What if one day you try to build yourself an armchair, but mess up some of the measurements and make it too wide? Well, so near, and yet sofa!
However, you could try one thing. Sell it online.
Furniture is an integral part of what helps you turn a house into a home. But, the downside to this is that we feel the need to change and upgrade our furniture from time to time.
Have you ever thought about what happened to the old table you replaced a while ago? It probably ended in a landfill somewhere, slowly rotting away. According to the EPA, an estimated 9 million tons of furniture gets tossed out every year.
Now, that is a lot of old furniture, lying somewhere around the world, adding to the waste that gets accumulated in the numerous landfills. There are many ways to prevent or lessen this, and one of the easiest and most effective ways is to sell your furniture online.
The emergence of the internet has made this even easier. There are many platforms that you can use to connect to various customers, all over the world, without having to create a website, or pay money. One of the best examples is Facebook Marketplace, where people come and sell all kinds of items, and earn some side income.
Everyone has that one piece of furniture that either has been passed down to you or you have just had it for a long time. It is always in some corner of the house, not being used the way it is supposed to be used. So, you can start by selling that online (Don’t deny it, we all have that one piece of furniture, no matter how small or big). In this article, we will talk in-depth about how to sell furniture online.
Essential tips for selling furniture online
If you want to get some extra space and cash, do follow us till the end. But, before you get started on selling your furniture online, you need to take care of a few things.
1. Choose the right platform
Choosing the right platform to sell your furniture is of utmost importance. So you need to ensure that you are listing your furniture in the right place, in order to be able to connect to the right set of customers, i.e., people who are looking for furniture to purchase.
There are numerous websites to choose from, as they all provide different types of services, have a wide range of features, and most importantly, have a specific set of customers.
As you are looking for a platform to help you get rid of your furniture, you need to choose a platform that does all the heavy lifting for you. You would also want to prefer choosing a website that charges a lower or no commission. This way, not only you will be able to free up some space, but also pocket a sizable amount of money.
Some of the options to choose from are:
One of the best features of this website is that it is a non-profit. Apart from selling, you also have the option to donate your furniture, so less fortunate people can use it. You can use this website to sell a lot of different things as well, such as paintings, building supplies, and musical instruments.
This website offers its users the to both, buy and sell anything they want. So, this platform becomes a viable option when it comes to choosing where you want to sell your furniture online. One added benefit of this platform is that there is an absence of any startup fees for your business as a seller.
Etsy is an online shopping platform that is very popular due to its super user-friendly interface. If you decide to sell your furniture via this platform, their marketing strategy tools that will allow you to optimize your business will cost you a little amount of money.
Charish can become a recognized name worldwide due to its notable furniture listings. Sellers who decide to use this platform to sell their furniture online can reap the benefits of being able to transfer their money very quickly via its PayPal feature.
Wondering what to do with that antique piece of furniture that you have had in your family for years? Well, 1stDibs can be your answer. It is a store that helps its users look for furniture manufactured many years ago, or is present in other countries.
So, if you want to give away any antique piece of furniture, you start selling them regularly, you know where you need to head.
EBay is unarguably the most famous website where you can sell your furniture online. You can list your furniture on this platform, and interested people would bid on it, and you can sell your furniture to the highest bidder.
OfferUp is also one platform to consider when it comes to deciding where you want to sell your furniture online. This platform offers its users local and nationwide shipping options. This ensures that you can cater to the needs of picky buyers, provided you have what they are looking for.
It also provides sellers with high-end store offers, to stand out and increase their chances of selling the product.
Some of the other top places which act as the best way to sell furniture online are:
2. Make sure the item is in the best possible condition
Another key step to check off your list before you list your furniture online is to make sure that it is in the best possible condition. If necessary, you should get it cleaned and/or repaired. Make sure there is no dust on the item, all the minor and major repairs are done, and the item is both functional and presentable to potential buyers.
Sometimes, all you need is a fresh coat of paint to regain the shine that could be lost during the time you owned the piece of furniture.
3. Ask your furniture to smile for the camera
When shopping online, the visual representation of the product is the first thing that catches the attention of the buyers. Once, the image has managed to get a hold of the potential buyer, then only they stop to read the description.
You need to show the buyers exactly what they are getting through the pictures you will click. To do that, you need to click numerous, high-quality pictures from different angles, and cover all the sides, along with a few close-up shots as well.
Natural light is a must, as it will enhance the quality of the pictures, eliminating the need to add filters. You also need to ensure that you are choosing a neutral background, free of clutter for a more professional look.
4. Write a detailed description
Once you have grabbed the attention of a potential buyer through the pictures you clicked, the next thing they would pay attention to is the description of the product. While writing a description, you need to make sure you are answering any questions the buyer might have about the item, and also don’t forget to include the right keywords, depending on the type of furniture you are selling.
Apart from that, you also need to include as many details as possible about the product, such as brand name, color, style, dimensions, and age of the item. You can also hook the customers by adding any personal story that might be attached to the item that you have listed.
One thing to keep in mind is that you should not lie about the condition the item is in, and list all the dents, scratches, or damages it might have. When the buyer sees the item and your description did not mention any of the above-mentioned details, they might insist on returning the item. So, the buyer should know about all this beforehand.
You should also mention delivery and/or pickup arrangements in the description itself. Buyers generally prefer to buy from sellers that are willing to meet them or get the item delivered to them, as this usually means that the sale will happen quickly.
Leaving the basics for the last, make sure that the description you write has proper spelling, punctuation, and grammar.
5. The price should be right
After taking care of the above-mentioned pointers, you need to ensure that you are setting the appropriate price for the item you have listed. Perform extensive research to determine the value of the piece, and what might potential buyers be willing to pay for it.
Always take into consideration how much you paid for it originally, to price the time accordingly. There are many other considerations that need to be taken, such as the item’s age, wear and tear, and brand.
Another way to determine the price of the item, you can search for other listings of similar items. Remember one thing, we all love to bargain, right? So will your customers. In anticipation of that, you should consider setting the price slightly higher than you know you would get for it. In case you are looking to get rid of the furniture fast, just set a lower price than similar listings and you are good to go.
If you are someone who is looking to get rid of one or a few pieces of furniture, or if you are wondering how to start an online furniture business, then these tips on how to sell your furniture successfully will definitely come in handy.
6. Determine the condition of your furniture
Just like we mentioned above, the first thing you need to check is the condition of your furniture. You need to determine if it needs any work before presenting it to any potential buyer. You also need to determine if it has any shelf life left (A little furniture pun).
Make sure you are fully satisfied with the item yourself, before listing it online.
7. Be willing to negotiate
If you have listed an item on any platform, there might be cases where you haven’t heard from anyone in weeks, maybe even months. So, this is your cue to try and lower your price. When potential buyers reach out to you, always be open to negotiating with them and be a little flexible with the price you have set. Meet your buyer somewhere in the middle, and set a price that works for both of you.
8. Make sure your timing is right
There are two cases in which you could be selling your furniture. One is when you are in a rush to get rid of the item, and the other is when you are not in any rush and have time on your hands, i.e., you are not in any dire need to sell your furniture immediately.
So, in the case where you don’t have time and are in a rush to get rid of your furniture, you should set a price that is lower than the expected price. This way the chances of a quick sale increase drastically, as people are always looking for deals.
However, if you find yourself with the luxury of time, and are in no hurry to sell your furniture, you can try to ask for a higher price and then play the waiting game. The right buyer is bound to come sometime.
Always keep a note that the timing in the furniture market is similar to that of the real estate market. As people are moving into new homes in the summer, it is the best time to sell any old furniture you have as people are looking for deals that will help them turn their new houses into homes.
9. Supply the demand
If you are selling a piece of furniture on any of the above-mentioned platforms, always keep an eye out for the listed products that match yours in style, condition, brand, or age. This way you can see what the benchmark has been set, and it allows you to improve your item in any way, if possible. You need to stay a step ahead of the competition. This will also help you in pricing your item right.
10. Stay updated with the latest trends
Just a little bit of research at the right place can help you understand the latest trends, what type of furniture is selling, and at what price. You would be surprised as to what you find because there would be certain styles and colors that have stood the test of time and remained trendy for many years.
If you have such a piece of furniture with yourself, or you can locate a supplier, then you are in luck, as you would find a ton of buyers willing to pay good money for it.
We understand that you would have certain expectations before you actually sell a piece of furniture online. Let’s talk about some of them in detail.
Just because it is furniture, doesn’t mean you can sell it!
Despite furniture being an absolute essential in any home all around the world, there are certain pieces of furniture you just might not be able to sell, especially if they are illegal to sell. There are certain places where you won’t be able to sell baby cribs, some types of mattresses, and much more. So, you need to research that according to your geographical location.
One other thing that can cause a hindrance while selling your furniture online is if it is not in decent condition. No matter if the item is second-hand, people will always be hesitant to spend any amount of money on a piece of furniture that is standing on life support. Sadly, some items are just not meant to be sold, but to be tossed out.
Another reason why you won’t be able to sell a piece of furniture is if it has any structural flaws. So, you should consider all this before you list your item on any platform.
Keep a realistic expectation of the price
No matter what the condition of your furniture is, always remember that it is second-hand. Your main aim in selling a piece of furniture is to provide it with a new home and clear up some space at yours. This will get you a small side income, but not help you make an easy fortune.
So, you should be content with the amount that you are getting, and not try to maximize it too much. You can consider getting a value of something around 60% of what you paid for it originally.
You can also show the original receipt of the item if you still have to so that it is easier for the buyer to understand the value of the item.
Start selling your furniture online today
If you were wondering how to sell furniture online or even how to start an online furniture business, this guide was written to help you understand what all it takes to make sure the piece of furniture finds a new home.
So, if you are someone who has a piece of furniture that you don’t need, catching dust, you must consider selling it online, on any of the platforms mentioned above.
Selling old furniture is a great business idea as well and a growing market to tap into, provided you have the right supplier for the items you will be needing.
So, pick up your cameras, click the pictures you need, and get started on selling that piece of furniture and making space for new ones.