Thursday, October 13, 2011

Tips for people selling on eBay or kijiji

One of the interesting things about having online markets like kijiji and eBay is that people who have never sold anything in their life now have the power to sell stuff. But this lack of experience leads to faux-pas like posting the wrong kind of picture of the item being sold. As a public service to such people, I offer Karl's tips regarding taking photos of stuff you are selling online.

If you're selling an article of clothing, it's not a good idea to leave it in a crumpled heap on the floor. You might want to model it in a manner that helps to demonstrate how great it looks being worn. That means put it on a mannequin or on a live person. If you choose a live person, try to frame the photo in a way that doesn't distract from the clothing. So for example, if the model has a cigarette dangling from their mouth, you might either want to get them to put it aside or frame the photo in a way that the cigarette isn't in the shot. Things like overly obese body parts, cut scars on the wrists, warts the size of dollar coins, extremely hairy limbs, etc. are things that might distract the viewer from the article of clothing. Articles in the surrounding environment that could distract from the item being sold include vibrators, open bottles of alcohol, underwear (unless that's included with the article you`re selling) and kitty litter boxes. If you're going to say that the clothing has never been worn, you might not want to prove yourself a liar by modelling the clothing on a person. At least - not a live person. If the clothing is full of wrinkles, don't be surprised if you don't get a lot of bids. As an aside, the term 'gently used' does not mean an article that came from the thrift store and has possibly been owned by at least 12 people. Don't insist that the clothing comes from a smoke-free or pet free home and there's a cat enjoying a cigar sitting right beside the thing you're selling. If you're selling jewellery and insist on putting it on a live model, try to choose someone whose skin doesn't look like the person is 90 years old. If you're selling bedding, like a mattress, if there are stains - make sure that you're not showcasing them by facing them to the camera. Consider putting the mattress on an actual bed. Laying it up against a wall covered in black mold, or having the mattress surrounded by boxes that look like they just experienced a spring flood might not be putting the item being sold in the best light. If the bed or bedding being sold is put together, think about how much better it would look if it was made up. 

So the overall theme as you can see is that if you're trying to sell something, you have to present it in the best light possible. The item should be clean, presented in a manner that flatters the object and not surrounded by objects or an environment that distracts from the item being sold.

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