Have you got a wardrobe full of clothes you don’t wear? We show you exactly how you make money by selling second-hand clothes from your wardrobe.
In the current economy, many of us are looking for ways to make extra cash. Whether you want to create a savings buffer or need cash quickly, your wardrobe can be a potential treasure trove of items that you no longer need and which would look better as cash in your wallet than unloved at the back of your wardrobe.
If you’ve learned why you need an emergency fund, selling unloved clothes is a great way to put money towards your emergency fund. Going to the effort of selling your clothes can also save you money as you’ll recognise it takes more effort than tapping your card to make money back on an item you had to have but never wore.
Here are 9 steps to selling your clothes online:
1. Declutter your wardrobe
Take everything out of your wardrobe and only put it back in if:
- You’ve worn the item within the past 6 months.
- You can actually see yourself wearing it in the next 6 months.
- It has an emotional attachment and you’re not willing to give it up yet.
Marie Kondo can be a great example of this decluttering process in action. You should then take the clothes you’re going to sell and put them in a box or separate room so that you aren’t tempted to sneak them back into your wardrobe.
2. Wash and iron to perfection
Anyone who buys your clothes online wants them to be in good condition. Take the clothes you want to sell and freshly wash or iron them to that they’re ready to be sold. They will also look more professional when you photograph the clothes.
3. Photograph the clothes
To buy the clothes, buyers will need accurate photographs of each item. You can find some photographs on a store’s website of what the item looks like on a model. However, you should also photograph the clothes as they look currently so that buyers know what will arrive when they purchase the item. You should also photograph any faults or stains on an item so that your buyer knows the extent of a fault and whether it’s something they can live with.
4. Take measurements
The advantage of buying clothes online from established stores is that you can see what the measurements are. You can overcome this by measuring the bust, waist, and hips of your items and providing this to buyers. A tape measure can be bought for less than $5 and can help generate a sale if potential buyers ask you for item measurements.
5. Pick an online selling platform
There are many online platforms which offer different features to sellers, which include:
- eBay: You can sell items as soon as you create an account and list items as live on the site for auctions or set a price for purchase. Watch out for the listing fees as eBay charges you a fee for each item you list on the site in addition to charging you a % of each item sold.
- Facebook: There are a number of buy, swap and sell pages on Facebook that are dedicated to selling items from high end designer clothes through to vintage dresses. You request to join a group, and once accepted, check out the group rules and post items accordingly. Unlike eBay, there are no selling fees most of the time.
- Depop: This is a favourite platform of fashion influencers as you can get followers through the platform who will shop your closet directly if they like your style. You can list anything from high end to high street fashion so if you have a wardrobe worthy of Blair Waldorf or shop at H&M, you can market your style accordingly.
6. Describe your item
This is your opportunity to market the item to buyers. Highlight the features of what you’re selling, including the brand, size and colour so that buyers know what they’re getting and don’t need to ask you. Be upfront about the current condition of your item, including whether it still has tags attached and note any faults, however minor you think those faults are.
7. Determine your price
The price you set for an item will depend on how much it originally cost and the condition the item is in. A starting point is to knock 50% to 70% off the purchase price as a starting point. You should also take note of the costs involved and assess whether you can afford to offer free postage and how much of your asking price will be eaten up by selling fees.
8. Communicate with buyers
My secret to consistently getting good feedback is communicating with buyers, including telling them when I’m posting items and the timeframe they can expect for delivery. You will likely encounter some potential buyers who forget their manners. Try and be polite but if you get abuse on the platform or if someone harasses you to charge a much lower price than you can afford, feel free to block them.
9. Post quickly
We live in an instant gratification culture and people often want an item as soon as they can get it. Posting quickly will set you apart from other sellers on a platform. Life happens and if the timeframes you promised aren’t possible, communicate that early to your buyers.
The reality is that many of us wear 20% of our closet, 80% of the time.
This includes clothes with the tags still on, clothes that don’t fit or those that are no longer in fashion and which you’ll never wear again. Rather than throwing out unworn items, selling clothes is one way that you can make money from your wardrobe and save the planet. Try out these steps to sell clothes from your wardrobe and see what items are hiding in your wardrobe that could generate cash for your emergency fund or redirected in getting started with investing. Your unloved clothes could be someone’s treasure.
Read more: 5 ways to make some extra spending money