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5 ways to get buyers to your doorstep

With the advent of the Internet came a veil of anonymity that protects both the innocent and the wily. On most websites, people are free to interact with others without divulging any personal information. While this has several advantages, it sometimes results in a distinct behavior change in those individuals who are no longer bound by face-to-face societal norms. What does this mean when you’re selling something on your local UsedEverywhere site? Christa, one of our Facebook followers had this to say:

I have had 15 yes FIFTEEN people (in the last 3 days) say they were coming by for numerous items.. I would set a time, give all my information.. and no one bothers to come. People shouldn’t be allowed to waste others times.

We feel you Christa. Below are five steps you can take to remedy the issue.

1. Get to the point
Everyone has the attention span of a guppy these days. When they inquire about your item, cater to that mentality and give them all of the information they need in a single burst. If they emailed you, respond with one email that contains your location*, your availability, and whether or not you’re willing to sell it for their requested price. If they phoned you, try to fit all of that information into a single telephone call without having to play tag.

*Update from the community

Gareth: I read your tips. Good ideas but giving your location and availability is a recipe for a B&E, particularly if you have listed items that are valuable / easily stolen. Seller beware!

Michael: I completely agree Gareth. Rather than disclosing their address, sellers may want to include their general area or a location other than their home where a meeting could take place. Coffee shops and well known, public areas are great if the item you’re selling is portable.

2. Follow-up
If someone shows interest in your item but doesn’t email you back, there’s no harm in following-up with them. We often get caught up in the woes of daily life and it’s not uncommon for people to skim over an email if they don’t have the time or energy to respond, only to forget about it entirely. Prod them with an email and at the very least you should receive a courteous “no.” This will speed up the selling process and give you more time to focus on other potential buyers.

3. Light a candle under their…
Sometimes all a buyer needs is a little manufactured motivation. Let them know that you have other buyers interested in your item and that you’ll be selling on a first-come, first-serve basis. Your time is valuable, and there’s no point in turning down potential buyers while you wait for the first person you spoke with to (hopefully) follow through with their promise.

4. Timing is everything
Everyone’s schedule is different and it can sometimes be tricky to coordinate a meeting with potential buyers. If you’re having difficulty making time you risk losing potential buyers. Post your item on a Friday or sometime when you know you’ll have a few free days to arrange the sale. If your item is reasonably small you might even consider taking it to work and making the arrangements to sell it on your lunch break.

5. Be price flexible
Everyone’s looking to hold on to their pennies, but in the long run 5 or 10 bucks isn’t going to make or break your bank account. Before you post your item, consider what the lowest price you’d be willing to sell it for is. Then raise the price slightly in your ad. Buyers looking for a deal will be more likely impulse buy if you cut down the price, and you’ll sell your item faster. If you really want to rake them in, offer your best deal to everyone and anyone who inquires. Bargains are tough to ignore.

Try those out and let me know how they work at

As the social media and community coordinator at, Michael is the voice you hear when you phone our 1-800 number and the text you read skim three days a week on our blog. Keep up with his antics on Twitter @MrConkin.

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