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Shopping for Free: Using Listia

Updated on July 7, 2012
Source

In today's economy, everyone is trying to save a few pennies here and there, but how would you like to shop for free? Yes, it's actually possible to do. It's called Listia.

What is Listia?

Listia is a website that began in 2009 and allows members to "sell" personal items that are no longer used in exchange for credits that can be used to "buy" items wanted or needed. The website looks very similar to Ebay, but there are no fees charged for it's use (though "sellers" may ask "buyers" to pay shipping charges). The types of items that can be bought or sold are limitless. Items that can be found range from gift cards to jewelry to electronics to video games and clothing to so much more.

How Do I Use Listia?

1. The first step is to sign up for an account on the Listia website. Here's a link that can be used: http://www.listia.com/signup/32192. As soon as you sign up for an account, you will receive 400 credits that can be used to "buy" items.

2. If you connect your Listia account with your Facebook account, you will be awarded 50 credits.

3. The first time you list an item for "sale", you will be automatically awarded 100 credits. Listing an auction is simple. You click on the "list auction" tab on the top tool bar and there is a form to fill out. Often bonus offers for credits are given for such things as offering free shipping, adding a photo, or posting certain types of items.

4. After your auction is listed, people will begin to bid on the item. You can choose how many days you want the auction to last, usually 3 to 7 days. When the auction closes, the person with the highest bid wins your item and you are awarded the number of credits they bid on the item. You are then responsible for shipping the item to the customer.

5. Have fun shopping. Once you have some credits, you can begin to search for things you want. Are you looking for books, children's items, video games (I was able to get Nintendo DS games for my children for Christmas for free, some never opened), clothes, photo albums, collectibles, or any of a limitless number of other things? Do a search and start bidding.

6. If you enjoy shopping for free, invite friends. For every friend you invite that signs up, you receive 500 credits once they complete their first auction.

Tips and Hints

There are some things to remember when using Listia to make the process easier and more profitable. First, offering free shipping and posting a picture of your item will give you a better placement in the Listia lineup. Also, Listia has an option that allows a "buyer" to follow an auction so that you can track when you've been outbid and how much longer an auction has before closing. Keeping track of auctions you are bidding on will allow you a better chance to win the auction. Finally, if you are an active user of Listia by checking in to the site, listing auctions, or leaving feedback for the seller of an item you bought or the buyer of one of your items, you may be awarded bonus credits.

Another very important thing about Listia is that members are rated by other members who have business with them; therefore, it is possible to determine whether a "seller" is reliable or not. Ratings are based on percentage, so someone with a score of 100% or close to it that has had many transactions would be more reliable to work with than someone who has a lower percentage score. It is also possible to read reviews before bidding on a seller's items.

Conclusion

Listia is a wonderful website in which to "buy" many amazing things for yourself or gifts for others for FREE. It is an easy site to use, and if used regularly, can be quite helpful for those attempting to save money in a difficult economy.

Some Items on Listia For Auction

New girls' Lego set
New girls' Lego set | Source
Boys' Star Wars set.
Boys' Star Wars set. | Source
Lots of books
Lots of books | Source
Jewelry
Jewelry | Source

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    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 5 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Interesting site, TripleAMom. Will be checking it out. Thanks for sharing this useful information.

    • TripleAMom profile image
      Author

      TripleAMom 5 years ago from Florida

      adawnmorrison-thanks for the advice. The problem I had was that I could not find the receipt. I could have proven that I put the money on the card. I am definately going to be more careful if I do that again.

    • adawnmorrison profile image

      adawnmorrison 5 years ago from The Midwest

      TripleAMom-I worked at a call center for a major retailer, and there are ways to find out if a gift card was used fraudulently. Before you send a gift card, call and check the balance, even if you never used it. Crooks can zap the funds without ever having possession of the card. After you send it, keep a record of the card number and the 800 number. If someone claims there is no balance on the card, you should be able to call the company and find out when and where it was used. They may have a complicated way of verifying if something is fraud, but they should be able to help you find out if it was used by the person you gave it to or by some third party. Good hub!

    • monicamelendez profile image

      monicamelendez 5 years ago from Salt Lake City

      This is my first time hearing about Listia. Sounds like a pretty good idea!

    • TripleAMom profile image
      Author

      TripleAMom 5 years ago from Florida

      Vocalcoach-definately give this a try. I have gotten so many neat things. I get box tops for education for my kids' school from this site. Starmom-I agree that some sellers are ripping people off. I had a buyer do that. I posted a gift card and the person who bought it I'm sure used it then said it didn't have money on it. I had put 2 on the site at the same time and the other person was honest and said that his worked just fine. Frustrating. But I make sure that people I "buy" from have high % ratings. I also have a couple of people I regularly get things from or "sell" to because of specific items like the boxtops that I know are reliable. It's overall a really good site though.

    • profile image

      Starmom41 5 years ago

      I joined their site a couple of years ago, and have received tons of great stuff. My only beef is some "sellers" are dishonest- some don't send the items, & then relist them; but what really bugs me is a few kept the shipping fees. The last individual who did that ripped me off for $6.95.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 5 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      Zowie! My kind of hub. Love to find free stuff. I also like your writing style. Direct and to the point. Thanks so much for sharing the Listia site and I will look into it. Voted up, useful, interesting and sharing.

    • TripleAMom profile image
      Author

      TripleAMom 5 years ago from Florida

      Thanks lyricwriter, I have actually gotten DS games as Christmas presents, books, and many other things from this site FOR FREE, just using points accumulated from having others bid on stuff I put on. Check it out!! Thanks for reading.

    • thelyricwriter profile image

      Richard Ricky Hale 5 years ago from West Virginia

      Sounds like a cool site TripleAMom. I have never heard of it before. I mainly use Ebay, but I will be sure to check it out. Voted up, useful, and interesting.

    • TripleAMom profile image
      Author

      TripleAMom 5 years ago from Florida

      Thank you moonlake. Everything on here really is free and it's fun to use. Try it out.

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 5 years ago from America

      I have never heard of this site. Nice to have something other than Ebay. Very good hub lots of good information. Voted up and more.

    • TripleAMom profile image
      Author

      TripleAMom 5 years ago from Florida

      Thanks Media Magnate Mom. This is really a fun website and I have "sold" and obtained lots of things. Thanks for reading.BTW, have you heard of the website Starfall? I saw you have a little one and it's an excellent website for teaching reading. My 6 year old LOVED it and still goes to it at times. I wrote a hub on that as well.

    • Media Magnate Mom profile image

      Media Magnate Mom 5 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      What an interesting concept! In all my online travels, I have never heard of this. Thanks for the info and tips. Heading to the garage to see what I can "sell"! Useful and following. ;)

    • TripleAMom profile image
      Author

      TripleAMom 5 years ago from Florida

      Thanks Charlu! Hope you find some great stuff on the site. It's awesome. Enjoy your hubs also.

    • Charlu profile image

      Charlu 5 years ago from Florida

      What a great hub with exceptional info on how to save some money and one I am definitely going to check out Voted up and interesting Now a follower and love your passion for working with kids.

    • TripleAMom profile image
      Author

      TripleAMom 5 years ago from Florida

      Thanks McKenzie. I have just finished a couple of auctions and I love the site. Hope you can use it.

    • Mekenzie profile image

      Susan Ream 5 years ago from Michigan

      Great instructions on Listia. I already signed up after learning about the website through AEvans. I did not find anything that interested me on that day but I did seem some items on the screenshots you have posted here.

      Great Hub TripleAMom - Your writing style is easy to follow and clear. I learned more about Listia on this hub.

      Voted up and Useful.

      Mekenzie

    • TripleAMom profile image
      Author

      TripleAMom 5 years ago from Florida

      Thanks debbieroberts. I've been using the site for over a year and it really works. You can really get some good stuff. Thanks for the comment and I hope you can find some good deals.

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 5 years ago from Greece

      I've never heard of a site like this and it does seem like a good idea, especially with times being tough at the moment.

      An useful hub and voted up.