Sell My Rocks, Gems, and Minerals Like a Professional

Selling rocks, gems, or minerals can be an exciting venture. However, you wouldn’t want to start selling without knowing the value of your rock collection. Unfortunately, there are scammers out there looking for beginners to pull a fast one. They’ll gladly take an expensive collection off your hands at a lower price to turn around and make a fortune for themselves.


Where Do I Go To Sell My Rocks, Gems, and Minerals?

Rockhounds can sell rocks, gems, and minerals in several places. You can sell your specimens as a collection or as single pieces depending on the rarity and value of each piece.  Sometimes it makes the most sense to sell the collection as a whole.


gemstone and specimen dealer


Selling To Rock and Gem Dealers

What dealers are willing to offer will vary significantly from one to another and I encourage you to get multiple bids, if possible.  Rock and gem dealers typically work the “rock and mineral” show schedule which means they travel around the United States selling their specimens at trade shows.

You’ll want to do determine when the next rock show is and what city.  Next, you’ll want a list of dealers at the show so you can contact them via email or social media.  Once you open up a line of communication you’ll need to send them photos or video of the collection to gauge their interest.

If they show interest in the collection then pack it up and take it to the show so they can inspect it.  Make sure you receive a ballpark offer or general cash offer before you make the trip.  If a rock dealer will not provide an offer then that is a red flag.


specimen for sale


Selling Rocks and Minerals As Individual Pieces

When you have the knowledge and a strong understanding of the specimens in your collection, you may find it best to sell your pieces individually. You can list individual pieces with a dealer or sell them on sites like eBay, Craigslist, or online marketplaces.

Organizing and cataloging your rocks, taking good photos, and posting your items for sale on reputable and knowledgeable websites is a good idea. Search the going rate of the specimens you want to sell before slapping a price tag on yours. Look into finished auctions, rockhounding communities (online and in-person), or whatever selling sites you trust. The rockhounding community is an excellent place to ask questions about buying and selling.


rocks for sale at rock shop


Selling To Rock Shops

Rock shops are excellent places to do business with. You might consider starting there if you’re lucky enough to have a shop in your neck of the woods. Selling to shops is a common way rockhounds sell their items.

Search for local shops and try to establish a trusting relationship with them. You have to be on top of your game, but you also have to ensure that the shop is too. You’re looking for a win-win situation.

Selling rocks, gems, and minerals online can be the most effective way to sell your items. However, some preparation and work are required to post and sell your beauties online. That said, you will reach a wider audience, providing more of an opportunity to sell your gems at a decent rate.

While rock shops typically offer wholesale prices. However, keep in mind they will need to purchase low to make a profit margin when they resell the items. If you’re near a city, you could search for larger rock or crystal shops near you. But you most likely won’t get the amount you were hoping for. On that note, they may also have a broader scope of minerals and stones they’ll buy.


crystal shop


Start Your Own Rock Shop

With a solid rock collection, you can take it up a notch and start selling your supplies or specimens in your own small shop or online business. Of course, this route can require a bit more work, but you can choose operating hours and sell directly to customers. Here are a few things to keep in mind.


  • Find a gap in the market of competition. Know what they have to offer and their prices, then gear your inventory (if possible) to deliver what they don’t.
  • Sell at flea markets. It allows a certain flexibility to replenish your goods as needed without the unnecessary time constraints one would have when selling from their own shop.
  • Save money by setting up a rock shop out of your home. If you have a spare room or space, transform it into your selling area.
  • Before opening a shop, you’ll want to run a basic market analysis to establish whether your location is good for the business.
  • Display your specimens and collections in a beautiful and intriguing way to catch the customer’s attention.


lapidary arts



You could start a lapidary business if you have the knowledge and skill. Doing so can provide the opportunity to create stunning jewelry pieces and other crafty items you have or find. Lapidary is the practice of shaping gemstones, stones, or minerals into beautiful decorative and wearable items. These items might include engraved gems, faceted designs, and cabochons.

You could make a nice chunk of money with the right tools and skills. It’s one thing to sell your crystals, but another to add creativity.

There are only a few excellent ways to sell your gems, rocks, and minerals. One of the easiest and quickest ways to sell your specimens and collections is through word of mouth and reaching out to other rockhounds like yourself. Selling your rocks or gems may seem overwhelming, but a little information goes a long way. You’re already a step into the game if you have what others want. Educate yourself, polish your rocks, display them well, have fun, and make money.

Jerred Morris
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24 Responses

  1. Interesting article. How can I find a buyer for a very rare black abalone pearl from Central Acifornia? This specimen is 70mm long, 48mm wide and 20mm tall. It is still attached to the shell.
    This unique finding is beyond most rock shop offerings.
    Thank you for your response.

    1. You need to find the right market to sell it into. I’d recommend researching which international markets pay the most for pearls. The US market is not very strong.

      Another avenue would be to work with a jeweler who has a strong following due to their one-of-a-kind pieces. They might be in the market for a unique pearl to fabricate a one of piece of jewelry.

  2. Hello! My husband is mining at a zinc mine and has a large assortment of purple fluorite, with the snowballs still attached, etc.
    He also has beautiful auburn crystals. He has one that’s approximately 8 inches high and 8 inches wide. It’s gorgeous.
    We don’t know where to begin. Could you point us in the right direction? Please?

  3. I have beautiful pieces of opalized and petrified/fossilized wood where would be a good place to sell ‘em

    1. Mekayla – It would depend on the quality and rarity of the items. Here are a couple of places that might work, Craigslist, FB Marketplace, Instagram, local rock shop, rock and gem show (dealers will buy quality pieces)

  4. Hi, I was wondering if you could help me identify rocks/crystals within my collection. I was given some as part of payment for a hoard clean out, and know nothing beyond what Google lems can tell me.

  5. Hi I have close to 20lb quartz crystal cluster I’m wanting to sell, I live on the north side of Texas near Dallas. I haven’t had much luck on fb or ebay. Any tips or hints?

  6. Hi I came into a collection and would like to sell some of them but am having hard time with it. I have some smoky quartz, obsidian,a pretty good mix of stones, and some amethyst geo.

  7. I think I have sphalerite Galena sodalite pyrite silver and I’m not sure but I want to say a carlin deposit.. I can send pictures if need be.

  8. Hi I found a rock/fossil/petrified wood/geodes collection being thrown out recently, an I need help with identifying them. I would like to sale majority of the collection but I’m having a hard time with knowing what each piece is.

  9. Hi I have a couple of specimens with what I think is gold but I am not sure I was told not to crush them and send them to a assayer, that they might be worth more to a collector if keep whole but I don’t know how to determine if it is gold or pyrite. Also I possibly have turquoise is there anyway you can help please?

  10. I have a small collection of small rocks with minerals that I’ve been collecting and need to know if there is any value. Looks like some type of crystal and maybe Au. are layered throughout. Some layers look like iron and one has dark red patterns.

  11. I have been collecting rocks for most of my life, but have recently found myself living part-time on an old Tungsten mine which has resulted in an overload of rocks, minerals & crystals of all sorts. There are so many in every shape, size, color, condition that I am unable to positively identify any of them with any certainty, much less begin to value the endless supply available. I currently have them sorted in “shiny” & “ugly duckling” categories (not very scientific, I know). Would you be willing to help me get started to identify with the goal of selling some of these?

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