Update on Selling Things Locally

While I enjoy selling on Etsy, I have a few items that I have been trying to sell locally due to their size and the difficulty/cost in shipping them. One of those items has been a number of large 3-D plastic medical charts. I posted them on Nextdoor.com where one lady immediately contacted me wanting to buy one and wanted to know what deal I was offering! Humph. Then they sat for a bit ignored till six neighbors contacted me within two days wanting to buy one or more.

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Two of the ladies showed up at the time we’d arranged and our transaction was done in 30 seconds. Easy peasy. Another two choose not to show up at all, though one apologized a day later and indicated she was still interested and maybe she could come next week.  Another gal keeps sending me emails saying she’s interested, but doesn’t follow through with a pickup time. And lastly one lady said she’d buy all remaining ones and has been very patient as I’ve waited for the first customers to buy (or not). The other day I sent her the total # of charts left and the special bulk discount price for all of them (60% off!) and it was crickets. I started thinking…oh no, another one.

But no!  She came today. Was happy with the charts. Paid me what I asked and then we got to talking. She has a brick-and-mortar bead and collectible shop about four miles away and we realized we’ve probably run into each other at local estate sales! She was delightful and we even exchanged business cards.

The bottom line…I could have made a lot more money continuing to sell them one or two at a time, but I would have been driven slowly mad and it may have taken years to sell all of them! I’m happy with my $132 profit (with a possibility of another $20 for one last straggler).

So while I will keep trying to sell my big items locally, in general I’m focusing on buying smaller/lighter things–jewelry, spoons, postcards, charms, etc–that are easy to store and ship. 🙂

I would love to hear if you’ve had great success selling face-to-face locally (and what platform you used).

As always, happy hunting,

Karen

4 Comments

  1. Laura Werley

    Karen, I have sold 3 pieces of furniture in the past few weeks, through Facebook Marketplace which has been much more of a success than my booth! End of September and the first two weeks of October were really slow at my booth. It has rained buckets for weeks and I’m sure that has kept buyers away. Most people make a day of browsing in the historic downtown square where the shop is located, so when it rains most shoppers don’t come to just shop at the antique mall. I am seriously thinking about Etsy for smalls and continuing to sell furniture through Facebook Marketplace and see how the two of those compare to the brick and mortar shop. The things that have sold were a real mix of smalls, from fall decorations to ironstone. No pattern at all, except most purchases were under $20. If my sales continue at this rate, I’ll make rent these last 2 weeks, but not much more than that. I like your charts, they are fascinating. I’m surprised that a doctor did not purchase some for decor. And your silver charms are exceptional!

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    1. Hi Laura! I’ve been tempted to get a booth, but a bit afraid that, in the end, I wouldn’t make much profit. Glad you had success with furniture on FB Marketplace. I’ve only listed two things with FB and have had no interest so far. Yes, do try Etsy. So far it’s my favorite platform. I try to sell things in a variety of price points, though I wish my sales were a bit more robust! 🙂 – Karen

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  2. I haven’t tried FB marketplace yet, I should check it out.
    I sold a few bits on local platforms but as you mention sometimes it can get complicate (people message, then disappear and so on).
    Great that you sold the medical charts, that will be a good deal of space back for other items 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Gabriella. I was surprised at people “disappearing,” especially after setting a time to meet. Such a waste of time. Still, in the end, they sold and I’m happy with that!

      How did your linen mystery box turn out??

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