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How to Sell Gift Card Certificates Online To Make Money

Updated on February 21, 2012

Introduction to Selling Unwanted Gift Cards

I wrote an article recently on the benefits of buying and selling gift cards and gift certificates. It seems to me that the evidence, and my personal experience, suggests that if you have a gift card you will never use, you will be able to sell it for a substantial percentage of the card's value.

This article will give you some really good basic tips on being successful at selling your unwanted, unused gift cards.

Reasons to Sell Gift Cards

I linked an article below that should give you some good reasons why you'd want to sell unused, unwanted gift cards. Check this article out if you'd like and then stop back.

Are You Really Making a Profit Selling Gift Cards ?

Well... it really depends on how you got the card. If someone gave you the gift card and you don't like the store or hate the product or don't like to shop, etc. you'd be surprised, if it is a popular store, at how much you can get. I've seen $112 gift cards sell for $110. If you got the card for $0 from a friend and sold for $110, that is a $110 profit.

Keep in mind, you are not actually earning a profit if you are selling a $112 gift card that YOU bought for $112. In that case, selling it for say $110 would result in a net loss of $2. You will earn a profit if you got the card free as a gift.

Where to Sell Gift Cards

I'm sure people use other platforms (like Craig's list) to sell gift card certificates but I prefer the old fashioned on line auction. Ebay seems to be the place to sell your gift card certificates. Sure, you have to pay the final value fee on any sales, but it is secure and has a good reputation

I've seen some pretty aggressive bidding for gift cards online.

This article will presume you are somewhat Ebay savvy and already have an account set up.

Gift Card Poll

Have You Tried Selling Gift Cards On Line?

See results

How to Post a Gift Card For Sale - Research

You will want to research how much success other Ebayers have had selling the same card you want to sell. To do this:

Go on Ebay and do an advanced search by clicking the "advanced" link next to the search bar.

Click the "completed listings only" box

Then type in the name of the store your card represents and "gift card"

Ebay will then show any history of your gift certificate being sold and what it was sold for.

How Much to Sell The Gift Card For

As of the date of this article (December 2011) is it free to list up to 50 Ebay auctions per month so you have nothing to lose by posting an auction at any price.

Make the starting price of the gift card something you are at a minimum comfortable with. If you are happy with earning $20 on a $100 gift card, post it for that amount. Also use the research I mentioned in the step above, this will give you some guidance on how much you may earn.

Don't be afraid to start the auction at a higher than what you hoped to earn. Keep in mind you occasional Ebayers, you are allowed 50 free to list auctions a month so you aren't losing anything if you get no bids. You can always relist at a lower price. You only pay if your product sells.

Keep in mind when you set your price that you will have to pay a final value fee on Ebay (more on that below)

Postage and Handling Frees

Be careful with postage as it can surprise you. Most wafer thin gift card certificates can ship no problem in a letter envelope via first class mail, the price of a postage stamp. Others might jump you up a rate or two. Check out the USPS (United States Postal Service) website if your gift card makes your letter envelope over one ounce in weight or makes the envelope too rigid. You'd hate to have the certificate returned to you by the mailman and have an irate buyer wondering why his or her order is late.

The Gift Card Ad

The ad you post in Ebay is very important. Make sure it includes at a minimum:

How much money is on the card. Very important.

The name of the store the card represents.

Any expiration dates

ALL disclaimers, locations, restrictions, etc noted on the card.

A photo of the card. Very important. People like images. Be sure the photo does not 'give away' any information such as codes, promotion numbers, etc that someone can 'steal' from the image. We don't want someone to spend the card before you sell it.

Length of The Auction

Unless the card is expiring soon, go for the full 7 day auction. It is still free and you get more exposure over time.

How About Buy It Now or Fixed Price Auctions?

Buy it Now or Fixed Price is a good way to sell on Ebay but as of the date of this article it is NOT free. If you are going to use buy it now or fixed price, be sure to research the selling history of that particular card on Ebay. Personally, with the free auctions, I stick with auctions and set the price where I am comfortable. I know at a minimum I won't get less than that price and if there is a bidding war, I'll see more loot than expected.

One Final Word - Final Value Fees

Check Ebay for the current final value fee amounts. Figure a significant percentage of you total sale, that includes shipping charges, will get kicked back to Ebay and PayPal (Ebay essentially). Keep that in mind when setting your prices.

I hope that helps you to successfully sell gift card certificates to make money.


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    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 3 years ago from Minnesota

      So glad I just read this. I always seem to get one or two gift cards that I will never use and they just sit in a pile somewhere. Thanks for the great information. Voted up and hit many buttons.

    • TurtleDog profile image

      TurtleDog 4 years ago

      Thanks so much for stopping by babee and tammyswallow ! I'm way behind on my comments lol!

    • tammyswallow profile image

      Tammy 4 years ago from North Carolina

      What a great idea! I would have never thought of this. I have some cards that I can't use. Now I know what to do with them. Awesome!

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 6 years ago from Georgia

      My daughter won an airlines gift card from her college and sold it on Ebay. Great advice!