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Dallas woman made over $450,000 reselling secondhand items online — here’s how you can, too

(NEW YORK) — Ashely Peek started selling on Poshmark in college several years ago when she no longer had the means to clear out her closet at her family’s annual garage sale and resale events.

As someone who was very familiar with shopping at thrift stores, she quickly came to realize how much she could sell something online vs. at home easily for roughly $30 versus $5.

Today, the Dallas-based full-time account manager and part-time reseller has been able to make over six figures consistently selling secondhand items on resell websites, and is inspiring others to do the same.

“I started by selling anything that I found cute that was not my size or style,” Peek told ABC News’ Good Morning America. “I would sell anything from boutique brands to Free People, Lululemon and Athletica if I could get my hands on it.”

She continued, “It was not until I found the reselling community on Instagram a couple of years later that I started to learn a lot more about reselling and develop my business into what it is today. Now, I sell mid-tier luxury and designer items.”

While Peek started her digital resell journey on Poshmark in 2016 and eBay a few years later — which both make up majority of the income she receives — she also now dabbles on other platforms such as Tradesy, Depop and thredUP.

“My first two years at Poshmark I made $7,000 in total earnings,” said Peek. “I became a more serious reseller in 2019 and quickly grew my business. Now, I have made over $315,000 in earnings after fees on Poshmark alone. eBay adds an additional $120,000 since starting in 2020. Other minor platforms such as Tradesy, Depop, and thredUP added in about $25,000 from the start, making my total sales a little over $450,000.”

So far in 2022, she’s made about $158,000 in earnings after fees with $123,000 coming solely from Poshmark.

Peek recalls her biggest sale to date being a Hermes bag that sold for $4,999 and left her with a $2,000 profit.

“I bought it when I was getting into designer items,” she said. “It was nerve-wracking to spend that much money on one item, but even early on I knew the value of these bags.”

With the continued success that Peek has had hacking the resale market, now she also shares lots of helpful tips on her social media platforms to help others do the same.

Just ahead, she shared more insight on key elements that have helped her resell business, top tips, common mistakes and more.

Peek’s best tips for selling secondhand items online

What are some key elements that have contributed to your success with selling on resell platforms?

Consistency and research are two key elements that have contributed to my success.

I have been listing pretty much every day for the past four years and that goes a long way. That consistency allowed me to build a reputation and customer base on these platforms and provides me with my own data points that I can learn from.

Consistency segways into research. When I made $7,000 in two years on Poshmark, I wasn’t doing much research. I had no idea what items sold well and I was only using prior knowledge of fashion, which developed from shopping at Forever21 and H&M. I had zero knowledge of designer brands. Taking time to educate myself about what items sold faster and at higher prices allowed me to start making $3,500 monthly consistently at month six of my reselling business. That jumped to $6,000 monthly six months later. The consistency over the years allowed me to see what was selling well.

What are of your top tips for selling on Poshmark/eBay and other related platforms?

My top tip would be to make sure you can answer these questions before you purchase an item to resell: “What can I list it for?” “What will it most likely sell for?” “What would the profit be if it sold for that price?” “Is that the profit I want to make per item sold?” Also, “What is the worst case scenario or lowest price this could sell for, and will I still be able to make a profit from it?”

Another huge tip I have is to remember that everyone’s business is different, so don’t just pick up items to resell based on what someone else is picking up. A lot of people share finds without going into detail about how much they paid for it or what they’re selling it for. A great find for someone may be scoring an item that produces a $20 flip. However, you may be aiming for $50 flips and up.

Also, make sure you are active and listing daily. Some platforms highly favor accounts that list every single day —especially eBay. Make sure you are sending offers to likers/watchers at least once per day as well.

For Poshmark, make sure you are sharing your closet multiple times per day. I would aim for at least three times per day. Sharing your closet allows your items to pop up at the top of buyers’ feeds. It always surprises me when people say they haven’t made a sale in one week, but I see they haven’t shared their closet all week.

What are some common mistakes or you think people run into when trying to resell items and why?

A common mistake within reselling is people not creating efficient processes. There is nothing wrong with selling lots of items for a lower profit, however, it does take more work. I typically see people stop reselling because they are not receiving as many sales as they would like. Take a serious look at how to decrease the time spent processing items or increase the type of items that bring in a higher profit. Do your research on how other resellers have found success and sales will follow.

Another common mistake is selling items with no demand. This may come in the form of listing items for too high, selling styles that are outdated, or selling brands that are lesser known. This causes sales to be slow with a low turnaround. Keeping up to date on trending styles and popular brands is a great way to combat this. Checking out Poshmark’s “Today’s Trends” is an easy way to stay on top of what items are in style and selling well.

Are there any workflows, systems or tools that you use to help toward your success?

I find that having a cross-listing service is very helpful when it comes to listing on more than one platform. I use ListPerfectly, which transfers my listings from Poshmark to eBay with a click of a button. I have a referral link on my personal website, reclothcollection.com.

It’s really important to keep track of your sales and expenses. I personally use my own Google sheets for that. Tracking helps me know where I stand in relation to my goals and see what items are selling best.

I also use Lightroom and Photoroom to edit my photos. Both are great because they have the option to bulk edit. Having clear images with ample brightness helps buyers see exactly what your item is like.

Any tips on getting the best bang for your buck when it comes to shipping and mailing costs?

When it comes to shipping, Poshmark is amazing because you can use absolutely any shipping materials except for Express boxes. I save money by primarily using free USPS boxes when shipping on Poshmark. The boxes I always order are padded flat-rate envelopes, medium flat-rate boxes, and 15x12x3 white rectangle boxes, which are available for free from USPS.

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