We may be a nation of spenders, but Brits are also conscious to make money from every little thing we own that we no longer use or have a purpose for.

From toys to furniture, consumers have a wide variety of platforms to sell any of their goods online. For those considering or just starting to make use of these online platforms such as OnBuy, one of the fundamental aspects of the process of selling to understand inside and out is how to ship and deliver the items safely.

To help with this, we have provided some useful tips on how to safely pack and send your parcels.

The Essentials

Before listing your items, make a list of all the things you will need for packing your items. You will need brown packaging tape, sturdy cardboard boxes, bubble padded envelopes, scissors, sticky white labels and different colour markers (should you need to mark the parcel with the terms 'fragile' or 'hold this way up' if the contents of the package is delicate). With regards to sturdy cardboard boxes and bubble padded envelopes - aim to get different sizes for each ones, as what you sell will undoubtedly vary in dimensions and weight.


Credit: 88studio/Shutterstock

Extra Protection

No matter which courier company you decide to use, you will have no direct control or knowledge as to how the parcel is handled. Whilst companies do try to look after the parcels entrusted to them, mistakes do happen. Especially, when they are under pressure to hit delivery targets during peak seasons such as Christmas. To take precaution against this - use either air cushions, bubble wrap or foam peanuts to provide extra protection inside your parcel.

Checking Delivery Options

Instead of opting for the cheapest shipping option available, consider the value of the item you are selling first. If you have sold something of high value such as an old smart phone or designer piece of clothing, then take the time to check what compensation certain courier companies will pay out should the parcel go missing whilst in their care. For instance, you don't want to send an items valued at £100 by using a shipping option which only covers you up to £40 if the parcel is misplaced.

Moreover, where possible, try and send every item via 'recorded delivery'. In doing so, yourself and the buyer can track the shipping status of the parcel without needing to get in touch with you as the seller as to the whereabouts of their goods.


Credit: 88studio/Shutterstock

Pre-shipping Due Diligence

When uploading an item to sell, be 100% honest about its condition in the product description. If there any marks, discolouration or broken parts/pieces - then be sure to accurately list them. This is not only for the benefit of any potential buyers but also in case the item goes missing when shipped - you have an accurate account of its condition to provide to the courier company when filing for compensation.

On top of this, take pictures of all items before and after packing them - as this photographic evidence will further solidify any missing/lost parcel claims. Additionally, opt to use a computer to print the shipping address of buyers and attach to the parcel. This will ensure no confusion as to the delivery address is made, avoiding a misinterpretation of numbers and letters which can typically occur when hand written.