How to Sell Your Surfboard Online

BoardHunt.com is an online marketplace for surfboards, started in San Diego and spreading across the US. If you’re looking to sell your board, it’s free to post an ad up on this site. If you’re in the market to buy, they have narrowed down the categories to make it easier to find what you’re looking for. It’s like Craigslist but only for surfboard enthusiasts, which means the information on the site is detailed and precise. They got in touch to introduce themselves and it got us thinking: what makes a good “Board for Sale” post? We read the recent Stab Magazine article about this topic, and we thought we could tap into BoardHunt’s experience in this regard to add to the pile of considerations. Here, they’ve outlined 6 strategies for how to sell your surfboard online.

1. Know the fair value of your board

If you’ve had good rides on your board, you probably think it’s the best board there is. We’re sure your board is great, but being realistic will save you lots of time and help you to get in front of the right people, the ones who are actually going to buy it. Cross reference the price—remember what you paid for it and check out what similar boards are going for. Websites and surf shops will be helpful here. Be honest about the condition. Dings are fine for used boards, but they bring the value down a bit. You can always fix them, but sometimes that can be more trouble than it’s worth. If you don’t make a habit of fixing your own dings, talk to someone who does and take a trip to the hardware store with a notepad to jot down prices and calculate some numbers before you spend any money on a board you’re trying to sell.

2. Prep the board

Is your board ready for its close up? Clean it, strip the wax, wipe it down with a pantyhose wax remover or your favorite organic wax remover to get all the remnants of wax or tar marks. You’re not trying to overcompensate here, but image is everything on the internet so put your best foot forward. If you have a lot of pressure dings on the deck, it may be best to add a fresh coat of wax to cover them up a little bit. Not that you are trying to hide anything, but it will look more appealing that way. Also, remove stickers. Your favorite apparel brand may appeal to some, but it limits the population who will be interested and at this point you do not want that.

Photo by dakine kane

3. Take good photos with a good camera

This is a must. Cell phones can work if you really know how to use them, keeping in mind lighting and scenery, but a quality camera is preferred. Take a look at ShowUsYourQuiver.com and see which types of shots appeal to you most. Oftentimes, it’s the ones that include earthy scenery with vibrant colors. Greenery is good, pools can be cool, but plenty of natural light is key. Get a good angle, get the whole board (both vertical and horizontal) and include close-ups of the dimensions and the logo to certify authenticity. For transparency’s sake, include a close-up of any dings. People know they’re buying a used board, so they just want to be fully aware of what they’re getting into. Be sure to include the fins and anything else you might be including in the sale. Remember buyers are looking at a lot of boards very quickly, so you need to catch their attention and keep it.

4. Post with details

Think about what you want to know when you’re buying a board, new or used. Include height, width (middle, tail, nose) and thickness. Describe the nose (is it rounded? Pointed? More rocker? Less rocker? Wide? Narrow?). Describe the tail (Thumb? Rounded? Pin? Rounded pin? Squash? Asymmetrical?) Describe the rails (hard? Soft? Full? Tapered?) If you don’t know, ask someone. Buyers are looking to you to be the expert on this board and they will have a lot of questions. If you answer them before they come calling, you’ll save both yourself and them a lot of emails.

It’s also important to honestly note the condition of the board, the type of glass job, why you’re selling it and where you bought it. Tell them a bit about yourself and the kind of surf you caught with it. If they can relate to your body type and your surf style, they are more likely to connect to the board.

Photo by Ian Brown

5. Optimize the sale

Let’s be real, we all like a good deal. Throw in a leash or a board bag to incentivize the sale. Also, be smart about when you post the ad. Match the board to the selling season (for example, don’t sell a gun in the summer), and time it right before a swell hits. Mondays, Fridays and weekends are high traffic days (according to boardhunt.com web analytics), so take advantage of the eyeballs. Spread the word on your social networks to let your people know, while simultaneously sending out the call to the wild blue yonder.

6. Be alert

Finally, once you’ve got the post up, you have to nurture the sale. Check junk mail to make sure nothing slips through the cracks. Respond promptly to inquiries because if you don’t, the buyer may have found another board that’s equally as good by the time you get back to them. But be aware of scammers who are phishing for personal information—use Facebook to verify if you’re concerned about the person. Ultimately, even though the ad is online, it’s best to sell to locals only, so you can meet face to face in public or when someone else is home. It’s always better to be safe than sorry people. 

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