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Selling Kiteboarding Gear Online
By Alexis Rovira
Now that much of the new 2011 kiteboarding gear is on the market, it’s time to think about upgrading your old busted gear to something new and shiny. With any kiteboarding upgrade, the big question everyone asks themselves is “What am I going to do with my old gear?”
We’ve all been faced with the dilemma of how to get rid of old gear and most of us that have been kiting for awhile have a pile of gear stashed away that is no longer being used. The most efficient way to sell your used gear is to post it online, but if you’ve never done it, it’s a little overwhelming to decide where to start and what website to post it on.
Here’s a quick overview on how to effectively sell your gear online along with some tips and the pros and cons for the most common sites to use to sell your used kiteboarding gear.
Do Your Research
First, do your research. Check around to see what similar gear (brand, condition, and model year) is selling for to give you a realistic idea of what you should expect to get for it.
Prep for Your Ad
Take good photos and take way more than you think you need. You can always delete the ones you don’t use. If you’re selling a kite, take photos of it inflated. Make sure the gear you are selling is clean and looking good. No one likes to buy sandy or dirty gear. Do a thorough inspection of the gear and repair or replace any parts that may need to be fixed. If you are planning on selling your gear as-is, take close-up photos of the areas that need repair or replacement and make sure that you list them on your advertisement.
Describing Your Gear
When writing your ad, stick to talking about the condition of your gear. Include how long you’ve had it and if any part of the gear has been damaged, is in need of repair, or has been repaired. Be completely honest about the condition of what you are selling.
No one needs to know all of the tech specs as this information is widely available online and chances are buyers have already read the info if they are considering purchasing your gear. Keep your descriptions simple and concise. 2,000 word descriptions are overkill. If you have to ship the gear, make sure you are very clear and on how you will be shipping it to the buyer and what the cost will be in addition to the selling price.
Now the last step is deciding what website to sell your gear on, whether it is on an auction site like eBay, a classified site like Craigslist, or the buy and sell section of a forum like iKitesurf or your local kiteboarding forum. Here are a few pros and cons of each:
Pros: A well known site that offers payment with PayPal security. EBay offers many different formats for selling your item: Buy Now, Auction, and Auction with Minimum Bid. On eBay, people fight over your stuff, making the price go up. It’s widely accepted that the best timing for selling on eBay is to post a 7-day auction on Sunday night to allow for last-minute bidding wars before the weekend ends.
Cons: Ebay charges fees for posting photos and service fees for selling items. Make sure you calculate these added costs into your listing price. While a bidding war may mean your gear could sell for more than expected, a lack of interest means you could end up selling it for less than you wanted to. If you have a minimum price, make sure you set the reserve price so you don’t end up selling a perfectly good kite or board for $20.
Pros: Geared towards selling in specific areas or cities. Craigslist is a free, quick, and easy interface to post your ad. Transactions are face-to-face and are usually done with cash. Be very careful of people offering to purchase your gear from out of town, especially if they offer more than you are asking. These offers are ALWAYS a scam.
Cons: Lots of flakes and low-ballers that waste your time. Most people who are buying on Craigslist are looking for the smoking deal and will be trying to talk you down on your price.
Pros: A very direct market geared towards kiters that are looking for used gear. Free to post ads with photos and can post over and over until item is sold.
Cons: Large amount of competition when selling your gear. Payment and shipping might be a concern if you are selling to a person not in your area.
Local Kiteboarding Forums
Pros: If you have a local forum for your area, chances are it has a buy and sell section. This connects you with other local kiters who might be looking for gear. Transactions are usually face-to-face at the local beach and you might even end up selling your gear to someone you know.
Cons: Local forums don’t have much reach outside of your local kiteboarding community, so if there isn’t someone interested in your gear in your area, you’ll have a tough time selling.
Although there are many different ways of selling your gear online, hopefully this information will help guide you in the right direction. Now go get your gear out of that dark corner, dust it off, post it online, and sell it.
Use that money towards new gear that you will enjoy out on the water or towards that kite trip that you’ve always wanted to go on. That pile of dusty used gear in your garage isn’t doing anybody any good, so let it find a home where someone will enjoy it!
Selling Kiteboarding Gear Responsibly
By Paul Lang
We’ve probably all met someone at our local beach that shows up with outdated and abused gear who is proud of the “deal” they got on some equipment that is dangerous and basically worthless. Almost always, these are people who are completely new to kiting and simply didn’t know any better when buying used gear online.
These people actually can be a big hazard for kiteboarding in general, as they probably have no clue what they are doing and might have even been told how easy and risk-free kiteboarding is by someone desperate to unload their stash of ancient gear.
We would all love to be able to sell our gear only to people we know will use the gear in a safe and responsible way, but the reality is that most kiters end up selling gear online to people they’ve never met. If you decide to sell your gear online, here are some guidelines we wish everyone would follow when selling kiteboarding equipment:
- Always include a disclaimer in your ads that kiteboarding is a sport that requires instruction and that the equipment is very dangerous if not used correctly. We don’t want to scare away potential new kiteboarders, but it’s important that inexperienced buyers don’t enter the sport with unrealistic expectations. You can even go a step further and verbally communicate this to your potential buyer to make sure they understand what they are getting themselves into.
- Be very honest and realistic in your descriptions of used gear. Finding an ancient kite at the back of your garage that you hardly used and calling it almost new is irresponsible.
- If you personally think you have a kite or other piece of equipment that is not safe for a beginner to use (after proper instruction, of course), you should consider throwing it in the dumpster instead of selling it.
- After the transaction is complete, you should always refer the buyer to a kite school for instruction if they are new to kiteboarding. A quick Google search or a look at the Kite Pages at the back of this magazine will help you find a school if the buyer lives in a different area.