Good afternoon peeps! I hope you are all having a great day! Spring time is here, and with Spring comes Spring-cleaning, and with cleaning/de-junking comes YARD SALES!
Since yard sales can be a GREAT environment to find treasures for your home and can be a great way to de-junk while earning some cash, today I’d like to give some yard sale tips on how to host the most successful yard sale possible. You may not know this about me, but I went to college and graduated with my Bachelor’s degree in advertising and public relations. Not only that, but while getting my Masters degree, I even TAUGHT advertising for a few semesters. I bet you didn’t know I was a school nerd, did ya!?!
Over the years, I have taught a lot of friends and family how to host a successful yard sale. A lot of those people have told me that my strategies are great. In fact, it’s pretty funny when we have a yard sale because the chatter always begins with, “Man who did your advertising?” (no joke).
You may think my strategies are a bit over-kill. But with tried and trusted experience, if you follow these tips, I know your yard sale will be more successful than if you hadn’t. Some have a hard time taking the time to properly promote their yard sale, and as a result, they don’t have as much foot traffic. Without a lot of foot traffic, then you simply don’t sell as much stuff. The main goal of the yard sale is to get rid of as much stuff as possible, right? Not only will my tips help you get the maximum amount of foot traffic as possible, but they will also help you sell more stuff once customersget to your yard sale.
Make your posters BIG. Ok, how BIG, you say? From the main road (or roads) that will bring the most traffic, you need a poster board sized sign. Yep, the size of the poster board (which is 22 X 28 most of the time). Don’t cut it in half, you need to get as much attention as possible on the busiest road near your home.
You need TWO big posters to catch the attention on your busiest road near your home. One for the traffic going one way, and one for the traffic headed the opposite way. For example, if that busy road heads North and South, you need one to grab those vehicles heading North, and one to grab those vehicles heading South. If you only put one poster to direct traffic, then you potentially lose out on half of your foot traffic right from the start. A great way to do this is with a large A frame sign.
Use balloons on your large signs. I’m telling ya, the more people that you can get to look at your signs, the more people you will have to actually turn off the road and head your way. A great compliment that I love to hear is “I wasn’t even planning on going to a yard sale today, but your signs caught my eye.”
Include your address, the date, and hours of your yard sale on your sign. Some people may not want to waste their time if they are not sure the sale is still going on. Let’s be honest here, we need to make it as easy as possible for people to want to come to your sale. We need to fill in the blanks in every way.
Use one color of poster throughout your advertising campaign.If you go with a pink poster, then every poster needs to be pink. Don’t change from pink to yellow to orange to white. It potentially confuses your traffic. If you stay consistent with one color, then your traffic knows they are headed to the correct yard sale not a different yard sale nearby.
Write BIG with Black marker. Make sure that your posters can be read clearly from a long distance away. Remember that if your poster cannot be read by a passenger in a vehicle driving by, then you potentially missed out on that person making it to your yard sale. You’d be surprised how many signs I have seen that are written in pen, and unless I was 12 inches away, I wouldn’t be able to read it.
Guide your traffic every 2 blocks with arrows. Remember that using the same color of poster board is key here. If your posters are pink, than a bright, bold, pink and black arrow reassures them that they are still on the correct path to your sale.Think of the arrows as little reassurances that say “almost there” or “you are still on the right path.” I have given up the hunt to find yard sales a lot if I think I’m lost. Who knows, I may have been a block away, but if I don’t see arrows and I’ve been driving for awhile, I assume I’m not going to find it and give up. Remember, we are trying to make it as easy as possible to find your sale.
Tip 8: Along with marking a clear map with arrows, you need to plaster your town with yard sale signs. I suggest to hang up at least 10 other signs in popular areas to inform others that you are having a yard sale. I suggest these signs to be half a poster board. Also, advertise your sale on Craigslist. Spreading the word is the key here.
Tip 9: Advertise that the sale is “HUGE,” “NEIGHBORHOOD” or “MULTI-FAMILY.” If you can convince a neighbor or two (or even more) to have a yard sale with you, you can advertise your sale as such. This will catch the attention of your traffic. The more stuff you have for them to look at, the better. So, if you can round up more people to participate, go for it. Warning: Do not advertise your sale as multi-family if your neighbor brought one or two items over to sell with your stuff. Make sure that if you are advertising as “multi-family” that there are genuinely more than one family participating in the sale.
On your half-poster signs, include a few of your best items on the posters. For example “Baby Items” or “Lots of Furniture” or “Hunting Gear” or “Decor Items.” Be specific if you have something that will be a hot item. For example: “Trampoline” or “Little Tikes Slide.”
At your sale, mark a few of your larger items with informative signs. For example, if you are selling a TV, include a larger sign that says “works great.” Or if you have a dresser for sale, put a larger sign that says, “Only $20.00.” These signs are to catch the eye of those people who are driving by. The first step to get a potential customer to buy something is to get them to get out of their car. If you show them that your prices are reasonable and that your items are working properly, they will be more likely to come check out the rest of your items.
Put a price tag on EVERYTHING. Let’s face it folks, a yard sale can be chaotic. In fact, most the time, it is hard to tell whose yard sale you are attending. Some people are shy, and some people are a tiny bit lazy. So, if you have your prices clear, then you’ll have more people buying. If you don’t, you will have people walk away even if they are interested in one of your items. We need to make their decision-making process as easy as possible. If the price isn’t on the item, you simply made their decision for them. They may think, “I don’t even know how much it costs.” Voila, you lost a sale. If you have an item that you are unsure of how much to ask, put a sign on it that says “make me an offer” but I rarely do this.
Organize your items in categories. Some people enjoy hunting for items, and like I said before, some are a bit lazy. Don’t lose all the customers that aren’t the searching type. The more items you have on tables the better in my opinion. Put the decor items together, the clothing items in a separate area, and the baby items near each other.
Present your items in a way to help your customers visualize them in their home. For example, if you are selling a crib, assemble it. If you are selling a couch, rug, pillows and end tables, set it up on your driveway like a living room. If you have a bedding set, lay it out on a tarp for the customers to see the entire quilt. Remember, we are making it as easy as possible for your customers to visualize the item in their home.
Never turn away a customer. You need to have your items set up at least a half hour before your beginning time. You will probably have early birds (those avid yard salers that get up at the crack of dawn just to go to yard sales). If customers begin to come and you are still setting up your items, you may miss out on a sale. It may be annoying that someone is early and that they begin rummaging through your stuff before you feel completely prepared, but don’t forget, the point of having this sale is to get rid of your stuff. Don’t forget to welcome them with a friendly, “Good morning” greeting! If you aren’t quite ready when customers begin coming, just simply tell them that you will have all the items displayed as soon as you can.
Hopefully these tips have given you some great tips of how to successfully host a yard sale. Happy Spring!!