BST 101 (Buy Sell Trade) 

I get lots of questions about where I buy or sell Olivia’s clothes.  Besides buying from my favorite retail and online small shops, I love buying and selling on BST Facebook groups.

It can be pretty intimidating at first if you don’t understand how to navigate the boards so hopefully this post will give you a good start if you too are interested in buying or selling online.

Let’s breakdown what BST means. 

B= Buying.  You can buy new, gently used or used clothing

S= Sell.  You can sell your new, gently used or used clothing.

T= Trade.  You can trade others for different sizes of the same items.

I’ve bought and sold, but I’ve never traded yet.

Getting Started

Easiest way to start is to set up a PayPal account, and join some BST Facebook groups. I’ll link some of my favs below.  If you plan on selling too, you will need to buy some poly mailers from amazon to ship.  You don’t NEED a PayPal to buy because you can pay a PayPal invoice as a guest with a credit card, but if you plan on selling, you will definitely need one to send a money request or an invoice.

PayPal Invoice vs Money Request 

Both are protected by PayPal for both the buyer and the seller.  If you’re the buyer and the seller ships an incorrect item, stained, wrong size etc, or doesn’t ship it at all, you can file a PayPal claim to get your money back if the seller doesn’t communicate with you to fix it.   As a seller, you are protected if tracking says it was delivered and the buyer claims they didn’t get it.

A money request is the easiest thing for a seller to send. It just takes seconds. You enter the email, the amount and then a note and send it.






An invoice is much more detailed.  It allows you to enter multiple items on each line, specific prices for each with descriptions, a shipping amount and a discount if offered.


For money requests I use just the regular PayPal App. For invoices, I use the PayPal Business App. Both are super easy to use.
The Lingo

When buying or selling, the condition of the items for sale must be listed.  Most will abbreviate the condition like below.

NWT – new with tags.  Never worn or washed

NWOT – new without tags. You took the tags off but never washed or wore

EUC – washed or worn maybe once but in perfect condition

VGUC – washed and worn several times but in great condition. No holes, stains, rips, washwear.

GUC – definitely used condition.  Maybe slight wear, scuffing, maybe one small hole or stain but still has life in it.

PLAY – holes, stains, rips, tears   Basically play clothes now.

I always inspect the items I sell very closely before I list because if you list something as EUC but there’s a hole or a stain, it can be returned to you. If this happens a lot, you can get removed from the group.

Buying 

Once you’ve joined the groups you want, you just wait until someone posts an item you’re interested.  Every group has slightly different rules, so make sure you read them first, but most groups you just claim an item by putting your email in the comments.   Some groups you reply to the item. Other groups you have to make a new comment with the item number and your email.  Some groups require you to say sold or me, and then your email.  The seller will email you a PayPal invoice or money request.  You pay. Then they will email you a tracking number once it ships.

I definitely recommend buying a little before you start selling, to hey the hang of it all.   The first group I joined was a Freshly Picked BST group because I wasn’t about to pay $60 for baby shoes.  Once I bought a few,  I started selling the shoes that she outgrew.  This got my feet wet and I moved onto other groups.

Selling

Selling is a lot more detailed, especially if you’re going to sell more than a few items (a purge).  You will need a PayPal account to send a money request or an invoice, poly mailers to ship.   If you’re selling a few items or a lot, you will need to keep track of who’s getting what, who’s paid, etc.  I just write it down on a piece of paper and put a check once they’ve paid. Then I package it up ready to ship once they’ve paid.  I drop off at the post office and then update the tracking number in PayPal once I’m back home.

A purge. A purge is where you sell multiple items in one post.  You usually will post a teaser shot.  Sometimes this can be a photo of your kid wearing some of the items for sale, a shot of a stack of clothes or a collage.  I like to mix it up.  Below is examples of each and why they work.


A shot of your kid. This generates interest because people like to see the clothes come to life.  This gives them an idea of your style, what might be in your purge and they can picture it on their kid.  Some use a shot with items that they are not selling. This is allowed but you just have to disclose that items in main picture are not for sale.


The mystery pile.  This generates lots of interest because people can’t exactly see what you have for sale.  This can either cause them to click on it and look, or to keep scrolling.   Maybe they get a glimpse of something they want or they are just curious.


The collage.  This is similar to the pile but gives people a clear shot of all or some items in your purge.  Again, this can cause them to either want to click on it if they see things they like, or keep scrolling, if nothing interests them.


The layout.  This is a mix between the pile and the collage.  Again it gives everyone a good idea of what you’re selling.  But if you have a lot of stuff, this can take a while.

Taking A Good Photo 

I swear, taking a good photo of your item can sell it! I’ve seen the cutest stuff sit because of bad photos.  Bad lighting, horrible distracting background, flash, dark, blurry or item layed out strange.

Good lighting, clean background, item layed out nicely.  Bad lighting, too close, not a super appealing background

Item not layed nicely out, flash on, bad lighting.

Selling tips:

  • Hustle. I keep posting my items over and over and over until they sell.
  • Offer $1 discount when a buyer buys multiple items. You’re saving in shipping and they like a deal.
  • Price to sell unless it’s a hard to find (HTF) or a highly sought after (hsa) item…. you can sometimes get more than retail for these.
  • If you can, post a picture of your kid wearing the item too. This gives people a visual. What might look so adorable on, might not look cute just laying in a photo.
    • Sell in season or just before the season. Example: don’t try to sell your swimsuit and shorts in December or your fall plaids in March…no ones buying it right now. I save everything in big bins and just sell in season.
    • Keep your eyes peeled for ISO (in search of) posts….you may have this item. They are an easy sell because you have a buyer who’s already wanting it.
    • Friday night is a good night to do a purge because it’s payday for most and a lot of people like to online shop on the weekend. Posting on the weekends I usually do the best.

    I hope this helps anyone new to the BST world. Leave me a comment if you have any questions. 😊

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