your best options. Bottom line, keep in mind what you’re selling and you should be able to strike a deal.

Look around and see what you could sell – you might be surprised!
Cheers to selling!


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