> Our review guidelines
Are you ready to upgrade your ride? Your old bike might help you to fund a new one. Perhaps you have too many bikes and need to clear some space?
In this article, you’ll learn the secrets to selling a used bike like a pro.
Discover expert tips and tricks to attract buyers, set the right price, and close the deal quickly. Maximize your bike’s value and hit the road with cash in hand!
Armed with a little knowledge, you’ll be able to sell your bike without any hassle or stress.
Read more: How to buy a used bike
Why Would You Sell Your Bike?
There are several reasons why people sell bikes.
Upgrading To A Better Ride
As cycling enthusiasts, there usually comes a time when we crave an upgrade. Selling your current bicycle can fund a new bike, allowing you to experience the latest advancements in cycling technology and performance.
Examples of recent technologies that may warrant an upgrade include disc brakes and electronic gear shifting. Disc brake bikes allow wider tires, which appeals to many riders. You may also want an improved version of what you already have: faster, more aero, lighter, or more comfortable.
Maybe when you bought your first bike you hadn’t developed a taste for a particular style of riding? The longer you ride, the more likely you are to identify types of cycling you enjoy. For instance, you might want a lighter bike for climbing hills, or an aero bike for riding fast on the flats.
Cyclists on road bikes may develop a hankering for getting out of the traffic, while mountain bike riders might harbour an ambition to ride farther and faster on asphalt or gravel. You can do all these things, or you might decide you’re done with some of them.
Life is dynamic, and so are our needs. Relocation to a new city may render your bicycle unsuitable for your current lifestyle. Selling it can free up space and resources for more relevant alternatives.
An example of this might be if you moved to a small city apartment and don’t have room to store a full-sized bike. You could sell your previous beloved bike and buy a foldable bike instead.
When money gets tight, selling a bicycle can be a quick way to generate some extra cash. There’s a good chance if you’ve been riding for a few years that you have more than one bike in the garage or shed.
If you’re a handy mechanic, you could even buy old bikes with the specific motive of doing them up and making a small profit. But you’d need to love bikes before getting into secondhand bike sales.
Video: How To Flip Bikes To Make Money
Sooner or later, most of us have some kind of physical limitation inflicted upon us or develop health problems. It’s possible you may not be able to ride the bike you bought 10 years ago, or that it causes discomfort to do so. You could be vying for an e-bike or a recumbent perhaps to help keep you riding.
Just as health issues may cause us to buy a new type of bike, so they justify selling your old one.
Selling a used bike is environmentally friendly in a number of ways.
Not all bike components are recyclable, and it slows the flow of bikes and bike parts into landfill.
Keeping used bikes in circulation reduces the energy consumption and resources required to build new bikes.
Where To Sell A Bike – The Best Places To Place A Listing
With the rise of online marketplaces and local communities, there are now numerous avenues available for selling your bike.
Below, we’ll explore some popular places where you can sell your bike, along with their advantages and disadvantages.
Advantages: Online marketplaces like eBay, Craigslist, and Facebook Marketplace offer a vast audience of potential buyers. These platforms allow you to reach a wide range of people, increasing the chances of finding the right buyer for your bike.
You also have the option of specialist online bike sellers like Buycycle or Bikefair, who will help you to pack and dispatch a bike as part of their service.
Disadvantages: Dealing with potential scammers and low-ball offers can be a drawback of an online marketplace. Additionally, shipping a bike to a distant buyer can be costly and risky, as there’s a chance of damage during transit.
Video: Selling A Bike On BikeFair
Local Bike Shop
Advantages: Many local bike shops accept used bikes for trade-ins or consignment. Selling your bike through a bike shop can be convenient as they handle the advertising and sale process for you. It also allows you to leverage the shop’s customer base, increasing the likelihood of finding a buyer quickly.
Disadvantages: Bike shops typically take a commission on the sale, reducing your final earnings. The offered price might also be lower than what you could get through private sales since the shop needs to make a profit from the transaction. Moreover, the shop’s customer base might not align with your bike’s specific niche or target market.
Online Cycling Forums and Classifieds
Advantages: Online cycling forums and classifieds, such as Bike Forums and Pinkbike, are frequented by cycling enthusiasts actively looking for bikes and related gear. These platforms often have dedicated sections for buying and selling bikes, making it easier to target potential buyers specifically interested in your type of bike.
Disadvantages: While these forums are more niche-oriented, they might not have the same level of visibility as larger online marketplaces. As a result, it could take longer to find the right buyer. Additionally, interacting with potential buyers and ensuring secure payment can be more challenging compared to mainstream platforms.
Social Media Groups
Advantages: Selling your bike through social media groups or dedicated cycling communities allows you to connect with local buyers quickly. Platforms like Facebook, Reddit, or WhatsApp often have regional cycling groups where you can post your bike for sale, reaching a targeted audience of potential buyers in your area.
Disadvantages: Privacy concerns can arise when using social media platforms for sales, as you may need to share personal information with potential buyers. Moreover, navigating through numerous comments and messages can be time-consuming and challenging, especially if there’s high demand for your bike.
Garage Sales and Local Events
Advantages: Participating in garage sales or local cycling events, such as swap meets or bike fairs, can be a great way to sell your bike in-person. This option allows potential buyers to inspect the bike first hand and make immediate decisions.
Disadvantages: The audience at these events might be limited compared to online platforms. Additionally, you may need to wait for the right event or season to sell your bike, which could take more time than online selling. Lastly, the success of a garage sale heavily depends on the foot traffic and the event’s popularity.
Advantages: Some bike manufacturers or retailers offer trade-in programs, allowing you to exchange your old bike for store credit or a discount on a new bike purchase. This can be a hassle-free way to offload your bike and invest in an upgrade.
Disadvantages: Trade-in programs often undervalue used bikes, and you might not get the best price compared to selling privately. Additionally, you are limited to using the store credit within the specific bike shop or brand, which may not align with your preferences.
How To Value A Bike For Sale
There are various online resources available to help you value your bike. You’ll have to take into account any alterations you made to the bike, which may increase its value.
Bicycle Blue Book
One of the best known places to help you put a value on your used bike is the Bicycle Blue Book Value Guide. If the bike you’re looking for doesn’t come up, try widening the search or use the “search by brand” field. There is a large catalogue of bikes archived on the site.
eBay Completed Listings
If your used bike is fairly mainstream, there’s a good chance it has been sold before on eBay. That being the case, you can use the completed listings filter to gauge the approximate value of the bike.
Be aware that a poor listing with low-quality photos and a vague description probably didn’t achieve the best price for the bike.
Online Used Bike Vendors
To get a ballpark idea of what your bike might be worth, check out specialist used bike websites like Buycycle, Tuvalum, and Bikefair. Bear in mind that these sites take a commission on sales, so the value might be elevated by a few percent to offset this.
Video: How To Find The Market Value Of Any Second Hand Bike
Tips For Selling A Used Bike
Selling a used bike doesn’t have to be a daunting task. By following these tips, you can attract potential buyers, get the best deal for your bike, and ensure a smooth and secure transaction.
Clean And Polish Your Bike
First impressions matter, and a clean, well-maintained bike will instantly attract more potential buyers. Before listing it for sale, give your bike a thorough cleaning. Wash the frame, tires, and all components, and consider applying a coat of bike polish to make it shine.
Pay attention to the drivetrain, ensuring it’s free from dirt and grime. A sparkling bike will not only make your listing more appealing but also give the impression that you’ve taken good care of the bike.
Provide A Detailed And Honest Description
When writing your bike’s description for the listing, be as detailed and honest as possible. Include essential information such as the bike’s make, model, size, year, and any modifications or upgrades you’ve made.
Describe the bike’s condition accurately, highlighting any wear and tear, scratches, or dents. Honesty builds trust with potential buyers and helps manage their expectations. If you’ve kept maintenance records or have recently replaced certain parts, mention these to further boost buyer confidence.
Take High-Quality Photos
Accompany your detailed description with high-quality photos that showcase your bike from various angles. Use natural light and choose a clean and clutter-free background. Include close-up shots of important components, such as the drivetrain, brakes, and wheels.
Photograph any unique or upgraded features that could make your bike stand out. High-resolution images create a positive impression and give potential buyers a clear view of what they can expect.
Video: How To Photograph Your Bike To Sell Online
Set a Fair And Competitive Price
Pricing your used bike appropriately is crucial to attracting potential buyers. Research the current market value of similar bikes to understand the price range. Factors such as the bike’s age, condition, brand, and market demand will influence its worth.
While it’s tempting to aim for a high price, be realistic to avoid deterring potential buyers. A fair and competitive price will generate more interest and increase the chances of a quick sale.
Highlight The Bike’s Selling Points
Every bike has its unique selling points, whether it’s lightweight, equipped with high-end components, or suited for a specific riding style. Emphasize these strengths in your listing to appeal to the right audience.
If you’ve recently replaced major parts, such as the drivetrain or suspension, mention the upgrades as selling points. Clearly defining the benefits will attract buyers looking for those specific features.
Be Responsive To Inquiries
Once your listing is live, be prepared to handle inquiries promptly and professionally. Respond to messages, emails, or calls from potential buyers as soon as possible.
Being responsive signals to buyers that you are serious about selling the bike and can build trust in the transaction. Answer any questions they have about the bike’s condition, history, or specifications accurately and in a friendly manner.
Be open to negotiating the price with potential buyers, but also know your bike’s value and set a bottom line that you’re willing to accept. Stick to your price if it’s fair, but if a buyer’s offer is close to your desired price, consider compromising to secure the sale.
Keep the negotiations respectful and remember that finding a middle ground can lead to a mutually satisfactory agreement.
Ensure A Safe Transaction
When finalizing the sale, prioritize safety. If you’re selling in person, meet the buyer in a public place during daylight hours. Bring a burly friend along if you feel more comfortable! Accept cash or consider using a secure payment method like PayPal if selling online.
Avoid sharing personal information such as your home address or financial details. Always issue a proper receipt or bill of sale to document the transaction.
Selling A Bike: Frequently Asked Questions
What Information Should I Include In My Bike’s Listing?
Include the make, model, year, size, condition, any upgrades, and the asking price.
If you know the approximate distance you’ve ridden on the bike, that also helps (especially when low).
How Can I Make My Used Bike More Appealing To Potential Buyers?
Be sure to clean the bike, fix any niggling mechanical problems like non-indexed gears, and take clear, high-resolution photos of it from various angles.
Is There A Best Time Of Year To Sell My Used Bike?
During warmer months is generally the best time to sell a used bike, when interest in cycling or taking up cycling is at its highest.
What Are The Common Scams To Watch Out For When Selling A Used Bike?
There are various payment and shipping scams to watch out for. A common one is where the scammer falsely claims to have overpaid for the item and requests a refund for the excess amount.
Should I Include Accessories With My Used Bike Sale?
Be wary of including accessories with a bike if they increase the price, because they may well be unwanted by potential buyers.
You’re better off selling accessories separately unless they’re a free incentive.
How Should I Handle Payment When Selling My Used Bike?
Handle payment through cash, verified electronic payment apps like PayPal or Venmo, or a direct bank transfer to ensure a secure and straightforward transaction.
What Steps Should I Take To Prepare My Bike For Sale?
Clean and polish the bike to make it visually appealing.
Ensure it’s in good working condition by checking and adjusting the brakes, gears, and tires.
Conclusion: Sealing the Deal on Your Used Bike Sale
To distil this article: get your bike looking as good and working as smoothly as you can, take some high-quality photos of it, and provide as much detail as possible about it to potential buyers.
Putting a value on your bike can be challenging, but there are many online resources available to help you. If the worst comes to the worst, aim high and be prepared to drop the price if interest is low.
I hope you found this article useful. Please feel free to leave a comment or share it.