The big differences are;
- Items can be sold for more than 99,999NP (the maximum allowed in shops)
- You will get offers to choose from.
- You can get items in return, not just Neopoints
What you need to know to start
How to create a trade
Go to the Trading Post, and click on "Create a Trade". You then choose which items you would like to be put up for trade (no more than 10), as well as writing your wish list. This is where you write what you would like for the items you have put up. You could ask for "pure" meaning just Neopoints, plus a junk item, a specific item(s), or nothing. You could also put "Reserved" or "For username" if it is intended for someone else.
Pure - All Neopoints with a junk item HTS - Hard To Sell item. (People may accept HTS items worth more than the offer) ETS - Easy To Sell items (such as Paint Brushes) Neomail with Offer (failry obvious) Will Haggle - this means they are willing to go slightly lower than the going price. Neomail them with your offer before making an offer.
Searching for Trades
When you are at the Trading Post, click on "Browse Lots". There are 4 options in the pull-down menu "Containing my phrase", "Identical to my phrase", "Username" and "Lot Number". The last two are if you know the trade you are after (each has an individual Lot Number), or you know the seller (if a friend has set up a trade for you). The first two make your search for an item slightly easier.
For example, if you are searching for "Har Codestone" and you click "Identical to my phrase", all lots will have "Har Codestone" within their trade. If you press "Containing my phrase" you may also receive lots with "Har Codestone Plushie". This may be helpful if you are buying things for a gallery, or don't know the exact name of an item.
You can also choose "Newest", "Random" or "Oldest". All of these have their advantages, for example the newest items may be cheaper than the older ones, especially if it is a new item, however the oldest may just want to get rid of the item, and may accept a lower offer.
Be sure to check all pages, to check the price, and perhaps find the item slightly cheaper.
Making an offer
When you have found the trade you would like to bid on, make sure you read their wishlist, then click "Make and offer!". Its simple. Click the item(s) you would like to trade for, and if required the amount of Neopoints you are including in the offer. Click "Make an Offer!" and then wait.
If you would like to cancel a trade that you have put up, you will need to wait at least 15 minutes, then go to the Trading Post and click "Cancel this Lot". If you have not waited 15 minutes, it should tell you how long until you can cancel the lot.
If you would like to cancel an offer, you will need to go to the Trading Post, then "Offers you have made", and click "cancel this offer" on the trade you wish to cancel.
Offers on Your Trade
When you get an offer on your trade you will get an event in the top left corner of your sidebar, this link will take you to the Trading Post, where you will need to click "# offers on this trade". Here you will be able to see all offers, you can choose to accept (meaning the trade will occur), reject (meaning the trade will NOT occur), or you can choose to do nothing, or ignore the offer for the time being (just in case you get a better offer).
The Trading Post can be a way of restocking. You can pick up some bargains, to then be sold for a higher price. This takes time, and knowledge of items and the Neopian Market. You will need a fair amount of Neopoints to do this.