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How to sell an Instagram Account

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Do you have several Instagram niche pages and don’t have time to manage them all properly? Then you should act before the account gradually dies and loses its value… So it’s best to find someone as soon as possible to take over the administration for you or sell the account before the engagement dies. That would be just too bad.

Unfortunately, it’s easier said to sell than done as you’ve certainly already noticed. On the way to selling an account, you’ll face many hurdles and uncertainties. In this article, every aspect of selling an account is discussed, so that you should learn which way is the best for you.

Why it’s hard to sell an Account

The next section first discusses the issues with selling Instagram accounts, followed by tips and tricks to overcome these issues.

1. It’s not allowed

In the beginning, it should be mentioned that the sale of Instagram accounts is not allowed under the existing terms of Instagram. They say:

You can’t attempt to buy, sell, or transfer any aspect of your account (including your username) or solicit, collect, or use login credentials or badges of other users.

Terms of Use from Instagram, viewed in August 2019

This means that you should not present your sales intentions to the public. Specifically, this means that you better not write in your BIO that you want to sell the account. Even publishing on popular sales portals like fameswap can be dangerous – even if the chances are very low, you should be careful. If Instagram finds out in any way that the account is going to be sold, there is a risk of losing the account. You don’t need to worry about further legal consequences. Only the Instagram terms were disregarded and not the laws. Unfortunately, this regulation of Instagram also leads to the fact that there are no professional and reputable marketplaces yet to sell accounts. These circumstances are leading to the following difficulties.

2. It’s hard to find buyers

We have just discussed platforms that specialize in selling accounts. Unfortunately, there is a lot of negative criticism about these platforms, but it would be wrong to conclude that all these services are unprofessional or not serious. What bothers us most about the known platforms is the lack of support. Many sites don’t even offer an email address for contact.

Avoid it under all circumstances an order in a value of several hundred or thousand dollars on a platform which offers no support. Since most of these marketplaces are already omitted according to these criteria, it will be difficult to find a buyer this way.

3. It’s risky

…in many different ways. Especially in this area, there are many scammers on the way. It begins even before the actual transaction – many sellers let themselves be convinced of taking the first step by giving away their login details before they received any part of the payment. This often has fatal consequences. A common procedure for scammers is to first obtain the account data, block any contact with the seller and then rename the account and selling it as quickly as possible to other (poor) people. If this happens to you, it is important that you contact Instagram as soon as possible. The procedure for getting back a hacked account will soon be published on our blog. Unfortunately, even after receiving the money, the seller can’t completely rely on the payment. Many payment options give buyers the opportunity to reclaim the money even though they have received the data… so don’t take any risks!

You should be aware of the risks now. So enough with the problems, it’s time for solutions!

How to find Buyers

I’ve mentioned it before – it’s not easy to find a buyer for your account. Not easy means not impossible. You can try and use the following methods for yourself.

  • Facebook Groups: There are countless groups with many members who all want to get into the Instagram business. Find these groups, join them and read the group policies or ask an admin if you can offer your account there. For security reasons, you should not write the name of your account in the public post. Name the niche and some key data of your page and then ask interested members to message you privately.
  • Instagram related Forums: In addition to Facebook groups, independent forums are a place where potential customers could be found. These forums are often a bit more complex to understand and it takes some time to find your way around. At this point, I would like to mention BlackHatWorld. The forum is known for discussions around search engine optimization, but there is also a large section for Instagram and social media. They offer a marketplace where you can list your account. However, a listing is expensive and only worthwhile if you sell Instagram accounts professionally or if want to sell a very large account.
  • Your DM’s: If you have a large account, there is a good chance that you won’t read all direct messages anymore. But you should do it because often you get direct buying offers there. So every day you should have a look at your messages. It will be worth it. But ATTENTION: Danger of fraud!

How to Prevent Scam

Let’s talk about how you can protect yourself. The best protection would be that you know the buyer personally and you are based in the same country. This gives both parties more security and illegal behavior can be sanctioned directly. However, since this is difficult to set up in most cases, other security measures must be taken.

Arrange a Call

Sounds easy, helps a lot. Typical scammers usually don’t let this happen. They will make excuses. So be sure about that: If the buyer doesn’t agree to a call, he doesn’t get the account.

Create a Sales Agreement

Design a document (one or two pages are enough) describing all details of the sale and the consequences of violation. Even if an international lawsuit demands high financial resources and would possibly be meaningless, such a contract ensures a more serious perception for both parties. IMPORTANT:Ask the buyer to identify themselves with an identity card.

No data before payment

That’s self-explanatory, isn’t it? Don’t give out any data until you have received a part of the payment. In the best case, you will get 100% of the payment before you give the data away. However, for security reasons this can hardly be expected from the buyers, so the payments are usually split. Remember that the customer needs access to the Instagram account as well as to the email inbox. As long as you have the password for the email inbox you are relatively secure. A possible offer could look like this: You receive 60% of the payment from the customer and you give him the account data, after receiving the remaining 40% of the payment the login details for the email follows.

Don’t be tricked by unrealistic offers

People believe what they want to believe and so many sellers always get involved with offers that are simply too good to be true. If you estimate your selling price and then a person comes and offers you that amount 5 times or more, then this is a pretty clear indication that this person is not quite serious… So, it’s best to keep your hands off it!

Use the right payment method

Sell Instagram AccountsFlip Instagram Accounts

… because receiving the payment is one thing – keeping the payment is another. In the following, we’re going through different options to handle payments. One thing you may already hear of is the middleman service Escrow. Escrow offers a service where both parties have to verify themselves before a transaction and then the content is sent to Escrow. As soon as the service has the login details/payment, it transfers it to both parties. We asked Escrow if they offer their service in this particular case. That’s the answer:

“We do support the sale of social media account/handle under the Milestone transaction type. Please note, though, that we highly recommend contacting the social media’s customer support first to confirm if the sale of an account does not violate their own terms and conditions. Escrow.com’s service only extends to the security of the funds while a transaction is ongoing. Once the Buyer confirms receipt and acceptance of the account/handle, the funds will be released to the Seller. The actual transfer of the account/handle has to be handled by the Buyer and the Seller, and will be considered outside the limitation of our service.”

Answer of Escrow, August 2019

As you can see, the transfer of login details has to take place directly between the buyer and seller. This means that escrow cannot verify whether the details have actually been passed on. If the buyer does not confirm the receipt of the login data to Escrow or even says that he didn’t receive it, it can lead to difficulties. At the moment we would not recommend this option.

The best-known method is PayPal. But great caution is required here too. A distinction must be made between two types of payment. For business transactions, PayPal charges a fixed and a variable fee and also offers the buyers the possibility of a dispute or a claim. This function is basically very good and protects buyers from being cheated by the sellers – but unfortunately, this function is also abused by some buyers. PayPal then checks the payment transactions and requires proof from both parties to make clear what’s happening with the payment. Unfortunately, PayPal’s decisions are not predictable and controllable – so this process represents a risk. You can find more information here. You do not have the problem with payments which are paid as Friends and Family. PayPal does not allow chargebacks, but you are not 100% secure in this case too. Why? Quite simple. PayPal offers users the possibility to pay with their credit card. This is practical, but also involves the risk of a chargeback. Chargebacks are carried out by the respective credit institution as soon as a credit card holder demands a payment back (since it may have taken place without authorization). The bank then checks whether this payment has been legally reclaimed. One thing becomes clear at this point. Make sure that you have documents that can prove the process. As mentioned above – Get the buyer’s personal details and create a simple document in which your agreement is documented – which will then be signed by both parties. There are several applications that allow you to make electronic contracts, e.g. Docusign. Use it! Also, record on the contract the process of the transaction and the email used by both sides. Don’t worry that legally everything has to be perfect. It’s just made to be able to provide the payment institutions or PayPal and Co. with evidence and documents. As further proof, you could also ask the potential buyer if your phone call can be recorded.

Probably the safest payment methods are these, which make a chargeback simply impossible. Understandably, however, these methods are not liked by buyers. You should still ask for it. A possible payment service would be Western Union. The buyer pays an amount to Western Union and then receives a code with which you can collect the money. Xoom.com from Paypal could also be an option for you.

Flip Instagram Accounts

It may happen that you stumble across the term “flipping” of Instagram accounts. The term “flip” is often used for the commercial and ongoing resale of Instagram accounts. So if you’re consciously buying accounts – and then selling it with a higher margin – you’re flipping accounts. The main difference is the character of the reseller – while otherwise, you set up an account yourself and sell it then.

Summary

You should now be aware of every potential risk and how you can handle it. Don’t rush into selling your account and don’t let potential buyers put pressure on you. Collect information about the buyer and draw up a contract describing all cases and the process of the sale in detail. Document each transaction and chat history. Use payment methods that may make it difficult for the buyer to charge the money back. If you follow these rules (it’s not that hard and expensive), then the probability that you will sell your account without any problems is very high.

Let the community know your experiences of selling Instagram accounts and drop it in the comments 🙂

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. Just write an e-mail to hello@adstock.io or take a look at our help-center!

About the author

Fabian Aichem

Co-Founder & CEO of adstock. On my way to simplify the way of selling ads on Instagram. Join the journey now.

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