With many people cleaning out garages, closets, basements, attics, and storage lockers, I spend quite a bit of my time informing people about the appraised value of Ty Inc. beanie babies. While some of the small pellet-filled stuffed toys from the 1990s and 2000s are very valuable, when it comes to selling these collectibles, there are some tried and true methods to bring home top dollar for your bears, dogs, cats, birds such as Peace bear, Valentino, Princess, Iggy, Garcia, and so many others. I will share my how to sell your beanie babies tips here. If you don’t know what your beanie babies are worth, you should read my post on 3 Tips to Spot Beanie Babies Value.
First and foremost, get an appraisal of your collection. I offer inexpensive methods to get this done quickly and painlessly. You need to know if yours are the ultra-valuable ones or not, so more than ever, you need an appraisal of your collection. Once you have learned the value of your beanies, selling your beanies online can be tough waters to navigate. Here are some of the tested methods for success in selling the most popular toys in the online marketplace now.
Consider Beanie Baby Condition
Consider condition when you are preparing to sell your stuff. Just like any other object, cleanliness is next to good sales. When it comes to beanie babies, they must be clean and that means odor free, stain free, spot free. When listing these for sale in an online auction like ebay.com or on an online shop like etsy.com, be sure to note clearly that your beanie babies are odor free, have been stored in a pet-free home or business, have been displayed in a smoke-free home or business. Be sure to note how they have been stored—in plastic cases, in temperature- and humidity- controlled areas, in plastic bags or tubs, etc. Be specific in your listing so potential buyers, resellers, and collectors can feel comfortable about what they are getting from you when you are selling your beanie babies.
I would not advise you to toss your smelly beanie babies into the washing machine or clothes dryer if they are dirty. You can try to remove spots like ink or food stains with a spot remover but again, be careful as you attempt to clean your beanie babies. Protect the tags—both heart shaped hang tag and attached tush tag—whenever you handle your beanie babies toys.
Take Snappy Photos
When posting your beanie babies online for sale, take clear –not blurry–photos showing the entire toy in the photograph shot. Show a photo of the entire front of the beanie, the entire back of the beanie, and of all four sides of the heart shaped hang tag attached to the top of the animal, usually near the head, and of both sides of the folded, creased and attached tush tag which is typically found near the tush or buttocks of the toy beanie baby animal. All of that information –from generation to birth date to types of pellets and manufacturer location and more—that is shown on these two beanie babies Ty Inc. tags is very important to collectors and potential buyers when selling in the highly competitive online marketplace.
It is a good idea to place a plastic tag protector on each beanie baby toy before you take the photograph of the toy to be listed online for sale on a website like eBay.com, Etsy.com, Rubylane.com, or on a social media selling platform like Facebook marketplace or the Letgo or Mercari app. The plastic tag protectors prevent the dreaded creasing of the cardstock paper tags. A creased or dog eared tag can negatively impact value by a great deal. It is good to show potential buyers that you have gone this extra step in protecting the heart shaped hang tag on all of the beanie babies that you are listing and offering for sale online.
Once you have prepared your beanie babies to be photographed, then be sure to place them on a suitable background. Be sure to crop your photos tightly to show online viewers and potential buyers your beanie babies toy without distractions like glare from a tv set in the background or your pet who walked into the shot, etc. Be sure there are no hands in your photos. Don’t have any other objects in the photograph either.
Be sure to place your beanie baby on a black or white background depending on the color of your toy. Put light colored beanies like Valentino the bear on a dark background and shoot the photograph of any dark-colored beanie babies like Blackie the bear, one of the original nine beanie babies from 1993, on a light-colored background so they attract the eye to your listing. This contrast of colored beanie babies and photo background will help attract people to your listing.
These potential buyers are looking at many online listings of beanie babies on an online auction or selling webpage and by using contrasting colors. By doing this, your listing becomes more attractive and puts you ahead of the pack. This and other tips to attract the eyes of potential buyers while they are shopping online will make your online listing stand out over others in the highly competitive online world of how to sell your beanie babies.
While most people do not realize that a picture speaks a thousand words even online, how that photograph speaks to potential buyers is very important. My advice is that you use what is called the law of complimentary colors (color theory) to attract viewers to your online listing. This is the 19th Century fine art technique that the Impressionist artist like Monet and Renoir used to attract collectors to their paintings. How does it work? There are three pairs of colors that attract or stimulate the optic nerve more than others: purple and yellow, red and green, and blue and orange.
So, in the world of beanie babies selling, if you have a purple beanie baby like Patti the Platypus or Princess (for the Princess Diana memorial fund), photograph that toy on a yellow background. Red beanies like Valentina should be on a green background. Blue beanie babies like Peanut the elephant should be photographed on an orange background. You can use a big pad of colored construction paper to change out various colors for backgrounds when taking photographs. These complimentary color pairs attract the optic nerve to an object and will attract buyers to your listing over other people’s beanie babies listings online. It is a great technique to use and one which my clients have used with success. Selling your beanie babies will take off if you present your beanie babies toys in the best possible light with the best photographs possible.
Marketing Beanie Babies
It is best to sell your beanie babies individually. List, post, and photograph them individually and explain all the highlights or facets of your beanie babies. Most sellers ask themselves or at least they should ask themselves… who is going to buy my beanie babies? There are many answers to that question. In my experience appraising beanie babies, buyers come in many shapes and sizes. They buy for many reasons such as wanting a beanie baby to add to an existing collection, to start a new collection for young children, to recall one that someone had as a child, to get one that references a nickname or holiday, to get a beanie of a specific animal, and the list goes on. Wondering how to value your beanie babies? Read my post on 3 Tips to Spot Beanie Babies Value
On a video call, an appraisal client told me that she was shopping for a specific beanie baby that she wanted because her sister had it and she didn’t as a child. She always wanted it and now she was shopping online for it. Another client wanted bumblebee beanie baby because that beanie baby shared her birthday. There are many reasons why someone wants a vintage beanie. As with any object you are trying to sell, some items are more desirable than others. This is true with beanie babies too. Sell inexpensive beanie babies as a lot or a group by theme, type, color etc. such as holiday beanie babies, all dogs or all cats, etc. Explaining all the facets of your beanie baby will aid in sales.
I can also help you identify the factors that affect value and appraise your beanie babies during a video call or you can send me photos. Check out the options and get started. Watch videos on Dr. Lori’s YouTube channel as she shows you how to sell your beanie babies.Read More »