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Creating the digital hub for Australia’s biggest Garage Sale

Garage Sale Trail started from a simple idea: what if garage sales in the same area took place on the same day, so it was easier for buyers to get awareness, for sellers to browse goods, and for a whole community to be involved?

Starting from a local event in Bondi, Garage Sale Trail has grown over the last four years into Australia’s biggest community/sustainability event, backed by local councils all over Australia, and is poised to go overseas. At every level, it’s a win: it reduces waste and clutter, encourages upcycling and reuse, and provide fun and focus for community invigoration.

Enabled by data-driven marketing

However a good idea can’t exist on its own: we worked hand in hand with Garage Sale Trail on an data-driven Drupal site to serve their marketing and campaign.

Using the live data, we created custom dashboards that let the Garage Sale Trail team see up-to-the-minute trends and bumps in their campaign, and deliver the idea to segments of their market. Through the website, they could also deliver marketing material and track open rates from their email campaign.

Dashboards for stakeholder metrics and engagement

Coordinating over 100 community councils throughout Australia, the 350,000 participants and tracking the millions of items is not an easy task.

Councils were able to see real-time infometrics that let individual councils track the signups and sales in their area, allowing them to see takeup in their area, and plan council involvement for the day.

Mapping out the trail

The website was also vital for individual sellers and buyers, from sellers registering their garage sale and even individual items that could then be wishlisted by potential buyers, to buyers looking at where to go next.

The day itself turned out to be a massive success: with over 3.5 million reached through social media, #garagesaletrail trended for half the day, and an online audience of over 2 million.


Because of the success of the event, in 2014, Garage Sale Trail won the award for Leadership in Citizenship and Communities from the Banksia Foundation.

“Garage Sale Trail has strong community engagement and great feedback from participants, backed by outstanding empirical data and results. This is a fabulous project and the enthusiasm is inviting and exciting.”

2014 Banksia Award Judging Panel

In addition to the 2014 Banksia Award the website also won the Acquia Global Partner award for the best NGO site of 2015.