Any resellers here?

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by MidwestMom, Feb 6, 2015.

  1. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Since working at Goodwill and learning all about merchandising from both work and the customers who come in to look for bargains that they can "flip" (resell on ebay or Craigslist or Esty), I am wanting to do this. I would not use Goodwill because I work there and we aren't allowed to buy anything for three days so all the good stuff is gone. Also, it isn't that cheap. But I love to go to garage sales and do it all summer. Right now I am starting to look for deals at thrift stores to keep until later, when I will try it. I am thinking that after I have my elective mastectomy it would be a good time to just try it on Craigslist.

    If anyone has done it seriously, please tell me what you did...tell me your experience. I am interested in the selling part, not the buying. I know certain items and brands sell and some do not. I know all the sites are different. I know about postage and all that great stuff. I'm starting on CL because there is no postage.

    I've been an avid garage saler since I had 37. He used to drive around in his carseat with me and fall asleep. I never had a time when I didn't do this.
     
  2. AppleCori

    AppleCori Well-Known Member

    I do reselling, but only for homeschool materials.
    I have homeschooled since my older ones were small, so I know the market well.

    I sell on homeschool classifieds.

    It has worked well for me, and I make a few hundred to a couple thousand per year, usually.
     
  3. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    What an excellent idea. I would like to know how to do that, too.

    Cedar
     
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Lots of books about it, Cedar. I realized half our Goodwill customers were waiting for our sales to stock up and resell and the customers were usually older or stay-at-home moms, all very enthusiastic about it and some make excellent money. Most sell on e-bay, Amazon or Craigslist. I have started reading those forums to see what sells/sold and how much. But every little bit counts. I am learning that large size clothes in good condition and name brand sells better than small clothing. Jean jackets always sell, but name brands are huge. A Harley-Davison Jacket can go for $100. If leather, more. People collect items too. A large size Peanuts coffee mug came into good will and it's an original. I'd love to buy it, but it will be gone by the time I can. Bundling items helps too. Starbucks coffee mugs with cities on them...fantastic. For resale on Craigslist, small furniture items can be great...and no shipping costs. Seasonal items are good and things sell better in winter than summer.

    Here is a short article about reselling. There are many. But I wanted to see if anyone here did it and what they recommend.

    http://www.consumerismcommentary.com/my-experiences-selling-online/
     
  5. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    I have never done this but I know someone who will bid on truckloads of "stuff", he never knows what he's getting. He sells it all on Ebay and does quite well.
    Thanks for the link you shared.
     
  6. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Heh. Well, I won't have a truckload of stuff. I'm aiming smaller. Don't have a truck and not a lot of storage. But, yeah, you can take tons if you have storage and hauling equipment.
     
  7. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My daughter has a business and probably 70% of her stock comes from thrift stores. Goodwill, to a lesser extent Salvation Army and a lot of local church-related thrift stores. The balance comes from estate and yard sales.

    She does the majority of her selling through Instagram - no fees! She probably does a "flash sale" on Instagram once a week. She also participates in local "pop ups" and does about 6 of those a year.

    As someone who had an antique business for years and also sells for others on ebay, I have a little knowledge. With my daughter's success, I've learned more. Have a "style" or "nitch" that is your own. Rather than selling a plethora of stuff, draw in your eye and concentrate on a period (mid-century, arts and crafts, etc.), a room (kitchen kitsch, etc.) or a style (shabby chic, etc.). Once you do that, you can more easily identify your market.

    My daughter does 60's and 70's clothing and small home decor of the same period. Her ascetic is brightly colored florals. She sells tons of clothing and linens are really, really hot right now. She rarely has an instagram linen sale where she doesn't sell everything!

    She works part-time as a nanny (been with the same family since there only son was 4 months old, now he's 4.5) so doesn't have to be to work until she picks him up from preschool at noon. She has gotten to know the days the local thrifts get new stock, has made friends with the workers (every time we go to a thrift, they know her name), knows most of the local estate companies so knows which estate sales will be priced too high for resale and which companies she can make a profit on. She keeps her eyes very narrow to her ascetic, which is a tough lesson at first. Don't shop for yourself, shop of the business is a lesson that took her a while to get!

    She will be having a "close out sale" in April. Her dad has an empty commercial space (very rough) and she is going to advertise on CL, Instagram, and hand out flyers at our two downtown universities. She is planning on using the majority of the space to sell out old stock by pricing everything the same. She will have one corner of full price merch. She has the luxury of a great warehouse space where she has 5 z-racks of clothing, tables filled with house wares, a shipping station, and a small area she set up with lighting for taking pics. Having the space to organize your things really helps. She used to have it all in her tiny apartment and was not as organized as she is now.

    That's how she does it. Hope this has given you some ideas.

    Sharon
     
  8. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hmmmmmmm...LDM, what if you have no idea how to have a flash sale and what is Instagram?
     
  9. Rabbit

    Rabbit Member

    Facebook in my area has an online yard sale . It is under groups __________county online yard sale U might want to check if they have one in your area. My friend is doing very well on this site
     
  10. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Thanks, Rabbit. I'm wondering what items these people sell? I'm not looking to get rich. If I pay $1 and make $10-20, I'll be a happy person. I'm thinking of large size clothing, some shoes in mint condition that are name brands, purses, name brand and vintage toys...stuff like that. And bundling!!!!
     
  11. Rabbit

    Rabbit Member

    my friend is selling purses and shoes she got at Goodwill
     
  12. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Our area does a Christmas Store for low income families. For several years my mom put aside a certain amount each month and went to yard sales for good condition and good quality children's clothes and toys, good brands not Walmart ones, and for great condition adult items that a child could give a parent. She did not resell them but donated them to the Christmas Store. Just before donating them she took photos to document them for her taxes. She got audited one year and learned that she did not deduct enough for her donations - she saved several thousand more than she originally deducted based on just the items she donated to the Christmas Store. Her taxes were otherwise perfect, so she just got money back and learned to use the tables the IRS published to deduct the right amount in the future. It was really a shock to learn how much more she could deduct than she actually paid (she deducted what she paid, having kept careful track of the actual amount).

    I don't know how this would work if your business is reselling, but it could help if you choose to donate stock that is in good shape but does not sell.

    The Christmas Store absolutely LOVED her donations as she washed/ironed everything and she also reinforced seams on many of the children's items if it looked like the seams might not hold or were poorly finished. Her items often looked a lot nicer than stuff donated from local stores, even the fancy local boutiques. But she loves to fuss over kids' clothes, so for her the ironing etc... was fun.
     
  13. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Susie, thanks for your post.

    I have donated, volunteered and even stuffed money into beggar's jars all of my life. Now I need a way to make some money (not so much that it affects our taxes much). I feel my own purpose for being here is to be a giver and caregiver and I have always been very generous, although I never had much myself. Not only that, but I've sponsored children and donated to animal resuces. A tax break won't help us as we never make enough to pay taxes ;)

    This time I'm going to do it for me. Goodwill is not a permanent job and I'm not interested in a full time job anymore. It's the time of my life to enjoy myself. I need spare change for that :)

    It's my time to finally be a little selfish. I'd like to have enough extra $$$ just to be able to go to St. Louis to visit my grandson once a year and to drive to Chicago to see my little grandbaby when I feel like it...and to spoil them a bit. And I'd like to take an Amtrak train from one end of the country to the other...things like that. Right now, not giving anything away.
     
  14. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Instagram - it's an app for sharing pictures. However, small business have gotten smart and use it to have "flash sales" and to direct interested buyers to their Etsy, website or Facebook stores.

    Kinda like Facebook, you have followers on Instagram - people who like your style, your pics, have things in common with you etc. My daughter has a bunch of followers who love that kind of things she sells and collects. She will sit down and take a bunch of pictures of products she wants to sell. She will "advertise" she is having a flash sale (listing a bunch of items quickly one after the other - you have to be really well prepared with the pics and descriptions) the day before or earlier that day.

    She will post her rules (first person to leave their email and zip code in the comment section is the winner -- if you don't pay within 24 hours, the item is lost, etc). What happens is that she begins posting the items with descriptions and prices (either including shipping or plus shipping). Folks who want to buy the item leave their email that is associated with their paypal account and their zip code in case the item is plus shipping. After the flash sale - which, depending on the number of times can last between 30 minutes and a couple hours - she will go back and screen shot the emails then delete them from the feed.

    She then invoices the email address through paypal. The customer pays and then she ships. So she pays the paypal fee but there is no listing fee. That's basically how it works.
     
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