How to sell unwanted Christmas Gifts.

sell unwanted Christmas gifts

Picture this scene: It’s Christmas Eve. Your palms are sweating. You smile nervously…

Surrounded by your extended family (or worst case scenario… your partner’s family) …

It’s the most dreaded 25 minutes of the year.

Your mother in law rises from her seat. She creeps to the tree, and lunges for the present at the back. One that just happens to have your name tag plastered all over it.

*sigh* *hands sweat*

Reaching in for a stiff hug before she hands over the present.

You reluctantly take apart at the wrapping paper. To slowly unveil at least ONE of the following:

• Lynx Africa Gift set
• A naff-oversized woolly jumper
• Dodgy socks
• Some cookbook
• Someone you hate’s biography

…All of which you don’t think will ever see the light of day again.

A smile and an enthusiastic, “thank you” are forced.

If you can relate to this description at all this Christmas, then do not worry. You’re not alone. In reality, thousands upon thousands of poor present-receivers just like you, will be waking up to unwanted gifts and presents this year.

But that’s where I’m going to help you.

For too long, I myself, have received unwanted Christmas gifts over the years, and I have watched people just like me suffer in exactly the same way.

So today I’m going to show you the simple, all-inclusive guide to getting rid of unwanted Christmas gifts this year.

And remember, there is no shame in wanting to get rid of gifts. So if you’re slightly at unease with your present, read on!


Place #1: Ebay

ebay logo

The top dog. The giant, Ebay, is probably the first place that came to mind when you opened your grey, oversized wooly jumper. (Oops.) It’s normally the first place you would go to if you needed to get rid of something quickly.

And not surprisingly.

It’s completely free to register on Ebay, AND they have millions of auctions and listings at any given time. No starting fees involved.

There’s not really much of a limit with regard to how much you can sell. Ebay gives users a limit of 1,000 listings. So… unless you’re extremely popular (and unfortunate) to have received 10,000 lynx Africa gift sets over the years… you’ll never run out of space.

But… not everything is Rosy. You will have to pay a 10% fee to Ebay once your items are sold. That includes posting and packaging. BUT, I guess that you’re not really expecting to make big bucks anyway, so that shouldn’t be a problem.

You can receive the money via PayPal too. But it does incur a very small fee. If you feel comfortable using PayPal, then that’s not a problem, but you should remember to take care when doing so.

Ebay has, in fact, created their own *very useful* guide for sellers, check it out here:

Ebay: Pros
• One of the world leading selling platforms.
• Good reputation online.
• Millions of users.
• More product listings than you will ever need.

• Small fees involved
• Care should be taken when using PayPal.

How to succeed on EBay:

Whilst it would be great to wake up on Boxing Day with all of your unwanted gifts replaced with cold, hard cash… it might not happen as quickly as that. It’s probably worth taking some time to set up your Ebay profile first. And remember, simple & professional is always the best look.

Secondly, do a little bit of market research to investigate what prices you should sell for. On top of that, take a little time to make sure your posting package prices are accurate. Some buyers may be unwilling to buy if you price your stuff too high.

Bonus tip: If you’re listing an auction, begin the auction at 99p, this will get you a better sale in the long run. It will catch the eye of more potential buyers and encourage a late bidding war when he auction is closing.

Option #2: Gumtree

gumtree logo

Gumtree is also completely free to sign up for, and is a Great place to get rid of any unwanted gifts this Christmas.

The good news is, that it has no fees. Whilst Ebay charges small fees for almost everything from listing products to selling them. Gumtree doesn’t incur such fees. Also, whilst it is still a hugely popular marketplace, there is, in fact, less competition than on other websites.

Thankfully, it doesn’t cost anything to use the platform to buy and sell. It uses PayPal too, and Gumtree does warn about the dangers of using PayPal.

However, having to actually meet up with buyers in person is a very common custom on Gumtree. When selling more expensive items, it happens almost always.

Gumtree Pros
• No fees
• Less competition
• Easy to set up

• PayPal care required
• May have to meet sellers in person

How to succeed on Gumtree:

Succeeding on Gumtree is essentially selling 101. With your product listing, you should be honest, describe any faults if they exist, read other listings to see what people say, and have a catchy title that makes people click.

You should also use your own photos. At the end of the day, people like to buy from people. Even if they’re just photos that you took from your smartphone, it will help build a trustful Seller persona, and will encourage your buyers to choose you over other sellers.

Top Tip: This is a really good piece of advice. Don’t only describe the features of what you’re selling – explain exactly what difference they make to someone. For example, if you’re selling a bike, you could say: “The 6 gears help you get the bike uphill with ease.” Rather than “This bike comes with 6 gears.” You see what I mean?

As Gavin said: “Sell the sausage, not the sizzle!”


Place #3: Amazon

Amazon Logo

What is, the largest online marketplace in the world, Amazon is a great place to sell unwanted gifts this Christmas.

Amazon has got two types of seller platforms, Amazon FBA, and Amazon Seller. Here’s what they both mean:

FBA, stands for fulfilment by Amazon, if you gotta get all those ugly woolly hats and socks out of your house ASAP, Amazon FBA might be the best choice for you. Once you pay the £30 registration fee, you ship the product to one of Amazon’s warehouses.

From there, they deal with the product listing, customer service and shipping. Pretty handy Eh?

It will also mean that there are fewer fees involved than in the alternative option: Amazon Seller.

Amazon Seller is generally the normal methods that people use to list products one by one. It’s very similar actually to selling in Ebay, but you get the perks of Amazon’s enormous marketplace and brand image.

You don’t have to pay listing fees, but you do pay 99p per sale, and Amazon may take an additional fee based on the product category and the final sale price.

Because you’re an individual which is selling on Amazon, you have to take charge of the listings, pricing, shipping and resolving any disputes which arise from buyers.

Amazon Pros:

• Access to huge marketplace and great brand reputation.
• Various types of Seller platform based on your position.
• Amazon FBA takes charge of almost everything
• No listing fees.

• High registration price
• Amazon Seller means you have to take control of almost everything
• Small fees involved in selling price.

How to succeed on Amazon:

One thing that’s very, very important on Amazon is Keywords. These are words that must be in your description and title in order for your listing to actually be seen when someone searches for your product.

So for example, let’s say you’re listing a grey bobble hat on Amazon. You literally need to conclude the words “Bobble hat” in your description multiple times, and in your title. This will simply help you rank higher in the Amazon search results, meaning more people will see your products and it will be sold faster.

Place #4: Etsy

etsy logo

What initially started out as a place for Artists to sell paintings, jewellery and other types of crafts, has slowly transformed into a marketplace for almost anything since its birth in 2005.

Not bad, considering it has over 1.6 million sellers, and 21.6 million buyers, if you do the math… that means there’s a lot of opportunity for sellers on the platform.

Etsy offers an inclusive platform and payment system on which individuals can sell products. As of October 2019, there is no setup fee to sell on Etsy. Your only costs are a about 15p per item listing fee, along with a 5% transaction fee and a payment processing fee of (3% + 15p)

Etsy is also very good for e-commerce businesses. If you’re looking for a way to generate some extra income online, it’s possibly one of the best business models out there, but we’ll get to that in a later article.

Etsy Pros:

Huge potential
Less competition than amazon
Small fees
Good to develop future business

Smaller marketplace than Ebay.

How to succeed on Etsy:

One important aspect to consider when selling on Etsy is the community. Try engaging on the website forum, interact with other sellers to gain more top tips, or chat with potential buyers.
You should also, obviously, use high quality photos, and use as many as you can. Use detailed angles to show off everything to do with your product.

You should also be quick and offer professional advice whenever customers send you messages. Be polite, informative and helpful to buyers. Following this advice, you should get rid of all those unwanted gifts in no time.

Remember: “The more you tell, the more you sell.” – David Ogilvy.

Conclusion: Which platform is best?

In conclusion then. It’s not great waking up to Christmas presents that you don’t want. But that should be no cause for panic. There are many excellent places online you can get rid of these gifts. Each having their own set of advantages and disadvantages.

I’m not going to say which platform is best, but I’ve gathered enough evidence to let you review that and make your own decision. Just remember some key points that you should keep in mind. For example, what fees are involved in selling? Do I have to meet these buyers in person? What payment method will I use, and probably most importantly of all… how convenient is it.

Do a little bit of investigating to find what works best for you, I wish you the best of luck, and I’ll talk to you again soon.

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