We have talked in the past about buying a brand new or second hand guitar, but what about selling one of your own? That is a very different story and I am pretty sure you will do this at some point in your musical career.
Later down the track, you will find out that trading gear will become very commonplace, whether you have GAS or not – a virus that affects probably 99% of musicians – I’m infected, but don’t worry, it’s not contagious. By the way, GAS means Gear Acquisition Syndrome.
Anyway, so how do you go about selling your guitar? Probably the best options out there are eBay or similar websites; some music stores also buy second hand stuff and don’t forget about music schools.
In my opinion, music stores are probably the last place I would go simply because they won’t want to pay you as much as you could sell it for somewhere else – remember, they’ll want to make a profit too. It’s still an option to keep in mind but as a last resort. I would go to eBay first.
Here it is my quick and easy guide for selling your guitar:
1. Prepare your guitar. Which basically means enhance its appearance. Take your time to clean every piece and corner of your instrument – you don’t want to show a dusty product. Imagine that you are selling your car, wouldn’t you take it for a car wash before showing it to a possible buyer?
2. Photo shoot. Don’t go for a flashy image. DO NOT add any effects. Always try to take the pic on a plain background and with as much natural light as possible. Taking a good picture of your guitar is probably the best move to make if you want to sell it well. Take different shots from the base of the guitar, the top, headstock, fretboard and of course the back of it too. Something that is really important is to take pictures of any scratches or damaged surfaces so the customer can see this up front.
3. Description of your product. Here is where you need to get very creative and become a “marketing guru”, you basically need to create a sales letter, the more information, benefits and reviews you write down about the guitar, the more likely you are to sell it, unless it’s a classic guitar jewel that needs no introduction.
Be very honest with your description, exact date of purchase, any serial number, your use and any known previous use, damages, what it’s good for, what you like and what you do not like about it. All these information will build trust with the customer and will also be easier for a customer to find if it’s the right instrument for them.
What about writing all the specs and techy stuff about the guitar? If you want to, do it. But also keep in mind that if someone is interested in the guitar, the first thing they will do is go online and check out the specs and reviews from different users, so I would say that you do not have to worry too much about that but by all means, drop in the links where they can get that info.
4. Terms and conditions. Will you be shipping the guitar worldwide? It’s a good idea to find out about shipping costs, especially if you are willing to ship worldwide. This section also includes packaging, you really want to be very careful about how you pack the guitar.
So eBay or any other online auction site is probably the first place to put your ad in. I also mentioned music schools, there are always people looking for second hand stuff, either a student or a teacher, if your guitar is good and is in good condition, it will sell – this is especially true if prospective owners can come and check your guitar out.
I really hope this helps and good luck whenever you sell your gear!
Learn more about Luis Tovar on his Google profile.