The Ultimate Guide to Selling Your Things Online

It’s been a few months since your birthday and that awesome footwear your aunt gave you is still languishing in the corner of the wardrobe, yet to be used. Probably your aunt didn’t take note of your size before buying? The fondue set that seemed like a great idea at a time has joined the popcorn machine in the darkest recesses of the kitchen cabinet. The beautiful iPad your were excited to get only to be frustrated by it’s usability is now equivalent to the “p” in psychology to you. And that beautiful but ill-fitting jacket you bought is at the back of the wardrobe – hanging beside your long-lamented skinny jeans.

You don’t want throw them away, that will be a waste right? Yet you have gotten tired of having them around you and you can’t return them either. So what can you do with them instead? The answer could be right at your fingertips: in the words of OLX, sell it!.

Another question that may come to mind is how do I sell it?

There are many ways you can use to find a buyer for your items and we will be looking at them in details.

Auction it

Online Auction

Auctioning stuff online is an easy way of de-cluttering your home, and one of Nigerian’s auction marketplaces is


Auctioning an item best when you are not sure how much to sell it or when your are willing to let the potential buyers determine the price.

Online auction is just as similar as the traditional auction we know, where the item goes to the highest bidder, but this time, the bidding is done online and the bidding period can be in days or weeks.

Here are some auction tips:

  • Best day and time for an auction to end: Sunday evening, about 8.00pm, when according to Thomas – an eBay spokesman, “people are at home, relaxing, and on the internet”.
  • Best starting price: In many cases, ₦99. “If you’re not sure about the value of an item, start it as low as possible,” says Thomas. “It encourages people to get involved in your auction. People see it as an opportunity to get a real bargain. And you might find people get so caught up in the auction, you get a better price. If you start it too high they can be put off.”
  • Ideal auction length: Seven days. “One week ensures people stay excited over a shorter period of time,” says Thomas. “Less than that and you don’t get two weekends; longer and people might get bored. That said, 10 days is great for items that need to be inspected before purchase, such as a car or motorbike.”
  • Cost of an auction: For regular members and with most auction website, it’s free to list up to 40 items in one month. If an item sells, the seller may have to pay some percentage of the final value. The pricing structure may vary depending on the item and the auction website.

Online classifieds

If you’re more interested in a fixed price than an auction and would rather avoid paying commission, try a classifieds service.

Online classified are similar to traditional newspaper classifieds where sellers list their used product for sell. A buyer sees the product and contacts the seller, they both agree on a price and where to meet for the exchange.

For most classified websites, listing an item is absolutely free and easy.

It is as easy as creating an account with them, take a picture of the item and upload it with the details.

Some top options in Nigeria are:

The advantage of using a classifieds site is if your item sells, you pocket the full amount. The disadvantage is that if you’re using a paid service, you may have to pay upfront to get your item listed but like I said before, most classified sites are free to use and they get quite a lot of visitors, which means that your item can easily be found by potential buyers.

Online Marketplace

Online Marketplaces

Another great place to sell items is online marketplace.

Online marketplace is similar to but also different form online classified.

The similarity is that items are listed at a fixed price, but unlike in online classified where price can be negotiable, price is not negotiable in online marketplace and in rare occasions will the buyer meet the seller. In most cases, the seller will ship the item to the buy so be sure to include the shipping cost if you are going to sell in a marketplace.

Online marketplace is must suitable if you will be selling multiple items on a regular basis.

Getting started with online marketplace is free but you may have to pay some percentage of the final sell.

Most online shopping sites in Nigeria are also marketplaces. You can find our list of top 10 in the industry here.


Another great place to find buyers for your items is forums.

A typical example is Nairaland. Nairaland has a section (Technology Market) where you can where you can inform the public of a gadget you want to sell, provided you don’t break the forum rules and regulations.

You can also promote your ad by buying an ad space on the forum.


Finding a buyer for an item you no longer have need for can be easy if you know where to look and if you market in the right way. You can use more than one avenue to advertise you item, but make sure to update the item as “sold” on other platforms when you finally sell the item to avoid confusion.

So when next you are wondering what to do with an item that is no longer serving you, just get online and sell it!

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