Upgrade Your Rig: Sell Your Used Gear to Make Room (& Money) for New Instruments
by Andrew Watson
When it comes to making sure you and the musicians at your church have all the tools needed to bring worship songs to life, not all budgets are created equal. And whether you bring your own music gear or the church provides you with instruments, one fact remains: Music gear can be expensive. If you’re like me, you like to switch up your tools frequently to not only challenge yourself but also to keep up with the ever-evolving sounds of modern worship music.
Luckily, third-party marketplaces like Reverb make it easy to not only find quality used gear at prices that fit into any church budget, but also to sell old gear to make money and room for new instruments. Whether you’ve got a closet full of goodies collecting dust at your house of worship or you simply want to sell a few pedals from your board, there are several tips that can help items sell faster on Reverb and similar online platforms.
- Take great photos.
Don’t get me wrong: You don’t have to hire a professional photographer or even purchase an expensive camera. With the right lighting and a solid-colored background, you can take quality photos with your smartphone. Be sure to photograph the item you’re selling from every angle and be as upfront about dings or blemishes as you are with unique or noteworthy aspects of the gear. Take more photos than you think you’ll need—a prospective buyer wants to see exactly what they’re purchasing.
- Don’t skimp on the details.
Use the description to tell buyers what your pictures can’t. How long have you had the item? Where did it come from? Why do you love it? Start with the most important info first—covering those bases will ensure that your item appears when people search for the brand or model. From there, let your artistic juices flow: A clever (while still accurate) description could be the reason a buyer selects your item over another similar piece of gear.
- Make sure the price is right.
Pricing is one of the most direct ways to impact where your gear shows up in searches since the most affordable pieces of gear float to the top of the search list. One benefit of listing your item on Reverb over other marketplaces is the low selling fee. With just 3.5 percent taken when you sell an item, you can afford to list your gear for less. If you’re unsure of how to price your item, take a look at the Reverb Price Guide, which shows real-time pricing information on what users are buying and selling on the site—it’s like a Kelley Blue Book for music gear.
- Be open to negotiating.
When you list an item on Reverb, you have the option to accept offers. Accepting offers provides you with an opportunity to negotiate with interested buyers and increase your chances of making a sale. Listings that have the “make an offer” functionality enabled sell up to twice as fast as listings that don’t. Keep in mind, you’re never required to accept an offer.
- Consider these pro tips.
When you sell gear on Reverb, there are several tools and services available to make the process quick and painless. Download the Reverb App—you can create and edit listings, respond to messages, and make sales from the palm of your hand. Consider using Reverb Bump. For a small fee, Reverb Bump allows you to boost your listing, putting it in front of more buyers and increasing the likelihood of a sale. Finally, get a 1 percent discount on future purchases when you select “Reverb Bucks” as your payment method—the money you earn will stay in your account so that you can use it to buy new gear on the site.
The best way to stay in front of an online marketplace audience is to publish listings frequently. Consider setting up one central shop where everyone in your worship band can post items they want to sell. Not enough gear on stage or in storage? Ask your congregation to donate old gear that’s collecting dust in their attics to raise money for new equipment for the church. You never know what treasures might be hiding in someone’s home—it could be your band’s ticket to a new rig.