How to sell on Swappa

How to sell on Swappa

Technology moves fast and whether you’ve got your eye on the next big thing or you’re simply looking to make some cash from the stuff you’re no longer using — selling on Swappa is the best way to get the most money for your old tech.


Why sell on Swappa?

Unlike trade-in sites which low-ball users for their old stuff to flip them for a profit, Swappa gives you what your old stuff is actually worth. We do this by cutting out the middleman, allowing sellers to directly deal with buyers. This gives you the true value for your old tech (something that can’t be said for the peanuts you get from trade-in services) and allows buyers to find the best deals around.

Selling on Swappa is quick, easy, and best of all: it’s free. The small seller fees are paid for by the buyer at the time of purchase, which means you don’t have to worry about any upfront costs when creating a listing on Swappa. Just list all of your old tech products and watch the money come pouring in.

In this post we’ll walk you through the entire selling process from start to finish, this way there’s no guesswork involved. By the end of this post, you’ll know exactly how selling on Swappa works and just how easy it is to start making money from your old stuff. Let’s get started.

Before you sell…

Before you sell on Swappa, there’s a few things you should consider before you even consider creating a listing. Here’s a quick checklist for you to run through:

  • ✅ You’ll need to have a PayPal account
  • ✅ The product you’re selling must be on-hand.
  • ✅ Product needs to be fully functional, including all buttons, ports, and battery.
  • ✅ No cracked glass or water damage.
  • ✅ Phones need to be ready for activation and cannot be reported lost, stolen, or blocklisted.
  • ✅ Device being sold needs to be fully paid off. That means no money owed to carrier, no outstanding balance or EIP (equipment installment plan) can be active.

Find your product

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With that out of the way, we can get to the process of finding the product you want to sell on Swappa. In order to create a listing in the Swappa marketplace, the product first needs to exist in our database. You can either browse through the various product categories on our sell page or use our handy search bar. (If the product isn’t listed on our site, feel free to drop a line to our support team and we’ll try to help).
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Once you’ve found your product, select it and you’ll be taken to the product page (above) where you can choose your specific version/model, as well as see the current going rate for like models already in the marketplace (the Prices button directly below the product image).

Create your listing

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Once you’ve selected the specific model you’re looking to sell, you’ll be taken to the listing page where you’ll fill out all the details about the device you’re selling. Mandatory fields are marked with an asterisk (*) but it’s recommended you fill out every field with as much detail as possible. More detailed listings increase buyer confidence and typically result in quicker sales.

Set your price

The price field is where you’ll set the asking price for your device. A small Swappa fee will be added to your price and scales according to the price you set for the product (the cheaper the product, the smaller the fee). Since the buyer pays the listing fee on Swappa, the Total Price is what will appear on your listing once it goes live in the marketplace.

Keep in mind Swappa doesn’t calculate shipping charges into the final price since shipping is left up to the seller. That means you should also be factoring in however much it will cost to ship the product into your asking price (before the Swappa fee is added).

Pricing tip:

The grey box shows you the current lowest listed price, as well as the price of a similar model that recently sold. While this gives you a ballpark figure of how much you should price your item, it’s best to verify for yourself by checking out similar models with the same storage sizes or colors in the marketplace. The last thing you want to do is price your limited edition 500GB smartphone the same as a much lower end 32GB model.

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Choose the condition

Here you can choose the condition of your device. Remember, buyer satisfaction should be your goal so don’t sugar coat anything. Anything less than mint should have a detailed description of the damage. When in doubt, it’s always best to err on the side of caution when choosing the condition — the last thing you want is a dissatisfied buyer returning your item.

Find your ESN/IMEI number

For phones, we ask that you provide and IMEI/ESN (serial number). Swappa uses this to verify the phone hasn’t been reported as lost, stolen, or blocklisted. We also check with the carrier to make sure the device isn’t being financed and is ready for activation. Need help finding your ESN/IMEI number?

  • How to find your ESN/IMEI on Android (varies by device): Settings > System > About phone > (look for ESN or IMEI number)
  • How to find your ESN/IMEI on iOS: Settings >General > About > (look for ESN or IMEI number)

Express Shipping

Sellers have the option of adding Express Shipping to their listings. This means you’re willing ship the device using 1-day shipping for an added fee you set. Just call your preferred courier service to figure out pricing for this service, then add the dollar amount in the Express Shipping Price field.

Buyers like having options, especially if they need a replacement device in a hurry and it makes your listing stand out from others in the marketplace. A lightning bolt icon will appear in listing results letting buyers know you provide this option for your product.

Headline and Description

Your Headline and Description are optional but you’ll want to take some time to fill these out. Both are important to tell buyers what to expect from the item you’re selling, with the headline also appearing in search result pages (up to 73 characters, so keep it short).

Since the condition, carrier, model number, color, and storage size are already displayed in the listing results, your headline should be anything other than this info to avoid redundancy. Our advice? Include any additional info that may be useful to the buyer. Whether it’s bonus accessories like cases, cables, or screen protectors, or anything else relevant to the listing. This will help your listing stand out from others and in search results.

Publish (wait, you’re not done yet)

Once you’ve filled out all the above info, you can click Publish to save it. Don’t run off yet — your listing isn’t actually live on the site until you submit a verification photo. Details for that are provided below.

Verification photo

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Once you’ve hit the Publish button you’ll be provided with your unique listing code (pictured above). You’ll want to write this down on a piece of paper and take a photo of it next to the device you’re selling. This is what we call a verification photo.

While you don’t have to do this immediately, remember that your listing can’t go live until our staff manually reviews your verification photo, so the sooner you provide this, the quicker you can get paid. Simple as that.

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A few things to consider when uploading a verification photo:

  • The entire item must be visible in this photo and the code should be shown next to the item, not on top or obstructing view of item.
  • Items marked as Mint, Good, or Fair condition, should have the device’s screen powered on in the photo (does not apply to New items)
  • Items listed in Mint condition must have photos showing the item from every angle (top, bottom, sides, etc) to validate seller’s claims.
  • Items in New condition only need to show the box with verification code, although additional photos of unbroken seals is recommended.
  • Items in New condition that did not come sealed when originally purchased will need photo of open box/item and listing code.
  • The device’s private ESN / serial number information should not be displayed in your photos.
  • A photo showing any additional items included in the listing should also be uploaded.

Of course, the more photos you add to your listing the better, so go nuts. Closeup shots are ideal, especially showing any damage or wear and tear on the item. Make sure there’s adequate lighting (try taking photos next to a brightly lit window) and for phones, take close up shots with the screen on and off so buyers can see if there are any major scratches.

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Once you’re finished adding photos, tap the Request Review button. If not, click Edit Listing to make any additional changes.

Once you request a review, someone from our staff will manually review your listing, making sure all the necessary info has been filled out (including the verification photo and verifying the device isn’t blacklisted or still being financed). Once the review is complete, your listing will then be live on the site and you’re all set to start making money.

More options for your listing

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Once your listing has been approved by our staff, you may want to take advantage of a few additional options that will be made available to you. All you have to do is view your listing (when signed in) and you’ll find some new buttons at the top.

  • Upgrading to Featured: You can also upgrade your listing to a featured one (by paying an extra $5) and it will appear at the top of the listings results page.
  • Expiration date: Your listing will be live for 7 days, if it doesn’t sell within this time, you can extend it for another 7 days by viewing your listing and tapping the button.
  • Share Now: At this point, feel free to share your listing on social media — the more people see it, the quicker you’ll sell it.

Accepting lower offers

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It’s just a fact of life: some people really love to bargain. It’s common to find comments on your listing requesting additional information about the product, but occasionally you’ll come across prospective buyers making you a lower offer than you currently have listed.

You have two options, either politely decline, or you can accept their offer and lower the price of your listing. Should you decide to accept the offer, there are a few things to consider. First and foremost comments on your listing are made public, so any correspondence will be sent to everyone who’s subscribed or previously left a comment on your listing.

When you agree to lower the price for one person, you’re lowering the price for everyone. That means once you’ve edited your listing and lowered the price, anyone can swoop in and buy your item — not just the person you agreed to lower the price for.

You can lower the price of your listing by viewing your listing, clicking the Edit Listing button and adjusting the price.

Get paid (fast)

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Swappa uses PayPal to handle all transactions in our marketplace for a variety of reasons. A big one is because sellers don’t have to wait days for the buyer to make a payment. Buyers are required to complete the payment to the seller at the time of purchase, which means you will get a PayPal notification as soon as your item sells. Swappa also uses PayPal because of the extensive protections offered to sellers (as well as buyers).

Ship your product ASAP

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Swappa policy requires sellers ship devices within 2 days of receiving payment. That means staying on top of your emails and keeping an eye out for notifications that your listing has sold. Sellers can ship via the courier of their choosing as long as a tracking number is provided. Insurance is also recommended to protect the item being shipped.

The Sales page is where you can find your recently sold listing. Selecting the listing will take you to the Sale page for that specific item and it’s there you can add a tracking number by clicking the Add Shipment button, upload any additional photos (the device being shipped out, receipts, etc.) and/or communicate anything else to the buyer.

Since good commerce comes from good communication, Swappa recommends buyers and sellers communicate before and after purchasing an item in the marketplace. Comments will be sent to the buyer via email, so it’s a great way to show buyers that their business is important to you. It’s also worth noting that comments on an item’s Sale page are private, visible only to the buyer, seller and Swappa staff.


Now that you’re equipped with everything you need to start selling on Swappa, there’s nothing keeping you from getting out there and making some money. To get started selling on Swappa, simply hit the link below to find your product and good luck!

Need anything else? Check out our seller FAQ for more answers to commonly asked questions or feel free to reach out to our support staff for additional help.