Selling Sheep - Personal Sales
For small farmers, a website is often the best way to contact potential buyers. They can find your
website in a couple of ways:
Through a Google search (or some other search engine, of course). Google can also lead you to useful information about naming your site
for effective searches, as well as to potential website designers. If possible, choose a website design that you can update yourself - for example, list your current
rams for sale in November and December when they are just over a year old.
Through a listing on the website of a Breed Society to which you belong. Because composites have no Breed Society of their own, our site
provides a listing. Contact us if you are interested in being listed.
Personal referrals can be another good source. They may come from:
Your previous customers.
Your (friendly) competitors, particularly if they can't help a potential buyer themselves. Keep in touch about stock for sale, and return
A Breed Society, especially for stock that can be hard to find in your locality.
Buyers are sometimes contacted through a local event where you have displayed or entered sheep.
Local shows are often one-day events. It's a long day, but your sheep can stay on their normal feed, with a bit of hay during the day.
Major shows which last for several days take a lot more organisation, for both you and the sheep.
Competitive showing usually requires at least two or three competitors, and this can be very hard to arrange for
composites and cleanskin breeds. You may need to persuade the show organisers to start a new category, and then co-opt some other breeders.
Show ring preparation gives your cleanskin sheep a better chance of winning a ribbon.
If you can't organise a competition but your cleanskin sheep look 'unusual', you may be offered a display pen in the sheep area, just for added interest.
Local fetes and gala days will often give you a display area, particularly if you are happy for children to pet a lamb. You will probably
need to take your own hurdles to make a pen.
You may be able to take part in a joint breeders' sale, usually an auction conducted by a local stock agent:
A Breed Society may organise and publicise a joint sale, for some or all local members.
Four or five breeders can organise their own sale and publicise it themselves.
A more traditional sales method is a classified advertisement in a local paper or an agricultural weekly.
This is less work than going to a show or taking part in a joint sale, but the results can be even less predictable.