Selling stuff on Facebook is my favorite way to make some extra cash. Being a stay at home mom, it’s easy for me to do during the day and it rids my house of clutter. I’ve been doing for about a year now so I have some tips for how to sell your stuff on Facebook Buy/Sell/Trade pages as well as the Marketplace, which is becoming more popular day by day.
1. Start Small
First thing I suggest you do is grab a box or bin and go through your house and find 10 items you don’t use anymore. Clothes, toys, small kitchen appliances, tools, electronics, etc. The main point is to grab 10 items to start with so you can get your feet wet and see if this is something you’ll like doing. No need to accumulate a huge box of stuff that will just sit around for 3 months.
2. Take Good Pictures
I cannot tell you how far a good photo of your items can go. I photograph all my items on my hardwood floors in natural light. If it’s a piece of clothing, I hang it on a hanger and photograph on a set of hooks I have so nothing else is in the shot. You need to make your items look like they’ve been taken care of and they come from a nice home.
What I like to do after I wrangle up some new items it photograph them all at once. Then I immediately put them in a folder on my phone that I labeled “Things to Sell” so I have easy access to them when making a post. Oh and clean up your item if it’s used. If it’s clothing, make sure it’s washed. Shoes can get a wipe down with a rag and other items can always benefit from a good dusting.
3. Post It Everywhere
In my area, there are a gazillion BST pages. I usually post my items in the 4 groups I belong to that allow my specific neighborhood to post in as well as add them to the Marketplace on Facebook. The Marketplace is where anyone can list their items, as well as add items from other BST pages, regardless of location. Listing your items on the Marketplace just gives you more exposure to buyers. When posting in specific groups, make sure to check the rules about posting so you know what you can and cannot post.
4. Do “Porch Pickups”
When you sell some on Facebook you’re going to get a variety of people messaging you for different items and wanting to pick up at different times. This can make this little money making activity a royal PITA if you’re not careful. So what I advise people to do is called a “porch pickup”. All you do is leave the item, in a bag with a label of their name and price, on your porch and instruct the buyer to put the money in your mailbox. That way you don’t have to wait around for someone to come and pick it up and if they flake you didn’t waste a bunch of time.
I keep a Rubbermaid bin on my porch, a great idea I got from a friend, and put my “pending pickup” items in it and every night I check on it and collect the money from the mailbox. If you live in an apartment or a townhouse that’s not accessible from the public this won’t work. In those instances you should meet the person in a public place or outside of you residence. Don’t go alone either, for safety reasons.
EDITED TO ADD: If you are selling larger items, such as a stroller or furniture, you’ll have to allow people in your home to check it out. In these instances make sure you aren’t home alone and do it during the day if possible. If you can put the item in your garage for viewing, even better! We don’t have to be paranoid about safety but we should be diligent.
5. No Holds
I typically give people a 24-48 hour window to pick things up. I understand that people might need a day or two to stop by but if someone asks for a week they aren’t really that interested. However, I will let them know at the end of the week if it’s still available. The flakiness on Facebook is at like 50%, if you hold your items for everyone they will rarely leave your front porch. So be fair but firm.
6. Price items to sell
My philosophy is to get clutter out of my house while making some money and to do it quickly. I’m not trying to get top dollar for my stuff. Typically I look the item up on Amazon and check what price it’s currently going for and then price mine around 40% of that. So for example if I have a new Melissa and Doug puzzle that’s on Amazon for $10, I price mine for $4. If I have a $20 dress I bought on Amazon that I wore once but didn’t like, I’ll price it at $7. I think Facebook prices should be a little higher than garage sale prices but cheaper than thrift store prices. Keep your prices on the lower side and they will sell quickly.
7. Donate Unsold Items
If I can’t make any money on it, I can still get rid of it! I will post my items for 7-10 days, bumping my post a few times. I will usually lower the price after about 5 days and then sometimes I get a bite. If that doesn’t work, I delete the post and throw it in my Goodwill box. Trust me, if you weren’t using it and no one wanted to buy it, it needs to go. Tip from a friend of mine: Save your donation receipts! They can really add up at the end of the year and make a difference on your tax return. Thanks Katy!
So that’s basically it. I know it’s not rocket science but there is definitely a methodical way to be efficient. If you have a little extra time throughout your week, you can make some extra cash. Last year I made around $500. Not a windfall but it can be airfare for a trip or a new dishwasher; plus less crap in your house. As M. Scott would say “Win. Win. Win.” Happy Spring cleaning and money making!
Taran is a self-proclaimed undomestic mom. She thrives as a stay-at-home-mom by consistently carving out time for herself and practicing realistic self-care. As a busy mom of 3, she knows that if mama ain’t happy, nobody’s happy! With a focus on how SAHMs can carve out time for themselves everyday, she teaches fellow SAHMs how they can do the same.