A Comprehensive Guide to Selling on Poshmark
Updated: Mar 17, 2019
Wait… what is Poshmark?
Poshmark is an online marketplace that allows users to buy and sell women’s, men’s, and children’s fashion such as clothes, shoes, and accessories. It launched in 2011 as a platform exclusively for reselling women’s fashions, particularly brand name and couture clothing. Since then, the app has evolved quite significantly and expanded to include men's and children’s fashion as well. Recently, they even added separate categories to the app to cover specialties such as maternity clothing, plus size, and “boutique” items, in which small businesses can sell their handmade or boutique items on the app. In addition, there is a wholesale portal now, where sellers can purchase boutique items in bulk to resell in their own closets.
The benefit of Posh Protect
Poshmark's policy states that all sales are final, except in the case of an item that does not ship or does not arrive how it was described. When an item is purchased on Poshmark, payment is not released to the seller until the buyer “accepts” the order. This policy, called Posh Protect, is put in place to protect buyers from fraudulent listings or even just listings that were maybe less than honest. Until the buyer has received the item and examined it to ensure it has arrived as it was described in the listing, the seller will not receive the money. Poshmark allows buyers three days to complete this process. After this waiting period, and provided there are no open report claims for the item, payment is automatically released to the seller.
How to get started on Poshmark
Getting started on Poshmark is simple. First, download the Poshmark app from the Apple App Store or Google Play. While Poshmark allows sellers to edit listings, manage sales, and do most of the general app functions using their desktop site, users cannot sell on the platform unless they download the mobile app.
Haven’t created a Poshmark account yet? Use my code ITZSTERR to get $5 off your first order!
Once you create your Poshmark account, you will automatically be set up with a Poshmark Closet to start selling your items. Your Closet will automatically begin with one listing already made – your “Meet the Posher” listing. While Poshmark will automatically generate this post using your profile image and the brands you chose as your “favorite brands,” it’s important to edit this description as soon as possible to make it less generic and more reflective of who you are. Poshmark shoppers want to know where their clothes are coming from and adding a bit of information about yourself makes a big difference! Including information on why you’re using Poshmark, what you like to do in your free time, or what your Closet’s general shipping practices are (such as “I ship orders same day if they are placed before 3 PM EST) help buyers gain insight into your closet and set standards for what to expect when doing business with you.
Adding a profile picture is also a great idea, as it lets buyers know they are doing business with a real person!
Creating your first Poshmark listing
Your account is created, your profile picture has been uploaded, and you’re ready to start selling! Now, it’s time to create your first listing on Poshmark.
First, click the “Sell” button in the bottom menu. Here, you will have the option to take photos within the app or choose photos that are already on your phone's camera roll. Poshmark also allows you to choose which photo to use as the cover image, crop the photos you have uploaded, and apply filters. I would strongly suggest against using the supplied filters, as this will make it more difficult for people to truly see your image and overall it just ends up being a distraction from your item.
Tips for selling success
I've been selling on Poshmark since 2013. If I had a Poshmark baseball card, what would my stats be? Over 22k followers, 200 listings sold, $2k in sales, and 100 ratings with an average of five stars. How did I do it? Use the following tips and you will be on your way to Poshmark success:
1. Eye-catching cover shots make all the difference
First impressions matter! Crisp, naturally lit photos are a must. Try taking your photos in a room that gets a lot of natural light during the day, as artificial light can sometimes add an odd hue to the picture and make it difficult for shoppers to get a true sense of the item’s color or material. For clothing items, be sure to show yourself or someone else wearing the item to give shoppers an idea of what it will look like when worn. Showing every angle of the item is a great idea and also prevents buyers from reporting that the item was “not as described.” Looking to go the extra mile? Pair your item with other available accessories or clothing to show what your buyer could wear if they choose to bundle their purchase!
2. Write descriptions that are honest and thorough
In general, people want transparency. Whether it’s about how their data is being used on a social media site, what their town is spending tax dollars on, or – you guessed it – exactly what they’re buying on Poshmark.
If your item is a few years old and has signs of wear and tear, do not hide it. Show the item’s flaws in your listing’s photos as well as in the description for the item. This will also protect you from any reports the buyer may try to write after they receive the item, as Poshmark will see that you were open and honest about the item before the buyer purchased. Poshmark does not let sellers edit their item descriptions after an item is sold. This helps prevent people from being dishonest and attempting to alter the description after the fact.
In addition to being honest about your items, be sure to also share as much information as you possibly can! Sometimes sizes aren’t enough – shoppers want to know exact measurements, such as length/waist/rise/bust, so they can make sure the item will fit just right. Sharing a photo of the care tag also helps users know the fabric content (in the case of allergies) and how to properly care for the item.
3. Share, share, share
On Poshmark, you are able to share your own listings as well as listings posted by other Poshmark sellers. When you are first getting started, one trick to gain exposure is to share from closets that have a lot of followers. If these Poshmark users see you’ve shared their items, they may choose to return the favor! This exposes your items to a lot of fresh new eyes and increases the likelihood of making a sale.
Sharing your own items brings them to the top of the search results. For example, if someone is searching for a ‘black dress’ and you have recently shared your own little black dress listing, your item will appear towards the top of the search results. This visibility increases your chances of selling an item. Try to avoid letting items sit for a long time without sharing, as it makes the items harder to discover both in your Closet and within a search. When you click on a listing within your closet, Poshmark provides a handy banner at the top of the screen to alert you how long it has been since you last shared. My advice? Don't let an item go more than five days without being shared.
4. Always follow the rules
Poshmark has a published Community Guidelines document that covers how people who use the platform should act and how the app should be used. It is very important to read this document before you get started on Poshmark!
Within these guidelines, Poshmark outlines that the app is for women’s, men’s, and kids’ fashion, accessories, and new makeup products only. This means that used makeup cannot be sold on Poshmark. Also, all pre-owned clothing and accessories must be clean and in good condition. Items that are not permitted on Poshmark include: replicas or fakes, cell phones, books, home goods, used underwear, and any health and wellness products. Because of USPS regulations, Poshmark also prohibits the sale of items such as nail polish and perfumes.
Before listing your item, make sure that it is allowed. Doing so will save you from being reported and will make Poshmark a better place to buy and sell.
5. Add new items to your closet as often as you can
Shoppers are on Poshmark every single day looking for new pieces to add to their wardrobe. By having a consistently updated Closet, you can catch the attention of prospective customers and keep your followers interested (and, most importantly, constantly checking in for something to buy). In addition to adding new items, remember to refer back to tip #3 and share the listings you already have!
6. Packaging leaves an impression
First – keep in mind that you can use any plain cardboard box for your Poshmark sales… OR you can get free shipping boxes from USPS! Make sure that the boxes you use say “Mailing Box” and not “Flat Rate Mailing Box" to avoid any issues with the shipping label Poshmark provides.
When packing your items, be sure to do the following:
Lint roll your items before shipping, especially if you have pets!
Include tissue paper to make your shipment look nice and professional.
Put a handwritten thank you note in your box to make a great impression. It doesn’t have to be long, just something like “thank you so much for buying from my Poshmark Closet! I hope you love your item.” You can even remind buyers to leave a review (or, as Poshmark calls them, "Love Notes") once they receive their purchase.
Make sure to use a box that is appropriately sized for what you are sending. For example, no one wants to receive a huge box for their order of one bracelet, just as no one wants to receive a small package with all of their clothing items squished inside.
7. Find closets similar to yours and follow their followers
I'll admit, the first time I did this myself I felt kind of gross. You may be thinking, "isn't that just stealing someone else's customers? Doesn't it come off as spammy to follow people you don't know?" The reason I always include this suggestion when helping people get started on Poshmark is because it's a great way to actively find users who are most likely interested in your items and, as a result, most likely to make a purchase. Plus, simply following someone does not come across as spammy! Of course, if you then start commenting on their posts or aggressively sending them items to "try on" by using the share feature, it will absolutely cross that line. However, Poshmark is built on the basis of community and adding new users to your following list can be mutually beneficial.
Bonus tip – have some extra time on your hands? Do a search for an item you have listed in your closet. Using the filters, change the "availability" view to "sold items." Once you find a listing similar to your item in the search results, click on it. Follow each person who liked the listing. This is a great way to give users a gentle nudge that you may have something they are looking for!
8. Ship as fast as you can
In today's e-commerce environment, consumers do not like to wait. Think about how wildly successful Amazon has been by offering two day shipping – and how aggravating it can be when you're trying to order something that doesn't offer speedy shipping! When I order something, I want it immediately.
That's why I always ship items the same day they were ordered, if possible. I work a 9-5 day job, so sometimes that is unrealistic. In that case, items must be shipped the next day. According to Poshmark, "over half of all orders on Poshmark are shipped by sellers in less than 2 days." My personal average is 1.7 days! When you ship quickly, buyers are more likely to leave you a stellar review which, in turn, makes you more likely to sell to someone who reads that review! It's a win-win.
9. Join in on the Parties
Poshmark has a feature called Parties. This is a themed virtual party where users can share their items to gain more exposure. Some examples of common Parties are "Everything Petite Party," "Cozy Staples Party," and "Best in Jeans Party." Sellers can only share theme-appropriate items to these Parties. For example, if you try to share a dress to the "Best in Jeans Party," you will receive an error message and your item will not be shared.
If you're lucky, a Host (this is a user that Poshmark selects to lead a Party) may even select your item as a Host Pick! This places your item in a special showroom, providing it with optimal exposure and a higher chance of making a sale.
10. Provide great customer service
Buyers want to make sure that they are making the right decision before they make a purchase. For this reason, it is likely you will receive comments on your items asking for more information. For example, a user may ask you if the item has any flaws or to include a photo of yourself modeling the piece, if you haven't done so already. When a question arises, always make sure to respond in a timely and respectful manner. Think of your closet as your personal store. Customers are much more likely to come back and make a purchase if they receive thoughtful, fast, and considerate support. When responding, always make sure to use the user's @ username in your response so that they receive a notification!
11. Keep your closet organized
Unfortunately, Poshmark does not allow sellers to manually organize their closets. Instead, closet listings are shown in descending order from most-recently shared to least-recently shared. For this reason, it is important to always keep an eye on what your closet looks like to buyers. Once an item sells, it is a good idea to share items that appear below the sold item in your Closet in order to bump them to the top. This way, a buyer will only see available items when they view your Closet.
12. Never accept payments outside of Poshmark
As mentioned earlier, Poshmark offers Posh Protect so both buyers and sellers can safely complete transactions. Never agree to accept payment from a buyer via an outside source, such as PayPal or Venmo. Doing so would open yourself up to being scammed! It is much safer, and easier, to complete transactions within Poshmark's app.
Don't let selling on Poshmark intimidate you
You can totally do this! Whether you are simply looking to clean out your closet or you are trying to start a side hustle, these tips will help you get started and see quick success.
I am constantly updating this guide to reflect changes in Poshmark's policies, new app features, and lessons I have learned from being a seller! Do you have specific questions? Don't hesitate to reach out to me. You can also find my Poshmark closet by searching the username Itzsterr or clicking here.