Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Selling your stuff online, without shipping it overseas

If you're like the average Anglo-Israeli, you probably have plenty of stuff hanging around your house that you don't really need and takes up space in your closet or shed. Stuff that other people might enjoy and use.

 Of course, you always have the option of donating your stuff to charity, giving it away (e.g., via Agora or Freecycle) or selling it on eBay, but this isn't always the best solution for heavy, fragile or very expensive items. Try sending, say, a large crystal vase abroad, and you'll end up either with a huge shipping bill because of the weight of the padding, or a broken vase and one very dissatisfied customer. Your best bet is probably to attempt to sell it to someone nearby, preferably someone who'll pick it up from your house or an agreed-upon meeting place.

 To this end, you have several options online. You can also help others get rid of their unwanted stuff , and help the planet as a bonus, by buying secondhand and helping others recycle their unwanted goods.

If your Hebrew is passable, to the extent you can handle a phone conversation comfortably, you'll get the largest exposure by posting your stuff for sale on Yad2 or WinWin. Posting a regular ad is free, but it costs (not too much) to feature an ad for even more exposure - and in the case of WinWin, you can also get an ad in the print version of Ynet. If your Hebrew isn't that great, you can always post your wares at Janglo and be confident you'll be selling to a fellow Anglo, or at least a fluent English speaker.

Shpock (with a Sh, not Captain Kirk's sidekick) is an app where you can sell and buy goods from private people located close to you. There are free download versions both for iPhone and Android, and the items for sale are listed in order of proximity to your location. You can also search for specific items you're interested in.

Levmarket and Mamazone Market are two barter-type sites which work on a similar platform and use virtual hearts as their currency, Levmarket using purple hearts and Mamazone Market using red. You can exchange purple hearts for red as you wish for use at the relevant site. Some of the more expensive items and services have a price combined of both hearts and Shekels. Both sites have an English version.

List your items in the relevant category, name your price and wait for messages from interested buyers to come in. The hearts you earn from selling your stuff can be used to get items you're interested in that others have posted. I've noticed that because actual money doesn't change hands, the psychological barrier that normally comes with spending real money is much reduced, and good stuff goes quickly.

Bigso is an online local marketplace much like eBay - there are real retailers as well as just plain people who want to sell their extras. There is a 5% cashback when buying from this site from Cashback.co.il (for more about this site, see this post of mine) that doesn't take away from your profits. Posting stuff for sale is free. The site is entirely in Hebrew.

Happy selling and buying!

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