So, you have some clothes to sell and some time on your hands? When is the best time to list and sell them?
Follow the seasons
Of course, if you are selling a sundress, the time to sell it would be summer. Few people would be looking to purchase their summer clothing during the winter, unless they were hunting for a bargain. You are probably at looking at making the most amount of money possible, so try and sell your clothes in season, but not necessarily too far ahead. If you live somewhere with a warmer or cooler climate, remember that your buyers could be anywhere in the country, or even half way around the world.
As you leave winter behind, you may be able to resell some of your winter goodies, but the closer it gets to summer, the less likely this is to happen. In Spring, aim for selling lightweight clothing, and in the final month of the season you should consider listing your summer wear.
Summer is a time for swim wear, t-shirts, shorts, dresses, short sleeves, tank tops, beach wear, sunglasses and hats. Try and sell as much of your summer gear off at the beginning of the season when people will be looking for new clothing.
Any summer gear you have should be sold at the start of the season, but hopefully you have offloaded it by now. Try selling warmer clothing – long sleeved tops, jeans, boots, scarves, suede shoes or boots, – things that look ‘warm’ but won’t particularly shelter you from the elements. In the last month of autumn, you should start selling winter clothing.
During winter, try and sell coats, jackets, jeans, ski gear, sweaters, long sleeved items, woollen items and scarves – anything that will be too itchy or warm come spring time.
Know the events
Prom and formal dances
Is it prom or formal season where you live? This is the ideal time to start selling evening wear! Anything from heels to dresses to three piece suits could easily be listed online. If these are your old threads, consider having them dry cleaned first (list this on the item too).
Spring and Autumn tend to be the most popular seasons for weddings, followed by Summer and Winter. However, brides and grooms will want to buy their wedding attire before the big day, so you might like to consider selling your wedding items during Summer and Winter. Some items you could sell: wedding dresses, dress hoops, veils, gloves (if not stained), clutch bags, parasols, shoes, bridesmaid dresses, suits and ties.
Some costumes will sell all the year round – popular items include things from certain time periods such as the 70s or 90s. Other costumes will be seasonal – for example, try selling Christmas items in the weeks leading up to Christmas (people will spend the most money), rather than after (people will spend the least amount of money and expect a bargain price – if they want to buy at all.
Band tees and merch
If a band is touring, now is the time to sell those tour tees you’ve been hanging on to for years!
If there is a new super hero movie coming out, a cartoon movie or a remake, consider selling these items to coincide with them.
Pick the right time
Which days should I list?
To end listings, Sundays are best – many people are online, getting ready to go back to work or school, so it is the ideal day to try and end your listing. This means you’ll have to do some math and count backwards to ensure you are ending the sales on Sunday.
During the week, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays continue to be the most popular days of the week to trade.
Which times should I list?
Ideally, end time should be in the evenings – anywhere between 6.30pm-10pm bidders should be online, aiming to win your item. Evenings are almost always better when you consider the alternatives:
Late night/early morning: yes, plenty of people are trawling auction and sales sites for the perfect piece of clothing, but will they all be interested in your auction? It’s probably better to be anticipating a bidding war rather than hoping someone will click later at night.
Work day: you’ll miss a lot of people who can’t access online shopping, unless it is at lunchtime. If you want to list then, I’d suggest ending your listing by 1pm.
Afternoon: people are running around, commuting, picking up kids from school and just generally being busy. I’d try to avoid this if possible.
How do I choose what to sell?
First, where are you sourcing your items for sale? Let’s start with your closet. Take some time to make a pile of clothing which you’d be happy parting with – for a price. You can even look some items up to see if they will sell. Remember, just because they are listed online, doesn’t mean anyone is interested in buying them. However, if there are a few similar items listed, this can be a good sign.
Ensure that the clothing if your pile isn’t stained (try washing), ripped (repair or don’t resell) or damaged too badly. If you think the items might still sell, make sure you explain this when putting the items for sale.
Now, go through your pile and take out the items listed below:
Designer labelled items
Each country has different designer wear, but if you have any in your pile, look to sell these first.
These are next and catch a pretty penny – some shoppers will only be looking for a certain brand, or a particular item from that brand. See if there are any online images which will tell you the accurate name of the item, this will help your buyers, and in turn, you by attracting more interest.
Anything that’s a possible costume item
Have a funk crocheted vest? A sequined dress? One of those faux 70s items from 2002? Think about putting these items up for sale. Costumes tend to be popular the whole year around. If you have anything that looks a certain style, but isn’t, list this too. For example, if you have a swing style dress, you can list this as 50s fashion.
Anything hot right now!
What’s showing at the movies? Which bands are touring? Did you catch a segment on the Today show that told you fashion trends to look for next season? Pop these up online.
Work out wear
Believe it or not, gym gear is a popular item to list online. Think about selling these during the New Year – many people start trying to act upon their resolutions at this time. Don’t sell the item if it has sweat marks or it is a little too well loved. And, you guessed it, fitness fashion labels will sell quickly and for more money.
Brand new with tags
If you closet clean out pile had anything brand new with the tags still on them, these can also be put online – list them as BNWT (brand new with tags). If the item doesn’t have tags but is brand new and hasn’t been washed, these can be listed as BNWOT (brand new without tags). Most websites will only sell underwear and swimwear if it is brand new with tags.
Plus size clothing
Plus size clothing is a definite plus for selling online! If you have anything from a plus size retailer or at the larger end of sizes, these items do have a good resell value.
Anything else in your pile you can pop online, but try listing clothing from the categories first. If your item was reasonably cheap to buy, it may not have a high resell value. Try listing these items at $5 or less.
Maybe you’ve exhausted your closet and now it’s time to start scouring racks at thrift stores, your mom’s house or a vintage store. Here are some items to look for:
Coats and jackets
Look for designer labels and for what is popular at the moment. Are checks in? Plaids? Houndstooth? Pick these up. Leather jackets are always in, but if the style seems a bit off, pass these ones over for now.
Evening gowns and prom dresses
In perfect condition, these can fetch a pretty penny.
These can be a little hit or miss. Make sure they are in good condition and in an adult size – kids costumes are often very cheap to buy so they don’t really have a high resell value.
Pick jeans which are from well known labels in your area and country. Skip them if they have been altered in any way.
Plus size clothes
Get to know the plus size brands in your country, and see if you can pick something up. Make sure it seems in style – just because it’s the right brand, doesn’t mean it will sell.
Anything strictly vintage
Well, within reason. If it looks vintage and it looks nice, it’s probably worth taking a gamble on. Use your own sense of style and fashion on this one.
Many items you put online will sell if you have confidence in what you are selling ad can explain it well. Know your market – that cute dress might be cute, but you probably know it’s a maxi dress from 2012 by one of your favourite designers. Tell the story of your item – is it preloved? Has it had a lot of wear or does it have a lot of room for people who might be between sizes?
If you list the item’s measurements you can use Size.ly to list all of the measurements clearly. They use diagrams of the items and add your measurements to the diagram to help the buyer. It looks professional and will help add credibility to you as a seller.
Always use great customer service – answer any questions and be prepared to help your customer get that perfect sequined dress to their place by Friday for a party on Saturday night.
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