Is selling on Letgo safe?
We have all heard the stories–people selling on Letgo end up getting robbed–shady transactions, etc.
But are these occurrences really all that common? Should you be worried about potentially getting taken advantage of when selling on the platform?
There is no doubt that negative experiences such as these are few and far in-between. After all, tens of millions of transactions happen over the Letgo app on a monthly basis.
Most people don’t get robbed–but some do–and in this short article we will be going over how to avoid this so it doesn’t happen to you!
Letgo Is a second-hand selling app that is often said to be the newer version of Craigslist. If you know how Craigslist works then you know how Letgo works too. The purpose of both is to facilitate the buying and selling of products locally, where sellers make direct transactions with buyers.
Where Letgo beats Craigslist is with its usability, and technology to help your items sell faster. Not only does a handy little app make snapping photos of your items and listing them for sale an incredibly easy process, but the app also uses AI to help match buyers and sellers, which means that your items sell quicker than normal.
Some of the benefits include…
And some of the negatives are…
This isn’t eBay where you ship items directly to the buyer and the platform handles the payment process, nor is it like Mercari, which is basically the same thing.
With Letgo you meet up directly with strangers to make your transaction. The upside to this is that, because the app plays no part in this, there is no fee–the downside is that meeting up with strangers adds a great deal of risk to the equation.
These are all things that–unfortunately–could happen and that you should at the very least be aware of.
Luckily, Letgo is helping to ensure that these things don’t happen and there are some tips we will be providing for safer transactions.
The team at Letgo isn’t just sitting on the sidelines waiting for someone to have a bad experience. They’re getting in on the action and always testing new ways to make the platform more safe for both buyers and sellers.
In an interview with ABC News, a spokesperson for Letgo said that…
“We use human and artificial intelligence to moderate our marketplace and we ask our user community to flag anything or anyone that raises concerns in extremely rare cases where that’s necessary,”
Not only that, but Letgo’s rating and verification system has huge benefits when it comes to safety.
On the app users have the ability to verify their profile via Facebook, Google, and email–which helps to ensure that they are in fact a real person and can be held accountable for their actions on the platform–and users can also rate transactions between other users so that you can take a look at the reputation of buyers before selling to them.
1. Meet In Public
If at all possible you should meet in public to complete your transactions. You don’t really want to be giving out your address to strangers, so if you can avoid it that would be the best.
A public place with cameras is your best option. This includes places like gas stations, supermarket parking lots, and many police stations now have designated areas for meeting people for reasons like this.
However, if you were selling a large item like a refrigerator it might not be feasible to meet someone in public with it. If this is the case you were just going to have to be extra careful, and It would be advisable to follow the next to tip…
2. Bring Someone Along
If you want to add another layer of safety to your transaction, bring someone else along. Having someone with you that you can trust will always make a somewhat unsafe situation more safe–if that’s what it comes to.
3. Make a Phone Call
If you are alone and a bit nervous, you can always make a phone call when you’re going up to meet the buyer. Simply being on the phone with someone brings them along with you virtually–so that they know where you are if anything were to happen and can also hear if something takes a turn for the worse.
4. A Counterfeit Marker Could Be a Good Investment
When it comes to using counterfeit money, buying things on second-hand marketplaces like Craigslist and Letgo is a dream come true.
Yes, there are people that use counterfeit money to rip people off, and it only makes sense that they would be taking advantage of people selling on apps like Letgo.
Because of this a counterfeit marker may be a good investment. They are inexpensive and could give you peace of mind–in particular with large transactions.
5. Be Weary of Strange Messagess
Some of the stories you hear from people who have had negative experiences selling on Letgo often talk about having a gut feeling that something was not right to begin with. Often times the communication they have with the buyer through the app seems a bit strange and it doesn’t really add up.
Trust yourself–trust your gut. If you think you should avoid a particular buyer, then you may want to–especially if they have no ratings and no reviews from past transactions.
6. Keep Your Communication on The App
If someone asks for your phone number so that they can communicate with you, declined the request. If possible, keep all of your communication on the app. This way you have a nice record of the communication that went on between both parties–and so does Letgo.
While there will always be some risk involved when it comes to selling items to strangers, and this just comes with the territory, overall Letgo does a good job of helping to make buyer/seller transactions as safe as possible–much more so than Craigslist.
If you are still concerned you can always use Alternatives like eBay or Mercari, in which you will ship items directly to customers and the platform will handle the payment process–but of course shipping can be a pain and if you go this route you will then have a fee deducted from your payment.
What do you think? Is Letgo safe? What has your experience been like?
Is there any way for Letgo to make the platform even more safe?
If you have stuff to sell and want to sell it as quick as possible and make as much money as possible, then you need to know which platform to use. There are loads of different secondary selling platforms out there and they are not all created equally.
In this article we’ll be specifically looking at Mercari vs Letgo.
Should you sell that old Ralph Lauren sweeter that could fetch you a pretty penny on Mercari? Should you sell your tredmill that you no longer use on Letgo? Does it even matter?
Yes, it definitely does matter–if you want the best results.
Let’s find out how these two platforms compare and which you should be using…
You’ve probably heard the comparison before but I’m going to say it here too because it works great: Mercari is to Ebay what Letgo is to Craigslist.
Both of these platforms provide a more enjoyable experience than than Ebay or Craigslist, and both are excellent alternatives that make a lot of the selling process more smooth and simple because you can easily do everything on your phone with their apps.
In a nutshell, Mercari is like a newer Ebay and gives you the ability to sell items to buyers all across the country–who will pay you through the platform and who you will have to ship to, whereas Letgo is like a newer Craigslist and gives you the ability to easily sell items to local buyers–which will pay you directly and pick up the item themselves.
Let’s start by taking a look inside the two apps. Below is a screenshot–Mercari on the left and Letgo on the right…
Mercari has a very Ebay-like feel to it, which makes perfect sense since it pretty much is a newer version of Ebay in a sense. It has a lot more going on with it–a lot of different categories you can buy/sell in and users can even shop by brand.
When selling an item you will begin by taking a picture on your phone through the app. Then you will fill in some basic information such as the category the item falls into, the brand, condition, add a brief description, set a price, state where you will be shipping it from and so on.
Example: Below I took a quick picture of a laptop of mine and that’s it. What’s great about the app is that it automatically fills in as many details as possible using AI. It recognized my item as an HP laptop and filled that information in on it’s own.
After listing an item for sale the process is pretty simple–buyers will be able to purchase your item through the platform at the price listed or make you an offer, which you can accept or reject.
The money is all handled over the platform–and if someone asks to send you a check in the mail or something of this nature, it is highly recommended that you do not accept this form of payment–keep the entire transaction on the platform for your safety.
Letgo is a much more basic app, just as Craigslist is much more basic than Ebay. Here you do much of the same thing, just you don’t deal with shipping and most sellers don’t provide as much detail in their listings.
Example: Below I took another picture of my laptop, this time using Letgo. This app also uses AI to fill in details for you with what you are selling. As you can see, it recognized it as a laptop, automatically put it into the category of Electronics, and even set a price for me of $100–which there is no way I would sell it for this little, but you can easily change this.
With the example shown above the app didn’t fill in all that many details for me, but I have had better experiences with other items–it just depends on what you are selling. For example, at one point I sold a set of matching luggage bags on the app–and when doing this all I did was snapped a picture. It then added it’s own description which was good enough for me–so literally all I did was took a picture and clicked “post”.
After posting your item buyers will be able to easily contact you. Then you will arrange to meetup and make the transaction face to face, no shipping involved–although you could ship your item if you somehow worked this out with the buyer (not recommended).
*Everything is free, but they do have an option where you can pay to have your listings get more exposure–which will help them sell faster.
There is no doubt that both apps are mardern marvels of the secondhand marketplace, but which is a better choice for you? Let’s dive into it…
It is fairly obvious with these examples which platform you should use to sell your stuff. As a general rule of thumb, most people will sell the bigger items that will be a hassle to ship on Letgo and the smaller items on Mercari, but it’s not always so cut and dry.
For example, let’s say you have a used laptop computer that you want to sell. Mercari may seem like the better choice because this would be an easy item to ship, but don’t jump to conclusions too fast. Used laptops are an item that are in very high demand and even if you try selling it locally, you will have people that are interested (as long as the laptop isn’t ridiculously old).
I personally have had great success selling laptops on Letgo–and am glad I gave it a try because I didn’t have to think about shipping.
Other small items that might be easily sold on Letgo include smartphones, tablets, and other electronic devices.
On the other hand, you may get better results posting somewhat large items on Mercari if they are very unique and lack a large market of buyers–for example a GI Joe themed computer desk might be a hard sell in your local area with Letgo.
When you don’t know where to post your items–just post them on both platforms.
Safety is always a concern.
Which of these platforms is your safest bet?
Is a buyer on Letgo going to scam you, maybe by paying with conterfiet money?
Is someone on Mercari going to lie and say that the item you shipped was damaged and demand a refund?
These are both serious concerns–after all we are trying to make money with these platforms, not waste our time.
By selling on Mercari the main concern is that you are going to ship out your item and the buyer is either going to say that it was damaged. Then you have either the option to pay for return shipping, which might not be worth it since the item could be damaged, or just let them keep it and give them a refund–all the while taking their word on the matter. Mercari will help mediate disputes, but as is the case with pretty much any platform of this kind, they will favor the buyer most of the time.
On Letgo the main concern is that you might be ripped off with conterfeit money or may even be mugged. This is why the app suggests meeting in a public area. As for the conterfeit money–I wouldn’t be too concerned–and you can always get a conterfeit marker if you are.
With both platforms there are some concerns that are unavoidable–just as any secondary selling platform out there. Unfortunately if a buyer really wanted to scam you, they probably could. Fortunately most buyers aren’t scammers and I have never encountered such personally.
There is no winner. The fact of the matter is that Mercari and Letgo are similar yet very different, and because of this we can’t really do a straight comparison.
They both have their upsides and downsides and they are both great platforms for selling.
If I absolutely had to pick one–if it was a life or death situation–I would go with Letgo just because it is more simple and there aren’t any fees–and most items will probably sell on their anyhow.
I hope you enjoyed the comparison.
What do you think? Have you had good experiences with either platform? What would be your first choice? Let us know in the comment section below 🙂