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I have a used bike I would like to sell. It's relatively high end (retail price was about $3.5k). I put the bike for sale on Craigslist at what seemed to be a good price, especially relative to others on the site that I've seen, but haven't gotten any responses at this time.

What other methods or services are popular and reliable to sell a used bike?

EDIT:

To be clear, I don't want tips about why my ad might not be good on Craigslist, as that is a very different question and probably not helpful to most readers. I'm curious about reliable venues to sell used bikes from people who have experience with that.

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    @DanielRHicks: yes I intentionally didn't link to my ad so keep it clear that I'm not using this question to directly sell my bike, and trying to keep focused on resources that would be useful to other readers, rather than how I can do better. I'm vaguely aware of lots of venues I could go down, such as Pro's Closet, PinkBike, etc., but have no experience in using these and wanted to hear from people who might have used them before.
    – Cliff AB
    Mar 9, 2020 at 1:20
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    Should add - where I live in the world, 25% discount of RRP is pretty easy to get. If its a MTB, fork and should service will set you back $200-$300, replacing a drive train another $200-$300. A buyer of a used bike is not (usually) covered by things like frame warranty and consumer protection laws. A 'near new' $3.5k bike, is worth no more than $2000, and if more than a few years old but mint condition, $1000. Again, local markets this will vary enourmously
    – mattnz
    Mar 9, 2020 at 1:21
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    @DanielRHicks given that we know nothing about the age or condition of the bike you can't say it's only worth a couple of hundred dollars Mar 9, 2020 at 1:21
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    @ArgentiApparatus - It's used. People who spend $3.5k on a bike have money to spend (or think they do) and want "the best" (or what they think is the best). Perhaps if the bike is still shrink-wrapped it will fetch half its original price, but there are simply too many bikes on the used (and free) bike market for any bike that's actually been used to fetch more than a few hundred. Mar 9, 2020 at 1:33
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    I don't understand the question - what is this "sell" a bike ?
    – Criggie
    Mar 9, 2020 at 2:33

4 Answers 4

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Best methods to sell a bike will vary depending on where you are located.

If you are in North America local Facebook marketplaces oriented to bikes or bike gear can be good. See https://www.facebook.com/groups/dcusedicyclemarketplace/ as an example.

Pinkbike has a buying and selling section https://www.pinkbike.com/buysell/ but it seems to be dominated for really high end bikes (think > US$5K).

The general rule is that if you can't sell something you are asking to much for it. Try checking Bicycle Blue Book https://bicyclebluebook.com to get an idea of how much your bike is worth. Many folks will say BBB values are BS, and I partially agree as values are dependent on many factors, but at least you'll get an idea what you should be asking ($100s vs $1000s).

Post Christmas winter is probably a bad time to try to sell a bike. Wait until the warmer spring weather appears and you may have more luck.

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  • Finding a local Facebook group is a great tip. Craigslist and other generic marketplaces can be a case of "wrong audience" more than anything, while if you find an active Facebook group you've got a captive audience of enthusiasts who will appreciate higher-end equipment. My local facebook cycling group has a constant stream of high end stuff getting sold quickly at fair prices (not the $200 nonsense someone mentioned in comments above).
    – dwizum
    Mar 9, 2020 at 15:19
  • "Wait until the warmer spring weather appears and you may have more luck." Is probably the main point, unless OP is somewhere that it's currently summer/early fall, or where it's perpetually warm.
    – FreeMan
    Mar 9, 2020 at 20:19
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Some additional options which may work...

Local bike shops sometimes have a bulletin board where one can post an ad.

There are many FB groups for specific types of riding. For example in Colorado there's the "Front Range Fatties" which caters to all the snow/fat bike people. Depending upon the group one may be able to advertise.

Similarly Colorado has a "Front Range Bike Swap" marketplace on FB. This is generic to all types of cycling gear but posting anything not bike related will quickly get one banished.

Velo News magazine, based in Boulder Colorado, has an annual "Velo Swap" which is a huge event where manufacturers, shops, pro teams, racers, and people with way too much stuff will buy space and unload whatever they can. You might check around to see if there is a similar used gear event in your area.

If you have friends who are in a club you might check to see if they have a FB group and if people advertise gear for sale.

Regarding BBB (Bicycle Blue Book), the pricing seems to be much lower than what people ask for their bikes in Colorado. If you're in an area with a small bike community you're likely going to get little or no interest in your ad.

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  • "Local bike shops sometimes have a bulletin board where one can post an ad." my first thought! +1
    – FreeMan
    Mar 9, 2020 at 20:20
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A solution for a specialist item like a high-end bike is to check with the original supplier and see what they offer in terms of trade-in. High-end stuff has a relatively small group of potential customers, and the supplier is more likely to know them.

As you say, its not a BSO, so consider whatever they offer as a buy-back value as an indication.


Another option is to go with an auction. List it well with a low start, and the market will tell you exactly what its worth. Sadly used bike prices are generally low, whereas high-end new bike prices are "inflated" by comparison.


If you're a business, check with your accounting people, to see if a donation makes financial sense. I Am Not An Accountant, but its conceivable that donating the bike to a charity may get you a better tax situation.

Locally to me, http://ironmaori.com/ have been looking for good usable road bikes for teenagers to get into triathlon without the big initial costs.


Your last option is to hold onto it with an aim to riding again. This may not suit your present plans, but life has a habit of changing over time. Storage might be a better solution for you, or pass it onto a family member as a "long term loan"

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  • Good point on trade-ins. In the US, I am seeing many Trek stores offer trade-in deals, and I assume they get financing by Trek to do so. Also, The Pros Closet on eBay offers you cash for trade-ins, and I believe there are similar large sellers on eBay. To my knowledge, however, most bike manufacturers don't offer trade-ins (anyone please correct me if I'm wrong!), and I suspect that only the largest would be in a position to do so (e.g. Trek, Specialized).
    – Weiwen Ng
    Mar 9, 2020 at 13:19
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Search for a LBS sponsoring a consignment sale. The bike shop does all the work in terms of collecting payment (cash credit or check), assisting the buyer with sizing etc. In exchange they will typically either give you a 90-100% store credit or 70-75% in cash. The commission varies with the sponsor. You need not be present to sell. They can guide you to set a price that is reasonable. The advantage for you is people attend with the intention of buying a bike, they can compare yours to others and see what a great deal it is, they can pay with a credit card (buy more bike than they can afford). Because there are typically large crowds at the opening people tend to impulse buy. The one I regularly attend is for 2 days, they offer the option of automatically lowering the price on the second day if you wish.

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