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How To: Flip Guitar Gear

Posted by Ryan Kick on

We all like to get new guitar gear, but not everyone can always afford the newest pedal or guitar on the market. As guitar players who constantly want to try new sounds and get new gear, we understand that it can be an expensive hobby. One of our favorite ways to get new guitar gear is to buy, sell, and flip to fund your next purchase. While this can be a bit of hard work and patience, flipping can be a very fun and rewarding way to try the newest gear. Here are some dos and don’ts to the art of flipping.

 

Knowing your Product

The first step to flipping is that you have to know your market and be knowledgeable in what you are selling. Whether it be pedals and smaller gear, or bigger and more expensive items, know what you are selling. Products such as pedals tend to sell faster but the payout is smaller, while guitars are expensive to ship and take longer to sell, but the payout may just be worth it. Learn what brands tend to hold their value more, and what brands tend to sell for way less than the new price. Understand the trends of when people typically are willing to spend more money, and times when people are selling stuff for cheap. Also, you need to know where to sell. Some online websites take more percentage per sale than others, but side on convenience. Our recommendations to buy and sell would be Reverb, eBay, Craigslist, and your local Facebook classifieds page. Lastly, whenever possible, avoid sending or receiving payment via the PayPal gift option! While this avoids fees, it is unsafe in case something goes south, and then your hard earned cash is gone.

 

Make a Sales Chart

Keeping track of your sales and all the fees associated will help you track your actual bottom dollar. Track how much it costs for each item you buy, the processing fees for sales, shipping cost, and then your final net profit. It’s also really good to have an end goal, like your dream guitar or a new amp. The dream of a previously unobtainable item will keep you hustling and working hard to get to your goal. Now, lets go into a quick explanation on how the sales chart works. Make 2 sides of an excel spreadsheet that can separate your sales from currently trying to sell. 1 side should be listing all of your sold and current sales, that includes your price bought and sold, and the other side just your current selling items. The second side is important because you can put your list price, but also the lowest you are willing to go in order for you to make money. It is also important to take note of seller fees once you make the sale, because even though the pedal may have sold more than you bought it for, the fees can some times make you take a loss. The key here is record everything, and stick to your guns. As you progress further in your flipping endeavor, you begin to see how much money you have made, and also have records of what things sold for, and even records of the pedals you may have taken a loss on. A chart is the behind the scenes secret that can keep you on track and organized. 

 

Buying

This one is pretty easy. The first step of flipping is that you have to actually buy something. The key to this whole process is that you want to make money, so take your time and find something that is listed under the normal selling price. A big tip we have found is that you can’t be afraid to lowball. Now most people who are selling don’t like to get lowballed, so shoot low and start the offer process but be realistic. You know what the pedal is worth, but you also are trying to make money. Be patient and wait for something to pop up that is low enough to make money, because a premature purchase can cause you to make less or even take a loss. Another piece of advice is that anything with the original box or paperwork always tends to fetch more money. People like to know a product has been taken care of, so those help a lot. Our last thought is to know what pedals are the big flips, or ones that people always seem to pay more for. The Analogman King of Tone is a prime example because the wait list is over a year long from them directly, but typically sell for well over double on the used market.

 

Selling

Now this is the part we all want to do, sell. This also requires patience and being smart about your market. Firstly, take good pictures of what you are selling. Being very detailed can avoid an unhappy buyer and later issues that are just annoying to deal with. Next, price your item competitively but high. This encourages offers from people, and can really be your chance to make the person feel like they are getting a deal, when really you are getting exactly what you wanted out of it. Give a good description and make the listing look as professional as possible. People would rather pay extra to buy from someone that looks legit rather than the sketchy listing. Lastly, package the item well. This is something that most people skip out on, but can make a big difference to the buyer, as well as your online reputation. Make sure you keep in contact with the buyer often, give them updates, and act professionally.

 

Flipping is a great way to help you get that new piece of gear without effecting the family budget. It also creates a huge sense of pride when you finally get that piece of gear you have hustled for all year. Now get out there and start flipping, your wallet will thank you later.

Ryan Kick

Ryan has always had a passion for music, as well as training both students and adults in their giftings. He loves all things guitar gear, chicken wings, and Buffalo sports teams. Ryan resides in Olean New York with his wife Jasmine, where they work together as youth pastors.

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  • Great reminder on keeping track of sales and purchases! I love Google Sheets, so I made a little gear-flipping template and thought I would share here, hope this is useful to some of you!

    It turns red for negative numbers and calculates the current balance. If I’m updating a posting, I find it helpful to put links in the "x"s of the listing so I can quickly bump, repost, or check how many views the item has.

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1RYD61YpqvQKfKSXSquuJME-bu45Shrj3uy3J_5-KPSY/edit?usp=sharing

    Adam on

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