Online buy/sell/trade 101.
I’ll let you in on my secret to having nice things without paying top dollar – local Facebook buy/sell groups (a.k.a. Facebook-hosted marketplaces where Soda Citizens post items they no longer want for other group members to purchase).
What can you buy/sell? Each group has its own designated theme + set of rules letting members know what is okay (and not okay) to post for sale, like home furnishings or clothes. With a little digging + due diligence, you can find just about anything you’re searching for – from gently used designer rain boots, to surround sound speakers, to nursery furniture, to concert tickets.
Image via Minted Home- Columbia
👜 Some of Cola’s primary Facebook shopping groups:
For Sale, Wanted or Free In Columbia, SC | 🌐 open group |🛍 Home goods, services, clothing, event tickets + more
Miss-IT Columbia, SC | 🌐 closed group, must request to join |🛍 Women’s, men’s + children’s clothing, home goods + furniture, event tickets
micit – Columbia, SC | 🌐 closed group, must request to join | 🛍 Women’s, men’s + children’s clothing, home goods + furniture
Free & For Sale | 🌐 open group for UofSC grads/students/staff | 🛍 Home goods + furniture, men’s + women’s clothing, event tickets for sale by UofSC student members
Minted- Columbia | 🌐 closed group, must be invited by a member | 🛍 Women’s designer clothing
Minted Home- Columbia | 🌐 closed group, must be invited by a member | 🛍 Home goods, decor + furniture
Clutch + Dapper + Clutch Kids | 🌐 locally-owned buy/sell website, subscription-based | 🛍 Designer women’s, men’s + children’s clothing
🗣 Vocabulary (a.k.a. all those acronyms)
ISO ➡️ in search of | a request from a group member who is searching for a particular item. (Ex: ISO 2 tickets to the Carolina game.) The price might be $0 or a random assortment of numbers – letting potential sellers they are willing to negotiate the price.
Image via Minted – Columbia
OBO ➡️ or best offer | When a seller posts an item and lists the price for “$20 OBO,” the seller will accept higher bids than the listed price.
Following, F or . ➡️ wanna know more | Group members will often comment “following” (or just “f” or “.”) on an item they are interested in, but are not yet ready to purchase – usually hoping they will get a notification that the seller has dropped the price.
Bump ➡️ reminder | Sellers will comment “bump” on their own listings when the item has not sold for an extended period of time to move the post back towards the top of the group page.
PPU ➡️ porch pick up | If you’re selling, this means you agree to leave the item on your porch (arranging specific location + pickup date/time with buyer), then they pick it up and leave money behind (a.k.a. no face-to-face interaction).
Cross-posted ➡️ in multi groups | Item is also posted for sale in other buy/sell groups.
Sold | If someone comments “sold” on an item, by the ethics of Facebook buy/sell groups, he or she has committed to purchasing the item. If you missed out on an item you wanted, I would recommend continuing to check on the post until the seller marks the item as “sold” him or herself or completely deletes the post – as sales can sometimes fall through. ⬇
Interested | If someone comments “interested” on an item, It does not mean that he/she has purchased the item – but might have a few questions on color, size or price before buying the item. If someone comments “sold” after an “interested” comment, the item will go to to the “sold” commenter.
Next | If someone has already commented “sold” on an item, but you would like to be next in line, comment “next” on the post – which lets the seller know who to contact in case the sale falls through. Multiple people can start a “next” queue on popular items.
Image via Minted – Columbia
Messaged you or sent a PM | When someone comments with “messaged you” check your inbox for a question from a potential buyer about your posted item. Pro tip: oftentimes the message is hidden under “Message Requests” if you are not already Facebook friends with the person.
Check + abide by rules upon acceptance into the group + before posting an item for sale
Look for tickets to the The Weeknd + Thomas Rhett concerts at Colonial LIfe Arena
Post your property for potential tenants/buyers
Be open to haggling with buyers + sellers on item prices – unless the seller has mentioned in the post that the price is firm
Go with whatever payment method the buyer/seller is willing to use – Venmo, Paypal + cash are most used options
Offer a fair price for the item you are selling according to condition + quality (Pro tip: Check out what other similar items are going for on the page before posting.)
Respond to direct messages + comments within 24 hrs
🚫 Do Not’s
Post an item against the rules of the group – i.e. a pair of rainboots in a buy/sell group for home goods
Comment “sold” if you are not 100% committed to purchasing the item
Sell items that are defective or in bad shape, unless you fully disclose the defects + shape of the item in the post and offer for a fair price
Seriously, I don’t buy anything full price without first checking to see if a neighbor has posted it on Facebook. I’m practically furnishing my entire Shandon cottage with items from Minted Home- Columbia.
Back in March, I bought a full dining room set of a table + six chairs (that needed a little TLC) for $175. A few weeks later, someone else posted a few yards of designer fabric (just enough to cover the chairs) for $40.
An afternoon of recovering the chairs + $215 later, my dining room looks straight out of Garden & Gun. Thanks, Minted. 👌