The hot pink sign boasted ‘Upscale Sale’. Of course we had to go see what an ‘upscale sale’ looked like so we turned right. At the next intersection, there was a piece of cardboard with an arrow. We followed. The next spot had a small pink arrow, we took our chances.
There was no sale to be found. The ‘Upscale Sale’ did not have upscale signage. Bummer!
Garage sales are a lot of fun and come with bonuses! You get to free yourself of clutter and earn a little money at the same time! It’s a win win! The trick for a successful garage sale is in the preparation.
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5 Tips to Prepare for a Successful Garage Sale
1) Location, location, location
You’ve heard it before and it holds true! The most successful garage sales are held near a major road. If your signs boast ‘3 blocks’ you are likely to catch customers who weren’t intending to garage sale but can easily spare 3 blocks! Find a friend or relative who has the ideal spot and join forces!
Garage sales are always better with friends! Not only do you have someone to work with, you also can run to the restroom if needed. Plus, friends = more merchandise. Customers are less likely to do drive-bys if there is a huge assortment of merchandise. The more the merrier!
Signage is what brings the buyers in so skimping isn’t an option! Make your signs uniform but different from all of the other signs out there. A-board signs are awesome for the main intersections. Make the smaller signs that you staple to sign poles look the same so customers are certain they are going to the right sale. Check the codes in your area. (One year we couldn’t figure out why our signs kept disappearing. Apparently, the police were ripping them down because putting staples in poles endangered the pole climbers’ lives. I had no idea utility workers still climbed poles so I paid attention and, sure enough, I actually saw someone climbing a pole not too long after. Who knew?) We save our signs from year to year and freshen up as needed. Quite by accident, we came up with a unique sign by changing the day with a bright yellow posterboard strip on our hot pink signs. It is very identifiable and we have even advertised on Craigslist, ‘follow the hot pink and yellow signs’.
4) Price Tags
Price those items! Price tags can be found at the Dollar Tree or just about anywhere. We happened to have an excess of return address labels and have used those for quite a few years now. It’s super simple to print initials on them and cut into thirds for price tags. This makes it easy to know who to give credit to at check out. You can even pre-print prices for ultra easy pricing.
We have an old cash register from my dad’s old business which works fabulous! It isn’t necessary though. Make sure you have a school box, fanny pack, or something to keep money in. Have 1’s, 5’s, and coins on hand to make check out simple. Keep an eye on that money too, as it has been known to disappear.
If you have kids … why not let them make some money too? Customers are happy to pay for a cold drink on a hot day! Pepsi and water are what we usually have on hand … throw them in a cooler with some ice and have the kids make a sign! Cookies and brownies seem to be a hit as well!