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Are you looking to sell used clothing out of your own closet? Or would you like to turn a profit from buying and selling second-hand clothes online? If you answered “yes” to either of those questions, this guide to selling clothes online is for you!
I often sell used clothes online (or at least list items once before donating them). I have no issues with donating second-hand clothes, but I like to try to make money off of them first.
Long before life got busy with my home business and this blog, I sold clothing on behalf of friends and family. This was fun for a time, but hardly sustainable with the lack of tools back then. Truthfully, I didn’t even have a smartphone to snap pictures of the clothing and upload them directly to a marketplace like you can nowadays!
Over the years, however, I have found that the best way to sell used designer clothing is to purchase it at a low price and resell it for a profit online.
Whether you choose to sell used clothing from your own closet, sell for a commission, or buy and resell, you will find this guide extremely helpful!
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Sell Clothes Locally and Get Paid
Selling locally can be the quickest way to get cash for your clothes if you need money today for free. You can sell person to person for a cash exchange, or you can use a money app like PayPal or Venmo to receive payments.
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Benefits of Selling Used Clothing
First, let’s go over the obvious (or maybe not so obvious) and talk about the benefits of selling used clothing online.
- Decrease clutter fast. If you’re selling used clothing out of your own closet, surely you’ll be clearing clutter in the process!
- Make money from your smartphone. This is one of the reasons I stopped selling clothes as a business back in the day–I didn’t have a smartphone. Now, you can take pictures and sell clothes right from your phone.
- Go green, upcycle. At the very least, selling used clothing online is far better than sending it to the nearest landfill!
- Help others in need of clothes who don’t want to pay full price. Whether you’re listing used clothing on local selling sites or on eBay, you can rest assured that you’re helping yourself and your buyer.
- Even if some items don’t sell, you can donate them and write them off on your taxes. When you’ve exhausted your selling efforts on a batch of clothing, go ahead and donate for some tax relief.
Related: Get Paid to Take Pictures
Keys to Selling Used Clothing Successfully
Here are a few tips that will help you be successful in selling used clothing online. Make sure to complete each one of these to make the most of your time and effort!
- Buy items that are good quality at a low price (can sell for up to 3x more than what you paid).
- Take plenty of good, high-quality photos. A high-quality photo can do wonders for your listing. A poor quality photo leaves the customer guessing.
- Set realistic prices. You don’t want to overprice secondhand clothing and never sell. You also don’t want to price too low and not pay yourself enough for your own time or shipping costs.
- Revise and relist often. Making periodic revisions to your clothing listings ensures that you are keeping up with them and customers’ questions. It also makes your listing more recent which often places you higher in search results.
15 Places to Sell Clothes Online and Locally
There are apps to sell clothes, used clothing stores online, second-hand stores that buy clothes, and online forums and marketplaces.
Let’s go over where to sell used clothing!
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Online Marketplaces Places to Sell Worldwide
1. Etsy – while popular for handmade goods, you can also list and sell used clothing on Etsy’s marketplace. Sign up here to get your first 40 listings for free. After your free credits run out, the cost is just $.20 per listing, so price your clothes accordingly.
2. eBay – a nationwide marketplace to list items for sale and let people all over the country bid. The highest bidder wins the item.
Online Marketplaces Places to Sell Locally
3. OfferUp – an online marketplace to list and sell clothes to people in your area.
4. Varagesale – a local marketplace to find buyers in your area.
5. Craigslist – a worldwide site that is free to list and sell clothing to people in your area.
Apps to Sell Clothes
6. Instagram is a great place to sell old clothes. All it takes is uploading a picture and putting the brand, color, size, and price in the caption. You can get views on your listing by using hashtags such as #shopmycloset or a hashtag of the brand. Although you won’t be able to actually sell it through Instagram, you can take bids via the comments section and square up using apps like Venmo.
7. Facebook Marketplace is booming with people selling their used items online. Create a listing through the marketplace extension, add pictures and descriptions, and let the bidding begin! Those who are interested will contact you through Facebook Messenger. With Facebook you will only deal with people within a 100-mile radius, so you will have to discuss with the customer how they can pick-up or you can drop-off.
8. LetGo is similar to Facebook Marketplace. It is a mobile app that you can use to buy and sell clothes and other items locally. It does not have a payment system set up through the app. Beware of sketchy payment methods and make sure to discuss payment details before you make the transaction.
Online Consignment Stores
While all of these online shops will charge you a commission per sale, they will really help you get your listings in front of a live audience. The more people that see your listings, the more sales you will get!
The following are some of the most popular online consignment stores that boast brand name items at discounted prices:
9. Thredup. “… The world’s largest online secondhand shopping destination with thousands of like-new styles from your favorite brands at up to 90% off retail.”
10. Swap.com. Mission: “To give our community of thrifters high-quality, affordable secondhand apparel for the whole family.”
Local Consignment Stores
If you’d rather take your clothes to a brick and mortar store to get paid for your items today, you can take them to one of these second-hand stores. While they generally only pay you about a third of what they will be able to resell it for, you will walk out with cash in hand. Here are a few of the top secondhand clothing stores with locations across the US.
13. Plato’s Closet
14. Clothes Mentor
15. Uptown Cheapskate
How to Sell Clothes Online
eBay is a great marketplace to sell clothes online, as it’s been around longer than any other online reselling platform. Selling on eBay is like hosting your own virtual garage sale.
To get started, you will want to do a search on eBay for previously sold listings that are the same or similar to the used clothing you’re trying to sell. Read about how to use eBay in flea market flipping to learn how to price your items on eBay.
Once you have an idea of how to price your used clothing, take good pictures, write a relevant description, and list it!
Your listing will be active for 30 days. Be sure to check on it daily to see if you have any watchers or offers.
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Where to Buy Used Clothes to Resell
Other than your own closet, there are lots of places to get used clothes to resell for a profit. Places like garage sales and thrift stores are nine out of 10 times the best bet for you to buy used clothes.
Many of the clothes you will find at garage sales are either children’s or older clothes. Focus on anything that looks like new or very lightly used. Try to stick to traditional sizes as well.
Clothing that might coincide with a current trend will be a great seller (i.e. Star Wars).
You will get the best crack at the good items at the start of the sale. Try to get there early on the first day. Never pay more than 1/3 of what you intend to sell it for. Keep in mind the cost of shipping.
Related: Best Things to Sell to Make Money
Thrift stores are hands down my favorite place that sells used clothing. You can often find used designer clothing at a bargain price and sell for top dollar.
Anything brand name will be a good seller. Stay away from off-brand clothes or items that would have had a low selling price even when brand new.
You can also find items like sports jerseys or band tee collectibles for a bargain. When purchasing used clothing such as these, be sure to check their going rate online to ensure you will be able to make a profit.
Shop local places like Goodwill, Salvation Army, AmVets, or Savers on days that clothing is offered 50% off.
You can also buy all kinds of used clothing online. Places like eBay, Etsy, ThredUp, and Poshmark sell used clothing and ship straight to your home. Then, you can relist them for a profit.
Make sure to check for quality before purchasing used clothing online since it can be hard to make money off of them.
Is Selling Used Clothing a Good Business?
If you tried to sell used clothing and cannot empty your stash entirely, you can always donate them to charity. Not only will you get a tax deduction but also some places will give you a discount on in-store items when you donate. You’re also helping people in need and not putting them into a landfill!
To sell clothes online, it all boils down to great pictures and a platform to list your clothes on. Don’t be afraid to list clothes that were never your favorite items because everyone has a different style. I’ve made great money selling clothes online in the past and I know of others who have done the same. It takes time and dedication, but selling used clothing is a great business to start.