I've purchased some of my favourite items of clothing on Grailed, the menswear resale website that lists everything from the latest Supreme drop to vintage gems by obscure European brands. So, when it came time for me to sell some items of my own, I assumed I'd do an OK job.
How wrong I was. My items languished on Grailed for weeks, even after I discounted the prices. I didn't even receive any questions from prospective buyers.
In desperation, I turned to my friend Alex, a semi-professional re-seller who purchases collectible clothes on his regular trips to Japan and flips them for a profit. It turned out my Grailed selling technique was sorely lacking.
This is what he taught me.
1. Choose your listing title carefully
Grailed expert alexentick says the title is the single most important component of any listing. All titles should contain the brand name, a precise garment descriptor (e.g. three-quarter trousers), the tagged size and the material used.
If your thumbnail image is a runway or lookbook shot, make sure the title identifies which specific garment you are selling. and always use the tagged size, even if you think the garment fits large or small.
If your thumbnail is of the garment itself on a hanger or dummy, including a word to describe the fit (e.g. 'slim-fit', 'oversized').
2. The more detail, the better
It's not enough to have an insanely rare/fashionable item: you need prospective buyers to trust you, too. And a great way to build trust is to be forthcoming. Therefore, your listing should contain every piece of information a prospective buyer could conceivably want to know:
When was the item manufactured and where did you purchase it? Was it part of a specific collection or range?
If the item is used, describe the condition in detail: are there any rips, holes or stains? Listing small quirks or flaws can actually help you sell your item (honesty equals trust), and it reduces the likelihood your buyer will be dissatisfied upon receipt. Rating your item's condition out of 10 is also useful.
Include detailed measurements and any extra information about the fit (e.g. "These trousers are forgiving in their fit due to the elasticated nature of the waistband."). Also, always list the item's composition (e.g. 100 per cent wool).
Most importantly, try to use evocative details that help prospective buyers imagine what it would be like to own the garment. If the fabric is super soft, say so. If the stitching is interesting or the buttons are etched, mention it. Tell the garment's story.
3. Photos matter
The general rule is to use as many photos as possible. But photos don't count for much if they're not of a decent quality. Therefore:
Photograph your item during the day with plenty of natural light and no flash and make sure to catch it from a variety of angles.
Get any quirks or flaws close up for the buyer's reference and include photographs with a measuring tape that shows how the listed lengths were measured.
If possible, include an image of the item on the runway, from a lookbook or from an online store. Professional photography such as this helps prospective buyers imagine themselves owning/wearing the item.
4. Price high, then start dropping
When you first list your item, price it optimistically. Ask yourself: What is the highest price a big fan of this brand would pay? If you're lucky, someone will purchase your item for the asking price. Otherwise, starting with a high price gives you room to drop, and price drops entice buyers.
Decide how frequently you're going to drop the price (every day or once a week?) and stick to that schedule: consistent drops encourage buyers to pounce when they feel the time is right.
Dan's writing on style, travel and more has appeared in The New York Times, the Australian Financial Review, Condé Nast Traveller and others. He is based in Sydney.
Follow him on Instagram