Record Fairs 

Participating in a vinyl record fair as both a buyer and seller can be a fantastic way to enhance your collection and make some profitable sales. 

Tips for Buying and Selling at a Vinyl Record FairOver the past 30 years I have probably been to hundreds of record fairs for a number of reasons. Firstly, it is where I find like minded people and dealers that specialise in certain aspects or even genres of records. It is also a great way to buy, sell and trade records (I generally do more selling than anything else). As a buyer and sellers it puts me in touch with new contacts and helps me broaden my knowledge too.

When you love what you do, attending record fairs is like the icing on a cake for me. Surrounded by many records, specialists and enthusiasts means I am in my element. I have attend both small and large record fairs over the years and tend to sell at least 5 per year.

My Top Tips for Selling at a Vinyl Record Fairs

Preparation

Choose Your Collection

  • Select a variety of records, including popular genres, rare finds, and classics. Ensure a mix of well-known and niche artists to appeal to different tastes.

Pricing

  • Research current market prices on platforms like Discogs and eBay.
  • Clearly label each record with its price using stickers that won’t damage the sleeve.

Promotion

  • Announce your participation on social media and highlight key items.
  • Use flyers and posters in local music stores and community spaces to attract a local audience.

At the Fair

Stall Setup

  • Display records neatly in boxes or on display stands.
  • Use clear signage and visible pricing.

Customer Interaction

  • Be friendly and approachable.
  • Share your knowledge and enthusiasm for vinyl, which can make the buying experience more enjoyable.

Negotiation

  • Be prepared to haggle but know your lowest acceptable price.
  • Offer discount deals to encourage multiple purchases.

Payment Methods

  • Accept multiple payment methods, including cash, mobile payments (like PayPal), and card payments using a portable card reader if possible.

Security

  • Keep a close eye on your displayed stock and preferably enlist help if possible. Having two sets of eyes on the stock and money is recommended. Sadly there are opportunists out there that will take advantage of a distracted seller.
  • Secure your cash in a locked box that is close to you at all times or wear a money belt.

After the Fair

Follow-Up

  • If you are planning on attending regular record fairs. We recommend to collect customer contact information so you can keep them up to date with what stock you are selling at the next fair.
  • Thank customers and request feedback. This helps to ensure you are selling stock that appeals to your customers.

Inventory Management

  • Look at what sold well and adjust your stock accordingly for future events.
  • Properly store unsold records and update your inventory list.

Tips for Buying at a Vinyl Record Fair

PreparationRecord Fair - Guide to Buying and Selling

Research

  • Make a list of records you’re looking for and their average prices.
  • If looking for certain rare records make sure you do your homework first so you know what you are buying. You don’t want to end up paying out a fortune thinking your purchase is a rare record to find it’s a reissue or bootleg!

 

 

Budgeting

  • Set a budget to avoid overspending.
  • Bring cash as some sellers might not accept cards.

Early Bird Entry

  • It’s our recommendation to turn up early (before fair opening time) to grab the bargains. Otherwise they get snapped up by other dealers!

At the Fair

Browsing

  • Take your time to browse through different stalls.
  • Check the condition of records carefully, looking for scratches, damage or mould. 
  • You can ask a seller to play any vinyl records (if available) you are interested in buying. That way you can check if it plays well before purchasing.

Negotiation

  • Don’t be afraid to haggle. Sellers expect some negotiation.
  • Bundle purchases do get better deals. The more you buy the greater the discount if offered generally speaking.

Networking

  • Engage with sellers and other buyers. They can provide valuable information and recommendations.
  • Exchange contact details for future trades or purchases.

Be Open-Minded

  • Be open to discovering new music or records you hadn’t initially considered.
  • When purchasing vinyl records from a seller it’s recommended that you request a business card from them so if you have any issues with your purchases when you get home. You can get in touch with them. Or alternatively contact the event organiser for help. 

After the Fair

Inspect Purchases

  • Clean, sleeve and properly store your new records. Proper storage of vinyl records is essential to maintaining their condition and ensuring they provide high-quality sound for years to come.

Connect with Sellers

  • Follow up with sellers you had a good experience with for potential future purchases.
  • Join mailing lists or social media groups to stay informed about future fairs and sales.

General Tips for Both Buying and Selling 

  • Essentials: Carry bags as not all sellers have them on offer. For the buyer, TURN UP EARLY to GET THOSE BARGAINS! For the seller make sure you bring plenty of change and a money belt to wear on the day. 
  • Networking: Use the fair to build relationships with other vinyl enthusiasts, which can benefit both buying and selling.

By following these tips, you can enhance your experience and success both as a buyer and seller at a vinyl record fair.

Links to UK & Europe Record Fairs

If you decide after reading this article that Record Fairs are not for you. Then feel free to GET IN TOUCH and I will be more than happy to offer you some advice on how to sell your vinyl record collection through other available options. Call Steve on 07827 479271 or visit our website @ www.sellvinylrecords.co.uk