How to sell my phone online

There are very few things as exciting as getting paid with some cold hard cash, especially if you’re going to use the money to subsidise the cost of a new phone. However, if not done correctly, the deal might make you feel like it was a donation.


The key lies in knowing what to do. So instead of hurriedly typing “How to sell my phone online” in search engines and just hoping for the best, just read our brief guide below to get you up to speed.


Image courtesy of Pixabay


1. Get your phone ready for a sale


This is an important part of the sales process that many owners simply ignore.


Would you buy a phone littered with fingerprint and food smudges on the screen and chassis? Would you pay good money for a phone with caked dirt between the seams and around the speaker? If you won’t, do you think anyone else would?


So begin the process by cleaning your phone thoroughly. Use a soft damp cloth, apply a little pressure, and rub the smudges away in small, circular motions. Don’t use tissue paper; larger wood pulps on the tissue might create fine scratches on the phone.


Next, clean the phone internally. Log out of all online accounts and un-pair the phone from any devices (earphones, speakers, printers, etc.). Next, remove the SIM card and memory card before finally resetting the phone back to its factory state. This last step is crucial to prevent people from harvesting any of your personal information from the phone. If you really want to be safe, use an app like iShredder 5, which offers military grade deletion ability, to completely wiped off any trace of you from the phone.


2. Finding a buyer


There are many ways to sell your phone, both online and offline. However, you need to find the right buyer to ensure that you will receive a fair and reasonable amount for your phone. In addition, you want to trade with a reputable buyer to minimise the risk of fraud. So please a sufficient amount of time to conduct a due diligence on all prospective buyers. Note down the prices offered as well to give you a good idea of a competitive price range for your phone.


Here’s a quick listing of your selling options, featuring only reputable buyers known to pay competitive prices (both trade-ins and direct cash purchases).


  • Carphone Warehouse (best trade-in package)
  • O2 Recycle (most efficient trade-in process)
  • Envirofone (most environmentally-friendly recycler)
  • CeX (best cash prices)
  • Apple Store (below average prices, but above average service level)


You may be tempted to sell your phone on eBay, Amazon, Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace after hearing all the sell my mobile success stories. However, there is a learning curve at these places that are not worth your time to learn if you are only planning to sell a phone once. Besides, the risk of fraud is higher when doing business on classified sites. So if this is your first time selling, you’re better off dealing with the big companies listed above.


The extra 5% or 10% you might earn at auction sites or classified websites is just not worth the risk. Besides, if you follow our advice and clean your phone, you might even manage to sell your phone for 5% to 10% more.