How to Make Money Buying and Selling on Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp or Craigslist

Making a little cash is my favorite part of decluttering. It's also one of my favorite parts of buying secondhand. I love picking something up for a deal, enjoying it for a bit, and then making money on it. It literally gives me a rush. I've been reselling for more than a decade. I've seen how online selling platforms have changed through the years and I have gotten pretty good at figuring out how to make some easy money in not a whole lot of time. Today I'm sharing how to sell on Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp or Craigslist and giving you all my tips to make some extra cash on the side!

make money buying and selling on craigslist, offerup and facebook marketplace

How to Make Money Selling on Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp or Craigslist

how to buy and sell and make money on secondhand sites

Do you guys remember eBay in the early years? It was so much fun to buy and sell there but in the past few years, eBay has quickly turned into a storefront for businesses, and honestly, I haven't been around to buy or sell there in about a decade. My favorite places to sell are Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp, and Craigslist, though I will say, Craigslist has taken a backseat for me the past few years as OfferUp created a better system for selling. And just like the game of leapfrog, Facebook Marketplace has now jumped ahead of OfferUp for me and now I'm almost always selling first on Facebook Marketplace. This brings me to my first point.

Selling Platforms are Always Changing

Any advice I give you now may be obsolete in about four seconds but stick around anyway. Selling platforms are constantly changing. When I first joined OfferUp there wasn't an option to add in shipping. It was strictly a local meet-up selling platform. Craigslist used to be hyper-local and if you didn't live in a large metro area, your area probably didn't have one. But now, there are subgroups in even the most remote locations. Being flexible is key to learning these platforms and how they work.

5 Tips for Selling your Items


Take Good Pictures

You can certainly use your phone for these {in fact, it's usually easier} but taking a good photo of an item is key! I prefer to take pictures in natural light so I often go outside to take my listing photos. Take several photos of an item and make sure you get any close-up photos of defects you want to disclose. Don't post a photo of your item that you found on-line. Post your real actual item. 

Be Honest

Make sure you are honest in the description about the condition of your item. This can sometimes be hard, but buyers want to know what they are getting into before they buy an item. Full disclosure will not only protect you if the buyer ends up unhappy with the purchase, but it will make it easier for a buyer to trust you and make an informed decision in their buying process.

Set a Fair Price

This is the one thing I get questions about all the time! People are constantly confused about how to price their items to sell. Start by doing some research. See if a similar item is for sale and take into consideration the condition of the item you are selling. If you want your item sold quickly, I always price it on the lower end of what most of the items are going for, if you aren't dying to sell it, price it on the higher end and see if you get any bites. You can always lower the price later.

Leave Room for Negotiation

OfferUp allows you to check a box that says firm on price and it never fails that you will always get people making offers anyway. I like to negotiate so I don't mind when people make offers, but some people take offense. Don't let your emotion get the best of you, you can always say no. 

Tip for Buying: If you are buying an item, make sure you do any negotiation for the item before you arrange to meet. I will often have multiple people interested in an item to buy and if someone is meeting me, I want to make sure we have the price negotiated first rather than getting caught off guard meeting and someone lowballing me with an offer I didn't expect. 

Be Safe

Meeting people locally may not be your thing. Not going to sugarcoat it, there have been Craigslist murders. Generally, people aren't getting murdered for selling their used baby clothes, it's usually for higher ticket items like diamonds. There are ways to stay safe when selling. I often try to meet at a busy location during daylight hours and I always make sure someone knows where I'm going and who I'm going to be meeting. I will occasionally do pick-ups at my home {often necessary if you are selling a large item like a couch}, but only if my husband is home with me, or you can invite a friend over. 

If meeting someone to sell something isn't your thing, you can always offer to ship an item. Offering shipping often allows you the ease of selling without the hassle of meeting. Just make sure you cover your shipping cost or work it into your price. 

Pro Tip: Raise the price of your item to include shipping and market your item as having free shipping! People love free shipping!

How are Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, and OfferUp Different From Each Other?

pros and cons of various sales platforms

We have so many options for selling now that didn't exist when I first started. As I mentioned in the beginning, the platforms are constantly changing, but these are my current observations.


Pros to Selling on Craigslist

There is a lot of anonymity on this platform. You e-mail through an encrypted address and you never have to give out personal details if you don't want to. It's free, there are no fees and it's generally pretty easy to use. I

Cons to Selling on Craigslist

There is no method of accountability on this platform. You can't rate a seller or a buyer which often leaves you waiting around for a buyer or seller and it can be frustrating. This is very much a local selling platform, so it's great for selling large items {we bought a car on Craigslist once!}, but if you aren't comfortable meeting people in person, this may not be the platform for you.


Pros to Selling on OfferUp

There is a rating system that allows you to rate the buyer and/or the seller. This allows for some accountability and you can be more selective in who you sell to and who you buy from after seeing their reviews. There are no fees on OfferUp if you pick up and sell locally, but there are fees if you sell an item that will be shipped {more on that in the cons section}. There is a built-in messaging app making communication easier and I find it's relatively simple to list an item for sale on OfferUp. 

Cons to Selling on OfferUp

Sellers are responsible for paying a service fee for shipped items. This is often a percentage of your item's final price {excluding shipping} and is at a minimum of $1.99 or 12.9% of the sale price. Even with the accountability of the rating system, I have had my fair share of no-shows when I've sold on this platform.

Facebook Marketplace

Pros to Selling on Facebook Marketplace

Like you needed another reason to spend more time on Facebook. But the reality is, most people are on the platform and it can be easy to sell your items. Like OfferUp, you can select a local pick-up option for selling, or you can offer to ship, of which there is a fee. I generally select both local pick-up and shipping as an option to get more people looking at my items. There is a rating option in place for buyers and sellers to help with accountability.

I have had the most success lately selling on Facebook Marketplace. So much so, that I have almost completely stopped using other sales platforms. Keep reading and I'll share my secrets to success in selling on Facebook Marketplace.

Cons to Selling on Facebook Marketplace

Again, there are fees for selling when you ship an item. The selling fees are more affordable than OfferUp at only 5% or a minimum of .40cents per order. I recently lost some money on my sales on Facebook Marketplace because I chose to ship the item instead of getting a shipping label from Marketplace when I sold my item thinking I could ship my items cheaper on my own. I could not. They have since increased shipping prices to keep up with the rising shipping costs, so if I were you, just select their shipping label instead of trying to do it on your own.

Facebook Marketplace is flooded with sales listings, so your item can quickly get buried if you haven't priced it right or in the right place.

My Secret to Success Selling on Facebook Marketplace

secret to success facebook marketplace

It's no secret that Facebook has a lot of eyeballs on its platform daily. A lot of people spend a lot of time there, which is good for you because your item will get seen by a lot of people. The biggest tip for success in selling on Facebook Marketplace is to join a specific subgroup to sell your items in. Got a lot of North Face gear to sell? Join the North Face and Patagonia Resale group. Want to sell your daughter's old American Girl dolls? Join the American Girl Resale group. Want to sell locally? Join your local area group. Heck, join any of the local groups you're willing to drive to. I'm part of a few in a 20-mile radius.

Seriously, there is a group for everything! When you list on Facebook Marketplace you can cross-post your listing easily by selecting up to 10 groups to list your item in. Every subgroup has its own set of rules, and you often have to ask for permission to join a group and answer several questions about why you want to join that group, but once you're in, you will have access to a select group of people who are invested in buying a particular item, so you narrow down the playing field.

Not going to lie, sometimes these subgroups let me down. Anyone can start a group on Facebook, so make sure when you join it's an active group {Facebook will tell you how many new posts it gets in that group in a day} and make sure there are a lot of members in that group because the more eyeballs the better!

My Item Didn't Sell, Now What?

I'm always surprised by hot ticket items that basically sell minutes after I list them, and those that sit and go stale. This happens and you can't take it personally. 


Some Reasons Your Items Aren't Selling

You've priced it too high

Take a look at what other items are selling for

The pictures aren't good

Make sure the profile picture is in focus and has good lighting. If you can, stage that item to look more professional. 

You don't have enough information

Buyers want to make an informed decision before they buy, so make sure you have all the information in your listing. Add in the dimensions of an item and if you keep getting the same questions in your inbox, make sure you add those answers to your listing.

Rethink your listing title

Make sure you have all the information you need in the title of your post so people who do a quick search can easily find your item. Use keywords in your listing and make sure it's easy to find for people who are looking.

Make sure it's listed in the right place

Double check to make sure your listing is in the right category. Sometimes when filling out the information, a default setting can put your listing in the wrong category and eyeballs aren't getting on your item.

Make sure you are following the group's rules

This really only applies to Facebook Marketplace, but if you have your item listed in a subgroup, make sure you follow the rules you agreed upon. this recently happened to me when I added a North Face coat to the North Face resale group. I left out in the description that my item was from a smoke-free pet-friendly home and this was part of the admin approval process, so my listing never got approved for the group. 

In case you missed it, I set a goal for myself to make $500 reselling items. You can check out this post for all the details. Think I can do it?

disclaimer: this post may have affiliate links. By clicking on them and purchasing through them, I may receive a small commission. These small purchases help me to continue to keep writing content and creating at Rachel Teodoro. Thank you!

1 comment

Valorie2 said...

Please tell me how to start blogging Please!
How to get sponsors, where to start, pay rates, anything you could offer because I only know how to sell on eBay which has let me down and not protecting my seller status...100% feedback of 14 years torn down by a looney tunes buyer. Refunds to buyers with only remorse or wore a nice new item of clothing ionce. They also take way too much for fees.
Thank you

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