Updated: October 9, 2020
We've all been there. You need to unlock the value of your current bike so you can find a bike for your next adventure. There are plenty of ways to sell your used bike. Some require more or less work than others, and some provide more value for your bike and your time. Which is best for you? How much is your bike worth? What is it like to sell a bike to The Pro's Closet? What can you do to prep your bike for sale?
Let's answer those questions and start by looking at the top five ways to sell a used bike.
1. Sell with The Pro's Closet
The Pro's Closet operates the Internet’s largest used bicycle marketplace. Whether you want to sell outright or trade-in a bike toward a new purchase on our website, our online Sell/Trade process is designed specifically to help you get money for bikes quickly and easily.
If your used bike has an original retail price of $1,500 or more, we're interested in buying it. There's no need to struggle with listing your bike.
Simply follow the instructions on our Sell/Trade page to submit your bike and you will receive a response with an offer for the value of your bike within one business day.
Click to learn more about how it works.
2. Sell Your Bike To A Pawn or Used Sporting Goods Shop
If you're lucky, there might be a used sporting goods shop near you that'll buy used bikes. Many modern bike shops don't bother buying and selling used bikes anymore. Otherwise, one of the quickest ways to turn your used bike into cash is to find a local pawnshop. It is the old-fashioned way to turn most items into quick cash. If you're lucky, you may have a shop nearby that specializes in buying, selling, and consigning used sporting equipment.
The advantage here is the convenience of selling locally and completing a transaction the same day you walk in. The major concern, however, is getting maximum value for your bike. Many shops may lack the expertise to understand what your bike is worth, or their business model makes them unable or unwilling to give you the amount you want.
3. Sell Your Bike On Craigslist, Facebook, or Local Online Marketplace
Online classifieds give you a free platform to list your bike. Just upload some photos and write a description. Once again, getting maximum value for your bike is the greatest concern here. The people who browse online marketplaces are diverse and can range from experts to enthusiasts, to complete noobs. These places are ripe for negotiation, something many people find exhausting. If your bike is of decent value, expect low-ball offers and aggressive hagglers.
When selling online, you must also always be wary of scammers and bogus offers. The most important thing when dealing with and meeting Internet strangers is to make sure transactions are safe and secure. Many police stations now offer special areas for such transactions to occur.
Your ad also has to fight for attention, as it continuously gets bumped down by newer ads. If someone isn't searching for exactly what you're selling, they may never see it. If you're up for the work and personal interaction it takes, then it may be the way to go.
4. Sell Your Bike On A Bike Forum or Website
The Internet is rife with bike nerds and online forums are where they gather. There are forums dedicated to every cycling discipline imaginable, from specific ideologies to brands to interests. Many cycling sites have specific buy and sell forums, which are slightly more educated versions of your local online marketplace. Still, visibility can be hit-or-miss depending on the site or bike, and you may run into low-ballers, potential scammers, or lack of views.
Remember, if your bike doesn't sell locally, you'll have to pack and ship your bike. This costs money (sometimes a lot!), and if you don't have the materials or experience, it can be difficult. Here is a post on How to Pack & Ship a Bicycle. Selling your used bike on a forum can be a bit of extra work, but it can help when you want to sell to a more specific type of buyer that you might not be able to find locally.
5. Sell Your Bike On eBayeBay allows you to reach a pool of buyers that spans the globe. You have to deal with shipping and eBay fees, but in exchange, you get good visibility and a better chance that your bike sells.
A small hurdle involves developing a reputation through positive feedback. Often, buyers are more inclined to purchase from trusted sellers with good ratings. This isn't to say that you can't sell with poor or few ratings, but if you don't sell often or you're selling for the first time, there's a chance that you could be missing out on some buyers willing to spend a little more for confidence and security.
eBay is also a popular option for the “part-out.” Many enthusiasts will search for specific bike parts. If you're having trouble selling your used bike as a whole, or you want to maximize your return by splitting your bike into its components. With eBay's global marketplace, you can likely find that one (or hopefully more) buyers looking for what you're selling.
Click To Sell
We get it. There's a premium bike in your garage. You used to love it, but now it's not right for you. That's where we come in.
We have a proven, efficient system to buy bikes from cyclists like you. Whether you want the cash or you're ready to trade-in for your next bike, our goal at The Pro's Closet is to provide you with exceptional customer service and a trouble-free way to sell your bike.
We will offer to buy your bike upfront so you don't have to deal with the hassle of selling your bike through an online marketplace.
Simply follow the steps below and we will send you a quote for your bike within 24 hours. If you have a high-quality used frame or wheels, we're interested in those too! It doesn't matter where you live in the U.S. We cater to clients across the country, and we are committed to offering a fair price for your used bicycle.
Go to Sell // Trade and enter your bike details
Visit our Sell // Trade page. You will be asked to log in with your The Pro's Closet account. If you don't have an account, it's quick and easy to create one.
From the Sell // Trade page, select either bike, frame, or wheels, depending on what you're selling. Each item will require its own submission.
Fill out the submission form to tell us about the bike you have to sell. You will need to know the make, model, and year of your bike. This information must be accurate for our team of experts to give an accurate quote for your bike's value. If you are unsure of any of these details, please contact our Ride Guides for assistance.
If there is any damage, or you have made any upgrades or downgrades to the bike, please describe them in this form. These will affect our quote for your bike. If your submission is accurate, it will make the process easier and quicker for everyone!
Upload photos of your bike
You will be asked to upload a drive-side and non-drive-side photo of your bike. Make sure your photos are clear and well-lit so our team can make an accurate appraisal of your bike.
You will be able to upload up to three additional photos to show upgrades or damage.
Describe the condition
You will be asked to describe the condition of your bike using a 1-5 scale. A condition guide will be provided to help you assess your bike's condition
Our team methodically prices each bike based on the make/model/year and its condition. If we receive a bike in worse condition than expected, we will have to adjust the offer, potentially delaying the process. So please honestly assess your bike's condition.
Submit your bike
After submitting, you will receive an offer for your bike within 24 business hours. You will be able to choose between cash payment via PayPal or store credit with The Pro's Closet. Note that store credit will be valued 10% higher.
Ship your bike
We will email you a prepaid shipping label for your bike. Ensure that your bike is safely packed so it does not become damaged in transit. Damaged bikes will be returned or have their offers revised.
If you're worried about properly packing your bike for shipment, our Shipping Manager, Steve has a few helpful tips:
- Make sure there is no rub or contact between metal and carbon fiber, such as the front wheel against the frame, or handlebars against the frame. Use adequate packing material to protect areas of contact.
- Make sure nothing can move around in the box, such as the front wheel, handlebars, seatpost, or other small parts.
- Make sure the box is free of any old shipping labels. Take a photo of the box before shipping to record its condition.
Read our complete guide to safely packing your bike for shipping.
Once your bike arrives and passes inspection, we will send your store credit or payment via PayPal.
Thanks for choosing The Pro's Closet to sell your bike! We're confident that we offer the highest level of customer service and the easiest way to unlock the value of your bike.
DO pick the proper channel for selling your used bike. You can trade it in to your local shop if they offer a trade up program, sell it on Craigslist or eBay, or go through us, The Pro's Closet. Trading will usually net you the least amount of money, and Craigslist is the biggest hassle dealing with phone calls, offers, etc.
Craigslist vs eBay: Craigslist is free however the saying, “you get what you paid for” comes into play here. Not only does Craigslist open the door to more scammers but it also limits your bike’s exposure since Craigslist is a local marketplace.
eBay opens your bike up to a larger demographic that will increase the final sale price, yet in most cases, the shoppers are looking for bargains so you won't receive the highest dollar amount for your bike.
The Pro's Closet: Each pre-owned bike that is sold at The Pro's Closet undergoes a comprehensive Quality Assurance process that begins the moment a bicycle arrives. Every pre-owned bike sold under the TPC Quality Assurance process is given a comprehensive inspection and tune by a team of full-time, seasoned mechanics. This level of detail and inspection gives our customers confidence when buying a pre-owned bike, and customers are willing to pay more for guaranteed quality. As a result, you eliminate seller-hassle when dealing with an unsatisfied buyer if there are issues with your bike.
DO clean your bike before selling. Do you want to buy a dirty bike? Put yourself in the customer’s shoes. A clean bike gives potential buyers the confidence that your bike has been loved and well maintained.
DON'T sell your bike with extras. Pedals, computers, and spare wheels generally don't add much value to a bike sale and can be sold on their own for better money.
DO provide details of any upgrades you've made to the bike. Newer, lighter components can add value to you bike.
DO make sure to outline anything that is wrong with the bike. Scratches and dents are inevitable on a used bike and nothing is worse than surprising your buyer with a bike in worse shape than they had expected. Be transparent and advertise the bike honestly.
DO take as many photos as possible. The old saying, “photos are worth a thousand words” is especially true when selling a high-end bike. Show off your bike in great detail and make sure to take photos using a background that won’t distract from the actual bike. If you don’t have access to a professional photo studio, we recommend using a concrete wall or a solid colored garage door.
DO give your bike a tune-up. Making sure your bike is ready to ride will give buyers the confidence that they won't have to do any serious maintenance once they purchase from you. Apply these simple principals the next time you want to sell your bike and once the dust settles, you will notice your wallet will be a little fatter.