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The Saddle Bank is the UK’s fastest growing and most trusted online saddle shop. Having thousands of customers all over the world we are the experts in saddle selling and in this article we are going to share with you our secrets to getting your saddle sold.
If you have been trying to sell your saddle for a while unsuccessfully, there could be a number of reasons why.
Saddles are a product where size is a key determining factor on how well it will sell. Imagine trying to sell a pair of ladies shoes in a size 2 or a size 9; the number of potential buyers are going to be much more limited than if you were trying to sell a pair of shoes in a size 5, 6 or 7. Of course, people still need shoes in sizes other than 5, 6 and 7, but you're likely to find there's less of them.
The same rule applies to saddles. 16.5, 17 and 17.5 inch are the most desirable seat sizes for a saddle. Medium, Medium Wide and Wide are the most desirable widths of saddles.
If you have a saddle that is 18 inch and Narrow, and are reading this thinking you won’t find a buyer, do not despair! You simply need to apply some of our other tips to ensure the right buyer sees your saddle and wants to buy it from you.
The type of saddle you are selling will also determine how many buyers are looking for that type of saddle. GP and Jump saddles sell much better than dressage saddles – that’s a fact.
Why? Because more people do general every day riding than they do dressage. The same applies to show saddles; there is a lesser market for these types of saddles.
Dressage and show riders are also more particular about what they ride in. Dressage riders aim to get the ultimate classical seat to enable them to encourage the horse to move and work correctly, whereas show riders are being judged on the overall appearance. Therefore the colour, style, and type are very important.
In the world we live in, brands are important to most people. Most people want the best brand they can afford. Fortunately, there are brands on the market to suit all budgets. If you are unsure on the brand of your saddle, find out. Post a photo of the pin badge and the plate under the skirt of the saddle into equestrian Facebook groups and people will be glad to help you out.
Some saddles are manufactured by well known manufactures and then branded up as something different. Some independent saddlers will create made-to-measure saddles for you, and have manufactures such as Ideal make them. They will then put their own maker’s plate, and pin onto the saddles. Sometimes saddles branded with the individual saddler details are harder to sell, as less people have heard of that saddle fitter or company. Do your research, and if you find it was manufactured by a well known company then tell people that. Unbranded saddles are notoriously difficult to sell. This is because people don’t know the quality of the product and they are unable to verify where it came from. Some unbranded saddles originate from cheap manufacturers in India. There have been reports that these saddles have very poor quality trees and awful flocking, which can injure a horse. Do NOT purchase these saddles. You can find an old English branded saddle for a similar price.
There are some basic things you can do to ensure your saddle is as attractive to potential buyers as possible, increasing your chances of selling and/or achieving a better sale price.
You might think this is an extremely obvious or basic point, but most people do not clean their saddles before advertising. A clean, polished saddle looks 100 times better than a dirty saddle that has just come off the back of a sweaty horse who has just been out hunting and flicked mud all over it. Cleaning your saddle before photographing it will have a huge impact on the level of interest you receive.
Find out what products the experts use to clean saddles here.
Once your saddle is clean, polished and looking beautiful, the next step is to take some good quality photos. Use a good camera, or a phone with a good camera, and ensure you take clear photographs. Blurry photos instantly put buyers off, as they will wonder what you are trying to hide, even though it may just be poor photography skills. The same applies to photos taken in very dark rooms. Take your saddle to a bright, light place indoors or outdoors, and position it on a saddle stand. Putting a clean saddle cloth underneath will make the saddle look more presentable. However, make sure it is a clean saddle cloth – a filthy one will detract the buyer from the saddle and ultimately reduce the amount a buyer is willing to pay. Ensure you take photographs from all angles, or follow our checklist below:
If a saddle fitter has been to fit your new saddle, or there is a saddle fitter on your yard fitting for someone else, ask them to take a quick look at the saddle to ensure it has no serious damage. Cosmetic damage is not usually an issue. However, a broken tree is a serious issue. Get it checked to ensure it is sound and fit for purpose.
If you bought the saddle secondhand or have lost the original paperwork, do some research online and try to find out what model it is. If the saddle has a serial number, you will be able to contact the manufacturer to get them to verify the model, age, and any special features it has. For example, it may be built on a particular tree or have a specific length flap. Serial numbers are usually found on the under flap of the saddle. You should include a photograph of the serial/stamp when advertising the saddle. The more information you can find out about the saddle, will reassure buyers they are purchasing something suitable for their horse, and something which is accurately described. You can contact British manufacturers by Googling the brand and then calling them, or by emailing overseas manufacturers.
Some people think that because a saddle has a scuff, or a scratch, or needs a replacement girth strap, that people won’t buy it. So they decide not to include this information in the advert. This is dishonest and wrong. Treat people how you wish to be treated, and provide a full, honest advert.
Example of a good advert;
17.5 inch Black Kent & Masters GPD. The GPD is a slightly straighter cut than the standard GP. It comes with Velcro knee blocks which can be adjusted to suit you. Adjustable gullet – currently fitted with a Medium R Bar by Kent & Masters/ Thorowgood. Easily adjustable yourself. This saddle has some very minor scuffs to the cantle, but is overall in very good condition.
Example of a poor advert;
Black horse saddle think it is a medium fit
Often, people advertise saddles without stating a price. This not only wastes the advertisers time, but it wastes the time of 99% of the people who comment on it. People think that inviting offers without stating a price will encourage a sale. However, all it does is mean lots of people who cannot afford the saddle will comment on the post or send you messages with no intention of buying. Clearly state a price, and if you are happy to accept offers, indicate this on your advert by placing 'ONO' or 'Offers considered' after your price in the advert.
If all of this sounds like too much in the way of hard work, you can always opt to have a saddle company sell your saddle for you. The Saddle Bank offer sales on behalf of clients, which removes all the hassle of selling a saddle from you. No cleaning, relentless advertising, or dealing with timewasters. We simply send you the payment once your saddle has sold.
The Saddle Bank also purchase some brands outright.
Find out here how we can help you turn your saddle into cash.
If you would like access to The Saddle Bank’s FREE Saddle Fitting guide and get access to our unmissable step by step checklist to ensure your saddle fits your horse click here.
If you want to learn more about how to recognise the signs your saddle does not fit then join the many happy riders in The Saddle Bank academy.
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