Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Garage Sale Tips

Our booth is awesome!

I was in my early twenties when I first ran my own bazaar stall. I thought it was cool that I had my own business and I was my own boss. I sold clothes, bags, accessories, toys-- stuff I found in Divisoria that would easily sell. At least I hoped the items would be bought immediately. 

My stall catered to those who were looking for nice affordable pieces and quality may only be third or fourth consideration. I priced merchandise inexpensively, so people would not think twice when buying. Well in most cases that was the case. In the end, I tripled the amount I invested. 

Last week I was given a chance to have my own stall again. There was a condominium-wide garage sale organized in where I live. It was a 3-day event where tenants were allowed to sell dry-goods and food. This was very timely because my husband and I had to dispose a lot of our household items, clothes, shoes and what-nots. 

My husband joined in setting up, manning and closing our booth

I really had fun. Aside from earning from selling our old things, the event reminded me of my childhood. When I used to spend whole days, and sometimes even nights, in provincial fairs and I try out all the interesting food being sold. 

For those planning to hold their own garage sale, these tips might help:

1. Price merchandise competitively low. 
Garage sales have a variety of consumers: those who can afford to buy condominium units, toddlers who easily gets what they want by whispering to mommy or daddy, teenagers who already have allowances, retired and working individuals, household helps. But although different in status, one thing's for sure, all are in the look out for nice inexpensive items. Remember that your main goal for holding a garage sale is to dispose items you don't need anymore and somehow get a few bucks from it. My most expensive apparel was P150, majority was P100, and lowest was P10.

2. Be flexible with prices 
For each item, know how low you can go. Example for a 100 peso apparel, you can go as low as 80. So when someone asks for a discount, give it. Be extra flexible if your consumer is a househelp. It will mean a lot to them and make you feel good inside. 

3. Make sure prices are easily seen
This is a no brainer. Put your signages big and bold. 
Not my signages, but my neighbor stall's. Mine was just hand written on the spot. 

4. Display nicest, most eye catching pieces upfront
You have to make visitors look at your stall and make them think that there is something in your stall worth checking out. 
My (used to be) colorful dress that doesn't fit me anymore displayed up front

5. Display all items for sale
So first you try to get their attention, now you make sure that their experience will be smooth. Not everyone has time to go through your items on a pile. Make it easy for them by hanging clothes, displaying items. 
Add caption

6. Know all the items you have
Just like any salesman, may it be for gadgets, automobile or real estate, you should know what you are selling inside and out. This will come in handy when customers are looking for something specific. And you want to proactively offer to a repeat customer.

The view from inside our booth. Good thing I love people watching. 

7. Set up early and close late
Be available as much as you can. You'll never know when a big buy will come. 

8. Make sure that someone is manning the booth at all times
Same as number 7, you wouldn't want to miss a possible sale.
I invited my friend Tet to share our booth and she made a number of sales, too.
9. Be approachable
This can be challenging because there are different kinds of people. I usually just stay on the sidelines and talk when asked. Don't go asking what the customer is looking for. That is annoying. But always be genuine and warm when approached. 

10. Have fun! 
Well, apply this in everything you do and life would be brighter.
Peace out! No to clutter. Sell your old stuff!