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During the time we have been selling on eBay we have seen at least a dozen platforms come and go. Every time something new comes along everyone that isn’t doing so hot on eBay claims that the new platform is the savior of the reselling community and encourages others to jump ship. Here’s the truth though…if you can’t make it on eBay, you probably can’t make it as a reseller anywhere. For all it’s issues, eBay has the largest audience, the best support, and the lowest fees. However, other platforms have a valuable place if your reselling arsenal. After all, why would you want to leave money on the table? So let’s talk about what is (in my opinion) is the best of all of the alternatives to eBay…Mercari!
Mercari, a Japanese company, is a selling platform/app that is currently available in Japan and the U.S. It has exploded in popularity recently and most resellers have started using it a way to bring in a little extra income or move slow inventory. We are no exception and cross-post the majority of our inventory on Mercari. However, because cross-posting opens a new can of worms (something selling in both places, it takes twice as long to list two items, etc.) we are choosy about the items we list on Mercari which begs the questions…what sells the best on Mercari!?
The Top Selling Items on Mercari in 2021
The top-selling items on Mercari are typically the same as the top-selling items on the rest of the internet. Meaning that you can typically pick up the same items that sell well on eBay and list them on Mercari. However, not everyone is already a reseller.
Our research and experience indicate that the best selling items on Mercari include:
- Small Electronics (cameras, phones, speakers, etc.)
- Video Games and Gaming Systems
- Trendy/Designer Clothing
- Purses & Bags
- Outdoor/Sporting Goods
Unlike other platforms, Mercari’s search engine favors mostly new listings or trendy items. Their search function and filters leave a bit to be desired so the people with lots of sale are people who list items that people are typing into the search bar.
The Pros of Selling on Mercari
There are several areas in which Mercari is actually better than eBay..at least for now. If you want to make some extra sales, now is the time!
The two main advantages of Mercari are:
- Less Market Saturation (fewer items from fewer sellers means you have the potential to get a larger piece of the pie)
- Low Rate of Returns (buyers have only 3 days to request a return. If they don’t, the sale is final)
The Secret To Massive Success on Mercari
Much like eBay, selling on Mercari is a numbers game. The more items you have listed, the more you will sell. Unlike eBay, however, Mercari has a very simple algorithm that you’ll need to understand if you want to succeed. The main issue is this: unless someone puts in a significant number of filters and changes the sorting, they will be shown items that were recently listed first in results and browsing.
This means that, as your items age, it becomes drastically less likely that they will sell. In fact, over 80% of the items we’ve sold on Mercari sold within 3 days of listing (and most of those within the first day). After that, they were typically so buried in new listings that very few people ever saw them.
The best way to handle this is to constantly be ending and re-listing items on Mercari. However, for full-time eBay or Poshmark sellers, this may be easier said than done. We currently have over 1500 items live on eBay and crosspost around 1,000 of them to Mercari. If we tried to end and relist them all on Mercari every month (which is the period I suggest) it would be almost a full-time job.
The solution is to use a crossposting software that will pull all the pictures and information from either Poshmark or eBay and populate a fresh listing on Mercari. You can simply check the information and post it. The software we use has changed a 2-hour daily task to a 20 minute one for us.
And if you’re worried about breaking rules? Don’t worry, crossposting software are allowed on all platforms as long as they follow a certain set of rules. The best one out there (and the only one I recommend) is ListPerfectly. You can check them out here and use our discount code “ResellingRevealed” for 30% off your first month!
Now that that secret is out of the bag, let’s get to the types of items you should actually be listing:
Breakdown of our sold Mercari Items:
Obviously we’re not huge Mecari Sellers, but as we approach 200 sales we thought a break down of our sales might be helpful. Here is how our sales shake out by category:
- Women’s Clothing: 47 Sales (27%)
- Men’s Clothing: 32 Sales (18%)
- Bags & Accessories: 22 Sales (13%)
- Men’s Shoes: 20 Sales (12%)
- Women’s Shoes: 19 Sales (11%)
- Tools & Outdoors: 7 Sales (4%)
- Kids Clothing: 6 Sales (3%)
- Electronics: 6 Sales (3%)
- Camera Equipment: 4 Sales (3%)
- Craft Items: 4 Sales (2%)
- Household Goods: 3 Sales (2%)
- Jewelry: 2 Sales (1%)
- Other: 1 Sale
While your sales are obviously dictated by the items you list (and we obviously list a lot of clothing…) this break down should illustrate one point: pretty much everything sells on Mercari!
In fact, antique (and most vintage) is about the only nice of items that we have not had much success with on Mercari.
My personal 6 favorite things to sell to make fast money on Mercari:
- Trendy Items and Brands. One of the oldest truths in business is: if you want sales…then sell things that people want. Sourcing and listing trendy items and brands will always lead to lots of exposure which, in turn, leads to lots of sales. Be on the lookout for Nike, Uggs, Funko Pops, Rae Dunn, Patagonia, etc.
- Electronics. Current electronics are some of the best sellers on Mercari. While this is the area you are most likely to run in to scams (as both a buyer and seller) we have not had any issues. We have luck with video games, phones, speakers, and calculators to name a few.
- Large items. We have sold some very oversized and heavy items on Mercari. For example, a large brass trash can, golf bags, and a grain mill. The reason that these items sell so well is because Mercari has a flat rate subsidized shipping option which allows the buyer to save money on shipping!
- Backpacks and Bags. Before we started selling on Mercari, we rarely picked up purses or bags anymore. This was mainly because the purse and bag section on eBay is so over saturated. We’ve had some purses listed at blowout prices for over a year with almost no traction. On Mercari however, we have sold many purses and bags within 24 hours of shipping.
- Cameras and Camera Gear. Cameras and their gear get a place on this list because we have had exceptional luck selling them on Mercari. Why this is, I don’t know but it doesn’t seem to matter. Every camera we find goes straight onto Mercari and sells within days!
Selling Online for “Fast Money”
If one of your friends came to you and said, “Hey, I just got layed off from my job and really need to pay my rent soon. Do you have any ideas how I can get some fast money?” What would your response be? Would you tell them to go start their own business?
People who are unfamiliar with selling on eBay, Mercari, Posh, etc. often associate it with selling to a pawnshop which, fortunately, is not at all correct. It is closer to starting your own pawnshop. The money and opportunities can be great but it is in no way, “fast money.”
As much as I love flipping items online, my response would be to tell my friend to go out and get a job ASAP. If you want to sell on Mercari for fast money, don’t do it. While some items do sell fast, Mercari holds your money until the person has received their item and rated you (which can take up to three days after delivery).
You then have to transfer the money to your bank account. It is not uncommon for it to take 7-10 days after you sell an item to have the money from the sale. If you need money now, sell your items locally on Craigslist or FB Marketplace. You’ll get less for them but you’ll have cash in hand!
One Last Trick for Selling on Mercari
The serach function on Mercari is not quite like the one that you’re use on eBay (or Poshmark). It returns results only in the order that they were listed (new to old). Because of this, items that have been listed for a longer period of time are very unlikely to sell. In our experience, thing either gain traction and sell quickly or never sell. If we have something that has been on Mercari for several weeks without many offers or likes we’ll do one of two things: delete it and relist it, or promote it. Either one will get your item back to the top of search results and increase your chances of a sale!
In the mean time just remember: the more you list the more you sell so keep up the good work! Happy selling!
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