Best Community Selling Sites and Apps

6 Best Community Selling Sites and Apps

by Milos Djordjevic

Did you know that 60% of all shopping journeys start online

This means that if you want to sell your stuff locally, yard sales are no longer the best option. To get maximum visibility for the items you are selling, as well as increase profits, take a look at our selection of the six best community selling sites and apps. 

1. Craigslist

It’s no surprise that Craigslist is the first name that comes to mind when you think of community selling sites and apps. 

Founded in 1995 as a local events guide for the San Francisco Bay Area, today Craigslist has developed into a place where you find jobs, services, electronics, and homes. The site gets about 20 billion visits a month, making it one of the most popular websites in the US, while the app has more than 5 million downloads on Google Play alone. 

One of the biggest pros of selling stuff on Craigslist, in addition to the huge user base, is that it is completely free. In other words, you don’t need to pay transactional, shipping, or account fees for using the site. On the downside, this makes Craigslist a hub for potential scammers and fake buyers. 

2. Facebook Marketplace

The Facebook Marketplace was launched in 2016 as a sales site meant to compete with Craigslist. It has since grown from a C2C (consumer-to-consumer) platform to an excellent B2C community, offering integration with Shopify, on-site checkout, and other features designed for small businesses. 

Even though it is a global platform, counting an impressive 1.1 billion visitors worldwide, the Facebook Marketplace is a great opportunity to reach local buyers. Actually, as many as 18.3% of Americans make a purchase through Facebook; plus, users have the option to filter listings by location and contact the seller for an in-person exchange. 

Keep in mind that while posting listings is free, Facebook charges 5% on all sales over $8, while shipments under that sum incur a flat fee of $0.40. 

3. OfferUp

Like Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist, OfferUp is a C2C website that focuses on in-person transactions. Users may list anything from cars, baby products, art, business equipment, and even event tickets. 

The site is free to use, although you can opt for pay-per-use features like Promote or Promote-Plus. Also, OfferUp can ship the items for you—the service costs 12.9% of the sale price, but the maximum you can be charged is $1.99.

OfferUp is known for its strict security standards. The platform has a 2-Day Purchase Protection claim, allowing buyers to file a complaint about an item they bought as well as a TruYou feature that verifies the identities of users. In addition, you can find designated community meeting places in the app where buyers and sellers can carry out the transaction safely.

4. VarageSale

Founded in 2012, VarageSale is a virtual garage sale app that allows members to purchase and sell products within their communities. The site is 100%  free—you can list items, buy products or bump your listing at no cost at all. 

On top of that, VarageSale makes sure that all profiles are based on real users by verifying accounts through Facebook. Plus, all listings are subject to a manual review before they are posted on the site. This way, VarageSale offers protection from scammers and ensures safe transactions. 

According to similarweb, VarageSale gets around 1.1 million visitors a month, more than a third of which are based in the US. 

In terms of goods sold, the site accommodates all types of listings, from books, furniture, and electronics to homeware and clothes. 

5. 5miles

5miles is a free-to-use app that connects you to potential buyers in your neighborhood within seconds. So far the app has facilitated over $1bn in local sales and helped 10 million users earn some extra cash. 

One of the biggest pros of 5miles is ease of use—simply snap a photo of the item you want to sell and post it through your phone. Negotiating the price and arranging meet-ups are also done in the app. 

Safety standards are another big plus. Like VarageSale, 5miles requires users to verify their identity through their Facebook account or phone so you know you are dealing with a real person. The company’s support team also manually reviews listings to minimize scams and fraud and has set up Safe Exchange Area Locations you can use to carry out the transaction. 

6. Swappa Local

Swappa Local is one of the best apps to sell your old tech locally. It is visited by more than 10 million people and has generated $90 million in sales proceeds

One reason behind its popularity is its focus on safety. In fact, Swappa Local uses a pickup/delivery method to avoid scams and meetups with shady buyers/sellers. The goods are picked up from the seller, and if functional, delivered to the buyer’s doorstep. Costs are split between both buyer and seller—the latter pays a fixed fee of $10, while buyers pay more (depending on the distance). Transactions are executed through PayPal, further guaranteeing safety.

Last but not least, Swappa has a super responsive 24/7 support team ready to answer all your questions.

Swappa Local is not free thought—the platform charges a 3% fee on all sales

Bottom Line 

Shopping apps and sites are an excellent option to get rid of unwanted stuff and make extra money on the side—they are accessible, easy to use, and convenient. On top of that, it is estimated that 69.4% of internet users use shopping apps on their cell phones, giving sellers access to a huge user base. 

On the downside, marketplaces have become very vulnerable to scams and fraud. As a seller, you need to be wary of possible fake buyers and sketchy transactions, such as receiving fake offers, counterfeit bills, or even getting mugged at the meeting stop. To avoid such situations, make sure that you are using a reputable app that verifies users’ identities or offers safe meeting places where you can exchange the items with confidence.