What I learned from Selling on Mercari in Japan

What I learned from Selling on Mercari in Japan
Photo by visuals / Unsplash

I shipped the first item sold in Mercari today.

Although I was able to list items & successfully sell an item, I was not sure about the delivery cost for each item based on the weight/dimension.

So yesterday, I attended an online "Mercari school", which was presented by a staff of Mercari on the basic how-to list the items on the app & send the goods. The class was 90 minutes, and although I already listed few items by figuring out myself, I learned few tips that may increase the chance of selling the products.

  1. The time when items are most sold is around 10pm
  2. It is better to have some buffer time when setting the "発送までの日数 Number of days for the item to be shipped out". Make sure to send the item by the set number of days noted (or earlier). You would lose credit if you send past the set number of days you promised.
  3. Refer to the different types of delivery options in the chart attached below. You can choose the delivery method based on the cost, weight & dimension of the product, and/or location of the place you will deliver from (e.g. 7-eleven, Lawson, post office, etc.)

I took the item above to 7-eleven today, and the staff told me this should be delivered as 宅急便. I looked up the same item sold on Mercari, and the delivery cost was 1,050 JPY.

As Mercari takes 10% as sales commission, the profit from item I sold is 1,080 JPY (1,200 - 120). This means the net profit will be 30 JPY (1,080 - 1,050). I did not expect the delivery fee would be this costly when I first listed the item. The seller who listed the same item actually lost 150 JPY since the item was sold at 1,000 JPY.

But this was a great learning experience, which also gave me 30 JPY back. Especially since I was planning to give away this item, which would have cost me time to arrange the meet up place & wait for the person to pick up. I have already donated many items through same process of listing in "Mottainai" give-away FB page. So I would not have learned anything new if I had given the product away for free. Besides, the item may not have been sold (at least for a long time), should the cost have been higher as the same secondhand item was sold at lower cost.

The moment I realised my item was sold, it felt amazing. I had a rush of adrenaline. I was happy to wrap the item to be sent. More than the fact I was "gaining profit", I was enjoying the process of selling something as well as feeling good for the fact I was helping someone get what they need in life.

Imagining how exhilarating it would feel to manufacture my OWN products & shipping out to people who would benefit from using them all around the world! I am so excited by visualising when that day will become a reality. I simply cannot wait x