In part two of Mark Hill’s “Dealer Hacks” series, he reveals some of the tools he keeps on hand for evaluating, measuring, and calculating shipping for his pieces. Mark has been helping people sell their antiques online for two decades, and also sells his own stock online. He has developed a process that he is happy to share with the Ronati community. Watch the video at the end of this article to hear these tips from Mark himself.

Click here to check out part one of his Dealer Hacks.

Your Item Description

Once you have great photographs of your pieces, the next step is to describe them really well, and with precision regarding size and weight. Mark has a set of “paraphernalia” that he keeps on hand:

Shipping Antiques

Measuring your Items Accurately: What’s in Mark Hill’s Toolkit?

While you may already have all these tools, an accurate measurement is critical, so Mark shares what he keeps in his own toolkit:

  • A really long ruler, rather than a short 6 or 12-inch ruler that you must move along a larger piece to measure it, which is annoying and imprecise.
  • To get an accurate circumference of a piece, use a fabric tape measure.
  • He always has a standard metal tape measure with a bent metal end to hold it in place for those times when you do not have another person to hold the end while you measure a larger piece.

A Closer Look Helps Create a Great Description

Mark relies on several items to take a closer look at every piece:

  • He wears a magnifying glass around his neck for a quick inspection of an item.
  • For a jeweler’s loupe, he recommends having a loupe equipped with lights to assess an item, so details or marks, like rubber silver marks, are as clearly revealed as possible.
  • A magnifier headband, so you can use both of your hands to hold a piece to reduce the risk of accidental damage.

Shipping Antiques

Postage and Shipping Costs

Postage or shipping costs are often charged in bands and can increase significantly if you are just a few grams or ounces over a band’s limit, so getting the precise weight is critical.

  • A digital kitchen scale for a super-accurate weight – don’t forget to weigh ALL the packaging!
  • A digital luggage scale to weigh larger pieces that won’t fit on a set of scales. After you wrap the item, hang it (safely) from the hook on the scale to get an accurate weight.

Mark Hill, along with the entire Ronati team, is here to help you succeed at the online sales game. Hopefully, you found a tip or two from Mark that helps make describing and shipping your items just a little easier. Let us know!


Watch the Video

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