Are you becoming a minimalist in the interesting of using, having and wasting less? Getting rid of years of accumulated items? Frustrated by the response to your yard or garage sale? Trying to draw more customers in? You have some great stuff at low prices, but nobody’s showing up. You know if they saw some of it, they’d buy it. The problem is, they’re not seeing it. How can you make your sale more visible? How can you draw in more traffic?
Call it an estate sale.
It’s not dishonest. You are, after all, clearing out your estate. Estate sales are often held by new minimalists looking to clear their life of personal possessions. Why not give this approach a try? Do it yourself or hire a service.
A service will take a percentage of your profit. On the other hand, there will be more profit to share. The more popular estate sales are run by services that have a following. They know exactly how to market your estate sale. They also combine them at times. If you just have a small amount of merchandise, they’ll combine your items with another sale to increase customer traffic.
Take a lesson from small merchants.
Have you ever heard the expression anchor store? It’s the large chain merchant in a shopping center. Small merchants know if they place their store in the same plaza, they’ll get business from the draw of the big store. You can do the same thing with your minimalist yard sale.
How? Get together with neighbors for a big block sale. The more people you can get to join in, the more visible your sale is. You’ll be rid of those unwanted, unneeded items and living your minimalist life before you know it.
What’s the problem with some garage sales?
All the good stuff is in the garage. Nobody can see it. Don’t be lazy when running a minimalist garage sale. You want to get rid of everything you can, as quickly as possible. Take the time to pull the big items out front where everyone can see them.
Why? Most garage sale shoppers do a drive by before getting out of the car. If all they see is a bunch of worn out clothes and shoes, they keep driving. Pull your most interesting merchandise to the front of the sale, no matter how heavy it is. That way, customers will stop to see the good stuff and hopefully buy more in the process.
Bonus tip: Price everything! People often walk away form un-marked items, believing them to be expensive. Not everyone likes to haggle.
Feature enticing items and language on your sale signage.
Use phrases that inspire action. Don’t just write sale and your address. Tell them what they can find there. Let them know about all the great deals. Use the phrase “Going Minimalist!” at the top of the sign. That way they know you’re anxious to sell. Make your sign stand out above the rest. Attach some balloons to it. Make mention that you have some free items.
Use the old standard, “Everything must go!” or “Everything in the yard free after 5 pm!” Don’t worry. If they really want something, they’ll pay for it, just to be sure nobody else gets it. If there’s something you’re not willing to give away, just put it in the house a few minutes before the sale ends.
Be bilingual with your signage even if you’re not. If you live in a diverse neighborhood, be sure everyone can understand your signage. You don’t have to make the whole sign in another language. Just add a few key words that let people who speak another language know what the sign is all about. If you don’t already know the words, look them up. You’ll get more customers and make your neighborhood social life a little more diverse as well.
Get your kids in on the fun.
Have them out there selling lemonade, cookies and their own cast offs. Give them a chance to make money too. It’ll help them make the minimalist transition with enthusiasm. Besides, who can resist a cute, enterprising kid? How many times have you stopped to buy lemonade from an enterprising young person on a hot day?
Attracting kids to your sale is a great strategy too. Get those toys out front. They’ll drag Mom and Dad over to see them. Before you know it, Mom and Dad are shopping too. Not everyone wants to be a minimalist.