How to Advertise a Yard Sale: 7 Methods for Successful Yard Sale Ads

a truck advertising a yard sale

Need to learn how to advertise a yard sale? If you’re planning your first yard sale, you’ve come to the right place. Running a yard sale successfully takes strategic planning, careful preparation, and close attention to detail. Doing it right can mean a difference of hundreds of extra dollars in sales and far more of your clutter sold to new homes.

Advertising is one of the most important parts of getting it right, and at Yard Sale Radar, we’re here to help you learn how to advertise a yard sale successfully. Here are 7 of our most tried and true methods for successfully designing and distributing your yard sale ads.

1. Lead With Your Star Items

The hardest part of a yard sale is getting people to show up in the first place. Once they’re actually on your lawn, you have a much better chance of earning a sale from them.

When you’re thinking about how to advertise a yard sale, think about those weekly grocery store mailers you often see. Those ads always lead with steeply discounted, highly-popular items (usually something like steak). In fact, grocers often discount these items so heavily that they lose money on them, leading to the concept of the “loss leader.” The idea is to get people into the store with great deals so that they spend money on other, more profitable products.

Your yard sale ads can do something similar: Lead with your most popular items. This should be a shortlist of items near the top of the ad that you know lots of people will be interested in. Use a couple of pictures if you’re advertising in a format that allows it.

2. Follow Up With The Vital Information

Once you’ve got people’s attention with items they’d like to buy, the next step when planning how to advertise a yard sale is to put on your journalist’s hat and answer people’s questions: who, what, when, where, why, and how? Put yourself in buyers’ shoes. What do they want to know?

  • What & Why: Briefly describe your yard sale with exciting information that will catch people’s interest, plus a “call to action” that gives readers a specific instruction. For example:
    • 200+ items, including affordable jewelry and furniture in top condition. The weather looks beautiful this weekend, so come out and enjoy our yard sale. Free lemonade!
  • When & Where: Be sure to prominently include the dates and hours of your sale, as well as your address and directions to get there. Double-check these details to make sure they’re correct!
  • How: List what forms of payment you’ll accept, such as “cash only,” “cash, checks, and money orders,” etc.
  • Who: When you’re thinking about how to advertise a yard sale successfully, the “who” doesn’t usually matter in a yard sale ad unless there is a specific sales draw. For example:
    • My dad was in the army and is selling souvenirs from his travels around the world.

3. Don’t Forget to Add a General Merchandise List

The next part of your ad should be a general list of items. The best way to do it is to start with a handful of categories, such as “kitchenware,” “entertainment,” “antiques,” etc. Then populate each category with a few items that you think will be the most popular.

If you’re selling any rare or hard-to-find items, be sure to specifically call attention to that, too.

If you’re able, add more pictures in this section, as pictures are a critical selling point when it comes to mastering how to advertise a yard sale. These pictures shouldn’t take up too much space in the ad itself, but when you’re actually taking the photographs make sure you get close-up shots that are in focus.

4. Post Your Yard Sale Ad on Yard Sale Radar

When it comes to knowing how to advertise a yard sale, we’ve saved the best for last: Post your yard sale online at Yard Sale Radar.

One reason Craigslist isn’t the powerhouse it used to be is that, nowadays, many people like to use task-specific services to meet their needs. Craigslist tries to be everything for everyone, which means it isn’t as flexible as it could be when it comes to terms of service, user experience, and ad restrictions.

At Yard Sale Radar, our entire mission is to connect buyers and sellers online in one convenient place. When you post your yard sale ad with us, you’re tapping into an audience of people who are specifically looking for yard sales in your area. It’s really that simple! Try it out today!

Want more help learning how to advertise a yard sale first? Visit the Yard Sale Radar Blog for plenty of informative articles to help both buyers and sellers have the best experience!

5. Advertise in Newspaper Classifieds

newspaper classified section

Although newspaper classified ads are less influential than they used to be, plenty of people still read them, and they’re still an important part of understanding how to advertise a yard sale.

If the rates are reasonable, it might be worth it to run a short classified ad on the day of your sale and for one or two days leading up to it.

6. Create Physical Posters And Signs

Physical posters and signs are important too! Early on the morning of your sale (or late in the evening prior), print out your ads and post them on utility poles or bulletin boards in highly-walked areas around town. On the morning of your sale, put up a few signs at important crossroads where they will catch people’s attention. You can also use these signs to give directions.

When creating physical ads, go crazy with the font size. There’s no such thing as too big. Fill up the entire paper with a few extremely large words in heavy, boldface lettering.

7. Post Your Yard Sale Ad on Online Forums

Now that you know what to put in your ads, it’s time to distribute them!

For many years, Step No. 1 in how to advertise a yard sale has been “Post it on Craigslist.” Craigslist turned the classified advertising industry upside down during the early years of the Internet by becoming the central hub for people to connect online for everything from yard sales, to job opportunities, to apartments for rent.

As the Internet has grown up and people’s usage patterns have changed, Craigslist isn’t the powerhouse that it once was, but it’s still an important part of advertising your sale.