Hints on how to sell on A'gon?

I've been buying stuff on A'gon for a few months, and - inevitably - now I need to sell some stuff. Having looked at several thousand ads, I've developed a sense of what appeals to me (pictures, clear and honest descriptions, links to more info) and what doesn't (hype, opaque language, non-existent zip-codes).

But I wonder if any of you more experienced A'goners might offer tips on the best way to get stuff sold. In particular, I wonder if there are particular days of the week or months of the year that are especially good for A'gon sales. But any advice would be welcome. Thanks.
It has been my experience that price sells things faster than anything! I have also found posting on the weekends best. Be prepared for "Low ball" offers no matter what the price. It seems in the last year, if you own it, it's worth top dollar and if you're buying it, it's not worth anything has been the philosophy. I have been pretty frustrated a few times. Also, no matter how clear the ad, someone is going to e-mail you asking the same info.
They're some really good people here on A'gon and then they're some I wonder about.
Try to give as much information as possible, a good picture or two, details on serial number or other identifying information to help determine what "revision" the item is, and detail about offers/payment options. This information will save you a lot of e-mails, especially from tire kickers. As Bigtee suggests post on the weekend, most of your views will be in the first day or two so do it when you have the biggest audience. And one thing not to do, please, please, please do NOT say "If you're reading this ad you know all about ..." I find that extremely annoying, and I'm sure so do others.
For me, Mondays & Fridays seem to get the most readership. Could people be reading on the job ;-)

Links to online reviews help. Some folks just aren't going to buy without reading reviews, even if they've heard the piece & loved it. Cheers,
Make sure to clean the equipment before taking pictures. In addition, make sure to take the pictures with a clean and uncluttered backdrop. I don't know how many times I've been interested in a piece of gear to be turned off by a thick layer of dust, greasy fingerprints and a dirty and/or cluttered room.
Try to avoid ''bogus'' and stupid reasons for selling like ( here is a SMALL sampling ) ....''Purchased two, selling one''...or the infamous, ....''Took it out of the box, just to make sure everything was working'' (sure...)....or...''selling for a friend who does not have internet'' (ok, let's have your friend's name and phone number then and kiss your ''cut of the deal'' goodbye)....or....''selling as I am downgrading'' (UNLIKELY FOR MANY OUT THERE)....

Get the picture? Nothing wrong with being honest. I find the short, quick ads to be most effective. What you need is to provide a taste only, to generate or initiate a discussion with a potential buyer, AND REALLY find out if you are dealing with a lowball tire-kicker or an honest and true potential buyer. Those who refuse to enter a more in-depth discussion are of the first category.

Any series ( meaning 2 or 3 )return e-mails that take more than 3 days to reach you each time, the potential buyer is just holding you on a line while he is searching for a better deal, it's better to cut your losses and move on to a more respectfull person.

I understand that there are exceptions to ALL of the above, I personally never met one.

I am ITCHING to reveal some well-known time-wasters here, but I will refrain from doing so. Let's just say I have developped a sense for detecting them...and since then, the Audiogon experience has been so much more positive and fun.

Good luck,

Pics, Pics, Pics,

and a proper, easy to read, straightforward description with no spelling errors. And you don't need to list a reason for selling. NO ALL CAPS EITHER.

I was once told by someone who sold quite a bit that Friday evening or Saturday morning was the best time to post for optimal viewing.

Good luck.
If you are going to auction, generally Fri and Mon are the best days for the auction to end. Preferably in the early evening. People are often away for weekends. I use these tips on the that other big auction site. I usually time auctions to end around 7pm west coast time. People are home for work, and that is 10pm east coast, so people are still up.
What they said. Good advice above. I would add, a simple honest description has worked best for me. If it has a few marks on it, be honest about it and try to show them in the pictures. People want to know how it works, how it looks, and that it has been well taken care of, hence all the ads that say "no smoking cats have used these speakers!" :^) Finally, price it fairly (check out the A'gon bluebook)and don't get overly anxious if it doesn't sell right away. I have had stuff up for several weeks without an offer, then received three offers in the matter of a couple of days.
This is not Ebay in that most respondents already know the intrinsic value of item(s) up for sale. Thus, the seller can set a reasonable price on Agon with less risk of underselling. Seasoned hobbyists also know what is a "classic" within their own fields of interest.
Good pictures, good feedback, honest description, and what are other people asking for the same piece. Has worked well for me...
In addition to all the good advice above, decide for yourself very clearly what your bottom line is before you post a price. You'll get an amazing variety of offers with infinite variations asking if you'll accept a lower price, pay the shipping, split the Paypal fee, etc. It's fine to be able to factor those things but unless you know what you're willing to accept, it can be maddening.

It's inevitable that someone will make a lower price offer, especially if you mark the ad OBO, but you're not under any obligation to give the person an answer immediately. It usually works well to tell the potential buyer that you'll get back to them if that's the best offer you receive. If they tell you it's 'take it or leave it,' leave it.
Generally, mid fall and winter ads are more productive. Sales fall off when the weather warms and around Xmas. My personal turn off is the ads that link to a well known web site where you can bid on "it". And the classified and auction for the same item.
Be aware of the fact that there will be potential buyers who do not know the details of your product. All too often a seller will write 'no description needed, since if you're looking at this, you know what it is...' A LOT OF PEOPLE DON'T!

Write a clear concise description, with more information than less.

Keep your paragraphs short and easy to negotiate.

IME ads with a better description will sell faster than a piece that is a few bucks cheaper.

In you list a reason for selling, as already stated, skip the BS.

If at all possible include those pictures.

Sell at an appropriate price. Too many people think because it was 'mine' it's worth more than the next ad, but at the same time keep in mind that price is not the only factor for the buyer.

Try to talk to the buyer once e-mail has been exchanged. It will go a long way to allaying any fears that a buyer might have. Something that is a cast-off for you can be a treasure to the next guy, and to him, a lot of money.

I have sold things to people who were unsure about the purchase till we were able to talk on the phone.

Be as helpful as reasonably possible.

Good luck!
there's a lot of good advice above. It's hard to disagree with any of it. I'll add some of my hot buttons.

1) provide a succinct and FACTUAL description. Especially describe the condition, age, and amount of usage/wear.
2) maybe provide a little bit about the features especially if the item isn't a well known. (eg, "tube preamp with 6 line level inputs, mm phono, remote control")
3) Include links to relevant internet info (ie Mfg website)
4) Don't bother with lengthy sales pitches, and don't make me read and essay on what a wonderful piece of gear it is. Instead, if you want to help, include a link to sales material and/or consumer reviews.
5) I don't generally care about why you're selling, unless it affects how motivated you are. If I become concerned there isn't total honesty, I may inquire about the reason for sale, but at that point I'm probably getting ready to move on.
6) Be realistic about your price.
7) knock off the knuckle head stuff like "if you're reading this you already know . . .".

I'm not saying you have to do all of these things, but IMO it improves your chances of selling.
1) multiple pics of ACTUAL item--no excuses
2) obsessive-compulsive quality, HONEST description--nothing should be be cut-and-pasted and there's never too much info
3) accurate condition rating based on AudiogoN rating system
4) proof read ad for typos, grammar, incorrect zip code, etc. (and for god's sake turn off the damn caps lock)
5) "if you are reading this, you already know how great 'X' is" should NEVER appear anywhere in an ad
6) the link to more info should be a link to more info of the exact product being advertised.

Contrary to popular belief, alot of books *can* be judged by their cover, so to speak. If the ad sucks I won't pursue the item. I'm a patient fellow--I'll wait for something to come along from a seller who seems like he or she made it past the third grade.
when you get an email,just reply and ask for their phone numbers or leave a number for them to call you with further questions.That will eliminate all the tire-kicker and low baller real quick. remember OBO mean you ll get a low ball offer and FIRM also mean that you ll get a low ball offer..usually i like to sell my gear to the one with the most feedback..
Lots of great info above. I like to use the info link to link either to a review or a manufacturers page for the specific item. One thing to be careful of, a pet peeve of mine, when you use the info link Audiogon starts you off with an "http" so if you add http again it doesn't work. I see this constantly and it drives me crazy! A lot of times I'll email the seller to clue them in. Beyond that, a fair price, a thorough description, and lots of pics and you're all set. Good luck!
A lot of good ideas here...

One thing that hasn't been mentioned is packing - the bigger and heavier the item the bigger a concern it becomes. So I don't worry about power cables - I do worry about floorstanding speakers. FWIW I see original packing materials as the minimum standard since that stuff is not always designed to go more then once.

Take a look at how often the feedback here and elsewhere involves packing and prompt shipment - what else are you going to leave feedback about that is really helpful to the next guy?

I think it also helps to be prompt in replying to inquiries - there is a certain 'heat' or 'buzz' with a purchase and I feel that its important to strike while the fire is hot. Which leads me to a final point...

Get Paypal. If you want to charge for it fine, but at least have it available. Speeds up the whole deal. And as a seller it gets the money in your hands now - so when you mark the item sold or pending you don't have to wonder if you are ever going to get that money order...
I have about 60 transactions on A-gon, and I always try to talk by phone with the seller / buyer. If you provide a phone number with your ad, many buyers will call you, and I find that a short conversation tells me more about the person that reading an E-mail.
I try to offer things at as low of a price as possible, but within reason (i.e., 25 cents on the dollar is probably not very often going to be "within reason"). People love a bargain, and my stuff (not very much yet, but that could change at some point) has always sold fast.
The stuff about packing is important.
The use of solid 2" foam on all sides between the inner box with the product, and the outer box is a great start. With this sort of double boxing you will not have nearly as many problems with shipping.
The rest I don't have much to say... Though I have sold a few items.
The selling of stuff folks might want goes pretty fast.
The stuff no-one wants.... hah.
Anyway, good luck.
And don't feel pressured to accept the 'first' offer to buy either. If you get several offers to buy in a short time, first, your item is desirable, second, the price is right or a bit low, third, you get to pick whomever you want of the potential buyers.
Elizabeth makes a good point about packing. In every case that I received items that were damaged in shipment, the sellers (most of who had excellent feedback and lots if it) said it was all the shippers fault. That's BS most of the time. Packages get handled and dropped - that's a given, but if the items were packaged with the care Elizabeth describes, using boxes suited to the size/weight, it will eliminate 90% of the damage in shipment. Furthermore, the extra care required is a lot easier than dealing with claims and returns.
What Elizabeth and Bdgregory said!

Both of the sellers who sold me electronics packed the items to the hilt, and I was extremely impressed. Pardales packing the Dodson 217 Mark II D DAC and Lak packing the Shunyata Hydra--Lak even TRIPLE boxed the unit (partly because he was also sending cords). It's hard to adequately express just how much these two sellers impressed me with their attention to detail.
List Fri before noon hour on east coast trust me folks look the most on friday at lunch hour. Lots of pics ,price fair. Good feedback is nessesary I wont buy or sell to members with low or bad feedback. Look into who is purchasing members with good feedback are best bet. Be prepared for folks to offer to purchase then back out with little notice or none at all. Folks will ask dum ? You just have to deal with it. But audiogon is you best choice I have done 100s of deals with no problems just be smart and dont fall for any scam offers.
If you want to sell it quick, be realistic and price it aggressively - especially if there are similar products already listed. Also, good pictures are a necessity. I personally skim right over adds without pictures.