It’s almost common knowledge that Ebay is the worst place to sell your gear. They take 10% of the final sale, and they also take a percentage for shipping (ridiculous). On top of that, most sellers prefer to be paid via Paypal… and, Ebay owned (or at least has a current stake in) Paypal. They take about 3% of the profit you make. So, if you sell something for $200 on ebay.. right off the bat, you’re now at $180. Then, if they pay you $200 via Paypal, that’s another $6 knocked off. So, you’re now at $174. It’s probably going to cost you between $10 and $25 to ship whatever it is… (USA shipping only), so… let’s assume your shipping cost is $18. The total profit you made? Not a lot. you’re left with only $156.
Many have said Guitar Center, Sam Ash & MusicGoRound pay the least. Maybe just above a pawn shop. You’ll walk away with enough for lunch, and maybe gas for your vehicle (I exaggerate slightly, but… not really). There are some great DEALS on those sites… especially MusicGoRound… but considering the deals, they probably paid pennies to the seller.
Reverb.com is gaining popularity more and more. But, also, it is suspected that Chicago Music Exchange either owns Reverb, or has a stake in their company… the logos and colors look very similar. What Chicago Music Exchange does is buy people’s gear for dirt cheap also, and lists it right on Reverb (almost immediately), either as a Reverb.com sale, or using their own Chicago Music Exchange name.
Whatever the case… I still love Reverb. I’ve bought and sold through them for a number of years. They take the lowest fee from a sale (only 3.5%) and offer their own Reverb Checkout system, which bypasses the Paypal fees (though it takes you about a week to get your money… not cool). The minimum fee is 50 cents per transaction, and the maximum fee (for really expensive gear) is only $350. So, if you sell a really rare guitar or synth for $20,000, they only take $350 (normally at 3.5%, it would be a $700 fee). Keep in mind, if you sold this $20,000 guitar on ebay, ebay would take $2,000 right off the top.
Then, of course… there are websites such as Gearslutz.com, HarmonyCentral.com, etc)… not the quickest way to sell gear as the ads get buried and it’s not as easy to search for gear like it is on Ebay or Reverb….. or, you can try specific forums of the company who made your gear (not all companies of course have their own user forums)…. for instance, if you have a Nord, you can sell through NordUserForum.com. You may not make as much, as the forum members know exactly what they want, since the forum’s so informative… but, it’s kind of nice to sell to a die-hard fan of your gear, instead of a stranger on Reverb or Ebay.
By far, your most profitable option is your local Craigslist. But from what I’ve seen… you have to price your gear lower… tons of people like to low-ball you via email, or you’ll just get a ton of spam/robot replies. Craigslist ROYALLY pissed me off recently when they started charging $5 per ad, if you wanted to offer music lessons in your area. $5 PER AD. I teach four instruments plus recording/producing, and there’s no way I’ll pay $20 to $25 per ad, just to have them get buried, and maybe get one student out of it. I’ve found people via Craigslist, but not a lot. I’ve sold gear on Craigslist A LOT, but it’s always for much less than I wanted to sell it for, and it took forever.