Mercari Review: Buy and Sell Online + Best Practices

Mercari Logo
Reading Time: 7 minutes

Mercari Logo
UPDATED: 10/24/2019

I am in a constant process of selling my belongings and sometimes purchasing more. I know…what a vicious cycle!

I was recently introduced to the Mercari App from an eBay seller who was willing to negotiate on a handbag that I was interested in and eventually bought.

Here’s what I found out… it works like eBay except the fees are way less than eBay + Paypal’s combined ~13% in fees. We call eBay, feeBay for nothing! I’ve been using Mercari for about 6 months and think it is brilliant!

Here is our Mercari App review plus tips and best practices on how to use Mercari!

Related: Best Sites to Buy and Resell Online

What is Mercari?

Mercari is a Customer to Customer (C2C) online marketplace where buyers and sellers can easily make purchasing and selling transactions. Mercari started in Japan and became such a huge success that they wanted to replicate the platform for US customers.

Want to see what it looks like on desktop? Here is my Mercari account.

How Does Mercari Work?

Sellers list their items on the Mercari App via their smartphones. To date, the app is available on iOS and Android. Mercari requires you to fill out an application form which includes mailing address, credit card information and account verification. You will need a phone number and e-mail to setup the account.

After your account is verified, you can start selling!

Photos and descriptions are the first things required to create a listing. Make sure you have a decent camera on your smartphone. You’ll then have to list the title, description, price, shipping fees, etc. If you do not know the brand name, you can choose “no brand.”

Once you have your listing up, you’re ready to sell! And here comes a buyer!

When buyers make a purchase, payment is withdrawn from the account via credit from previous sales, credit card, debit card or PayPal.

The seller then ships the item within 1-4 days.

Once the buyer receives the item, the seller and buyer have to rate one another to complete the transaction. Rating is on a scale of 5 stars and buyers and sellers are able to leave comments about the transaction.

After the transaction is complete, funds are released into the seller’s account. The seller has the option to use it for future purchases or transfer it to a linked bank account.

If you are linking your bank account in Mercari, a routing and account number is required for the withdrawal. The withdrawals are processed within 48 hours and there is a transfer minimum of $10. You can also expedite your transfer for a 1% fee if you need cash ASAP.
Mercari Review - Home PageMercari Review: How to List Product

Mercari Review + Best Practices

Pros and Cons of Using the Mercari

Any time we use a product, we have to weigh the cons and pros. The better we understand a product, the better we can use it to its maximum capacity.

Mercari Review - Sales PagePROS of Using Mercari

  • Low selling fees! Mercari selling fees are only 10%, whereas Poshmark’s fees are 20% and eBay is 10% + Paypal fees. During Mercari’s beta test run, they offered no fees to sell products (up until November 17th, 2016).
  • Easy listing format. It’s very easy to list your products on Mercari. The App will inform you of what fields are required and make suggestions as to how to price your item.
  • Make an offer! You can make offers (up to 20% off) on products that you want to buy. Mercari limits the percentage buyers can submit for offers. This prevents buyers from low-balling, or making ridiculously low offers.
  • Excellent shipping rates! Mercari offers shipping as low as $2.99 for items weighing 4 oz or less. See the shipping scale below.
  • Responsive customer support team. Their customer service is accessible through the App and usually respond within a day or two.
  • Track great deals! You can “like” the items that you’re thinking of purchasing. Sellers have the option to offer discounts to likers. You will also be notified of any price drops on items you like.
  • Communicate with sellers. You can reach out to sellers via messaging on items that are active. Sellers can only respond to buyers and potential buyers only if they reach out first.
  • Accepts different forms of payment. Initially, Mercari would only let you use credit from sales or a credit/debit card to make purchases. Now you use PayPal! It’s so convenient and I have not had issues with their payment system yet.
  • Free to list. There is no cost to list your products.
  • List as many products as you wish! There is no limit to how many items you can list. I have seen accounts list up to 1,000 items! Enjoy unlimited listing via Mercari!
  • Listings never expire. I am pro this feature because it is painfully annoying to keep re-listing things that don’t sell (cough cough eBay).
  • Modify listings. You have the ability to delete or make listings inactive. This is especially helpful for when you go on vacation. Simply select all and deactivate. Reactivate all when you’re ready to sell again.
  • Auto-rating makes getting paid easier. If a buyer does not rate within 3 days, items are auto-rated with 5 stars and you are PAID! Prior to this implementation, I had to wait WEEKs to get paid. You can also send a reminder for the buyer to rate. If they don’t, you will either be auto-rated or you can reach out to their customer service team to get rated.

mercari review seller profileCONS of Using Mercari

  • Their customer service team is accessible via messaging only. If you have issues, you’ll have to submit a query and wait for them to respond within 24-48 hours. There is not the option to call or email their customer service team. This can be frustrating when you need something to be resolved ASAP.
  • Mercari is typically on the buyer’s side. This can be frustrating when you describe something as is and the buyer says otherwise. I had a buyer state the color of something was not what they anticipated and Mercari approved their return. I think this is RIDICULOUS because I had all other details of the item in the listing per the company’s website. This is one reason why I always list the stock photo AND an actual photo so that there is no confusion.
  • You can’t sort by highest to lowest price.  You have to set a price range and scroll through all the listings to find the best deal. You can filter by sold and unsold items, which is really helpful.
  • Forbidden items and activities. Mercari has forbidden certain items from being sold on their marketplace. If you’re looking for a black market, this is not the place for you. They will filter certain words (ie. exchange, trade, and derogatory or drug-related terms like pills or vape).
  • You can get SCAMMED! You can get scammed by buyers AND sellers on Mercari. I’ve had an experience where a buyer (her name is Yasmin Yatzkan…yes I am name dropping because I lost $70 dollars on this sale) swapped the item I sold (new condition) with for a VERY well used bag in the same design. I now record all my purchases during shipping to ensure that no one scams me. You can also join Mercari groups on Facebook to get additional help and see a list of blacklisted buyers.
  • The desktop version of Mercari is very limited. You can browse products and update shipping information on Mercari’s desktop version. However, you cannot list products. Poshmark allows you to list products via desktop, but their fees are also higher.
  • Must use actual photos in listings. All images must be taken or uploaded from the App in the smartphone. Mercari also requires that you take a photo of the actual item. This can be good or bad. The listings can be accompanied with stock photos as long as an actual photo of the item is present. Mercari will allow you to load images of varying shapes and sizes onto the listing. You can also drag and drop images in the order of your choosing when creating or editing a listing.

Mercari Shipping Chart

WeightUSPS CostFedEx Cost
0-0.25 Lb$2.99N/A
0.25-0.5 Lb$4.25N/A
0.5-1 Lb$5.25N/A
1-3 Lb$11$9.90
3-10 Lb$16$11.50
10-20 Lb$30$17
20-40 LbN/A$35
40-70 LbN/A$50
70-100 LbN/A$65
100-150 LbN/A$90

You can also head over to PayPal.com/shipnow to create your own shipping labels. Sometimes this option is cheaper than Mercari.

Mercari Facebook Groups

Should You Use Mercari?

I highly recommend Mercari for reselling your used and unwanted goods. The fees are reasonable, it’s a great way to unload your belongings and earn some extra cash.

If you have a lot of belongings to sell or shop a lot, eventually it can become a nice side hustle. The money I make from my Mercari sales goes towards my vacations.

The Mercari pros definitely outweigh the cons for me. If you’d like to give Mercari a try, download the app for iPhone iOS or Android, and use my coupon code: SYVFUT to get $10 worth of credit to use towards your first purchase!

Feel free to ask any questions. If you have any feedback or additional tips on how to maximize your sales on Mercari, please let us know in the comments know!

 

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21 Comments

  1. Can you elaborate on how to get the cheaper shipping? I just sold my first item on Mercari yesterday (a 6 oz skirt, so nothing big) and it looked like all the prices on USPS.com were much more expensive if I wanted to do it myself rather than use their flat rate.

  2. Thanks for the review! Do you know if there is a way to get your items back to the top of the feed without deleting and re-listing them?

  3. I got a email from mercari saying the seller has shipped my item, I just don’t know if they REALLY Shipped it, because the tracking number that is listed doesn’t work when I looked it up on the fedex page. Help me??

    1. FedEx has been having issues. I waited a good 4 weeks before receiving my order using FedEx shipment. I would wait and be patient because it’s probably a package update issue on FedEx’s end. Next time before you buy, make sure the seller is shipping usps. Wish I had a better answer!

  4. I have a quick question regarding listing items on Mercari. If I have 10 of the very same item to sell on Mercari, am I allowed to make 10 of the same exact listing for that product simultaneously without risking being suspended?

  5. I am trying to order from mercari but it wouldn’t let me use my debit mastercard. Help. Where am I supposed to put in my card to register it. I dont want for it to start working and then I have all this money pulled out of my card.

    1. Hi Lisa! Head to the menu to the top left of the App (on Android) and choose Settings>My Payments>then add a card you’d like to use. When you pay for an item (Pressing BUY to proceed to cart) you have the option of choosing to pay with Paypal. It will prompt you to login to paypal to complete the sale. Hope this answers your questions!

  6. DO NOT BUY OR SELL ON MERCARI! complaint as a buyer; cons: 1.only 4 photos to see what your getting, 2. sellers are usually teenagers who ship in ziplock bags with a label slapped over it.3, items are not usually as described because teens don’t describe things well. 4. mercari has little protection fort you, no customerservice besides a vague text through their app to customer service.
    Selling cons: mercari dosnt protect you. returns are encouraged. (I sold a pair of new expensive mizunos for 79.00 and buyer blocked me and returned old mens tennis shoes beat up.) mercari wouldnt resolve this issu or step in to ban the scamming member of this site who probably has done this multiple times) 2. you dont get paid until a buyer rates you. 3. you dont know what buyer will rate you , they can do anythig to ruin you. 4. only cheap teen shop here and scam artists. 4. you money gets released Once a week.! and you have to constantly ask for it to go into your bank account.

    1. Thanks for your feedback! There are cons and pros to using Mercari. I still use it regardless of all the silly rules. To combat buyers from returning the wrong items, I have decided to record ALL MY SALES from the packaging to shipping process. I also let buyers know in case they’re planning on scamming me. I had one bad experience and made sure that will never happen again!

      1. Do you mind expanding on this? How do you record the process? I’m afraid that I’m being ghosted by a buyer and they haven’t left me a rating yet. I want to start trying to avoid this at the beginning.

  7. Maybe you can help, I can’t find the answer anywhere… Why can’t people make offers on items if they are using Paypal? I have had several people ask to make offers on my items today but it says Paypal won’t let them.. so I have to go in, change the price and tell them to buy it right away.. or reserve it for them. If you can enlighten me, that would be awesome! Thanks!

    1. I’ve tried to do this exact same thing when buying on Mercari. Mercari doesn’t allow processing of Paypal payments thru their offer function because the process can not be automated. Which means, when purchasing using paypal, you have to be actively buying the item. It’s a security thing on Paypal’s end. Annoying but it’s what we have to deal with! Paypal works the same way on eBay.

  8. Thank you for the review . I personally feel that mercari is a very good, easy to use sellers app. I feel that some of the cons will be addressed in the future as mercari moves forward.
    I list about 90% of my items for sale on eBay at this time, but plan to list more on mercari as they gain my trust..
    One thing I would love from mercari to help me promote items and even their app is a link like my ebay store

    http://stores.ebay.com/briella252

    1. They have a promotion option which allows u to promote 5 items per day but you’d take a 10% cut for that service. I usually price my items higher than normal then use the promo option. I’ve sold 2 out of the 20 items I’ve promoted. I’m still on the fence about whether I like the promo option or not. They also list their items on Google product pages like poshmark and eBay now. Only thing is their desktop browsing site is not user friendly and sometimes does not even load for me. I have another article that lists all the different selling products u can use and their parameters. I can link you later. 🙂 Thanks for your message!!!

  9. MERCARI HAS NOT DONE ANYTHING TO HELP ME USE THEIR APP IN 2 MONTHS. THERE’S BEEN 75 EMAILS BETWEEN US AND THE PROBLEM HAS NOT BEEN FIXED. I HAVE SPENT QUITE A BIT OF
    MONEY ON MERCARI BUYING ITEMS ON THEIR WEBSITE. FOR THE FIRST 4-5 YEARS THERE WAS
    NO PROBLEM, BUT NOW THERE IS. I CANNOT NAVIGATE ON THIS APP ANY LONGER. I SUGGESTED CLOSING OUT MY ACCOUNT AND OPENING A NEW ONE, BUT THAT’S PROHIBITED BY MERCARI.
    I WAS ALL READY TO START SELLING ON MERCARI, GOT ALL MY ITEMS TOGETHER WHICH TOOK A LONG TIME AND THEN MY MERCARI APP WAS UNUSABLE. ANY ADVICE???????????????????????????

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