Monday, October 26, 2015

The Virtual Yardsale: Instagram Version How To

We moved into our house barely a year ago.
And already, one entire side of my once perfectly clean brand new basement is loaded with storage bins and everything else under the sun that I haven't touched since before we moved in.
So I started thinking... I do not need all of this STUFF.
So I'll just have a yardsale.
Wait, NO.  I will not have a yard sale.
Yard sales are a pain.
I have to pull everything out of my basement and into the front yard, and people might not even show up...and I've wasted a whole entire day. 
And someone will no doubt attempt to give me a nickel for a barely worn $80 leather GapKids jacket.
I can't even.
So then I had the best idea ever.
I'm going to set up a shop on Instagram.  That way I can set a minimum price and if people don't want to pay it, then they can just scroll along to the next item!
And then I came up with the most original name ever...
 Shop Kelsey & Kollyns
and a little shop motto so people could get the gist of my shop by just scanning the top of my page...
Like it?  Want it?  Bid on it!
and because catch phrases are catchy and I like them.
I had myself convinced for two whole seconds that I was a genius for coming up with such a grand idea.
Until I googled it to find out if it's legal to sell stuff on Instagram.
Oh it's legal.  And I also found out it's "a thing" now. 
So apparently I'm not the Insta-Sale mastermind.  But I'm still proud because I thought of it on my own.
Of course you can sell your stuff on other social media sites, but I really think Instagram is the most functional one for this purpose, because it's so organized and buyers can view your whole shop in thumbnail size photos and scroll down through to items they are interested in. See...
So if you wanna start selling on Insta too...this is how:
1.  Set up a PayPal account and link it to your bank account so you can invoice and accept money through paypal if necessary.  Almost everyone loves PayPal.  It's safe, secure, and it's so easy.  This is mainly for long distance buyers and local buyers that you aren't comfortable meeting!  I live in a small town so I know most of the people buying my stuff which is super convenient!
2.  Set up a SEPARATE Instagram account for this purpose only.  Do not take over your personal instagram account with yardsale items or you're gonna get on people's nerves.  What?  You are. Ours is @shopkelseykollyns and I created a simple logo to use as the photo.
3.  Use your personal account to advertise for your sale page, tag the page & and tell your lovely followers to follow along if interested, and that's about it.  See what I did here...
4.  Be sure to post your shop rules as the first post on your sale page.  I posted mine a day ahead of time so everyone would understand how my sale worked, before I began bombarding them with items.  I expanded on the rules in the comment section!  Do you want to sell locally only?  Are you willing to ship?  Outside of the U.S. or are you keeping your sales in the states?  Are you willing to pay shipping or does the buyer pay?  TELL THEM.  They want to know.
5.  Take photos on a consistent background.  It just looks prettier.  All of my clothes on hangers are hung up on the same wall for photographs and all other items are photographed on my dining room table.  The page isn't covered in busy backgrounds, and the items pop!
5. Choose how you want to sell your items.  First come, first serve...or bidding?  For our shop, I'm posting items on Saturday and Sunday, and the bidding starts immediately and continues until the following Friday.  Items sold will be removed from my page upon receiving payment and delivering goods, and items that to do not receive bids will remain active until someone comments with at least the minimum bid.  I post the minimum bid under the photo, and buyers can comment below with their bids!  It's super simple!
6.  Once the bidding is over and your item sells.  Contact the buyer via DM or email to discuss payment method, shipping or personal delivery of items.  Do not delay getting the buyers the items.  This is supposed to be fun for them, not a pain in the butt trying to track you down to pay you and get their stuff! 
Happy selling loves!

I changed my shop name to Shop Kollyns River because it sounds cuter...

and changed the rules a little bit because I feel that in the past the bidding thing has increased the sale prices of the items unfairly in some situations! 

But if that kind of thing doesn't bother you, go for bidding style because you can make lots of extra money that way!  I just didn't feel right about it.

So now all you have to do on my sale page is comment SOLD and you get the item at the list price!  That way I'm not limited to posting on weekends and I don't have to run all over the place distributing the stuff the next weekend... while also posting the following week's sale.

But the great thing about a sale like this is you make your own rules to accommodate what's easiest for you! :)