Oh, the weird and wonderful business of buying and selling secondhand goods online. A market once cornered by Ebay and Craigslist, virtual resale sites and apps are a booming business, some as virtual garage sales and others as niche marketplaces. Here's the lowdown on five popular sites and apps and please jump in with your favorites (and not-so-favorites) in the comments!
The lowdown: The cPro+ Craigslist Mobile Client is a well-reviewed app that lets you take Craigslist on the road. If you're familiar with the Craigslist website, the app follows the same general format.
Usability: Attractive interface that is easier to search than the Craigslist website. Allows you to filter searches by specific category and location (down to neighborhood). You can reply to posters by texting/calling or emailing directly through the app. The app sends notifications when new items are added that meet your search criteria, and a GPS auto location feature helps users locate nearby items "now", in real time.
$$$: It's free to list, and Craigslist takes no cut of your sales as it is purely seller-to-buyer.
Things to note: Overall reviews are positive. Some users felt the in-app purchase does not deliver accurate push notifications. As with the Craigslist website, there is a user beware element and some reviewers noted instances of buyers and sellers flaking out or acting in a misleading fashion.
The lowdown: Chairish is a resale site and app specifically designed for gently used (largely designer) furniture and home decor.
Usability: An attractive, easy-to-browse interface is set up like a traditional shopping site, which makes searching for items fun and fast. Sellers can receive and respond to verified offers from phone, email or seller dashboard. Buyers and sellers can arrange for local pick-up or Chairish will arrange for delivery (though those fees can be steep).
$$$: Listing is free and items can be de-listed by seller at any time, though it's important to mention that Chairish takes a 20% commission.
Things to note: The site does not accept all pieces that are uploaded by sellers. They may reject an item due to condition or style of piece (e.g., if an item is in poor condition or they have too many of a certain item at one time).
The lowdown: Tradesy is a website and mobile app that specializes in resale of gently used designer handbags, shoes, clothing, and accessories.
Usability: The interface is stylish and easy to use, and feels like an online retail experience, rather than a consignment shop. For sellers, Tradesy crops and edits uploaded images to enhance display.
$$$: It's free to list items, and there are no time limits on listings, though Tradesy takes a 9% commission if you spend earnings on the Tradesy site but takes an 11.9% commission if you choose to withdraw earnings from site.
Things to note: The user base is on the smaller side, which means a smaller audience of potential buyers.