With many of us owning enough tackle to open a small tackle shop, its worth going through and sorting out the stuff that you use, and the stuff that sitting in the corner collecting dust. If in good condition chances are its worth something to someone.
With the many “list it yourself” websites these days its easy to reach a national and even international audience for your unwanted or unused goods. For many people who have not brought and sold online before the process can be a little daunting. In this article we go over a few pointers to get you started selling online and hopefully help you avoid any oversights or pitfalls along the way.
WRITING YOUR LISTING.
When writing your listing, its best to add in as much detail as possible and describe your items accurately. Things worth mentioning are: age, condition & reason for sale. There is no point, trying to hide any imperfections or faults in the items you’re trying to sell, this includes “forgetting” or deliberately leaving out details about the item that alter the way in which the item will perform or look. Leaving out/cover up information will ultimately come back to bite you, when the buyer either wants their money back or you get a bad name for yourself, which makes selling items in the future difficult.
When listing items on eBay, make sure to use the full (or as close to) 80 characters available in the title box. As eBay is very much a “search” driven website, your listing will only appear to those that search for items that are contained within your title. For example, if you were selling a fishing reel, Don’t just write “Certate 4000”. By doing this, you are limiting the audience in which your item will be exposed to. For your item to come up, someone will need to search either the word “Certate” or “4000”. A much better way to go about it is to describe the item in the listing title, in the example of the reel above I would write the following: “Daiwa Certate 4000 – Spinning Reel – Similar to Caldia, Sol, Shimano Stella”. Adding in details and items similar to your item means that your item will show up for not only for those who are searching for a Certate 4000, but also for those who search any other of the above mentioned terms. Your item will receive much more exposure and in turn should get more bids.
Photos are what really sell your item. Photos should be of the actual item and not a product photo off the manufactures website. Listings with pictures have much more impact on potential buyers than those that don’t. Images allow buyers to see, the condition of your item, which is a big consideration when buying second-hand items.
When taking photos of the items, try taking them outside or in a well-lit room with as much natural light as possible, preferably with a digital camera, Photos taken with a phone or at night can often suffer from harsh flash, be blurry and out of focus. You want to take nice sharp close up images of your item.
When selling rods, take close up images of the reel-seat, grips and guides and details on the blank, all of these shots individually will give the buyer much more information than if you just took a picture of the whole rod in a corner. You will also want to take photos of any imperfections in your item, paint chips, broken parts, etc so the buyer knows exactly what they are getting before handing over the money.Take close up photos of flaws and imperfections like this broken anti-reverse switch for example, that way the buyer wont be getting any nasty surprises that may come back to you.
There are many factors to consider when trying to work out how much to sell your item for. Condition, age, availability, popularity and exclusivity will all play a part in determining what your item is actually worth. Don’t expect your 5-year-old heavily used Certate with missing paint and a noisy bail roller to be worth the same as one that’s been used a handful of times and is in excellent condition.
It’s a good idea to do a search to see how much your item or similar items have sold for in the past. This is a great way to gain an idea of how much people are willing to pay and you can set your price accordingly. When deciding on a price be realistic. No one is going to buy your 6month old reel for $280 when they can buy a new one in the shop with a 5 year warranty for $300.
People usually buy things for one of two reasons. The first is that they either need or want the item, the second is that they will buy it because its cheap, also known as an “impulse buy”. If you are in need of a quick sale and want your item to sell fast, you can take advantage of the “impulse buy” mentality and put a very attractive price on your item, alternatively if you are in no rush to sell your item, you could start with a higher price and see if anyone is interested. You will soon find out if your price is too high as you will have no responses, if this is the case, it might be time for a reduction.
POSTAGE & POSTING
When it comes time to posting off your goods there is a few things to keep in mind to help you both save money and make sure your package arrives safely and intact.
It’s a good idea to know how much to charge for postage for you item before you list it. Over priced postage will quickly turn away potential buyers. Alternately under pricing on postage will leave you out-of-pocket. Australia post have a postage calculator on their website that can give you a pretty good idea of how much it’s going to cost you to send your item.
Offering free postage for items can also help attract buyers, just make sure you outline what sort of postage you are offering to avoid any confusion.
When packing items for postage, it’s a good idea to pack them as if you were receiving them. Fragile items like reels should be wrapped in bubble wrap and placed in a sturdy cardboard box. If sending a reel in its original box, it’s a good idea to place this in another box to protect it. When sending rods, they should be packed into PVC pipe or tube where possible. Cardboard tubes should be avoided, as they can get squashed or bent quite easily, and nothing kills the excitement of receiving a new rod in the post quicker, than finding it in multiple pieces.
Some smaller items like lures, can be sent through the post as whats known as a “large letter”. If the package does not exceed 260mm x 360mm x 20mm and weighs in under 500g, it can cost you as little as $1.20AUD to send. Packing lures side by side on a piece of cardboard can often achieve this. Worth noting is that if the same items were packed together randomly and the package size exceeded 20mm in height, then it’s automatically classed as a parcel and will cost you $6.60AUD. Its worth asking your post office if small items can be sent as a large letter, as some will class it as a parcel without checking first.
When sending items of substantial value (say $150+) its worth adding things like a tracking number or postage insurance. While these will cost a little more, they will allow you to follow-up if an item has not been received or covers you should an item get lost in the mail. It’s a good idea to ask how much it’s going to cost to send your items with a tracking number or postage insurance, as it may work out cheaper to buy a pre-paid express or platinum express satchel which have these options already included.
If your comfortable, offer pick up of the goods for your home or workplace, this will allow buyers that live close by to save on postage cost, and will often get you a sale. This is especially true in the case of rods which are quite costly to send.
Communication is vital if you intend on selling any items online. As a whole, internet shopping is basically an honesty system, where by items are not posted out until the money has been received. Good communication with buyers allows them to stay up to date with whats going on and not feel the need to worry that they might have been ripped off. It’s a good idea to let the buyer know when the funds have been received, when the package has been posted, and any delays that might have occurred. If you know that you can’t post the item for a few days, let the buyer know this.
Good communication between both seller and buyer is the key to hassle free transactions.
It’s up to you on deciding how you wish to be paid for your items. The most popular and convenient way is via Direct Deposit, where the buyer transfers the funds from their bank account directly to your bank account.
If you are overly concerned about giving out your personal bank details you could ask for payment via PayPal. PayPal allows you to send and receive funds without using your personal bank details, however not everyone has a PayPal account, so you may be limiting your target market.
The third option for payment is COD, which is most popular for when items and money are being exchanged in person.
Websites for buying and selling second-hand tackle
Ebay – www.ebay.com.au
Probably the best place to start your online dealings. Easily the most famous and popular auction site on the web, with thousands and thousands of transactions going on daily Ebay allow you to buy and sell items in a safe and monitored environment. Their feedback rating systems allows you to get a good idea of who you’re buying from, and how their previous transactions have gone in the past. .
If you’re not overly concerned about how much you want for an item, list it with a starting price of .99c. Items with a very low starting price do tend to attract a lot of attention and bids, and you can often start bidding wars between users which drive up the price of your item. You must however be prepared for the fact that your item may well sell for 99c should only one person bid on it.
FEES/CONDITIONS: 7.9% of the total sale price (excluding postage). Another hidden fee which is overlooked is if the buyer pays via papal. While not as greedy as eBay, papal still takes 2.4% +.30c of all money that you receive from the sale.
Gumtree – www.gumtree.com.au
Gumtree seems to be growing in popularity. It is great for those sellers who are in no rush to sell their item or are chasing a higher price as all gum tree ads are listed for 45days unless sold earlier
FEES/CONDITIONS: No fees.
Breammaster – www.breammaster.com
A very active community based forum based around bream fishing, breammaster has a very active classifieds section, with a lot of gear associated with bream and lure fishing.
FEES/CONDITIONS: No fees. Users are required to have a minimum of 25 posts before buying or selling from the classifieds section. Other selling criteria also apply – see classifieds rules at the top of classifieds section. No commercial selling allowed.
Fishwrecked – www.fishwrecked.com
Another active community based discussion forum, based around fishing WA. Fishwrecked classified see a wide range of items from light through to heavy tackle.
FEES/CONDITIONS: No fees. No commercial selling allowed
If you do plan on using of the above mentioned websites or any buy/sell website for that matter, its worth reading through their rules first to avoid any wrong doing and getting off on the wrong foot with other members.
Selling online can be a great way of moving on your unwanted or unused tackle, following these few tips and techniques should see you selling your goods in no time. While this article is written with the sale of fishing tackle in mind, the information here can also be applied to selling any other items online. Check back soon for our next article on buying second-hand tackle.