How to be a good seller on BST

Discussion in 'The Off Topic Room' started by TSF415, Feb 20, 2020.

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  1. Feb 20, 2020 #1

    TSF415

    TSF415

    TSF415

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    I’ve bought quite a bit of stuff off BST but haven’t sold anything yet. I definitely have way too much money tied up in knives and need to unload some. Plus I kind of have a better feeling for what works for me.

    Just curious of tips people have learned over the years. Best way to package. Send out. Things to be aware of etc.... Even the most basic comments are appreciated.

    And yes I know the first one is not to post a free knife for $500.
     
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  2. Feb 20, 2020 #2

    Johnny.B.Good

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  3. Feb 20, 2020 #3

    Dhoff

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    Be honest! secondly be honest! thirdly, be honest! (not that I think you wont be, but to me this is the most important point of all in a seller)
    Describe the knife itself, steel, maker, length, taper. Use measurements where appropriate, especially heel height, length, weight.
    Show or describe balance point.
    Describe how much use the knife has seen in a few words.
    Describe any damages.
    Describe how much approximately, you have sharpened/thinned the knife
    Take pictures of both sides of the knife, Choil, handle and whatever else you can think of. Make it look nice it sells stuff when you present it well. @preizzo is imo one who really present the knives he purchases well in photos.
    Example: https://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/threads/show-your-newest-knife-buy.7655/page-421 second post. That one really started the knife bug for me, though I still have not purchased much I really, really want to :)

    Make an asking price after researching the market (a few searches on BST will help in most cases) or ask one of the nice guys here in a PM if you need help pricing.
    Describe where you send to and the prices if they vary, saves time for ppl if you are not willing to ship to e.g. EU.

    That was what I had on top of my head.
     
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  4. Feb 20, 2020 #4

    CiderBear

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    Make an effort in taking pictures and describing the knife. There's a 10-picture limit. Use it, abuse it. The more good photos you have, the better protection you have (from PayPal) as a seller.

    My BST pet peeves:
    1) "I'll upload pictures later"
    2) one single photo, no measurements
    3) stock photo of a chipped Hinoura from bluewayjapan (this one is pretty specific, cough)
    4) "I don't have measurements but this link has the stock measurements."
     
  5. Feb 20, 2020 #5

    slickmamba

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    1. Post multiple pictures immediately
    2. Post measurements, or be prepared to even if it’s NIB. Sometimes users are looking for specific measurements
    3. Be clear with how many times it’s been sharpened and thinned
    4. If there are imperfections, scratches, etc be clear and take pics so users can make informed decisions
    5. Set reasonable prices
    6. Don’t try to obfuscate information through pms unless it’s something that’s just clogging up the thread.
    7. For packaging, make sure things are very secure with little to no room to move around inside the knife box or you could end up with a tipped/broken knife
    8. Rubberband the box so it won’t open during transit
    9. Like the knife box, make sure there is little to no movement in the larger box too. I wrap the knife box in bubble wrap or lots of newspaper. Then fill the rest with airpackets or other packing material.
    10. package saya separate from the knife.
    11. Dry and oil the knife as needed.
    12. PayPal goods and services is your friend. Protects both the buyer and seller in case of issue. Friends and family is fine if you know/trust the person.
    13. Be upfront and clear with when you can ship the item out And send the tracking ASAP
     
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  6. Feb 20, 2020 #6

    M1k3

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    Just be honest about knife history. The more details you offer, the less minor questions you'll field. Package well. Communicate in a timely manner. Don't stress to much but pay attention. Good luck.
     
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  7. Feb 20, 2020 #7

    TSF415

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    Thanks for the responses.

    Anyone feel there’s a best method for shipping? Ups? USPS?

    How about to Europe?
     
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  8. Feb 20, 2020 #8

    Dhoff

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    I've only used UPS from EU to the states. Don't know of other shipping services that might be of interest
     
  9. Feb 20, 2020 #9
    I will only add about the shipping to Europe - USPS works fine as does UPS. Whatever is more convenient. As long as the item is well packed and insured/tracked, it will arrive just fine.

    Do not try to ship a knife to Denmark - it will come back. For reasons unknown, they just do not let knives in from outside EU - irrespective of type of the knife. Even big vendors have given up trying to find a solution. Or maybe Maksim manged to get exclusive rights :D
     
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  10. Feb 20, 2020 #10

    Brian Weekley

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    Ship to Canada. It’s easy. ... and all the rest everybody has said preceding this post.
     
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  11. Feb 20, 2020 #11

    Dhoff

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    The reason for this is an idiotic danish law. It states knives with a blade length of 12cm or above as well as neck knives must not be imported. This law has been translated to English.

    Another law states that knives for specific purposes such as hunting, cooking etc. may be imported even if they are 12cm or above in blade length. This has not been translated to English.

    Only US and possibly Canada has problems with this as far as I know. I'm unsure of the reason for this.
     
  12. Feb 20, 2020 #12

    M1k3

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    Shipping within the U.S., definitely use signature confirmation. Insurance is optional, but, nice peace of mind.
     
  13. Feb 20, 2020 #13
    Now I know the reason for the origin of all those 'mini cleavers' that clog most FB knife groups :D
     
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  14. Feb 20, 2020 #14

    minibatataman

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    It's like a dating app. Sure you can talk up how great it is but just be honest in your description and show clear pictures.
    ...... And don't forget the measurements.
     
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  15. Feb 20, 2020 #15

    Zweber12

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    It all comes down to communication, honesty and promptness; hopefully folks that have purchased from me have experienced this. Besides all the talk about how to post, ship etc; I like to ensure that the buyers are part of the "post pay, pre ship" phase. I always follow up with images of the packaging stages and final shipment. In additon, I ask for packaging preferences, exact shipping specifications, import label description, declared value etc. Once mailed, to follow up with the tracking number; update PayPayl G&S with the tracking number etc.
     
  16. Feb 20, 2020 #16

    panda

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    Make sure you secure the tip. Take a plastic bottle cap and cut a slit into it to use as a tip guard. This will save you much agony. I've received knives with the tip poking out of the box before and almost stabbed my hand!!
     
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  17. Feb 20, 2020 #17

    ian

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    For shipping within the states, every transaction I’ve been a part of has been through USPS priority mail. I usually ship with insurance, but I’ve never shipped with signature confirmation, nor have I ever received a knife from someone here with signature confirmation. Personally, it would be a big headache for me to be present for a signature, but I understand some people may live in places where packages get stolen more often. It is a good idea to ask the buyer about shipping preferences, and if you can do that before you accept payment then you can make sure that their preferences will be covered in the purchase price. (I’d list explicitly the default method in your post.) This is especially important if you’re mailing the knife internationally. To pass through customs, the buyer may want you to insure or not insure, or value the knife at a certain amount, etc... Paypal currency conversion fees may also apply. So you should iron all this out before accepting payment.

    Other than that, yea honesty and communication are key. If you’ve got that going, you won’t do wrong. Or at least if you do, you’ll be forgiven.
     
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  18. Feb 20, 2020 #18

    CiderBear

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    My rule of thumb for packing is to violently shake the box. If it sounds like nothing is moving at all, you're good. This applies to everything, from very fragile Gibson Les Paul (and I mean they are very, very fragile) to knives.
     
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  19. Feb 20, 2020 #19

    minibatataman

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    I yeet my packages across the room to my roommate, then analyze.
     
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  20. Feb 20, 2020 #20

    dafox

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    Unless you have proper lighting for photographs, natural daylight works best.

    Take most of the photos straight on to show the actual shape and proportions of the knife.
     
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  21. Feb 20, 2020 #21

    Elliot

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    First off, good on you for asking.
    Second, I think overthinking isn't necessary. Be fair, honest and open and then respond to queries in a timely manner.

    Fact is, all different buyers have different things they pay most attention to, so pleasing them all in your initial post is a bit challenging. Some want a heel height measurement and one mm in either direction will make it a no deal. That's fine. Their prerogative. Me? Nah, just be honest and don't take advantage of people.
     
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  22. Feb 20, 2020 #22

    nakneker

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    1. Honesty is appreciated. It’s the foundation of a good reputation.

    2. Good pictures, more than one is also appreciated.

    3. List the specs. Edge length, heel height, weight, steel type, handle type etc.

    4. Good communication. When people spend their money they want to know the status of the sale. You want to communicate when you will ship, confirm you received the funds, double check the shipping address etc.

    Those are some of things I look for and do on the BSTs. The more history you have the more people will trust you so when you starting out I would recommend going the extra mile to be a good seller. It will pay dividends down the road.
     
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  23. Feb 20, 2020 #23

    ian

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    In general, if you’re selling more than one knife, make a separate thread for each one. It’s such a pain to try to sift through a thread to figure out what’s still available. If you’re going to put multiple knives in the same thread, at least keep updating the OP in a clear way to indicate what’s sold and what is not. Ditto if there are price changes. I don’t want to have to look through the whole thread to figure out the **** price.
     
  24. Feb 20, 2020 #24

    Dhoff

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    Amen to that!
     
  25. Feb 20, 2020 #25
    @ian one can edit the post only as long, so if the WTS thread is active for a longer period of time, updating the price through a reply is the only way to go.
     
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  26. Feb 20, 2020 #26

    ian

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    Indeed, good point! All the more reason not to list multiple things in the same thread. If you only list one item for thread, then you’ll only need to look at the end for the current price.

    or you could just what I do, and aggressively drop the price so that all your items sell within the window in which you can edit the original post. :)

    edit: I know the “one item per post” thing is not realistic sometimes, eg when @nutmeg is selling 100 uchimugori at once. But he generally includes “these are all still available stones and here are all the prices” with every bump. It’s when there are lots of bumps and you have to scroll up to find separate posts for all the available knives and their prices that I want to throw something.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2020
  27. Feb 20, 2020 #27

    Barashka

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    Lots of great advice already, I'll just add:
    - send tracking number when available
    - confirm when received .. just for sanity, USPS delivers to neighbor sometimes.
     
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  28. Mar 3, 2020 #28

    TSF415

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    Anyone want to run me thru the process for trades? How they’re executed? How not to get ripped off? Etc...
     
  29. Mar 3, 2020 #29

    Corradobrit1

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    Deal with established members. Everything else is based on trust. Get the tracking number and be sure the other party shipped. You can always recall a package if something is amiss. I traded Kato's with someone across the Pacific and all went well.
     
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  30. Mar 3, 2020 #30

    Brian Weekley

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    My dad used to say ... “The most important term in any contract isn’t in the contract ... deal with an honest man! ... If you are dealing with an honest man, you don’t need a contract. If you are dealing with a dishonest man ... no contract will save you.

    I don’t know whether the saying was original ... probably not. ... But I’ve always remembered it and lived by it through my adult life.

    In previous online forums it was common to ask for references from previous deals. Check the deal references. If the dollars are high and comfort might be low perhaps the buyer should ask for, and the seller be prepared to give, forum references from previous deals. Even then I’ve followed threads where deals have gone sideways and the seller declared the “he must be on the right side of a deal because he’s traded before”. It may be easy to just give references where deals went well and omit the questionable ones.

    With all of that I’ve been involved in over a hundred deals on KKF where I’ve been a buyer involving deals with dozens of members. On the whole I’ve found the members I’ve dealt with to be more than honest and honourable. They bend over backwards to make good deals. I’ve met three that I won’t do business with again. That may, however, be just my opinion. Each of us has to find our own comfort level in any deal. I’ve met many more that have become my good and trusted friends.

    YMMV
     
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