If you're planning a yard sale or think you may host a booth at a trade show sometime soon, one thing you will not want to save for the last minute is stocking up on supplies. You do not need a whole lot of items to successfully hold a yard sale, but at a minimum, you should consider grabbing the essentials below.
Display Tables, Racks, etc...
You are going to need some way to display the items that you have for sale, which is probably going to be your biggest challenge. If you are lucky, you already have some display tables and racks on hand.
If you do not, you'll need to either purchase these items somewhere or borrow them. You may have accommodating family members or neighbors who will be willing to lend you the supplies for the sale. Do not forget to purchase hangers if you will be displaying clothing on racks.
Some people are quite informal about pricing at yard sales, but others prefer to put a clear price on their items. If you fall into the latter category, you will need to purchase price stickers. Just do not forget to be open to negotiation. This can be essential in order to close a sale. If you do accept lower price offers, you may want to post a sign stating as much (see below).
You will need to purchase signs both to point the way to your yard sale from around the neighborhood and to help people who are browsing at your sale to find the types of items they are looking for.
Signage also can help you to make certain bargains stand out. If somebody has the chance to save hundreds or thousands of dollars on a used item, draw attention to that deal with a prominent sign. It could make the difference between whether you make a sale or not. This article is a great resource on making a creative yard sale sign.
You want it to be as easy as possible not just for shoppers to find what they are looking for, but also to take items home with them. To do this, purchase a bunch of shopping bags and have them ready when customers check out.
Ideally, you should clearly display the shopping bags on the table next to you. That way, buyers who may be walking home will not forego a certain item because they think it will be unwieldy to carry with them.
Cash and Coins
You will have to be ready to make change when people check out their items. You can save yourself a bit of grief by pricing everything with whole numbers (this way, you do not need to stock up on rolls of coins). But you will definitely need to have an assortment of bills ($1, $5, $10 and $20 bills at a minimum; if you are selling pricier items, you might want to grab some $50 bills too).
Nobody wants to stand around waiting while you try to do math in your head, even if you are great at arithmetic. Plus, even if you are fast, people may not trust your math if they do not see you punching numbers into a calculator.
So make sure that you have one, and that you pick up an extra battery for it as well. Calculator batteries last a very long time on average, but you still do not want to risk your calculator quitting in the middle of the day.
Water bottle and Snacks
You are likely going to be spending hours outside, if not the entire day. Sitting there, especially in the bright sun, you are likely to get dehydrated if you are not drinking lots of water.
Don’t force yourself to go inside to grab water or snacks. Make life easy on yourself by getting a big water bottle. As far as snack food goes, obviously you should refrain from eating when people are checking out or talking to you, but there is nothing wrong with keeping yourself fueled up for a long day.
Pop up Canopy Tent
Speaking of the hot, bright sun, you will be way more comfortable during your yard sale if you don’t have those harsh rays beating down on you. Get a canopy tent and enjoy sitting in the shade. You’ll be less hot, less likely to get dehydrated, and less likely to get sunburned too.
Your shoppers might also appreciate some relief from the sun, so think about getting one or two more tents and setting them up to shade your displays. The more comfortable you make the shopping experience, the more time customers will be willing to spend browsing your items. The longer they spend shopping, the more sales you will likely make.
Sadly, people may feel like throwing trash away while they are in your yard. To keep it from ending up on your yard, get a large trash bin and set it out in plain view. Hopefully, waste will end up in the bin and not in your flower beds.
At least one person to help
A person isn’t really an “item” of course, but it is worth mentioning lastly that you will have a tough time running a yard sale on your own. While you may be able to manage the customers, no one will be there to safeguard your items while you are in the bathroom. Plus, a yard sale is a lot more fun with a friend!
With These Essential Supplies, You Will Be Well Prepared for Your Yard Sale
Now you know everything you need to set up for your next yard sale. While it will take some time and effort to gather these supplies, you’ll be glad that you did. You’ll be able to enjoy a more comfortable, relaxed day, and your customers will have a better shopping experience. That should in turn lead to a more successful day with more items cleared out of your home and more money in the bank!