01/14/2019 at 4:32 am #55040
01/14/2019 at 6:20 am #55042
2019-01-06 – 2019-01-12
Total Items In Store: 2,626
Items Sold: 22
Cost of Items Sold: $80
Total Sales: $818
Highest Price Sold: $180 (Golf Bag)
Average Price Sold: $37.18
# Items Listed: 25
Money Spent on New Inventory: $83
Gut Sales Report for the week: I thought that looked familar in today’s title! Good sales for the week, but sales have taken a dive since Friday. Since Friday, I have only sold $70.
Challenge of the week: My Lister is back, so I have to gear up to be able to give her items again.
Scavenge of the week: Marble Chess Set for $10.
What I learned this week: Always wait for the seller to offer a price if you can. This has always been my angle, but it worked well this time. That marble chess set was $20 and so was a nice Waterford. I was going to see if they would take $20 for both at the estate sale. Then, since it was near the end of whole sale, the guy says, “I am making deals”. So I waited for the lady at the checkout to give me a price and she says $20 for both! Better than what I was going to ask for. Didn’t try to counter because probably their lowest already.
01/14/2019 at 7:46 am #55045
2019-01-07 – 2019-01-13
Total Items In Store: 9548
Items Sold: 36
Cost of Items Sold: $150 approx…
Total Sales: $930
Highest Price Sold: $245 (Vintage Bang and Olufsen Beolit 800 Radio)
Average Price Sold: $25,83
# Items Listed: 25
Money Spent on New Inventory: $0
Sales picked up again and I must remind myself that almost 1000 $ in gross sales is fine, as I have not worked many hours on eBay this week. This week I’ll add a lot of listings as my brother is helping me out with the listing part – hopefully that generate additional sales.2+
01/14/2019 at 9:49 am #55063
How many of your 9500 items are ephemera?0
01/14/2019 at 8:03 am #55046
First the numbers, some gut stuff! and then the listen.
1/6/19 – 1/12/19 (note – I do not cross list across platforms, items are unique)
eBay store totommyto
Total store items: 645
Number of items sold: 13 (1 international)
Total eBay sales (not counting s/h): $388.00
Cost of items sold: $31.50
Consignment payouts $21
Highest price sold: $95 – BIG & HEAVY vintage German Kutmaster paper cutter
Average price sold: $29.85
Returns: 1 – $25 lighter not working
Money spent on new inventory: $90
Number of items listed this week: 20
Sell through rate for the week: 2.0
Etsy store oldfleatoymarket
Total store items: 623
Number of items sold: 6 (0 international)
Total Etsy sales ( not counting s/h): $158
Cost of items sold: $7
Consignment payouts: $0
Highest price sold: $75 – three Jill Walker prints
Average price sold: $26.00
Money spent on new inventory: $50
Number of items listed this week: 8
Sell through rate for the week: 1.3
The Gut speak on eBay: With my style of selling, (long tailish one offs mostly), my inventory needs to grow by double to close in on a consistent $750 weekly. Amazing buyouts happen and inflate sales now and then, but if I want consistent $ then I have to grow the inventory.
The Gut speak on Etsy: Not sure what to make of Etsy, the COGS works out really low, its fun, and the $ earned goes back into picking. Once I get the $ earned right with eBay, I’ll try to really grow Etsy.
My Learnings: Wow, shipping a big & heavy with FedEx saved me (made me) an extra $60, and big Fedex boxes are half the price of big boxes at my fancy ship center! And I could print FedEx labels off eBay. Been a bit behind on the FedEx option!
Thank you Mark for The Gut Speak & My Learnings additions this week.2+
01/14/2019 at 8:59 am #55053
No problem. It is amazing to me me that with all of the experience that we each have, but guess what? We are still learning a lot. Even in the case I mentioned, I knew what to do, but saw in a tangible way why to do that.
That is the real power of this forum; we all learn from each other and we all just keep getting better at this business. I know for myself that I wouldn’t be half as good at this as I am without this forum. I think most people here can attest to that.
01/14/2019 at 9:17 am #55056
I attest to that fully,
I was doing this numbers blind, besides what I needed for tax purposes.
Also running and walking with few if any goals, and not really thinking about it much other than the nuts & bolts of buy & sell.0
01/14/2019 at 9:39 am #55061
Hey TTT: I hear you on doubling the store but I will saw a discussion Jay and I had some time back, maybe years ago, but worth mentioning again. You may already know this also..
That is, by doubling the quantity of items in a store does not necessarily equate to double the income. Back then Jay dicussed the many variables, like increased sold price per item, promoting, having sales, cleaning out old cheap stuff, etc., etc. But one thing most involved in the discussion did seem to agree on was that as a seller increased the quantity of items [inventory increase], that the amount of sales and dollar amount sold seemed to increase more on an alogrythmic curve rather than a linear curve. this discussion also led to Jay & Ryanne and a few others even going so far to open a second store to see if the velocity was quicker and steeper in the early stages of growth.
I had tyracked a years worth of each weeks posting by all the mebers of SL that posted weekly back in 2015 [I think] and the spread sheet I created seemed to support that as stores grew to a certain point the alogrythmic curve almost seemed to flatten out. The steepest accelration in Sales and thus dollars seemed to support Jay’s all time statement of seeing some consistency in [that is a key word there-consistency] at around 500 items. But a “steady stream” of sales started and continued into the 750 ++ mark, which 3 or 4 years later, adjusted for market conditions seems to be more like 1,000 to 1,250 items.
Back then we thought 1,250 would be a good number to see $500 a week “consistently”. After seeing competition kick in, higher fees, lowered discounts, Amazon and it’s impact and just everything that goes along with this online selling world, we have adjusted our target to 2,500 now. So, we would like to go from 1,116 items to as many items over 2,000 as we can get by June of this year. There we think we can see an overall average of $2,000 plus monthly income.
Now Troy has his spread sheet which actually can [somewhat predict] the future needs to equate to future income, but you have to get your numbers in order to input them to use his SS as a guide.
There is one very interesting observation I have seen on the few stores of SL members I track is that I keep seeing about a $1-$1.50 per month income for each item the posters here on SL make in there stores. Now no scientific proof of that by any means but on a monthly bases 1,000 item stores seem to post approx. +/- a thousand it gross monthly sales, 2,500 item stores seems to post about $2,500 per month, J and R store at about 8,500 posts about the same.. that $1.00 to $1.50 per item listed equating to about $8,500 to $12,750 dollars gross per month and as the stores get larger they seem to hover more closely to about the $1.00 per item range.
We thought it was just so strange that each time we did any type of projection on some SL members numbers we kept seeing this correlation to the number of items in their stores. Funny and puzzling. But again just a ton of variables to put a monkey wrench into that observation and nothing more than a statement to ponder. No supporting data to form any kind of an hypothesis on at all.
All and all we are going to put a good hard push on getting 2500 listings in, and these newer items being higher dollar items [we like the $50 mark] and see what happens next year.
Mike at MDC Galleries and Fine Art in Atlanta3+
01/14/2019 at 9:59 am #55065
Those were the days a very strong conspiracy theory. Sellers said that eBay put a limit on how much each person could sell. So once you reached your limit, then you made the same amount no matter how much you listed. A nice slice of business insanity.
The reality is that if you sell a cast iron pan for $50, then it doesnt necessarily mean that if you had 10 cast iron pans that each of those will sell for $50. The market get overloaded with the same item. People’s tastes change. There isnt a large group of buyers out there for these items. For long tail stores, this is especially true.
But I bet even Amazon-like stores that sell new commodity items don’t scale to infinity. If I sell one BBQ spatula for $10, then why shouldnt I be able to sell 1000 BBQ spatulas for $10? The market gets glutted by other sellers getting into the game. Or there just arent that many people who need a BBQ spatula.
Bottom Line: Scaling our store doesnt mean our sales continue to grow, but it does give us a much better chance of consistent sales. And more importantly, a large inventory gives us breathing room so we aren’t forced to list every day. A large inventory gives us flexibility of our time.2+
01/14/2019 at 10:52 am #55079
I think that everyone’s store/method is different. Depending on your items, your pricing, etc. your sales figures will be all over the place when compared to the next guy.
For example, I operate on a quick turnover – to do this, I like to be the “cheapest” guy on eBay for most of my items. I rather make $15 quick, then sit and compete to make $20 or $25 on the same item. It probably limits my profit in the long run, but in the short run I’m storing less, getting capital back, and it’s how I feel good running my business.
I sell about 10-15% of my inventory in a week – as I scale, I’m barely growing the size of my store inventory month to month. The calculations above would say I’m making about 20% of what I’m really taking in profit, so in my case they are invalid.
It all goes back to knowing your own personal numbers – as I scale, they seem to line-up with what I’ve done in the past. Using someone else’s numbers may get you into trouble in the long run.1+
01/20/2019 at 8:10 am #55431
Hey Inglwood: I agree with everything you said – all sorts of methods have their benefits and there is no right or wrong way – but I disagree that you are costing yourself profit by selling quickly. I imagine you may actually making a BETTER return in most cases.
Doubling your money in two weeks is a better return than getting 10X in 6 months especially if the 10x in 6 months is uncertain.0
01/20/2019 at 8:56 am #55433
Agreed. But there are multiple levels to consider. Your method is called “churn and burn”.
–Selling items quickly for a lower profit can make a seller a lot of money if they keep selling more items quickly.
–But in order to sell items quickly, they need to always be listing. The seller cannot stop listing. Because the seller sells so much quickly, their profit falls off a cliff if they ever take a break.
Amazon FBA stores are good examples of this model. Sales velocity is high, but net profits are usually very low. Feeding the beast is the name of the game.
“List it and forget” doesn’t create the extreme number of sales of “churn and burn”, but because net profits are so high, fewer sales are needed to make decent income. And more importantly, the seller doesn’t necessarily have to be listing all the time. Long tail inventory builds up, creating a buffer, which allows fairly consistent income during non-listing lulls.
Good news is that eBay can handle both kinds of sellers based on their selling personality.0
01/20/2019 at 9:04 am #55434
Agreed. Just because I prefer folks to know where I am coming from…. I tend to do some of both but side on fast because it’s right for me. You hold a gun to my head and ask which is better…. I would say the long tail for reasons mentioned – if one’s life can support it. Both have a lot of consequences.0
01/20/2019 at 9:17 am #55435
Yeah, I think it all comes down to what a seller’s priorities and resources are.
If you want to make quick money fast, then sell items cheaply and quickly. Does a seller have little storage space? Then sell items quickly for less profit.
I’d love to hear more details from people who sell things quickly and make double their money. Buy for $5, sell for $10 quickly.
–What size is your norma; inventory?
–How often are you scavenging?
–How often are you listing?
–What happens if you stop listing for a week or two, or even a month?
–Is eBay your main source of income, or is the quick sell a good strategy because it’s extra income on top of your full-time job?0
01/20/2019 at 9:45 am #55436
First off – I went full time and ‘failed’ – so right there may prove your point. I had lost a job and had a hobby and tried to get off the ground with not enough runway. But right there in itself can make a point as many folks here have succeeded with a longer term strategy. The most important trait i have picked up from the longer term sellers is consistency and having an even way about the business over the long term…
But I did not give up. I would not say I am part time as I put a lot into it – but I have two gigs both sort of businesses – the other being sales related from my old world. I would like to be full time reselling but need to make some pretty good money to do so because of the stage of life I am at and life choices.
My inventory had been up to about 1800 a while back. Now it is 400 ish (i posted then weekly here and do now as well) I plan to keep my inventory lower in the future. I sell both fixed price and auctions — typically i do not do good to cancel – i use shorted sales prices even when fixed price and use automation through Auctiva to reprice without having to touch them again. Auctions are almost never 99 cents — usually a price that is more than 2x — what a good profit is and likely to sell. I definitely use auctions for items that are super rare.
I source every day almost. I try to take a “science of hitting” approach and try to buy less stuff and only what is in my sweet spot. I try to remind myself the benefit of passing on the smaller stuff or only picking the smaller stuff up in line with a bigger thing.
I list most every day.
If I stop listing sales would slow way down. In the future if my inventory keeps on shrinking they would stop. The goal would be to make money to have aside.
Ebay is not my only source of income. This past month it did pay a lot of my bills though and would have had a very tough time without it based on how i allocate my time and earnings. For me currently I do multiple jobs – I am literally working whenever not with the family – mostly because I really enjoy doing the Ebay thing and would love to see how well I can get it going for myself. Like many I keep a leg in with the traditional career – but very much admire what J&R have built for themselves as well as others on the forum — for whatever reason i have just found myself gravitating to a slightly different strategy after starting to emulate the long tail one.1+
01/20/2019 at 9:58 am #55437
Cool. It doesn’t sound like you failed at eBay; you just had to re-adjust your strategy. That’s being a smart businessman.
We stumbled into our current way of selling. Like most new people, we started from zero inventory. Our instinct was to sell quickly and feel bad if something didnt sell within a couple weeks. We sold on auction and started at $9.99, selling about 1/3 of our auctions, often only at our opening bid. It was a grind, but it felt like free money.
As we learned to research prices, we realized that we were undervaluing our inventory. As our inventory grew, we realized that we didnt need to control what items were purchased each day, as long as things were selling. We became more concerned with making sure we made enough each mont to pay our bills. Didnt matter how we got there.
Ten year in, we value our time much more than the prospect of increasing our eBay profit. Our biggest fear is burning out, therefore much of our current selling strategy is based on how to stay excited about selling old shoes online. If we start hating the eBay process, then no strategy matters because we’re not in the game.0
01/21/2019 at 10:38 am #55486
My strategy is a little different, but I’ll explain my process as best I can…and what happens…
-I tend to buy items that I make 5x profit or more (there is always exceptions on higher value items). I have lots of items for sale around $20-$25 that I pay $5 or less (most around $1 or $2) that other sellers would sell for $30ish or more. I would estimate 50% of my items fall in this category, and they are quick sales (less than a month). The rest of my items are split in higher value turn ‘n burn, or unique items that I will hold onto until I get a high price (usually $100+ items, I’m the only seller).
-My inventory is always in flow, but with my plans to move to full time, it has been increasing. Historically, 150-200 items is my spot. I’m well over that now just with more focus this year.
-I scavenge weekly about 1 hour or 2. Historically I go bi-weekly for a full Saturday. I list soon as I buy items (usually that evening or the next day). As I am scaling, I am spending a full day a week scavenging, and about 4-5 hours listing (approximately 50 items a week). Most are repeats, so easy to list.
-Space has been a current issue – historically I could store about 200 items with items all over the place, now I can probably push 500. Once I move, I’m sure I can store 3000 items easily.
-My sales will go down if I don’t continue to feed new items. If I take 3-4 weeks off, it starts to slow up. After 6-8 weeks, the sales trickle in compared to when I’m focused on listing.
For me, this year is focused on expansion – and the challenge has been capital. The quicker I sell, the quicker I can buy new items for inventory, sell those items, spend that money, and repeat.
Maybe once I hit inventory goals, sales goals, etc. I’ll have to re-evaluate, but for quick expansion, the sell it quick, get the cash, spend the cash, list, sell, etc. cycle is working.0
01/21/2019 at 11:36 am #55495
As you’re growing, this is a great strategy.
–If you have a 200 item inventory, can you remind how many items do you sell each week?
–Whats your average gross profit per week (not including shipping costs?)0
01/21/2019 at 12:19 pm #55503
If I break down my average sales over 2018, it’s 23.25 items per week. However, I’ve fluctuated from around 108 to 272 items for sale in the last year at any given time (therefore, data is inconsistent).
My average item profit in 2018 was $16.57 (that is with all expenses/costs removed including fees, shipping supplies, gas, storage bins/shelves, and anything else put into the business).
So that gives me $385.25 in profit per week for 2018 – the only thing taken off of that is Income Tax (which at the moment is almost 50% while I’m still employed).
You don’t want to see my 2019 numbers…they are bad so far while I’m growing at a fast pace…I’m in the hole $26.19 as of this morning. I’m curious to see how they average out when I’m not pushing for growth and just replace what I’ve sold on a weekly basis. For this year, I pull money out every Wednesday each week out to buy new inventory and it’s been over $400 each time and should be $500 this week – so I’m seeing growth over my 2018 numbers and climbing each week.
I still need to figure out what is sustainable and what needs to change. For example, this weekend one of my Bread ‘n Butter items that I usually sell for $18.99 upped to $22.99 (still the lowest price including shipping on eBay). See if the sales still fly in on it.
Trying to find the balance will be interesting as I expand.
Note – all my numbers are in Canadian Dollars – so $1 is about $0.76 US0
01/21/2019 at 12:23 pm #55505
I should also add that there is a strategy at play at the moment – I do not want to make “money” yet…while I’m employed.
The less “profit” I make lowers my income tax now. I’m taking on this strategy for 2019 until I lose my job. Therefore, I’m taking my “profits”, rolling them back into the business in inventory, but not making taxable income.
It’s sort of an investment – it won’t pay as much now, but in the future I can reap larger rewards when I need to (and at a lower tax rate – almost 25% savings).1+
01/21/2019 at 1:15 pm #55507
Makes sense you’re building the process, working out the kinks, and figuring out what you enjoying scavenging.
But just a note: I totally get trying to lower your taxes, but if you do pay taxes, it usually means things are going well!0
01/21/2019 at 2:51 pm #55525
That is encouraging0
01/22/2019 at 6:50 pm #55630
Geoff/Inglewood/Jay: Great conversation, so sorry I missed it the last few days!
I think that if you have a second stream of income, or lack of time is an issue, then going for the 10X+ long tail is the way to go. Maximize your return per hour spent, and you don’t have a need for daily cash flow (to pay all your bills).
When you go full time, I think having those constant sales are more important. Small, everyday sales can add up and help fund other projects (or just pay the bills). If you are just long tail, then you need to either have very low cash needs or a very large inventory (preferably both!) so that there is a consistent flow of cash for everyday expenses.
I think this is why Jay and Ryanne are successful with their model, and why commodity folks are in the churn and burn. We are trying to have a bit of both, having commodity items fund purchases of long tail while still paying the bills everyday. I don’t think churn and burn is what you want to do forever, but it is a great way to start and has it’s place…0
01/23/2019 at 9:52 am #55672
It’s been very interesting how our thought process has started to change this month. We’re starting “to take price” (this is a term sales guys used when they would raise prices to customers where I work) on a few staple items we sell. Our sample size is only a few weeks, but will be interesting in a few months to see how the numbers work out.
Worst case scenario, I just lower prices and sell items for a quick turnaround if our pricing increases are wrong. For us I think it is the time to experiment – still have incomes coming in, and don’t rely on eBay profits to pay the bills yet.0
01/14/2019 at 10:55 am #55080
I would like a smaller version of your Bottom Line already enjoyed.
At this first successful juncture, I’m now ready for the next, and if all things remain the same,
The income should follow. After that, I may never know, just ready for a new normal now.
As for doubling inventory, I don’t look for the same types of inventory to double. While at the flea yesterday, I passed on some good sellers which I already have listed, and branched out into different areas. Yet I hear you, and hearing you for me means there may be more clothing to sell in my future, or other things that don’t necessarily really excite me.0
01/21/2019 at 1:17 pm #55508
Yeah, we sometimes sell things we don’t really enjoy, but it’s usually just a one off. We dont regularly sell things we hate.0
01/14/2019 at 10:32 am #55075
Thank you for pointing out so much, and yes, I was all ears during those discussions. I am glad you made comment so nobody actually perceives what I implied as perfect math in that by doubling your store, you double your income.
I pick like a mini Steve (minus car parts and electronics) and I long tail like a mini Jay & Ryanne, not quite so long tail and with much, much less inventory. By combining those styles, which I’ve already done to varying degrees, and then by doubling the listings, I believe that there may be a good chance to double the income. Certainly there is a sticking point and a plateau, yet I doubt I’ll ever experience enough growth to see that in the near future. And yes, the key words for me are Consistency in Sales, with the ability to walk away from the work for a month maybe, and still have that consistency. That is my focus, and not a real hard doubling of the bottom line. I enjoy that sort of consistency on occasion, yet it always follows a big buyout of really good stuff. So, I require more big buyouts of the same cool stuff, so more time in the field, which I can do and love to do. And then the listing. I will proceed with that increased listing load strategically and with caution. So we shall see!
- This reply was modified 1 month ago by totommyto.
01/15/2019 at 9:58 am #55179
Link to our discussion about Diminishing Returns… it’s a real life economic theory that can take a lifetime to master. Growth in non-linear, and knowing where you are in your business maturity is a key piece to it.0
01/15/2019 at 4:38 pm #55204
Thank you, very, very meaty stuff…0
01/15/2019 at 5:37 pm #55209
In that link you say “This is why I put some degradation in my forecast STR numbers for future months.”
What does that formula look like?
01/16/2019 at 12:47 pm #55259
Mark: Not a formula, but I go by gut.
I look at the sales curve for each month in prior years. So, if I wanted to have the exact curve and the exact STR in the future, I would forecast the exact same STR each month that it was last year. But, if I’m seeing (and I have) that I’m at a lower STR currently, then I will lower the STR in the future by 1-2% than what that month was in the prior year.
So if March was 14% STR last year, but I’m seeing that my STR in Dec-Jan is lower than Dec-Jan of last year, I will forecast 12% or 11%, whatever smells right.
So I use the past as a sales curve guide, and the current for a reality check.0
01/14/2019 at 8:26 am #55048
December 30 – January 5, 2019
Total Items in Store: 1,528
Items Sold: 25
Gross Sales: $769.28
Cost of Items Sold: $80.20
Highest Price Sold: $129.99 (men’s jeans)
Average Price Sold: $30.77
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $119.35
Number of items listed this week: 63
Store 2 (CAD)
Total Items in Store: 649
Items Sold: 7
Gross Sales: $101.30
Cost of Items Sold: $2.00
Highest Price Sold: $23.99 (vintage patch)
Average Price Sold: $14.50
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
Number of items listed this week: 48
Amazon.ca sales: $557.00 (CAD) (Approx $139.25 net profit)
Amazon.com sales: $1,094.00 (Approx $273.50 net profit)
Doing my numbers every week really brings things home. It felt like a slower week, but we actually did well by our standards. I was pushing to get more listings up on both accounts last week. Almost entirely bread and butter items. Not sure if the activity helped sales or not, but I’ll take it. Going to push harder this week.
Amazon numbers are up, with some shipments that were sent early in the new year starting to hit the warehouses. Having the additional income streams is really helping to buoy our numbers and lessen stress about going full-time online.
No notable scavenge of the week. Bought lots of bread and butter items, but nothing that was a definite home run.1+
01/14/2019 at 8:41 am #55050
Items in Store 1078
Items Sold 30
Total Sales $594.00
Total Profit $526.00
Average profit $17.53
Average sales price $19.80
New Listings 34
Since I’ve been on the kick about how we should not forsake low dollar items lately, this week is a PERFECT example of why. I only sold one item for $50 – everything else was low dollar. I sold a lot of items though, and still got up to almost $600 for the week.
If I did not list low dollar items, I would have only had a $50 week!
Having a diverse store in items AND price creates more consistent sales.
Now hopefully this week I can sell some more of those $50+ items. I have a potential buyer for a pinball machine which will net me about $1300, so this week should be good.2+
01/14/2019 at 8:49 am #55051
- Location: Southern California
Total Items in Store: 323 Ebay, About 55 Mercari
Items Sold: 8 Ebay, 2 Mercari
Gross Sales: $178 Ebay, $30 Mercari
Cost of Items Sold: $53 + $11 shipping included + 1 item ours
Highest Price Sold: $42 b.o. new pillow sham paid $27 clearance two months ago. I was hungry for sale)
Average Price Sold: $23 Ebay, $15 Mercari
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $4
Number of items listed this week: 13 Ebay, 26 Mercari
Very slow work week with barely any sales until Sunday. Interesting podcast. I like how you touched on comparing Simon’s method to your own. We have plentiful sourcing here and I started out sort of curating with a goal to be like a fancy Etsy settlor with a shop full of awesome vintage items. However, I’ve really shifted to a “great items at great prices” method with best offer in full swing. I’m working on liquidating piles at this point, so that totally makes sense for me.
Right now, it’s all about digging into the piles. Three years ago I started buying coffee mugs – Starbucks and character mainly – because I was shipping phobic. Some of them I discover make me groan but there are some cool ones. I’m also listing some of my childrens’ book sets on Mercari.
Watched the first episode of the Marie Kondo show. The FB groups are making jokes about licking their chops over the stuff people will donate after watching that show. I felt pretty good about myself after watching on one hand. On the other hand I definitely have quite a few cleaning out projects in closets and garage – mostly kids toys, paper filing, photos, and stuff from my parents’ house – that I haven’t gotten to yet. My inventory is not in our living space and I love to organize but there are many demands on my time. One of of goals for this year is to break down the clean out into bite size areas. Her method of taking everything out I can attest to after remodeling our kitchen. Importantly, I don’t know if it’s more reselling or aging, but I’m less inclined to be a consumer these days and have become way more utilitarian. I’ll occasionally walk through Target or Pottery Barn and be like I really don’t need any of this cute stuff. So I guess the scavenger side has really taken hold at this point in my life. It’s really a thrill though to get a great deal on something quality that we do need.
Have a great week!3+
01/14/2019 at 10:09 am #55069
I think the brilliance of her method if to make a big pile of all the stuff you have of one category. I think most people hide away all their stuff so have no idea how many clothes, books, toys, etc they actually have.4+
01/16/2019 at 11:54 am #55251
After hearing about the Marie Kondo method on the podcast on the way to work yesterday, I heard it mentioned twice more during the day so it certainly seems like a big trend at the moment.0
01/16/2019 at 12:57 pm #55262
I keep hearing people talk about it – in person, on the radio, on TV….
But, anyone I ask who is talking about it has never seen the show (even the local radio guy who talks about it every hour who I emailed)….is this just a big Netflix marketing stunt? Has anyone seen the show at all?
Lots of articles in papers saying that thrift stores are overwhelmed with items now because of this show – but the ones I went to today were quiet and the staff hasn’t noticed any change.1+
01/16/2019 at 1:15 pm #55265
I’ve gone thrifting twice in the past week, and both times the stores had wayyyyy less merchandise than they did in December. Only 1 store had an obvious glut of stuff they were trying to get rid of. The shelves were bare in a few stores, even. Not sure what’s going on? 🙁0
01/16/2019 at 1:25 pm #55271
I go to a Salvation Army, Goodwill, and Value Village every week.
All 3 are lower in inventory. The Salvation Army was bare a few weeks ago (completely empty shelves) and I asked why – I guess they purge everything at the beginning of January and July, and start fresh.
The Goodwill seems average, but the parking lot is emptier then usual and less shoppers in store. The Value Village is right in a major tourist area, and seems to have a lot of drop-in shoppers from out of town, but the parking lot has been noticeably quieter the last few weeks.
As for finding items, it seems average to me the last few weeks. Not finding a tons of amazing items, but still leave each store with a bag of good items.0
01/16/2019 at 2:59 pm #55282
- Location: Southern California
I watched a couple more episodes. The people are committed and spending a lot of time doing it, with off camera babysitters or empty nesters. Maybe it will take people a while to get it done, but I think it will be a good thing. I only made a couple of thrift stops this week and it’s lean so far.0
01/17/2019 at 8:31 am #55307
I read Marie Kondos book a few years ago. The show is fine, but the book (meaning following the instructions in the book) was absolutely life altering. I recommend it to anyone. Yes it can take a couple months to do the process correctly but totally worth it.1+
01/14/2019 at 9:38 am #55060
Nice title – looking forward to listening. A couple of weeks ago I felt a little silly when other folks on the forum pointed out that they do not pay for boxes (and i like pay a lot of money for boxes.) Anyway, it felt good grabbing free packing peanuts off craigslist this week as that tends to be a large packing cost for me typically — trying to keep all of those packaging costs close to zero excluding gas for the car. I don’t suppose anyone has figured out how to get around that one?
Total items in store (beginning of week): 424
Items sold: 18
30 day sell through (rate): 18.72%%
Gross Sales: $999.49
Cost Paid for Items sold: $212.75
Shipping Cost: $352.90
Ebay Fee’s: $84.57
Paypal Fees: $32.59
Total Costs: $682.81
Net Profit: $316.68
Profit % Rev: 32%3+
01/14/2019 at 9:45 am #55062
Geoff… One place to check out for boxes that you need to buy. Given that Ebay is down to only a couple of sizes and we use boxes that are not the same size as what Ebay offers and inbetween sizes the USPS offers, check out Staples.com
I know you would think an office supply store would not be an inexpensive place to buy, but when we compared the cost to the sizes that Ebay has dropped out of offering, we found Staples to be 50% or even less than what we got from the Ebay store, way less than Uline and the Lb. Test Burst Stregth is about the same. Large rolls of brown kraft paper is less also.
Check them out and compare. And they usually ship next day and if over a small dollar amount they ship free.
Mike at MDCGFA5+
01/14/2019 at 10:05 am #55068
Thanks for the tip Mike – I most certainly will0
01/14/2019 at 10:10 am #55070
When its affordable, we’re going to buy an all electric car. There are currently places to charge for free in our area, plus its much cheaper to charge at home than buy fuel. I think in the next couple years there will be an affordable electric car that gets 300 miles a charge.0
01/14/2019 at 10:18 am #55071
Boy that’s a thought. My car has been in the shop since before Thanksgiving. Supposedly I will get it back today ?? Maybe and it will be about $1,000. It was super hard to find the cause of why the whole security system kept failing and then the cut off switch kicked in and shut the whole car off dead stride while driving. Then it locked the car up and it would not crank at all.
Makes one think, an electric car that also drives itself. Just Google your estate sales for the day, plug in the routes and off you go, silently cruising for inventory, letting the car drive itself, while doing research on your phone.
01/14/2019 at 11:47 am #55085
During my days of traveling all across New England selling things to companies I made it all too close justifying to myself buying a car with that kind of technology for way too much and more money than i actually had to buy a car…. the thought of actually having the car drive for me was so intoxicating. That would have been such a gigantic mistake but the excel spreadsheets i had justifying the cost were scary in hindsight….. it did not take into account THE JOB GOING AWAY : )
when affordable i too look forward to an electric car.0
01/14/2019 at 12:20 pm #55092
Or maybe we’ll just give up our apartments and live in autonomous electric rooms on wheels:
01/14/2019 at 11:39 am #55082
In general you can get free boxes and I do. But, I still do have to buy the speciality boxes. Not too much cost. I have to buy the 48 x 4×4 bows for golf clubs, 20 X 15 X 6 boxes for brief cases (the eBay box that the 10 X 8 X 6 comes in works fine, but I am all out!) and a few others. Shipping is much more fun now.
01/14/2019 at 11:42 am #55083
Btw, I get my boxes from a local wholesaler. About the same price as Uline, but I pick them up so no shipping charges – shipping can be 75% of the cost of the boxes.
01/14/2019 at 11:54 am #55089
I agree Mark — I do not think i will ever get away from buying some boxes — as you cannot beat having the right box to ship that hard to package thing. I just try to remember the whole fiasco when actually sourcing big items — i now pass on way more than i used to for the ‘pain in the but’ factor and the costs that kind of creep up with getting the packaging material.1+
01/14/2019 at 12:10 pm #55091
Every area has a corrugated carton plant that you can call up to get boxes cheap. I use to work in the industry and there is always extra boxes made, or scrap boxes we had to dispose of. If they don’t have any branding, we gladly would give them away instead of renting a recycling dumpster.
They also sell to small businesses, and may have pre-made inventory for various local industries that you can buy on the cheap.
You should be able to get boxes for around 20 cents each by going direct. Also, specialized distributors sell boxes cheap. For example, I’ve bought boxes at a local restaurant supply business for around the 20 cent mark (generic pizza boxes, and various other boxes that are intended for use in the food industry).
Uline isn’t the cheapest, but they have more selection and easy ordering.
Also, if you buy 1000 boxes at a time, you could get your own size/printing on them cheaply from your local corrugated plant. They are very cheap if you aren’t picky on the liner/medium required (the paper that makes the box) so they can run it with someone else’s boxes, if you don’t have a tight deadline (they can run it when they are slow), and will pick them up yourself. All you need is your dimensions and they would provide a quote.3+
01/14/2019 at 12:25 pm #55093
Thank you Inglewood — that is very solid insight0
01/14/2019 at 3:40 pm #55117
Good idea Inglewood. Being in the larger format printing business for years we bought a lot of boxes from a local converter, but they had some minimums and forget exactly what they were, but I will check around the area and see if their are any converters close by.
I also like to use nice, new, plain, generic boxes. Many found boxes in dumpster have been shipped in already and are scuffed up and in many cases the wall integrity has been compromised due to weight ebing stacked on top of them and mositure absorbtion. You being in the industry, know what I mean. The crush strength of a box is lessened when several heavier boxes have been riding across country in a truck. And the boxes from China, which dumpsters behind dept. stores are full of really suck and most have come over in cargo containers.
I also am not a big fan of the Ebay tape. I still say it makes boxes look like a “jack in the box” or circus box. Not very professional looking and is avery thin mil-gauge tape as compared to the Heavy Duty clear tape we box with. But free is free. But I only use the clear tape for our Etsy Sales.
mike at MDCGFA1+
01/14/2019 at 3:25 pm #55114
I used to buy from Uline but then they started charging a min. of $30 for shipping or if you came down to pick them up. They are 6 miles up the road from us. The reason they said is they wanted to cut down on the local pick-up traffic coming into the truck loading area because it was a traffic congestion-safety hazard. Baloney.
But now I ask you, compare the Uline prices, even if you pick them up with Staples and see if you see what I saw or see. Think you may be surprised. Maybe not.
Worth a comparative look.
Mike at MDCGFA0
01/14/2019 at 3:47 pm #55118
- Location: Hopedale, OH
I’ve been buying my packing supplies from an ebay store called theboxery. I did a quick comparison and their prices are generally cheaper than even Staples. Plus their shipping is free. Also, the best price I’ve found for small bubble bubble wrap is Sam’s club. Their 240 ft roll is only $13. Of course you’ve got to factor in the cost of the membership, but the price I pay there for paper products and meat alone pays for that.1+
01/14/2019 at 4:18 pm #55123
DT Good to know. I use the Boery for our 50# brown kraft rolls which i wrap some items with or use for stiff dunnage-filler. I also buy our cut lighter weight newsprint from them. Yes the have very good prices but oddly enough I have not priced their boxes. I just did my first quarter shipping supply inventory. Before I do a fill in order from Staples, I will cross reference them.
Who knows, may some day we could start a thread on the Forum where we all just post sources and prices for items we all use. I know Ryann has a “resources” section here but maybe just a long list of sources and when ever we find a source that is ceaper than the one posted, the more expensive source gets replaced. Items on Sale would not count. Just long term, hard core, low ball prices from sources for everything, newsprint, bubble wrap, peanuts, reinforced tape, etc., etc.
But now that I think about it many sellers, as do I, like to single source for as much as I can so I don’t have to place a bunch of separate orders. Oh, well an idea.
But the Boxery is a very good source. And yes we too have a Costco Business Membership which has a section of supplies for business owners on their online website.
mike at MDCGFA0
01/14/2019 at 9:31 pm #55158
Yep, I get the 240 SQ ft bubble wrap from Sams along with the tape. I also get their copy\printer paper. A steal when it is on sale.
01/14/2019 at 2:00 pm #55107
Consider these boxes (free from USPS) for golf clubs and similar long but skinny items:
There is a shorter version as well. I will sometimes tape two together as long as the item is not easily breakable.
Of course, you have to ship them priority or express.1+
01/14/2019 at 9:33 pm #55159
Those boxes work for some of the irons, but not for most of the drivers. Most drivers are about 45″ or so, so a 48″ box can handle just about any golf club.
01/14/2019 at 10:46 pm #55163
Gotcha. I will tape two boxes together in order to get the height I need, but then the boxes aren’t as sturdy. Depends on whether you feel the item needs an un-compromised box or not.0
01/14/2019 at 11:43 am #55084
- Location: Ohio
Thank you for the podcast!
My Store Week Jan 6-12, 2019
Total Items in Store: 1073
Items Sold: 20
Gross Sales: $378.40
Cost of Items Sold: $55.27
Highest Price Sold: $39.99 (Men’s Florsheim Shoes)
Average Price Sold: $18.92
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
Number of items listed this week: 3
As others have reported, it was a busy week of many low dollar sales – and it felt good to have movement and “feel busy”… I always wonder how accepting (low) offers affect ranking and sales – in other words – if one accepts a low dollar offer that you are on the fence on, yet maybe haven’t had a sale in a day or two (or more!) – does this “help” your search ranking enough to make a positive difference in your store so that you make more sales? This week, some buyers got very good deals on items I could have sold for more money, but small $ sales are better than none, and I wanted to have a better week than last week. My hunger was definitely stronger than my patience!1+
01/14/2019 at 11:47 am #55086
1/7/19 – 1/13/19
Total Items in Store: 10,200 – Main Ebay Store. 2nd Ebay Store – 200 items.
Items Sold: 41 – Main Ebay Store. 8 – 2nd Ebay Store.
$: $489 – Main Ebay Store. $85 – 2nd Ebay Store.
Highest Price Sold – 2 books at $35 on the min Ebay Store. 1 record at $30 on 2nd Ebay store.
ASP: $11.92 – main Ebay store. $10.63 – 2nd Ebay store.
Combined COGS for both Ebay stores: $55.69
# of items listed: 70+ between both Ebay stores & Etsy.
Etsy sales – 0
Poshmark sales – 0
“Gut feelings report”
I haven’t listed to the podcast yet, but I will say how I’m feeling about the past week of sales:
It felt like a slow week, and it was a really slow week. Also, a very low dollar week. I didn’t list for several days and only caught up with listing this weekend. That didn’t help. I’ve only sold a few items out of those just listed, which is unusual. I’ve also been too busy to really focus on Ebay like I should’ve over the past few weeks, so I take partial blame. For me to list 70+ items in a week is no big deal, it doesn’t take me much time to list at all, and I find it enjoyable.
At the very least, I’m happy that COGS are very low and that it is still chugging along, albeit poorly. As long as I list, I will eventually sell. I have quite a bit to list, so I’m not worried about future listings or future sales.
However, sales do feel really slow and low for January. January and August are usually my best months, so I’m a bit worried that sales are lagging this much for my stock of items. I think the economy is worse off than people are letting on, and the government shutdown is not helping. I only had 1 sale yesterday, and no sales so far today on the main Ebay store. I am not in panic mode yet, but I am back to a “watch and be cautious” mode like I was back in 2008. I’m pretty much going to curtail my Ebay sourcing at this time and just list down what I have, unless I find really good stuff thrifting.
I also realize that nothing I sell in either of my ebay stores is “essential,” so the fact that I am getting sales on random items is pretty good.
Pleased to see that the 2nd Ebay store has come back to life! I’ve got a bunch to list on that store, so at least these sales motivate me.1+
01/14/2019 at 11:59 am #55090
- Location: Virginia Beach
I don’t allow my gut to chime in too much on sales, as I look at the “Past 7 Days” Sales marker on my dashboard every day, and can see how things are changing or keeping up. Last week was great, but Sat and Sun dropped off badly with just 3 sales total. Hoping it picks back up, esp while I’m trying to stay motivated listing lots of smaller dollar lots of military stickers and whatnot. Trying to work through some piles I’ve been passing on for months…
01/06/18 – 01/12/18
Total Items In Store: 968
Items Sold: 28
Sales (Total Sales – Selling Costs): $929.70
Highest Price Sold: $90 – Bad Elf Pro 2200 BE-GPS-2200 Bluetooth GPS Receiver Data Logger
Average Price Sold: $33.20
Cost of Items Sold: $53.84
Returns/Refunds: 2 – a sport watch/activity tracker that wouldn’t charge for the Buyer and a lot of pottery shards that wasn’t the one shown in the photos (I didn’t label the baggies of shards, and didn’t properly ID the correct one)
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $226.44
Number of Items listed this week: ~300
01/14/2019 at 12:45 pm #55097
Going to listen while doing a packing party for the warehouse…
Week of 1/06-01/12
Total Items in Store: 2,578 (Up 53% YOY)
Number of Items Listed: 140
Number of Items Sold: 66 (Down 1% YOY)
(Includes 1 Etsy, 1 Bonanza, 0 TrueGether, 3 Poshmark, 0 Mercari)
Weekly STR: 9% (Down 7% YOY)
Total Product Sales: $1,894 (Down 7% YOY)
Sales Volume Variance to Prior Year: Down $30
Sales Price Variance to Prior Year – Up $111
Cost of Items Sold: $409
Cost of Labor: $80
Highest Item Sold: $84 – Yukon Charlies Mountain Profile Snowshoes Adventure Pack
Competition: Highest Priced Sale: Veronica wins the week and Veronica leads for the year 2-0.
# Listed: 1,612
# Sold: 42
# Listed: 431
# Sold: 14
# Listed: 535
# Sold: 9
# Listed: 159
# Sold: 1
# Listed: 242
# Sold: 3
# Listed: 91
# Sold: 0
Started our quarterly review of our listings (we turn the auto relisting off in SixBit, and then look at the listing and resubmit it), and it has been beneficial. Lots of price changing, and most importantly, many of the Ebay Item Specifics changed, and our data didn’t change with it. Not using eBay’s Predefined Labels in Item Specifics (the labels in the drop downs) will limit you in search. We have seen a TON of our clothing and shoes that we have had to change. Hoping that gets sales improving in clothing especially.
Also noting that our Sell Thru Rate in Clothing has dropped Year Over Year about 7%. Interesting that this correlates to the 7.5% drop that eBay is showing in the Shirts and Jeans category. So eBay says that their overall market in Shirts and Jeans is down 7.5% YOY. Wondering if that is drop in interest by buyers, drop in sales value (market is oversaturated), or losing market share to Poshmark. Probably a mix of those items.
Going to back off crossposting a lot to Mercari right now. Trying to stay with FOCUS (Follow One Course Until Successful) and work on just getting our Poshmark numbers up. I almost have us at Posh Ambassador status (I just need to buy something and leave a review) which should help. Also started crossposting older items and lower value items as well to see if we can get more STR on that platform. So far, so good.0
01/14/2019 at 1:29 pm #55103
I’m surprised that your sales are down. No one needs ephemera, but used clothing sales should go up during a slowdown, recession or not. Is it possible that a lot of buyers are buying clothes for themselves directly in thrift stores at this point? Or a lot of traffic has moved to Poshmark and other sites?
I have noticed an increase in buyers in thrift stores buying for themselves over the past few months. While some may be fellow resellers (I can definitely tell who the majority are, but sometimes you never know), there are a lot of people clearly out looking for themselves, while also having fun with friends and family.
There has also been a trend of thrift stores renovating and marketing directly to buyers, not just resellers. Brightly lit Goodwills, curated front window displays like a normal shop, etc,.0
01/14/2019 at 6:31 pm #55140
Almasty: probably all are true. I have seen the shirt market drop in price for the brands I can find, so I’m probably going to do some price dropping and getting out of a lot of this market.0
01/15/2019 at 9:36 am #55175
Shirts are dead. I’ve only sold 10 shirts total in the last 90 days. All my shirts are promoted with free shipping and best offer.
I can’t sell a ralph lauren shirt to save my life. I quit sourcing shirts but I do have a backlog to list from. I haven’t listed any in quite a while either.
Currently I have 87 shirt listings…maybe I just don’t have enough listings.
Either way, I’m inspired to try a 20% off sale on what I do have.
It has been a long time that I’ve done a sale. I am a fan of the changes they have made – a lot more user friendly now. I decided to add free shipping as well for the sale. This way I don’t have to edit the listings to free shipping.0
01/16/2019 at 12:39 pm #55257
Shirts have definitely slowed down. Big glut in the market I think, and values have come down on what is selling. Supply and Demand….can’t fight it…0
01/14/2019 at 2:31 pm #55111
- Location: Hopedale, OH
Jan 6 – 12
Total Items in Store: 2010
Items Sold: 41
Total Sales : $1169
* above yearly average of $906
* below 2017 total week sales of $1267
Highest Price: $150 (Katadyn Microfilter Pocket Replacement Filter)
Average Price: $29
Cost of Goods Sold: $68
Costs of Goods Purchased this Week: $150
Number of New Items Listed this Week: 23
I had a decent week as well. Any week where I’m above my yearly average is great. Although I didn’t get as much listing done as I would have liked. I spend my whole evenings packing and barely have enough time to photograph and list. But I can’t complain too much yet; I’m making a lot of sales!
We went to an auction on Saturday that we thought was going to be a bust, but were pleasantly surprised to find a lot of good stuff. My scavenge of the week was a large original colored woodcut print by the artist Irving Amen. Signed and numbered. I couldn’t find this exact print even on Google, but other smaller ones were being sold in the $200 range. I got it for $3. I also bought a box lot of tobacco pipes with some other misc stuff, and inside one of the boxes was a gift card from Lowes. I called the number on the back and verified that it had $25 on it! WOOT!
This week I’m going to try and focus on listing, even if it kills me. I hate that my inventory number keeps dropping below 2000. I’m proud of that number and it hurts when it gets lower than that.2+
01/14/2019 at 2:55 pm #55112
Thank you for the podcast! I always look forward to listening to it.
Week of 1/6-1/12
Total Items in Store: eBay 301 Poshmark 131
Number of Items Listed: eBay 35 / 12 x-posted to Poshmark
Number of Items Sold: 20 (eBay 18, Poshmark 2, etsy 0) (1 int’l sale)
Total Sales: $359.89 (eBay $299.92 / Poshmark $60)
Average Sold Price: eBay $16.66, Poshmark $30
Cost of Items Sold: approx. $20
Cost of Labor: $10.5 (paid stepdaughter to crosspost to Poshmark)
Highest Item Sold: $35 tied: lot of wooden toy furniture & a Cache animal print wiggle dress
Most interesting item sold: lot 14 used pantyhose ($30), sold within 2 days, to Canada.
Didn’t hit my goal w/ listing, but did better than usual & much better than recently. Tried a different strategy w/ Poshmark: sending out offers only once a week on Fri night (rather than nightly), BUT, I also wasn’t crossposting regularly to Poshmark, will continue to experiment.2+
01/14/2019 at 4:23 pm #55125
Another good week! Went all in again – I spent about $3k on a big oilfield surplus auction. All sorts of stuff, from welding rods to gas meters to big capacitors. I got a freight quote to ship it to me and it looks like that will cost $270 (not in these numbers). Basically, the auction company requires pickup ASAP and I can’t take time off work. (It’s not that much more than my daily take-home pay anyway – assuming the quote doesn’t increase.)
Hoping I can receive some of this stuff this week so I can get it listed.
Sales: CAD$1288, 9 items.
COGS: $64 –> Item profit: $1019
After-tax cashflow: -$2470
Listed: $140, 5 items
Sold: audio connector thingies $324, emergency lights with expired batteries $320 (this now pays off an auction buy from about 3 months ago + $200 profit). I like this sale because I ALMOST threw these out and I hated looking at them right up till they sold. They took up a lot of room in storage and I was pretty sure nobody wanted them. Ha!2+
01/14/2019 at 4:55 pm #55129
Week of Jan 6-12
* Total Items in Store: 1300 eBay, 10 Mercari
* Items Sold: 25 eBay
* Cost of Items Sold: $24.65+ $39 Commission
* Total Sales: $681.72
* Highest Price Sold: $125 vintage David Palumbo brutalist iron menorah
* Average Price Sold: $27.27
* Returns: 0
* Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
* Number of items listed this week: 8
I actually had a really good week, but sales have slowed down since the weekend. The discussion about the government shutdown does make sense.
Between my end of year trip and a last minute trip I made last week, I didn’t list much, and I haven’t purchased any new inventory. I still have a backlog of items to list.1+
01/14/2019 at 7:10 pm #55144
1/6/2019 – 1/12/2019
Total Items In Store: 3508
Items Sold: 66
Cost of Items Sold: $445
Total Sales: $5213.79
Highest Price Sold: $600 (Leather Jacket)
Average Price Sold: $79
# Items Listed: 111
Money Spent on New Inventory: $1495
Scavenge of the week, $25 Leather Jacket sold above for $600 in under 12 hours.
New years business goal was to try a little Amazon action in my “spare time”. lol
Got my account set up in the last week of December and acted on that resolution immediately and sent in a few things for FBA on Jan 1. Also have a few things I’m doing merchant fulfilled for now. After a week or so of waiting for my units to go live, I finally have my first week of AMZ sales.
Total items listed 55
Items Sold 9
Cost of Items sold $24
Total Sales $320.02
Average Price Sold $35.561+
01/14/2019 at 8:11 pm #55151
This was a rough ebay week, but a decent Poshmark week (where I have 1/3 the items).
ebay Items in store: 1050
ebay Items sold: 19
ebay Sales: $630
Poshmark: $275 (after fees)
Mercari and Depop: $0
Grand Total: $905
Once again, crossposting continues to give me that sales bump weekly.0
01/14/2019 at 8:26 pm #55152
T-Statt: In response to jeans & mens shirts being down 7.5% YOY, Yep. I have a bucket of mens jeans that move like molasses.. I rarely get mens shirts these days but bundles will do well for me when I can grab 4-5 XLs.
Here are my bolos for jeans right now that bring a $20 ring.
larger sizes waist, shorter inseam.
work pants and lined pants
Carhartt of course
Selling in bundles by size1+
01/15/2019 at 9:33 am #55173
Big and Tall stuff is an easy sell – as someone who wears tall shirts (they have the size with a T – like 2XLT) they are VERY expensive at retail and the number of stores selling these items at a fair price is lessening every day. I’m in Canada, and only 2 stores sell Big & Tall clothing now with Sears gone here since last year.
My favorite stores in the U.S. are also dying off – K-Mart was great for Big and Tall clothes at a reasonable price, but all the local ones to me are gone. The retailers that still exist in the U.S. are charging crazy prices for low quality product – Destination XL is horrible. I’m basically left at brick & mortar stores trying to see if the 3-5 shirts at Marshalls interest me.
The U.S. is one of the only countries that has online retailers selling big and tall clothing for a decent price – if you are outside the U.S. like me, you are stuck with eBay or a few other online retailers to get a deal.
Anytime I find Big and Tall stuff, especially with the tags, it is a quick and easy sale. Most of my items go to Europe where it must be VERY hard to get the sizes that are in the U.S.
Huge shoes are another struggle to find – I wear size 17…good luck finding them at a mall or for a good price when you do find them 🙁1+
01/16/2019 at 12:37 pm #55256
It has picked up a bit this week. I think the updated listings (using the NEW predefined Item Specifics from eBay) and repricing to the current market is helping. Lower value than what I would like, but I can’t fight the market…0
01/15/2019 at 9:18 am #55168
Sales have been trickling in.
I have been taking best offer on anything remotely reasonable.
These are times are when you list and take any reasonable offer.
Hopefully, things will turn around soon.
01/15/2019 at 9:22 am #55169
In 2018, all my sales came in during the day and I would have crickets over night.
So far this month, my sales and offers happen a lot overnight and I get crickets during the day.
Things are definitely odd right now.0
01/15/2019 at 4:24 pm #55201
Same with us RTWV: Wake up to several offers and just one sale today.
It is what it is!
mc at MDCGFA0
01/15/2019 at 4:35 pm #55203
- Location: South Dakota
I’ve sold three items in the last 24 hours that sold within hours of listing.
It’s just a matter of the right stuff at the right time.1+
01/15/2019 at 9:29 am #55170
Week January 6 – January 12, 2019
Total Items in Store: 982
Items Sold: 22 (8 consignment)
Cost of Items Sold: $140 (18.6% of sales)
Total Sales: $751.39 ($168 consignment)
Highest Price Sold: $100 (1965 John Coltrane Ascension)
Average Price Sold: $34.15
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $120
Number of items listed this week: 18
Promoted listings test: 10 sales, $318.43 (42.4% of total sales), $16.21 fees (5.1% of sales)
Other fun sales included this Painted Cast Iron Georgia Seal that sold for $75 (paid $10 total for a box of 20 these on the last day of an estate sale) and these c1970s/early 1980s Brazilian sunglasses sold for $65 BO that I got for maybe $3 at the flea market.
Was able to get out to a couple estate sales this weekend and had some neat finds:
– 1940s Ouija board (thanks @ryanne, never would have picked this up without your tip!)
– Embroidered Scottish Infantry patch
– practically new 1950s Rolls Razor setup
Much more of a “normal” week for me after 3-4 really high weeks in a row. It felt like it too, only mailing 2-3 packages per day as opposed to 5-7 per day. Avg price was also down, thinking that perhaps the holiday gifting and also the “self gifting” post holiday might be slowing a bit. Looking at my historical numbers, this is pretty typical. January is my best or second best month for the past 4 years running. Last year, my January was $3419 gross and the first two weeks this year have been $1839 gross.
- This reply was modified 1 month ago by Brian Treasures from Grandmas.
01/15/2019 at 9:32 am #55172
This article at the end says to try “Market your lower cost items”.
Maybe this is good advice to us to try and list our lower cost items right now if we haven’t.
01/15/2019 at 11:22 am #55181
What’s interesting is that my normal bread & butter book sales are continuing like normal, but in much lower numbers. My cheaper ephemera sales have slowed down quite a bit.
I suspect that cheap clothing and necessary books, housewares, hard goods will continue like normal, but cheaper end non-essentials will just stop selling. For higher-end items, it’s probably mixed, depending on how the stock market is doing or not a thought for those with a lot of $$$.0
01/15/2019 at 9:37 am #55176
- Location: Schnecksville, PA
Jan 6 -Jan 12, 2019
Total Items in Store: 3482
Items Sold: 80
Gross Sales: $1409.56
Consignor Commission (COGS): $361.83 (25.7%)
Highest Price Sold: $150 (Bassett Vintage Dresser-local pickup)
Average Price Sold: $17.61
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
Number of items listed this week: 50
Spent a lot of time getting things cleaned up and organized this week,
so not a lot listed. Happy to see our average sales price is slowly
climbing so our selection of inventory is changing.
Can’t wait to listen!0
01/15/2019 at 11:51 am #55183
- Location: St. Louis
Total Items in Store: 2700
Items Sold: 26
Cost of Items Sold: $25.75
Total Sales: $838
Highest Price Sold: $85 (50s Arrow shirt)
Average Price Sold: $32.23
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $90
Number of items listed this week: 70
I also have about $200 from Saturday that sold as best offer that haven’t been paid for yet 🤦♂️
Found some great gold when I went mining on Friday. 2 vintage Pendleton Mackinaw coats for $5 each, New vintage Levis’s plaid flannel-lined jean jacket for $5, Nautical streetwear style from the 90s for $4, Kurt Cobain Mohair cardigan for $2….0
01/15/2019 at 10:09 pm #55222
Marie in FloridaParticipant
Total store items: 445
Number of items sold: 5
Total eBay sales (not counting s/h): $210
Highest price sold: $90 Limited Edition print
Average price sold: $42
Returns: Somebody keeps telling me he’s going to return something. He keeps asking me to send him prepaid shipping. I’ve told him a few times to start a return. He’s now talking about returning outside of Ebay. He’s got 4 more days to make this return and then it’s done. I hope.
Money spent on new inventory: $
Sell through rate for the week: I think it’s .0110 Is that right? Anyway much better week1+
01/16/2019 at 12:50 pm #55261
Marie: Yes, your STR is 1.1% for the week.
Your week on a monthly basis would be 4.8% (5/7*30)/445.
That means that if you had sales all month like what you had this week, you would sell 4.8% of your inventory for the month.0
01/16/2019 at 9:14 am #55234
- Location: South Mississippi
We don’t track our numbers on a weekly basis, I don’t know how accurate that can be really, I think you need more time to really get a true reading. We track monthly. I wouldn’t get too depressed if your sales for a single week are down. Take a look at your average over a month, 6 months or even a whole year to really see your stores heartbeat.
Having said that we had a good week overall but I would have been just as happy if we had not because I know we will reach our STR goal by the end of the month which we are currently holding at a STR of .07% @ 17.00 APS.
With 2 weeks left to go I have no doubt we will meet or exceed our STR goal of .09% and maintain or exceed our current APS.
Wishing everyone great sales !
- This reply was modified 1 month ago by Tony2Times.
01/16/2019 at 11:48 am #55249
I got a mention in the podcast!
One minor correction. I actually list the vast majority of my hats at just under $20 initially. Once in a while I find something that I think is worth more but that’s uncommon. Sometimes I price at $15 when the target audience is just so small that I don’t want price to cause me to lose a sale (eg: “joe’s Plumbing Supplies, Someplace, WA”). I keep my $20 price for about 6 months at which point I’ll start running sales or add best offer. I permanently reduce hat prices after being listed 2 years and I start pulling them off eBay at around 3 years. I sell a lot of hats because I have a lot listed and because I’m patient. The average hat sale takes about 6 month.
My sales for this week are pretty normal for this time of year. The rainy weather here has meant few, if any yard sales which has put a damper on my sourcing and I only sold low-priced items this week.
Total Items in Store: 2639
Items Sold: 36
Total Sales: $690
Cost of Items Sold: $53
Average Price Sold: $19.17
Average Cost of Item: $1.49
Number of items listed this week: 75
YTD Sales: $1580
Average age of items in store (in days since listing): 368
Average number of days between listing and selling this week: 184
Median age of sales (in days, between listing and selling): 103
Sell-through rate (for the week): 1.36%2+
01/18/2019 at 11:07 pm #55379
Thanks for the shoutout on the podcast, Jay! You referred to what I had posted here (and also in other threads):
which is my method of not paying for any shipping costs on false inad returns. To respond to Ryanne’s comments about this on the podcast, this is different than the ebay functionality for TRS+ listings which allows you to not refund original shipping. What I describe is for sellers who do NOT offer free returns, and it involves doing a partial refund via PayPal in an amount that results in not being out ANY shipping costs, and most of the time involves no calls to ebay.
My method does not fix the problem of having an INAD on your record. I wonder if the TRS+ method does? (I’m guessing not).0
01/19/2019 at 9:21 am #55395
Are you sending money through Paypal outside the transaction? Or does eBay see the paypal refund in the return request?0
01/19/2019 at 5:25 pm #55407
I go into the PayPal transaction for the purchase in question and do a partial refund. Within a day or so, the ebay website sees that refund and prompts me to refund the rest of the money. At this point I don’t do anything, and within about 2-3 weeks the return auto-closes. I assume that if the buyer called ebay to complain they would get the rest of their money back, but then I would call to appeal. This hasn’t happened to me yet, so I can’t say for sure how it would turn out.0
01/18/2019 at 11:14 pm #55385
Here is the post I was trying to link to:
One thing I learned a while back is that trying to fight a return reason before I have received the item back is a no-go with ebay customer service – it just leads to maximum frustration. The way I have been avoiding this type of hellish experience recently is by waiting until I have received the item back AND the amount of return shipping has shown up on my ebay activity, then I go into paypal and refund original item price (not including original shipping) minus return shipping. Then I send a message to the buyer explaining why their refund is the amount that it is. So far for 3-4 returns, the buyer has either just not responded, or has responded telling me that they don’t like it. The return then auto-closes 2-3 weeks later. I started doing this on the advice of ebay reps.
I imagine that if a buyer calls ebay to fight these, that they would get the rest of their money back, at which point I could then appeal.
If my number of INAD/damage returns starts inching up towards 10 (thus risking being rated “very high”), I will start calling ebay to try to get the return reasons changed on the bogus INADs.0
01/19/2019 at 2:02 pm #55401
Sonia we do very much the same thing when we can but as TRS+ we do offer 30 day free returns.
But so tired of self centered buyers who like in other areas of life are just so focused on themselves and what they think they deserve and are entitled to in this world. But let’s not get into that can of worms.
But just think about a normal return for any reason, if you were making a return at any box store USA…
* You go shopping one day, buy a shirt for either yourself or as a gift for $10.
* It is 10 miles to the mall or store
* You get the item home and it either doesn’t fit, or color is wrong or even if you discover it is ripped in the middle and you decide to return it
* You drive 10 miles back to the store the next day with the shirt and your receipt
* You go to customer service and say, “I wish to return this shirt”
* They say ok, take the shirt and ask for your reciept and tell you they will credit your purchase of $10 back to you
* BUT NOW you say, “oh no, that won’t do. I want $15 back
* The clerk asks, “Why” and you answer, “Because I drive 10 miles here to shop last week, discovered a rip in the shirt and because of that I had to drive 5 miles back doen here, and 5 miles back home [a round trip], that was caused by your oversight of not seeing the internal rip
* So, you would like the big box store to REIMBURSE you for the wear and tear on your car at $.50 per mile.
GUESS WHAT THE ANSWER IS GOING TO BE…. Sorry we can only refund the amount of the exact purchase, the rest is on you. And don’t talk to us about the cost of your time either, because that also won’t fly.
The trip to and from both to shop and for the return is the cost a buyer has to bear in order to get goods and services that otherwise they can’t get for their selves. That’s your “Buyer Sweat Equity” into your receipt of goods and services. And a chance you are willing to take based on research and reviews that the seller you are buying from can and will deliver quality goods and great service most of the time. You knowing full well that at times, the services or product may come up defective.
So, then why do online buyers expect us as sellers to re-emburse them for absolutely everything, lot, stock and barrel for everything.
We recently got a heavy arctic coat returned. The reason was “the arms are too long”. The return was accepted of course due to 30 day auto returns but that did not stop me from sending him a quick reply.
I said, the description and item specific areas state the sleeve length of 22″ from arm pit to end of cuff. Did you pre-measure your arms? We are of the opinion that your arms are just too short”. Everybody here at the office had a good laugh on that. But I digress.
Have a great weekend..
Mike at MDCGFA in ATL1+
01/19/2019 at 5:30 pm #55409
“your arms are just too short” – LOVE IT! lol0
01/19/2019 at 7:19 pm #55412
If you do a manual refund via Paypal, you would still need to call ebay if you want to get a refund of your Final Value Fees, those aren’t automatically refunded outside of a “thru-ebay” refunds.1+
01/19/2019 at 8:26 pm #55414
You are right!! Argh, I hadn’t thought of that. Thanks for pointing it out. I’ll have to think about whether I want to try calling ebay about these returns after they close. Since I dread having conversations with ebay reps about false INADs, I may just put the lost FVFs down to cost of doing business, with that cost partially offset by the amount I save doing a partial refund instead of full. We’ll see.1+
01/19/2019 at 9:20 pm #55415
OK, so I just called ebay and was able to get my FVFs refunded for these transactions. It wasn’t too painful, either, probably b/c I wasn’t trying to argue about the return reason. Just spoke briefly with the first rep, and once they agreed that I should be refunded, I ended up talking to an account specialist who issued the refunds. What also helped from my point of view is that I had them do 5 of these all in one call. I think it would be too much overhead to call ebay for just one item at a time. So I’ll continue to wait to call ebay until I have a few of these piled up.
One funny thing I have to mention is the rep gave me a LOT of praise (lol) for actually going ahead and refunding the buyers for the false INAD returns, and no criticism at all for these being partial refunds that subtract out shipping costs. It sounded like they don’t like it when sellers get upset about the return reason and don’t *voluntarily* refund the buyer. So I feel like this call to ebay further validates my method. At least for now, until the next site update comes out and everything changes 🙂
I did ask them about the unfairness of having the false INAD dings on my account, which show up in the service metrics, and the account specialist said that they have no way of changing return reasons. It will be interesting to see what happens if/when ebay ever decides to go through with the plan of actually raising FVFs for sellers based on service metrics.
And so, like the sand of an hourglass, so goes the continuing saga of false INADS…2+
01/20/2019 at 10:05 am #55438
I’ve spoken in length with at least 3 anchor support reps about service metrics. They all told me you have to be a very poor seller to be penalized. It requires at least 4 separate things to happen. They all have to happen in order to be penalized.
– 10 or more NAD returns (in the same category/group) for that evaluation period.
– 1% or higher NAD return rate (in the same category/group)
– Exceed your peer group NAD return rate (in the same category/group) by an undisclosed percentage.
– Be evaluated in the “Very High” level of the NAD % chart…..also an undisclosed percentage.
Additionally, they all reps assured me that in the unlikely event we are penalized with higher FVFs for our service metrics, and have several “false” NAD returns, we can then appeal the FVF penalty and they would then look at the questionable returns individually. While they do not have the power to remove the false NAD returns from the record, they do have the power to overturn the FVF penalty if they see a history of false claims.
If it helps, even though I offer 30 day free returns, I had 11 NAD returns for the last evaluation period. 7 of them were “false” NADs for color, fit and one even tried to return something his dry-cleaner destroyed. This landed me with over 10 returns and just over 1%, but I’m still right in line with my peers by a tenth of a percent or so. I think everyone gets them regularly and that’s why they go by the peer average.
Remember when they started that horrible defect system a few years back and thousands of innocent sellers were kicked off ebay within in a few weeks? I truly think they are trying to perfect that system so it doesn’t happen like that again.
I totally agree with you on calling in. I try to wait until I have a few to call about. If it’s only one transaction, and it’s only going to save me a couple bucks, it’s not really worth an individual call.
- This reply was modified 1 month ago by The_SEAM_Store.
- This reply was modified 1 month ago by The_SEAM_Store.
01/20/2019 at 3:27 pm #55456
Thanks for that additional info from anchor support. That’s great to hear and re-assuring.1+
01/22/2019 at 6:38 pm #55628
01/23/2019 at 7:40 pm #55710
That’s a good question, so I just checked. I have been doing this partial refund thing for several months now, and my “cases closed w/o seller resolution” remains at 0.00%. So the only ding is the INAD, but that stays no matter what you do or how much you refund.0
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