07/31/2017 at 7:58 am #21048
Jay’s favorite thing to do it to make lists. Lists and lists and lists. Taking to-do items off your mind helps relieve the stress of getting things do
[See the full post at: Scavenger Life Episode 321: Lists Will Set You Free]
07/31/2017 at 9:35 am #21050simplicioParticipant
This would have been a fantastic week if I had not gone to an antiques auction as an experiment, felt like I had to buy to make the time worth it, and overpaid for a whole bunch of junk. I won’t lose money, should double up, but it was not worth the time or outlay.
It was strange, though; people were paying ridiculous prices, $70+ for chotchkes (like Doulton figurines) that sell for around $20 on ebay! One of them was an antiques dealer in my town. I guess you can get a crazy premium for that kind of stuff in an antique shop?
Sales: CAD$570, 5 items
Profit: $426, over 9 hours = $47/hr
Listed: 25 items, estimated value $1430, total now 203 items
Expenses: $457 !!!!! what was I thinking??
Notable sales: Shure radio receiver $10–> $262, Cuddeback game scouting camera, found 3 of these new in a thrift store, paid $25 each, sold first for $190. Glad, because they were new but old stock, was worried they were too dated to be worth much. Original $400 price tag helped convince me.
I find I keep going back and forth on willingness-to-spend. One week I’ll be ready to drop $200 to make $500, next week I won’t want to pay any more than $20 even if there’s profit there. Got to find some sensible mean there.
07/31/2017 at 9:41 am #21051
Total Items in Store: 801
Items Sold: 14
Cost of Items Sold: $48.50
Total Sales: $400
Highest Price Sold: $115 Nike Ken Griffey Jr. Sneakers.
Average Price Sold: $28.57
Average Profit: $25.09
I ran a sale this week but didn’t list as consistently. Still a decent week compared to where I have been sales wise but slowed back down for sure. My weekend was a complete dud even with lots of listing and inventory SKU management.
My goal this week is to list more of my large items that have been taking up a lot of space. They can’t sell if they aren’t listed. I listed a 13″ TV/VCR combo yesterday. I have a lot of stereo equipment to list. I’m dreading the packing but at some point the band aid has to be ripped off. Besides, I’ll be well reimbursed for my time!
Have a great week everyone!
07/31/2017 at 9:44 am #21052
J&R, congratulations are in order.
You guys did over $3k in total sales this past week. $3K!!! In the dead of the summer!!!
That’s a HUGE deal and you deserve to be celebrated for that. My gosh if I could pull those kind of numbers I wouldn’t be sitting in a cubicle right now slowly killing my soul.
Keep up the awesome work. I wish you much more success and can’t wait to celebrate you all consistently breaking $4k a week in the fall.
07/31/2017 at 9:51 am #21053ThriftShiftParticipant
- Location: Cabarete, Dominican Republic
Sold items: 28 items for $1074.45
Highest: Gucci men’s loafers for $290 (paid $50 at estate sale)
Lowest: Ann Taylor tank for $7
Listed this week: 117
New inventory cost: $728
Good money this week even without the Gucci loafers for $290 and four bottles Chanel perfume at $60 each. I bought a Gucci briefcase and several Gucci Accenti perfumes + less premium purses at estate sale for $553, and then a whole bunch of premium Ethan Allen linens + pillows for $175. Trying the experiment of paying more to make more. But Gucci loafers are not just laying around everywhere! My average price for sales was $35 range. All my premium perfumes from the bulk purchase are sold now, so I have about 30 remaining priced at $19 – $50.
I also got a storage unit this week and started my inventory control system. With 560 items in my store, I started losing control two weeks ago and now I feel good about what’s in my home and in the storage unit.
07/31/2017 at 9:59 am #21055RhiannaParticipant
Lists are my best friend. I am a visual person and enjoy checking things off. Edgar and I use an app called wunderlist. It is an application where you can share your list with other people and they can add to the list. We use it for everything from grocery shopping to name brands to be on the look out for. Jay and Ryanne are very similar to Edgar and I. I DO NOT like being told what to do. I also have a hard time asking for help. I will say the past years when I was working as a supervisor I learned that asking for help and letting go of stuff really helps relieve stress. Edgar and I do not work well together in the same office. He has a totally different way of doing things then I do, and of course his way is best. Lol. But after 23 years together I have learned to let him do his thing (even if I don’t agree).
Total Items in Store: 1,011
Items Sold: 30
Cost of Items Sold: $118
Total Sales: $1071.53
Highest Price Sold: $135 (DVD Recorder)
Average Price Sold: $33.90
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $90
We had another good week. Keep on keeping on.
Our find of the week: We bought a small bag of jewelry from an estate sale for $6, when we got home I opened it to find several gold items. Some rings and pins. On of the pins is a years of service pin that has a diamond and an emerald!
07/31/2017 at 10:12 am #21057
Total Items in Store: 364
Items Sold: 2
Cost of Items Sold: $18
Total Sales: $55 Ebay + 1 Facebook Sale: $30
Highest Price Sold: $35 New large measuring cup
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
Number of items listed this week: 32
A dreadful week despite listing, which is very unusual for me. The second sale came after I revised the prices in the listing improvement section on that item. Ebay came up with way more listings for me to improve than ever before, about 15% of my inventory. Fortunately they also added a place for you to just tweak the price without opening and revising the listing. I tweaked almost all of them a little bit, upward in some cases. Hope for a better week this coming week and I’m focused on building up inventory. Can’t wait until school starts again and there is less running around.
Thank you to those who provided the Ebay Open updates and links. I’ve turned on 60 day returns and turned off the restocking fee that I wasn’t using anyway except to make people pause if they are likely to return. As soon as I can get on the Guaranteed Shipping program I will go for it since I’m always taking the kids here or there and work is right next to Fed Ex. I have had some missing PO scans but not enough to keep me from trying the program. I’m starting to add an overnight option to all of my listings as the final shipping method choice and have run a few new item promotions. Finally, I’m doing a bit of pruning to some old items or creating new listings. Despite the backlog, I find it very hard to give up on dud items I picked. Not sure why – it’s totally irrational.
I’m a bit bummed about the white background requirement for Google Shopping as I really enjoy designing my listings and using color and sometimes patterned paper or wood backgrounds. Hopefully Ebay will not adopt a requirement. Hope everyone’s week on Ebay was better than mine. 🙂
07/31/2017 at 12:12 pm #21060MyCottageParticipant
According to the video posted on the ebay Open thread, ebay has no current plans to require a white background. Personally, I wouldn’t worry too much about the Google Shopping thing. (And, if I understand correctly, that only applies to Google Shopping, not Google Images or Google organic search….so it’s not like your items couldn’t show up in Google at all.
08/01/2017 at 9:55 am #21102
Yeah. I use Google Shopping sometimes myself but I think you are right that not much traffic to my listings can be originating there (wish we could see details in traffic!). My pinned items and photos often show up on images very high and most people would be using Google organic search. Ebay adopting a clean background also goes against their new colorful marketing theme, so I hope this is one thing they won’t want to emulate about other sites going forward.
08/01/2017 at 11:51 am #21112
To clarify, it is not eBay that wants white or black background, it is Google. Google has specific requirements for pictures to be used in shopping, and white or black background is one of them.
eBay doesn’t care…
07/31/2017 at 11:11 am #21058
I finally got to catch up on the podcasts. We’re still in recovery mode after the flood last week. We finally got our basement cleaned and ready to move back in. The gas company is coming by today to turn the gas back on. No more cold showers! I think all the hard heavy work is done. Now we’re just cleaning all of the salvaged items, and there’ll be a lot of that! Still, though, I feel like we’re about 60% of the way to being able to be up and running again on eBay. I’ve been making a list in my head of all the things that I did wrong in my situation or things that I should have done differently, and I thought I’d share them for everyone here to think about.
1. I had totes with high-value items or easily damageable items close to the floor. In the future, I’ll be sure to place those types of items higher on shelves above the ground level, or even on the second floor.
2. My shelves weren’t secured to the wall. Some of the shelving fell over during the flood and resulted in damaged to items that would have been fine if that had not happened. It takes some effort to do, especially if you have concrete walls like I do, but it’s worth it in the long run.
3. I used a lot of cardboard boxes to store items in. Big mistake! As soon as the water reached the bottom of the box, it just instantly absorbed it all and waterlogged everything in it. At least with plastic totes, it’ll need to reach the top before spilling in (which did happen with a lot of my totes anyways, but it would have been so much worse if I only used boxes).
4. Almost all of my packing supplies were in one location, right at the bottom of the basement steps. I should have had a small backup supply of packing items stored away in a closet or somewhere safe. By the way, wet muddy cardboard is one of the worst thing I’ve ever tried to handle.
5. I did some incredibly stupid unsafe things to try to rescue my stuff. I went outside to try to make it out to my garage in my flip-flops. Well I lost them in the mud and had to walk back barefoot with broken glass and debris everywhere. Then, I was down in my basement almost waist high in water and witnessed my refrigerator topple over. I could have been under that and died. Plus all the electrical items that could have shocked me. Looking back, I should have been way more concerned about my safety then I was. You can’t sell on eBay if you’re dead.
A couple of things I think I did right though… I didn’t have all of my eBay items in one location. I had items stored upstairs and in my garage as well so those are at least safe (except the things I had in cardboard boxes on the floor of my garage). It may seem convenient to have all of your items in one easy location, but all it takes is one disaster and it’s all gone.
I’m so glad I dealt with shutting off my eBay store almost immediately. Though I did have to refund three sales that occurred earlier that day, it would have been so much worse if I woke up the next morning with a bunch of more sales. Plus, with the lack of packing supplies, it would have been a nightmare even if the things that sold were safe.
I had some tarps that were safe and dry. Those came in handy with the wet totes. We just threw a big tarp down on the living room carpet and started stacking. It helped with muddy boots too. We might make it out of this without having to have our carpets cleaned.
One important thing I’ve learned is to have your insurance worked out to fully protect you. For me, I went with the advice of my agent and didn’t sign up for flood portion of my renter’s insurance. He told me that I wasn’t in a flood plain so it wasn’t necessary. Well that only worked out in the insurance’s favor because now they don’t have to give me a dime. In the future, I’ll definitely keep in mind that even though insurance companies seem like they’re there to help you, they’re absolutely mostly out to make a profit. If they can weasel out of a claim in any way, they will!
Anyways, I’ve realized that this has become my longest post ever. But I’m doing a lot better since last week. Things are looking up a little more every day. Just gotta keep my eyes on the future and move forward! I just can’t wait to be selling again!
07/31/2017 at 1:00 pm #21064
One other thing I thought about that I did wrong. When we started hauling stuff out of the basement, I had this defeated mindset and just wanted to throw everything away. There was a lot of stuff that went into the trash that could have been cleaned and saved. My main regret is not taking the time to go through and sort what could be washed and restored vs what was beyond repair. When a tragedy like this happens, you get in a dark place in your mind and have a hard time seeing anything positive. If something like this happens to you, put any potentially salvageable items aside and give it a day or two before deciding to throw it out. Give your mind some time to come to it’s senses.
07/31/2017 at 1:32 pm #21066
Doubly, we are very glad to see that you are getting back to a normal life again, and thank you for all the advice on risk avoidance. That is big. We always say that people learn from experience, and the smartest people learn from OTHER peoples experience. You gave me a couple tweaks to make for risk avoidance as well. If your advice saves other people from disaster, then we are finding the good from the bad.
And you will look back on how you did all this and how you rebuilt and you will be proud. When I worked at Ball, we had 139 MPH winds one day, that tore the roof off of two warehouses of cans. We had ZERO inventory that we could sell, and Coke, Pepsi, Coors, and Miller were all needing to keep producing (all these companies work 24/7). We made plans (starting with a list Jay!), executed, had ZERO downtime with our customers, and collected all the money from insurance. It was some of the worst work days I have ever had, but one of the most proud.
07/31/2017 at 3:59 pm #21074AdventureEParticipant
Wow, what powerful and insightful posts you have shared.
I am so sorry to hear that you and your family had to go through this devastation.
I am glad to see that you and your family are okay and that things are slowly moving forward and coming back together.
It seems that there is already so much you have learned and so many opportunities for grace and kindness that have come your way. While I would never wish this experience on anyone, you never know how this experience will serve you in the future and/or serve to better the lives of those around you locally and/or globally. You never know what ideas you may come up with along this path as you design your business item by item and day by day.
Best Wishes to you and your family as you go through this healing and recovery process.
07/31/2017 at 9:27 pm #21089
DT (doublythumbs): I sincerely appreciate the advice you are passing on to the rest of us so we can learn from your unfortunate experience. I am amazed you are so quickly able to see these lessons. Take care, keep on truckin’!
07/31/2017 at 12:25 pm #21063omfugParticipant
Total Items in Store: etsy, 477, ebay, 215
Items Sold: 6 on etsy, 6 on ebay
Total Sales: $527.98 (259./268.98)
Highest Price Sold: $75 (miniature trunk)
Average Price Sold: $44
This summer’s sales have been surprisingly steady fortunately. I had Royal Mail return a package with VAT due over a month ago, emailed the buyer and Finally heard from her yesterday–on a $125 item. I admire her patience even though I had contacted her as soon as the package came back, this was an etsy sale and I really miss the GSP in cases like this.
07/31/2017 at 1:35 pm #21067
Listening to the podcast while I catch up on the Admin work (meaning numbers and accounting).
Jay, I love ya man! I am the same way, list items that need to get done and then more importantly, work to get them done! But getting the items on a list frees up your mind. At eBay Open, we came away with a TOOONNNN of changes and updates to the business. But it can be like drinking from a firehose, and you can’t process it all or work on them all. So put it in the list, your mind is clear, and then take small bites…that is how you eat the elephant…one bite at a time.
I started using the process where at the end of each day, I schedule my next day, including taking 1-2 items off of the To-Do list and creating time in the schedule to do them. Don’t overdo it, as the axiom is true – People overestimate what they can do in one day, but underestimate what they can do in a week. But having the next business day planned out is very freeing. I know what will get done, I can relax. And when I wake up, I look at the schedule and execute.
And when you can’t sleep because you are worried about something, I do as you do. Write it down, a couple of steps I can take to mitigate/avoid etc., and then I can relax again, as my mind knows that it is handled.
07/31/2017 at 2:14 pm #21069
Jay, I totally get the list thing. It’s the only way I can imagine keeping my life on track and organized. Every morning starts with a cup of coffee, my calendar/organizer with my To Do List, and prayer time. If I miss that time I find myself distracted and/or anxious during the day. The best thing about lists is that they help you PRIORITIZE. The most important thing is to do the most important thing first. The way to identify that is to think, What will I be happiest tomorrow knowing that I got it done today? If you just write down the top 3 most important items, then do them in order of importance, you will accomplish more than most people.
The month of July I neglected Ebay for the most part, other than removing a ton of my listings that I was sick of looking at and selling them in the auction we had. My husband and I spent a lot of time helping to get my son’s (inherited) house on the market, including opening the pool, etc. it was great having an auctioneer friend to give me a no-charge auction in exchange for giving them plenty of space to sell some of their own things. It worked out well, the house is under contract now, and I’m glad. All we have to do is maintain the pool and sprinklers until it closes. Taking a week off to visit a friend’s house in Florida was nice. As you guys said, getting away from Ebay for a while makes it feel good when you get back to it. I reorganized a lot, including my store categories and storage. Feels like a brand new store!
07/31/2017 at 4:17 pm #21076BradBParticipant
Total Items in Store: 595
Items Sold: 15
Cost of Items Sold: $33
Total Sales: $353
Highest Price Sold: $34 White Leather Vans Shoes
Average Price Sold: $22.15
This week was good for me. I tried to get a lot of listing in. I had an atari 2600 that I think will never sell. I get an offer and the person never pays or something goes wrong. II have a current buyer who wants it by a certain day but is not willing to pay for expedited shipping. When we finally agree on shipping price than they don’t pay the invoice that I sent. I think this item is cursed. I have had several none payers and a International buyer that wanted me to say it was a gift on th customs form. I know it will sell eventually but I would sure like to get it out of storage. I am having good success on a vintage skipper doll clothes lot I bought. Each outfit is selling for $20- 30. It is funny to pack up tiny doll clothes that sell for more than my adult size clothes.
Have a great week everyone!!
07/31/2017 at 5:11 pm #21083Rydell RelicsParticipant
RR Store Week July 23-29, 2017
Total Items in Store: 1,312
Items Sold: 28
Cost of Items Sold: $37.33
Total Sales: $841.75
Highest Price Sold: $159.99 (90’s Lauryn Hill concert t-shirt)
Average Price Sold: $30.06
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
Number of items listed this week: 21
Great advice with the lists. It’s something I do for fun projects, but not for work; strange, I know. T-Satt, making your schedule the day before is also great advice. Time management is one of my biggest challenges, and I think that would help.
Hit my goal again this week. Whew! That Lauryn Hill shirt was an awesome sale. It sold last week for a best offer of $90, but the buyer never paid. After the Unpaid Item case closed, I relisted it and it sold within two days for full price. I paid a dollar for it at a church rummage sale on my birthday.
Last week I bought three large boxes of full of photos and paper ephemera at an estate sale. After a few hours of sorting, I pulled a lot of great stuff out that’s already starting to sell. So far the big winner is a Certificate Of Participation from the 1972 White House Easter Egg Roll: $48.99. And just as I sat down to do my numbers, a White House Christmas program from 1987 sold for $19.99. I love that I’m making money from stuff that would have definitely wound up in the trash; no one at the sale was giving those boxes a second look.
07/31/2017 at 5:31 pm #21084
Week of 7/16-7/22
Total Items in Store: 1,520
Items Sold: 68
Number of Items Listed This Week: 50
Total Sales: $1,991.69
Cost of Items Sold: $310.81
Highest Item Sold: $150 – Disney Princess 12 Pc Lighted Porcelain Village Set
Competition: Highest Priced Sale: Veronica wins the week, Veronica leads for the year 17-11.
Week of 7/23-7/29
Total Items in Store: 1,477
Items Sold: 32
Number of Items Listed This Week: 0
Total Sales: $979.39
Cost of Items Sold: $178.06
Highest Item Sold: $50 – Robert Graham Flip Cuff Casual Shirt
Competition: Highest Priced Sale: Troy wins the week, Veronica leads for the year 17-12.
July is still here, with wild weekly swings, as shown in the numbers above. What a ride…
SixBit is working like a charm to handle the backend, and I spent a lot of time with John Slocum (the founder) and some others of his team to walk me through some of the other capabilities of the software once I get the networking issue resolved. But the fact that it handled all of the relisting of all our listings while we were gone was HUGE, and the ease of changing the handling time was very nice. Still work to go, but I see a lot of capabilities coming for us.
eBay Open was huge for us. We came away with a lot of good ideas for the business, we have early adopted into Guaranteed Delivery, we networked with a lot of sellers and got good ideas on sourcing, and even met a few eBay celebrities (Casey the Rockstar Flipper and Jason T Smith (Thrifting Board and Thrift Hunters). And we loved meeting a few other Scavenger Life listeners as well. Very Cool, and we will be going back next year.
Alright, back to listing! We have been slacking off the past few weeks! Time to EXECUTE!!!
07/31/2017 at 6:07 pm #21085BrianBParticipant
Jay, Ryanne: I bought a new truck from GM. Later, I went back and told them I paid too much. This truck is probably worth $25,000 instead of the $35,000 I paid. They are going to get back to me. I’m still waiting.
07/31/2017 at 7:19 pm #21087
Good discussion today, I am a notorious list maker, love it, especially making lists for other people =:oO haha, snicker, lol
ON USPS PRIORITY SHIPPING … Has anyone noticed that ebay is not charging a surcharge on larger size boxes going Priority???
I have a small stash of the extra large Priority Mailing boxes that USPS no longer has, they are 15 1/2″ x 12″ x 12″.
I shipped a huge afghan last month, and after I dropped it off, I realized there was not a surcharge. I figured I had accidentally not put in the correct dimensions, but the box got delivered and I held my breath expecting the buyer to say they had to pay for extra shipping, but nothing.
So today I shipped a stack of Limoges china plates and used one of those boxes, expecting I would have to cut it down to squeak under the surcharge. I used to have to cut the xlarge priority box down to 9″ and it would be ok. But I put in the correct full dimensions and usps priority shipping for a 9 lb box was $8.32 , no surcharge … whoa!
Did this change and I totally missed it? I read about the new system that is supposed to catch wrong labels for weight and dimensions, but did the surcharge go away for larger priority???
08/01/2017 at 1:03 am #21093So Cal JoeParticipant
If you actually measure those boxes they are smaller than the stated dimensions. The largest dimension is like 14.75 inches and if you don’t round up, I believe they are not oversized.
I’m not exactly sure how the post office treats them, because I usually cut them down to be safe, but I remember other people saying their Carrier told them they are not treated as oversized.
08/01/2017 at 8:12 am #21097
How far away was the person you were mailing it to? I’ve never been charged dimensional shipping when someone in my shipping zone (east coast) buys my items.
08/01/2017 at 12:35 pm #21116
HA! RETRO TREASURES has it right! I played around with the shipping calculator, and if the buyer is nearby (I’m in Washington, buyer is in Oregon), there is no surcharge, the Priority charge stays the same regardless, $8.20. If the buyer is in New York, the charge would be $29 for 15 1/2″ x 12″ x 9″ and $45 for 15 1/2″ x 12″ x 12″, so a surcharge for the larger box.
Thanks, that was just freaking me out. Ok, now I can cross that mystery of my list! ;o)
08/01/2017 at 11:07 am #21107
FYI: USPS Priority cut off is 1,728 cubic inches which is 12 x 12 x 12 inches. BUT they know they still have some of those “Old “C” size boxes” floating around so I am told they just let those ride. Then after 1,728 cubic inches you have to change the shipping method over to Parcel. Parcel has two calculations to be made. Dimensional weight will start to be imposed after you reach 108″ gathered from the longest dimension added to the girth, which is a complete circle around the shortest part of your package. The Dim. weight amount charged will vary as the weight and distance the package will travel increases. The dim. weight is applied UNTIL you reach 130″ of the length + Girth. at 130″ then USPS Parcel Select and 70 lbs. of course is the final cut off. At this point you will need to gravitate to UPS or FedEx.
May I suggest to make a small sign and just post these couple of numbers in or around your shipping area and you will be good to go.
Mike at MDC Galleries & Fine Art in Atlanta
08/01/2017 at 12:31 pm #21114imjoshParticipant
- Location: Virginia
Beverly, USPS only charges dimensional weight for Priority shipments to zones 5-9. You can see here:
Change the zone to 5 and you will see the billing weight jumps from 9 to 12 lbs.
07/31/2017 at 9:32 pm #21091
Ryanne, when I take a package to Fedex and they scan it the tracking number is on ebay’s site before I get back home. What’s with the USPS?
08/01/2017 at 7:54 am #21096
Linda – I’ve noticed that as well. I’ve been assuming that someone, either at the local office or at the distribution center, has to verify the package against its initial scan before the information gets online. The other possibility is that their software system is slow to update.
I’ve also noticed that the rate at which the information comes up is different for priority, first class, media, etc.
08/01/2017 at 11:21 am #21109
Hey Linda.. Interesting. Maybe it is just your local USPS but I see my
“Over sized mail box” from out of the window in my office. I see our carrier reach in, grab our packages and then scan then on the spot. Within less than 60 seconds those scans show up in my Ebay Dashboard. Maybe, just maybe, your carrier is not scanning your packages right away. Some carriers I am told will wait until they get to a safe stopping point and scann, some wait until they get back to the local PO and then scan as they unload thier trucks. Which by the way IS NOT what they are supposed to do, but they use this technique so they get their routes done faster and get back to the office. And some carriers don’t scan and let the internal guys do it when they load items into the larger trucks to transport to the local distribution center [larger PO].
But I have talked with our local Post Master more than a couple of times and this is what she said. Carriers are “supposed” to scan in the field at the time and point of first contact. They are furnished with hand held scanners for this purpose and those scanners cost them $1,500 each. They happen to be re-furbished FedEx scanners BTW. She said why would we buy those and pay that much and not intend for them to use it. She has also said she wants to know who is not scanning in the field because she will call them out on the carpet. Fire them, NO but will certainly tell them, to scan in the field. She also said she is aware of the new guarantied delivery programs, both for Ebay and Amazon and her boss stresses for them to enforce the scanning process. Not doing it just to finish their routes early or to get out of the heat or cold is not acceptable, especially with these new programs.
So hopefully as these programs sink in and more Post Masters get in the groove, we will see timely scans and also that data showing up in our dashboards in a timely fashiopn.
Mike at MDC Galleries & Fine Art in Atlanta
08/01/2017 at 1:53 pm #21118GompersParticipant
- Location: Connecticut
Some quick details on the USPS scanning / not scanning. If you have a lot of packages its best to print out a “scan sheet” The postman will scan this instead. Most likely he won’t stand there and scan 40+ packages, nor will he scan them back at the office. Schedules are way too tight for that.
What most people don’t know is USPS routes are drawn up to be very tight. Some routes have 800+ drops and you’re expected to finish that in roughly 7 hours. If one were to run the math on the delivery times this equates to 30-45 seconds at each “drop” over a 7 hour period. This period also does not take into account scanning customer pickups, certified mail, registered mail, or any other type of mail that requires a signature.
The one potential benefit to the mailman for scanning packages on a route is if he picks up enough packages over a long time (perhaps one year) his route may get shortened, but even that is highly unlikely.
The post office never really adjusted route delivery times after package delivery volume increased. Post office Mgmt M.O. is to keep adding on work until someone can no longer do it.
08/01/2017 at 12:14 am #21092IdahoarderParticipant
Store Week 7/23/17 – 7/29/17
Total items in store: 1415
Items sold: 20
Cost of items sold: $97.75
Total sales: $1501.89
Highest price sold: $975.00 (Antique Coleman lantern)
Average price sold: $75.09
International Sales: 2
Money spent on new inventory this week: $7.00
Super stoked to make my biggest sale EVER this week! I think I mentioned the Coleman lantern a few weeks ago when I bought it, and finally got it up last week. I listed it for $1200, hoping to get at least $1000 and got a bunch of offers right away, mostly around $300-$500. But then this guy came with an offer of $975. Close enough!
We were traveling Thursday through Monday, and little things kept selling all weekend. That is such a great feeling!
Oh, and I am also a huge fan of lists. I’ve been known to write something I already did on my list, just so I can cross it off! (Haha – that part might not be helping me much!)
08/01/2017 at 9:06 am #21100
Idahoarder, I have done that, too! I love the satisfaction of seeing everything I accomplished crossed off on a list. Surely that’s a sign of something good! Haha
08/01/2017 at 4:31 am #21094davidbloopParticipant
Haven’t had a chance to listen to this week’s podcast yet, going to be doing it while I wake up to work tomorrow 😉
Anyway numbers, much better this week, we got granted Top Rated and Powerseller within the last week and we noticed an immediate sales boost which has remained steady so far, we’re hoping it can continue as long as possible!
Week 5 (23-29)
Number of Active Listings: 742
Items Sold: 11
Avg Selling Price: $31.51
Cost of Goods Sold: -$8.98
Total Sales: $346.66
Unpaid Items: $0.00
Had to take a return on a shirt which was a bummer but it got returned no worries so relisted, no fuss. Best sale this week was a cup and saucer set that I found for $4.98 and just sold last Friday for $120 🙂
08/01/2017 at 7:39 am #21095Willow603Participant
I went to Ebay Open, first time for me. I am totally not a Vegas fan, not a gambler or drinker. My husband was excited to hang at the sports areas at various casinos so we had a car. The best part for me were non-Ebay adventures- out to Red Rock park- so amazing, finding a weird exclusive pricy village called Blue Diamond, wandering the streets around ULV. Last day we escaped to Red Rock Casino for a buffet and just hung for 2 hours playing cheap Keno waiting for our red eye flight. Great people watching but kind of sad too. Needless to say- so hot, 108 on Thursday.
Ebay Open- I might consider going again, it was very motivating, just super huge & hectic. It’s a long trip from NH. Absolutely mind boggling amazing the $$$ Ebay puts into Ebay Open, stunning jumbo screens, endless food, massive square footage of conference spaces. I met loads of great people plus we had a group from our local NH meetup. Not so thrilled with our MGM room but the hotel price was OK, many many many small flaws daily, the glitz is all in the public areas.
WHAT I LEARNED FROM EBAY OPEN- actually nothing new I did not hear already, Ebay Radio really does do great updates. Explore the Growth tab on the Seller Hub, Ebay will be expanding this data significantly very soon. 80% of Ebay listings are NEW items. Use sales or promotions, all retail does, buyers expect it. The social media hash tag advanced suggestions were way over my head. Use plain white, black or perhaps gray backgrounds for best search. Use all your tax deductions, don’t be scared if they are legal & acceptable. Change my Ebay fees to credit card vs PayPal withdrawal to earn points (I’ve been procrastinating, like throwing $ away).Griff’s photo sessions are packed, get there early or you will be standing or shut out.
I encourage you to go at least once to Ebay Open, it really is a BIG experience!
08/01/2017 at 8:43 am #21098
I am constantly making lists, sometimes several in a day, and I have to consolidate every once in a while. Lists definitely help you organize and remember what needs to be done. I’m one of those persons who will walk into a room and forget why I’m there. Sometimes I remember everything in detail, and sometimes I can hardly remember my kids’ names (or so it seems).
Week of July 23-29
* Total Items in Store: 963
* Items Sold: 26
* Cost of Items Sold: $34.61 + $0 Commission
* Total Sales: $514.17
* Highest Price Sold: $90 Vampire Tarot Card & Book Set – last one!
* Average Price Sold: $19.78
* Returns: 0
* Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
* Number of items listed this week: 36
Absolutely awesome week for me! My average price sold is a bit low mostly because of the books that are selling one at a time. I have listed some lots of 10-15 books, so hopefully I will see more leaving the house.
I had something kind of crappy happen this week. I’m been looking at auctions on GovDeals.com for quite some time, but not bidding on anything. A few weeks ago, I saw a school township that listed a significant number of marching band uniforms. Initially, their price was $300, and I felt it was too high for me, so I passed. Then they re-listed them at $100. I was in a small bidding war against one other person, but I won the auction at $210 + 5% premium. I paid right away and called & emailed the contact first thing Monday morning. I get an email back later in the afternoon that the township decided that the high school still needed the uniforms, so cancelled the sale. This was within the terms of the deal, but I’m pissed. I think that they didn’t like the price they got, and I bet I see it come up in the month or two. I’ll call GovDeals if that happens, but I’m sure they can’t do anything about it.
08/01/2017 at 3:28 pm #21129
That’s an awful thing to happen to you. I’ve used govdeals to source a little bit. While I don’t always win the auctions, I have gotten quite a few really nice things to resale. But to retract the sale like that… that’s just shady. Like you said, they probably were expecting to get a lot more for the uniforms. I would definitely call and complain if they come up again. That would mean the township was abusing the site.
08/02/2017 at 9:28 am #21163
Hey Doublythumbs – Yes, it’s crappy, but I’ll reserve the word “awful” for things like your house being flooded – like what happened to you. Just putting things into perspective.
The thing is that I was making plans. Like getting any damaged uniforms listed first because people might be thinking of Halloween soon. What’s better than a zombie drum major? And thinking about where and how I would store them, how much I’d price them, etc.
On the other hand, I’ve got an auction to go to tomorrow, there’s an online auction close to me ending on Friday, I want to check out a few church & synagogue rummage sales this weekend, etc. So, I’ll move on to other things and someday I’ll actually buy something on GovDeals. I saw 40 new VCR tapes listed for a beginning bid of $5, but the drive would be about an hour. Not worth it.
08/01/2017 at 10:00 am #21103HabnabParticipant
So, these last few months have been a little crazy. Sorry I haven’t been checking in. The kids are home for the summer, I’ve been obsessed with politics, I’ve developed a minor medical issue which is affecting both my attention span and my overall functioning, I haven’t been listing or sourcing very much, and my sales — predictably — have slowed. I’ve also lost top-rated status due to late shipping times (see attention span, kids, etc.)… I’ve had a few big sales here and there, so I’m still making a little bit of money, but I need to regroup and get things under control.
The attempts to dismantle Obamacare (not getting political here) have also had me scouting around for a job with health insurance. With three kids and a handful of medical issues in the family, we can’t be without care. A few of these issues will be new “pre-existing conditions” if we have to get a new plan, and we were paying over $1000 a month before these conditions developed (before anyone had ANY non-standard health needs) pre-ACA. I’m frankly terrified.
Good sales recently include a rare glass vase (over $900; paid $8, thinking it might be worth $50) and some paintings for $200 and $400.
Total n00b question, but how do I get to the bulk editor? I want to change my handling time. Thanks so much.
08/01/2017 at 10:01 am #21104HabnabParticipant
Ooops, got editing. Thanks.
08/01/2017 at 12:19 pm #21113omfugParticipant
I’ve been obsessed with politics
LOL me too, I mostly go toe to toe on facebook about it. As for the ACA, I clearly want the law to stand and be fixed–it saved my life and I know of at least 2 other people whose lives were also saved, to be clear, it is VERY difficult to find decent medical care in this country without insurance, many uninsured middle class people go bankrupt after being burdened with medical expense that they couldn’t cover, so I consider this an urgent issue obviously.
08/01/2017 at 10:45 am #21106
Wanted to comment re the Ikea RA conversation. Plastic bags are banned here so I bought all of my great reusable Ikea bags on Ebay. If I lived near an Ikea, I would totally source certain items there (probably lightweight textiles and kids’ items), though I would never list something I didn’t own and you are not supposed to use stock photos.
It’s fun to buy one of a kind vintage items and the return is amazing. But it’s also fun to speculate with RA and get great design and quality at a low price, then hold and flip for 2-10x the money and there is way less holding time if you are doing it right. Retailers are stuck having to produce and liquidate all of their duds and meh items. As resellers, we can go in and cherry pick their most special and undervalued items. If I think I can get more for something on Ebay than they have it priced at the retailer or predict they will sell out of it, I’ll even pay full price and sometimes it sells while it still available in the store and/or on the retailer site. I’ve been called out in messages for this once or twice, but I don’t see anything unethical about it. Some folks are too far away from the retailer or have never heard of it before, plus I ship globally with GSP and reach other audiences with Pinterest or Google. Anyway, it’s a whole other fun game about scavenging that I love.
08/01/2017 at 12:33 pm #21115
08/01/2017 at 12:57 pm #21117
I use OneNote [the same as EverNote]. It is great. Also synchs with phone. One click and up pops “sticky note” like squares on my PC screen. I name each sticky note by topic Personal To-Do, Business To-Do, Long Term To-Do etc., etc. When I click all of the ones I created pop up on my screen which can show up to 12 notes and still be large enough to be read. I can add and delete the notes as needed. Also any line item will synch to my Outlook calendar and I can set an alarm if it is a short term to do today or tomorrow type of thing.
But bottom line is I use the “Business at the Speed of Thought” axiom and if I didn’t have a quick way to jot down my To-Do items on a list, I would forget half of them.
Mike at MDC Galleries in Atlanta
08/02/2017 at 12:38 am #21149Steve ListParticipant
- Location: Richmond, Calif.
July was a slow month for me. Sold quite a few smaller items such as beer patches and a few postcards. I am slowly working through my cache of tattoo flash sheets, I sold 4 of them in July for a total of $120.
Numbers for month of July
Total Listings: 818
Sold 42 items for $761
Cost of Items Sold: $143
Highest Price Sold: $68 – used iPod Nano 6th Generation – no accessories
Average Price Sold: $18
Spent on new inventory: $59
Number of items listed: 46
Returns: 1 – I just refunded and let them keep it
I sold the iPod Nano as a favor for a friend, I seldom do consignments due to my own huge death piles.
08/02/2017 at 2:57 am #21150Brian Treasures from GrandmasParticipant
- Location: Hoboken, NJ
Week July 23-29, 2017
Total Items in Store: 890
Items Sold: 24 (2 Amazon, 1 Bonanza)
Cost of Items Sold: $82 (11.5% of sales)
Total Sales: $711.28
Highest Price Sold: $70 (1926 Par Golf Card Game)
Average Price Sold: $29.64
Returns: 1 (damaged in mail, insured)
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
Number of items listed this week: 0
Promoted listings test: 10 sales, $339.35 (47.7% of total sales), $23.15 fees (6.8% of sales)
A little late posting after a long weekend in Florida visiting some family. Listened to the show on the plane!
Another solid week for me. Consistently selling volume & getting a good average price. I’ve become a believer in the promoted listings. I was skeptical back in Q1 as I thought the good sales were just self gifting after the holidays, but now that the depths of summer have arrived my sales are even higher with the promoted listings on.
In addition to the promoted sales, I’ve been making a real effort at getting higher quality and higher dollar items to round out the bread & butter items.
Looking forward to getting back to the grind this weekend after being away 3 weekends in a row. Shooting for 40 items listed, but I’ll get at least 20 up.
08/02/2017 at 9:10 am #21161Steven SParticipant
- Location: South Dakota
July 23-29 2017
• Total Items in Store: 822
• Items Sold: 9 eBay 1 Truegether 1 Bonanza
• International 1 Switzerland 1st class international
• Total Sales $700
• Highest Price $190 leather duffle bag
• Average Price Sold: $78
• Returns: 0
• Cost of Items Sold: $62
• Cost of items purchased this week $200
I’m now selling a huge hobby collection, when I was a kid I loved all this stuff, now it’s just merchandise and I have to reacquaint myself with models, trains etc. There’s good money in it though.
08/02/2017 at 11:24 am #21174Denny E.Participant
- Location: Glendale, AZ
I’m hoping someone with Worthpoint can follow this link and let me know what the item sold for:
If that didn’t work, the title of the item is RARE BK SWEENEY ST-1270 CUMMINS DIESEL INJECTOR VALVE ADJUSTMENT TOOL KIT SET PW
I’m trying to save my Free Trial on Worthpoint until a time when I have a bunch of items to look up. Thanks!
08/02/2017 at 12:47 pm #21182
It sold for $149.99 in March of 2014
08/03/2017 at 3:09 pm #21285KarenParticipant
I always wonder if having Worth Point is worth it? Anyone?
08/03/2017 at 3:31 pm #21290
Going to answer your question with a question.
Does having over 3oo million [1/3 of a billion] items available to search along with a description already done for it, the prices they all sold for, when they sold, from several sources [not just Ebay] along with a over 100,000 hallmark stamp patterns to search along with a library of 1,000 books available on the topic of antiques and collectibles have any value to you? Then Yes, if not then No.
Mike at MDC Galleries in Atlanta
- This reply was modified 4 years, 4 months ago by MDC Galleries & Fine Art.
08/03/2017 at 5:09 pm #21300KarenParticipant
Can you read the books online or do you purchase them?
08/03/2017 at 6:01 pm #21313
I am like Steve. We got a subscription many years ago for $14. They have been pushing the upgrade to us at $20 a month for a couple of years now, but we have stayed at this level. I believe you can read them online but you have to have the upgraded subscription, not an older one like we and Steve have.
08/03/2017 at 3:40 pm #21294Steve ListParticipant
- Location: Richmond, Calif.
I use Worthpoint almost every day when I’m listing, I find it very helpful for pricing and research.
I was lucky enough to get a special subscription price of around $10 per month a few years back when Jason Smith had the Thrifting Board and was on Thrift Hunters. I do not know if the deal is still available or not. I believe the price has gone up and is about $20 or so a month now for the basic service. They also have other services such as mark lookups and I believe they are working on an image search capability. I’m not sure if I would subscribe now at the higher price but for what I pay I’m very happy with it.
J&R, you might want to look into setting up an affiliate link for subscriptions, at the least, they would probably give you a free subscription.
08/04/2017 at 2:24 am #21340LoveJamParticipant
Jay & Ryanne I know you guys always talk about just extending the handling time when you go out of town, but why not just use eBay’s vacation settings to let everyone know there will be a delay in shipping to them their purchase? Does changing the handling time affect your rating as a “top seller” or what have you ( i think you need to have it as 1 or same day to achieve “top seller” status)?
08/04/2017 at 7:36 am #21344
vacation mode only puts a note on your listings, it does not change your handling time. we just change our handling time and message buyers. you can remain top rated if you ship within your handling time, you just don’t get the final value fee discount on those items if they’re over 1 day handling.
08/04/2017 at 9:40 am #21352pythoneskParticipant
- Location: East TN
BTW, love the photo – which must be the view from your river house. Fantastic! Can’t wait to hear more about the river house and see pics of the finished product.
08/04/2017 at 9:40 am #21353AmatinoParticipant
- Location: Texas
On the Worthpoint topic, I bit the bullet and took out a sub. It’s only $20 per month after all. I’ve ended up using it quite a lot. Not as much as Mike or Steve, it appears, but enough that I don’t mind paying the piper.
That being said, Mike has mentioned a few things that I didn’t know about it. I really need to spend some time learning about all my different programs and what they offer. Only… too busy working IN the business to work ON the business! LOL
08/04/2017 at 10:12 am #21358
Boy you said a mouthful and can I totally relate. I have multiple work stations in our office, each with it’s own scale, and computer. A laptop is turned on at one station, a desk top at another which has TWO Monitors connected. All three screens going, multiple tabs open, 11 tabs currently open, along with Outlook pulling in emails from 6 email accounts, then Quicken open with 8 different accounts showing and I bounce between all of that constantly. Then wife Susan doing photography and we also have a helper for 3 hours a day 5 days a week.
If I only had 3 heads and 6 hands I would be fine. This is why WorthPoint really helps. I just pop over to the right side screen, drop in a search term and bingo. Then I can also cut and paste if I find a great description already composed in one of the WP listings.
Now.. just add a glitch that happens in one of your software apps and you are on the phone trying to work out the “problem” and one can have a real full day really quick.
But boy do I love.Keeps me young!! LOL 🙂
mike at mdc galleries in atlanta
08/04/2017 at 3:47 pm #21366NiNjA BoBParticipant
Yesterday I had to make the dreaded eBay Customer Service call. I say dreaded not because of the wait time, or the possible language barrier, but because of the roulette wheel spin of who will take the call. Once you have been around the block for a while one finds that they typically know more about the rules then the eBay reps do. This happens more often then I would like to describe. Which generally ends in asking for a manager and then to calling back to find a more competent rep.
So I was looking at my feedback which I saw that I had received a negative. I only have 2 in the last 12 months so they stand out if I get one. The buyer wrote, “Restocking fee charged upon return; buyer paid shipping”. This feedback was in response to a buyer that had purchased a needlepoint and was unhappy because she “thought” there was a glass covering the needlepoint. I do not know how she got that idea but there was no mention of glass or a picture of glass, and or that matter there could not have been a glare of glass since it was a picture of yarn. When the buyer contacted me and asked to return the item and not pay the restocking fee I informed her that the restocking fee covers my time and the packaging materials, i.e. bubble wrap. She never responded, she never opened a case or returned the item. So I called eBay to get the feedback removed. I have an anchor store so I called the dedicated line and was placed on hold since the removal of the vast majority of the department (I only know this because the last time I called I complained about the wait time and how it had recently became much longer and the rep let it slip). When the phone was eventually answered I explained to the rep that the return policy is clearly stated when buying an item and becoming upset about something you knew before you purchased the item is buyers remorse. I also stated that the item was never returned and she was never charged a restocking fee. The rep. said that because it was her buying experience and the feedback could be interpreted a number of different ways that they could not remove the feedback. I asked to speak to a manager who basically said the same thing. Beside my self, I hung up the phone, said a few choice words, and took a few deep breaths. I then called back. Like all people, reps are subject to having bad days and wanting to stick to their guns and sometimes like with the case of a diagnosis it is important to get a second opinion. The next rep I got said that she would remove the feedback because it was violating eBays feedback policy. I hung up the phone and called my wife and told her what had happened. While on the phone I saw there was a Utah Phone number coming through and this is the number eBay uses. When I answered the call, the rep Heather informed me that she knew that I had called once before and that what I did was called Agent Shopping and she would be putting that in the notes on my account and that my customer service privileges could be revoked. She had already taken the feedback off so she could not put it back. Basically I was shamed for getting a second opinion when I didn’t think the first rep knew what she was talking about. FYI, the rep I just spoke with informed me that a feedback given the mentions a restocking fee is not removable. Thought you all might like to know that they are on to the call back method.
08/04/2017 at 4:13 pm #21367
Hey Ninja Bob: Well, if I heard things right on posts coming from Ebay Open, they would like all of us sellers to have 60-90 returns and to drop a re-stocking fee anyway. If they are going to be like what you ran into, we might as well go ahead and beat the Ebay release and just change to 60 or more returns and drop any re-stocking fee.
I guess another way of looking at it if we apply a 20% re-stocking fee, then in essence we are only giving the buyer an 80% refund. If Ebay is going to play the let’s be like Amazon game, which it looks like we are headed full bore down that path, we might as well just beat them to the punch.
Back a few years ago, everyone on SL, J&R included, made statements that a restocking fee may also discourage some people from returning stuff and that was in addition to easing the burden on us sellers somewhat. Well, that is not much of Ebay’s concern now. It is just make the buyer happy at all costs so they will continue to use the Ebay platform to buy.
I will re-read all the Ebay Open notes and if that is what they are suggesting, then maybe I’ll just drop the re-stocking fee anyway. What little returns I get, even if they are false, are few and far between. Our biggest loss of merchandise at our former booths, was my wife Susan “butt Bumping” things and knocking them off and breaking. We have thrown out more stuff also since closing those booths that compared to “Returns” that is minor. It is called “shrinkage”, take it and keep going I guess.
Mike at MDC Galleries in Atlanta
08/04/2017 at 4:22 pm #21368NiNjA BoBParticipant
I think you are right. I do get very few returns. I know though that the restocking fee is a deterrent, otherwise she would have returned the item. In all honesty, I did not care about the $6 dollars. It is the principal. But as I write this it seems rather silly to let something like principals affect my business. Just suck it up to the cost of doing business. It could be worse. I could always be attending meetings or having to commute to work each day. I just didn’t like getting told I would have notes put on my account, like I am a problem to deal with given the amount of money I give them every month. But I guess it all is just business. Thanks for input. – Brian
08/05/2017 at 10:55 am #21376
that is nutty dude. i’m sorry to hear that. we pay $300/month for an anchor store, i’d think i’d be allowed to call back if i disagreed with a rep.
08/05/2017 at 9:41 pm #21390AmatinoParticipant
- Location: Texas
Be grateful: Amazon has now introduced a new returns policy that allows automatically authorized returns and “returnless refunds” to all non-FBA clients.
At least eBay lets us have a little argument/control over returns.
08/05/2017 at 9:59 pm #21391
Wow…hopefully that is the line that sellers stop at and move to eBay.
08/06/2017 at 9:33 am #21396
it seems to say that the “no return” return would be for items that are hard to ship. like maybe a bathtub or something. we bought a bathtub on amazon and it arrived really banged up, so we returned it. thats an unsellable item that has to be paid to be returned. but, i’m not one to defend amazon’s policies. so who knows.
08/06/2017 at 6:43 am #21393The Thrift RaiderParticipant
Just adding my opinion about restocking fees, I think they are pretty dumb and I totally see why Ebay wants to get rid of them. I would personally be unhappy if I had to pay a restocking fee for something that I was unhappy with. I’m happy to take returns from my customers, even though I’ve never had one. I’ve just given partial refunds if that’s what made them happy.
08/06/2017 at 10:48 am #21398GompersParticipant
- Location: Connecticut
I use restocking fees on “new and factory sealed” items or items that are “new with tags” such as clothing. So far I have not charged a restock fee on any return. I think it’s a good way to discourage returns, but I have no stats to back that up.
08/06/2017 at 10:13 am #21397Mark SParticipant
I just tried to accept an offer for an item and ebay would not let me. I called ebay and they verified that there is a problem with ebay and accepting the offers right now. They said to give it 3-4 hours (that was an hour ago). I messaged my buyer to let them know and they said they were having all sorts of issues with ebay right now.
08/08/2017 at 10:56 pm #21562ManateejaqParticipant
I forgot to post my numbers for last week: so here they are late.
July 23- July 29 2017
Total items in store: Etsy 520 // Ebay 488 (Items not crossposted I list different types of things on Etsy and Ebay)
Items Sold: Etsy 17 // Ebay 7
Cost of items Sold: Etsy $32.35 // Ebay $18.82
Total Sales: Etsy $196.45 // Ebay $112.93
Highest Price Sold: Masters of the Universe Trap Jaw action figure $35
Average Price Sold: $12.89
Number of items listed this week: 50 (Listed at $1080)
Nothing out of the ordinary this week – no customer issues, no scavenging, no sales or specials. Just some listing and spending time with my family. Working on saving up for a trip to Walt Disney World next summer. I budgeted it out, and know how much money each month I need to earn to pay for some bills, and will save the rest for the trip. Hopefully I will make enough to go!
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