11/03/2019 at 2:31 pm #69969RyanneKeymaster
- Location: Virginia
Join the conversation in the forum>> Our Store Week October 27-Nov 2, 2019 Total Items in Store: 8489 Items Sold: 44 Gross Sales: $1,217.43 Co
[See the full post at: Scavenger Life Episode 435: List and Forget, Still Works For Us]
11/03/2019 at 3:06 pm #69971RickerParticipant
- Location: Florida
Your soap Shtick is hilarious! If I ever rent an Airbnb from you, you’d better believe that I’m hoarding all of your soap! 😀
My Store Week October 27-Nov 2, 2019
Total Items in Store: 630
Items Sold: 25
Gross Sales: $2199.60
Cost of Items Sold: $194.14
Cost of helpers: $0
Highest Price Sold: $200.00 (Brook Brothers by Alden USA Shell Cordovan Penny Loafers)
Average Price Sold: $87.98
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $215.00
Number of items listed this week: 29
11/03/2019 at 3:19 pm #69972
We use liquid soap so bring your own little container 🙂
11/03/2019 at 3:32 pm #69973RickerParticipant
- Location: Florida
Thanks for the heads up! 😀
11/03/2019 at 4:29 pm #69974
Hey this is Anna, the girl that called a few weeks ago that is a new seller of Beauty Products.
I wanted to share my view about relisting every 30 days.
There are no solid rules about what everyone should be doing. Ebay is of course not hiding anyone’s listings, it really just comes down to your rank in search.
Ebay does bump up new listings in search, which is why some people do notice some increase in sales by relisting older items. However if there is not a demand for your item or you are priced too high this won’t help you.
In a store like Jay and Ryanne’s where they have unique items search rank may not be very important. If there are less than 20 of a certain item available than most likely the buyers will see them all, and rank will not matter.
If they had a pair of jeans that isn’t any different than hundreds of other pairs they may briefly benefit from relisting. But as was very well said in the podcast, is that chore going to take away from their enjoyment in the store?
I do think there are some sellers who enjoy ending their items and relisting because like Jay had said in the past it gives them a sense of control of what is happening.
I did an experiment where I relisted about 30 one-off items that have sat for a few months and one of them sold from doing that. With Bulk edit it only took me a few minutes to do.
I find that if I go through my store and lower the price on a ton of items by $1 it has a similar (if not greater) affect and I see an enormous boost of sales for a few days. Then it goes back to normal.
Anyway I don’t think we should be so polarized for or against the method of relisting. It is all about what you sell and what relisting will do for your quality of life. And know that by relisting you aren’t saving them from being invisible, you are just briefly bumping them up in search.
Thanks for another great podcast today.
Here are my recent numbers. I am growing fast and I wouldn’t be here without this podcast.
11/03/2019 at 5:32 pm #69979
All good info. You seem to be in the commodity business selling new beauty products. I forgot what percentage you said your cost of goods were. On $3500 gross profit last week, how much did those items cot you to buy? That’s where the meat is.
You make a great point that it makes sense for you to tweak listings since you are in a very competitive market. No one way to do anything. Our point was you should feel in control of your business.
11/03/2019 at 5:45 pm #69982
I make about 25%-33% profit on those numbers.
I make a lot more than someone who is simply sourcing wholesale because I am actively finding sales on deep discount that usually come with many free gifts with purchase that I sell.
It takes many hours of deal-hunting a week but I really enjoy it for some reason.
11/03/2019 at 6:03 pm #69985
Cool. So you probably made $1000 last week after 15% eBay/paypal fees and 65-75% COGS. You’ll definitely make more money finding those good deals. Just takes time. Sounds like you’re having fun and thats the important thing.
11/04/2019 at 10:01 pm #70054Steves StuffParticipant
- Location: Lakeland, Florida
@ SomethingFantastic – The relisting may or may not give a ranking boost. But what it DOES for sure do is make your item appear when someone searches by “newly listed”. So maybe that plays a role in the apparent boost you’re seeing.
- This reply was modified 2 years, 2 months ago by Steves Stuff.
11/07/2019 at 12:28 pm #70266
There was a talk by an eBay representative in the search program that was posted a while back here by Jay and Ryanne. He said that there is a temporary search boost that’s given to new listings.
11/07/2019 at 1:11 pm #70272
I’m wondering how folks are actually doing their end and relist process. If using the Relist function from Ended Items, that is probably not going to give much of a boost since I believe it still carries the same impressions, clicks, and sold information. Or, Sell Similar, which is what I have done, actually creates a completely new listing unassociated with the performance data on the old listing.
11/03/2019 at 5:19 pm #69978mnhynesParticipant
- Location: California
If you are having trouble using the bulk editor to modify these new required fields, I suggest you try the “File Exchange” method to update your listings. Basically you use a .csv formated spreadsheet where you download a file of your items then modify the fields using excel or similar program and upload the modified file. I’ve been using that to list and have found it is easy to list a lot of similar items. In this case I think it would help you. Just be careful because with great power comes great responsibility. Learn more here: http://bulksell.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?FileExchangeCenter
11/03/2019 at 5:32 pm #69980Mark SParticipant
2019-10-27 – 2019-11-02
Total Items In Store: 3304
Items Sold: 16
Cost of Items Sold: $ 60
Total Sales: $ 585.33
Highest Price Sold: $ 125 (CD Player)
Average Price Sold: $ 36.58
Money Spent on New Inventory: $ 18
Number of items listed: 31
Gut Sales Report for the week: Slow week. We are nearly half way thru the 4th quarter and sales have not picked up much. I am afraid that if things don’t pick up this next week, the 4th quarter may be a bust because at that point we are about halfway thru it.
Challenge of the week: I still have a lot of items I need to process and list.
Scavenge of the week: I found about 90 new baseball hats that I got for $36. My total of my selling price for these is about $1300. Long tail I know, but that is a good income stream to start.
11/03/2019 at 5:43 pm #69981Steve ListParticipant
- Location: Richmond, Calif.
As for clothing sizes, I sometimes put it as “vintage tag size” in the title and then I’ll show the actual measurements in the description.
I vote for the “list it and forget it” method. Many of my items are vintage and may be hard to fine so when that one special buyer is looking for that one special doo-dad, I want it available in my store. If it only takes a few days to sell great! – if it takes 5 years that is also great! I just ignore the “This listing hasn’t had any sales in at least 16 months. Please consider updating it” eBay notes under my older listings.
My Numbers for Oct. 2019
Total Listings: 1079
Had 45 Sales for a total of $835.60
Highest Price Sold: $90 – 1949 Watercolor by Stan Cohen (cost $4)
Average Price Sold: $18.57 – Average Cost: $2.40
Cost of Items sold: $108.18
Spent on new inventory: $8.21
Number of items listed: 52
Issues: 1 return ($8 Pepsi patch)
My numbers for the past three months have been very similar and flat, but November is looking much better as November 1st was almost a $300 day.
11/03/2019 at 10:18 pm #69993DoublythumbsParticipant
- Location: Hopedale, OH
Oct. 27 – Nov. 2
Total Items in Store: 2613
Items Sold: 23
Total Sales : $1114
* ABOVE yearly average of $950
Highest Price: $150 (Cardboard Electric Light Up Christmas Fireplace)
Average Price: $48
Cost of Goods Sold: $46
Costs of Goods Purchased this Week: $0
Number of New Items Listed this Week: 26
Wow. I really kicked butt with sales this week. It’s been a mix of a few higher priced items and a bunch of mid-ranged ones. Hopefully this means that 4th quarter is starting to kick off finally. I didn’t get a lot of listing done but for good reason. I spent a couple of days stocking up on shipping supplies. There was a moving company auction on Tuesday which advertised a brief description of stuff including boxes. I figured I’d check it out to see if I could score some cheap supplies. I sort of went overboard… I only spent $130, but I got so much packing paper and boxes that I had to make three trips in the van to haul it all back. I spent several hours the following day just getting it all from my garage to my basement. I think we now have enough newsprint sheets to last us 10 years or more. I was pretty ecstatic to say the least.
I have a feeling I won’t get much done this week either. Steph and I both caught a nasty bug. Just a cold virus, but colds seem to really hit me harder the older I get. I’ll see what I’m able to do. I’m just thankful that I can take a few days off without the repercussions I would have otherwise faced if I were still working a normal day job.
11/04/2019 at 12:53 am #69994Mississippi PickersParticipant
- Location: South Mississippi
When i list any clothing i always put the tag size first right after the brand in the title and then the last thing in the title i put the measured size. Like “old navy mens size 40 jeans bootcut 41×32”
Then i put the measurements in the description and include a piture of the size tag.
For shirts that are vintage i always say in the description the shirt is clearly not a modern size x it measured as a modern mens size x.
Granted it takes more time but worth it.
Never had an issue
11/04/2019 at 3:47 am #69995Kelly1mmParticipant
- Location: Maryland
Totals for the MONTH of October 2019. I am mainly a mens clothes seller, free shipping, free returns, 1% promoted listings, no best offer, good till cancelled.
Listings/items at end of month = 4291 / 4815 Total listed value $105,738
Items sold = 355 Down 20% YOY
$ sold = $9686 Down 20% YOY
ASP = $27.28 Flat YOY
Monthly sell through rate 8.3%
Postage = $2015 (20.8% of gross)
Ebay fees = $1132 (11.7% of gross) (includes Promoted listing fees of 83 sales totaling $2286 ($22.86-8.33 credit = $14.53) 23.4% of items sold/ 23.6% of $ sold) and return labels
COGS = $910 (9.4% of gross)
Returns = $230 (2.4% of gross)
PP Fees = $397 (4.1% of gross)
Total operating expenses = $4684 (48.4% of gross)
Total operating profit (my name for it – does not include expenses such as mileage, shipping supplies, depreciation, etc …) $5002
Mitchell & Ness Throwback Varsity Jacket New Orleans Saints Wool Sz 64 (5XL?) FS (buy price $12.99, sold for $175.00)
Vtg 1973 US Army Mens Field Jacket Medium Regular Alpha Industries M-65 w/ Liner (buy Price $6.99, sold 3 sets for $129.99)
Holland & Holland Mens Jacket Coat Diamond Quilted Large Made in France Shooting (buy price $6.99, Sold for $149.99)
Alden Mens Shoes Dark Brown Leather Cap Toe Oxfords Foot Balance System 6.5 EE (buy price $4.99, sold $89.99)
YTD Items Sold = 2878 (+10% YOY)
YTD Gross = $74,269 (+14% YOY)
YTD Net = $37,636
11/04/2019 at 4:49 am #69996simplicioParticipant
To a certain extent I agree with “list it and forget it”. However, I do suspect that too high a price discourages some buyers and it’d be nice to automatically reduce the price by say 10% every 6 months down to some floor price of my choice. I dislike sales because you are selectively selling the fraction of inventory “close” to the market price, but the stuff that is way overpriced stays overpriced and, when the sale is over, reverts to the original price.
I had a good week! Went all in ($4000) on an out of town auction, a bankruptcy of a pretty big drilling operation. Mostly paid for some inverter drives, but I also bought several “grab bag” lots. As usual, upon getting it home, I find the stuff I paid up for slightly disappointing (not bad but not amazing), while the lots I paid pennies for yield up amazing treasures. I am only about 1/3 of the way through everything. It’s great fun.
Sales c/w shipping: CAD$2531, 13 sales, COGS: $22 Shipping: $287 Fees: ~$353 –> Gross profit: $2156
Expenditures: $4490 –> Cashflow: -$2312
Listed: $640, 12 items
Notable sales: laptop port replicators $500… lots of ~$100 sales.
11/04/2019 at 10:26 am #70010
Are your industrial items very competitive since they are commodity items? Or are they so specialized there is very little competition?
Thats the real key. If you are in a competitive market, then yes, buyers are super price sensitive. It’d be madness to price higher than your competitors for the same item. Madness!
But long tail items are different. Very little competition from sellers, but a very small pool of buyers. The buyers are rarely price sensitive, but looking for that “special” item that adds to a collection or brings a feeling of nostalgia.
Which market are you in?
11/04/2019 at 10:41 am #70017simplicioParticipant
It’s kind of a mix, tending towards not competitive. However, my situation often boils down to “there’s a market price but I don’t know what it is”. The reasons why: (1) pricing info is hard to find/requires a formal quote request, (2) a part may be worth quite a bit, but not so much that it’s worth it for the buyer to just buy a new widget altogether. The buyer knows that go/no go price point but I don’t.
11/04/2019 at 5:50 am #69997Marie in FloridaParticipant
Total Items in Store: 482 (most ever listed)
Items Sold: 2
Total Sales : $50
Highest Price: $33 NWT Chicos shirt
Average Price: $25
Cost of Goods Sold: $3
Costs of Goods Purchased this Week: $10
Number of New Items Listed this Week: 15
Items on Posh: 17
Items sold on Posh 1 $15 for a plaid Ralph Lauren shirt
2nd week in a row in which I have sold only ONE clothing item. So I went to the dark side and started working on Posh. And Bingo an offer, counter, and sale. Conflicted at this point. Posh with my minuscule 17 item closet? Or Ebay? I’m getting so close to my goal of $500. At this time of year though, I should be hearing ca-ching several times a day. Three weeks ago I was. $600+ in clothing in a week. Then came the bright bulb of messing with sizes.
Haven’t listened yet. I’m a list it and leave it for a while. A couple of months ago I started looking at my listings, starting with the oldest. Finding some that needed cleaning up. The ones that are an ugly thing that no one has shown interest in for 4 years are taken down and put on auction. These are my mistakes and if I only get $8 or less, oh well. Before the Fall adjustment I was clearing out some of these. This seemed to stop 2-3 weeks ago too. Not sure why.
11/04/2019 at 6:56 am #69998GoodsbyGarciaParticipant
My observation of the eBay world is:
Demand is inelastic: people came to eBay to buy a specialty item. They either buy or they don’t. They’re not price matching a vintage embroidered shawl to amazons options for example.
Price is inelastic: people don’t care if the shawl is $10 or $15 they came looking for this specific shawl.
Sellers have a large market share: There might be one other shawl max 5 that are comparable such that each seller commands a 20-50% market share.
Sellers are price makers
From the get-go you should be pricing your items competitively (with our margins that’s the whole point we can undercut), and if you’re closer to the top of the spectrum expect to wait longer for a sale and vice versa. I suppose what people are trying to do is work their way down to the equilibrium point from the top–which is fine if that’s your style (why does this even make sense with best offer? *scratches head*). That’s pretty involved though if you’re trying to recalculate every idk week or “x” amount of days. Not to mention the market is changing as well, with 8K items not realistic.
You’re bound to have LOSERS however if there is demand for your item then eventually it will sell as the market reaches equilibrium. If you’re having to readjust every week you might be leaving money on the table or you might have just picked a bad item to sell. I think it’s easier to say “eBay is throttling me!” “This is a LOSER” etc than to say “I picked a bad item” “I’m pricing it too high”.
For those who do lower the price after a week or two. You’re not even using the correct metric to in my opinion. If I’m seeing idk 200 views on an item and I do a search for similar solds and the market hasn’t shifted drastically then I think you could say it’s price too high. Time is irrelevant if there’s no carrying costs. This is all IMO.
My model is list it and forget it undercutting competitors from the get-go OR pricing high with best offer. With a smaller store I definitely could be more involved but, I’m not in a hurry for sales I’m just moseying along.
11/04/2019 at 10:28 am #70011
Price is inelastic: people don’t care if the shawl is $10 or $15 they came looking for this specific shawl.
Exactly. A certain kind of item has fewer buyers, but they are willing to pay whatever to have “that special thing”
11/04/2019 at 7:06 am #69999
Week Oct 27 – Nov 02, 2019
Items in store: 4574 Listings for 7294 Items
Items Sold: 103 transactions for 109 Items
Gross Sales: $7123.78
Highest Price Sold: $375 Tanuki Fur Coat, Unpaid, $320 LVC Sheepskin Jacket
Lowest Price Sold: $2.75….Shoelaces
Average Sale Price: $65.36
Cost of Goods Sold $445, Plus consignment payout, roughly $1130
Number of new items listed this week: 134
$$ spent on new inventory this week $0
International Sales, 33%
Returning Customers 9
Hit my $30K goal for October on the last day! Woohoo! last October was the first time I hit $20K. So I’m liking the progress.
Thanks again to @StainedGlassKarin for the tip on the Pirate Ship international simple export rate, I’ve already saved $46 on my international first class shipments, since Wednesday. Minimizing daily expenses to grow the bottom line is my favorite.
11/04/2019 at 8:07 am #70002
Week of 10/27-11/02
Total Items in Store: 3,271 (Up 17% YOY)
Number of Items Listed: 67
Number of Items Sold: 82 (Down 4% YOY)
(Includes 4 Etsy, 9 Poshmark, 0 Bonanza, 0 TrueGether)
Weekly STR: 11% (Down 2% YOY)
Total Product Sales: $2,406 (Down 7% YOY)
Sales Volume Variance to Prior Year: Down $91
Sales Price Variance to Prior Year: Down $86
Cost of Items Sold: $522
Cost of Labor: $0
Highest Item Sold: $75 – Hugo Boss Suit
Competition: Highest Priced Sale: Troy wins the week and Veronica leads for the year 25-20.
Been a crazy few weeks, with the contract gig going full time, and spending the weekends out of town to go hunting with my youngest son (may be the last time for a few years as he goes to Dallas for Medical School next year).
Sales slowed the last couple of weeks. I have a feeling that the issue with the Item Specifics not being backfilled when they made the change is part of it. I think we will have to start going through our items and bringing them up to date…
As for measurements…always list the item as it is measured. I state that if the tag says 34, but it measures as a 32, I stated that: “Tag Size 34 – Measures as 32”, and all titles and item specifics are as a 32.
11/04/2019 at 8:16 am #70003totommytoParticipant
- Location: Naples, Fl
Great discussions on the Podcast this week. I more or less list and forget, yet I am starting to edit older listings a little at a time and also adding free shipping. All of my Etsy listings are free shipping now, basically forced to go that route and it actually seems better, at least over there.
As for clothing sizes, I take way to long in listing clothing making sure the buyer has all they need and I’m blameless on my end. Sort of like what Tony2Times does yet I sell so little clothing it is not really relevant for me to be too opinionated.
Etsy outperformed eBay this week so it gets to be first to report.
10/27 – 11/02/19 (no cross listing is done between platforms)
Etsy store oldfleatoymarket
Total store items: 662
Number of items sold: 5
Total Etsy sales (not counting s/h): $315
Cost of items sold: $28
Highest price sold: $222 – pair of beat up old boat oars – paid $20
Average price sold: $63
Money spent on new inventory: $9
Number of new items listed this week: 0
Sell through rate for the week: 0.8
Number International sales: 1
eBay store: totommyto
Total store items: 881
Number of items sold: 9
Total eBay sales (not counting s/h): $209
Cost of items sold: $10
Highest price sold: $40 – Magic Lantern Malaysia slide, shipped to France, paid $1
Average price sold: $23.22
Money spent on new inventory: $9
Number of new items listed this week: 0
Sell through rate for the week: 1.0
Number International sales: 1
11/04/2019 at 10:29 am #70012
Makes sense to recheck older listings if you feel that they arent good quality. We all evolve and improve.
11/04/2019 at 9:07 am #70004
Ok, down the wormhole that is US Vanity Sizing. Somewhere along the line in past decades the US began making sizing changes, especially in the casual/mall brand clothing sector, while higher end designers still adhere to traditional sizing methods. This is what is causing a lot of the confusion for buyers.
For sizing, basically it depends on the item.
Example 1: A typical pair of jeans made for the US market is 3-4″ larger than the tagged size, when the size was initially the respective measurement in inches. I will list jeans with the tagged waist size and measured inseam in the title, and with full measurements in the description.
Example 2: A pair of tailored dress pants/suit pants will typically be tagged in size which is the same as the actual measurement. You will see inexperienced menswear buyers return dress pants because they are “way too small” not realizing they have become a victim of vanity sizing. Additionally tailored pants can also be altered in the waist and length. I list the measured waist/inseam as the size, with complete measurements in the description. If there is a discrepancy in the tagged size and the measured size, I highlight that info in red, and add it to the condition details “Tagged XX, but measures ZZ, see full description for detailed measurements”. Or “Tagged XX, altered to YY, see full description for detailed measurements”
Example 3: Belts are typically sized in actual inches from the buckle to first or center hole. You may see higher returns on belts, due to the fact that someone may place their order based on the size of their favorite Levis, and then discover the belt is several inches too small.
I list at the tagged sized, with detailed measurements in the description.
Returns still happen, returns will always happen.
If you want an eye opener, go measure your favorite pair of jeans. I learned my lesson in 2012, when I ordered a pair of size 38 linen dress pants for an outdoor wedding. When they arrived, I couldn’t button them, so I measured them and they were indeed 38″. When I measured my size 38 jeans, I discovered that my waist was actually 42″!! That’s when I started slimming down.
- This reply was modified 2 years, 2 months ago by The_SEAM_Store.
11/04/2019 at 10:31 am #70013
Understood. But what size do you put in the title + item specific? The tag size or actual size.
I understand we can add language in the description, but what do you think eBay would back up?
11/04/2019 at 10:46 am #70020
Sorry. I included how I list them, but should have made those points bold text. Too late to change it now.
1. Vanity sized items like jeans I list using the tagged size, with the exception if an item has had the inseam changed.
2. Tailored items I list using the measured size.
3. I always include detailed measurements for both, and point out tagged size/measured size discrepancies.
Ebay can side with whomever they may, though since we use free returns we have the ability to re-claim the original shipping for those sorts of returns. I just accept the return and move on. I verify all my measurements when the item arrives, attach photos to the return if needed and refund appropriately. I’ve been backed by ebay each time I’ve had to do that at this point, though I’m not sure the same applies to ‘buyer paid returns’ and ‘no returns’ policies.
- This reply was modified 2 years, 2 months ago by The_SEAM_Store.
11/04/2019 at 10:39 am #70016
Womens Jeans are the most ridiculous things on this earth. Women: Ya’ll need to quit lying to yourselves!
I learned the hard way to list the actual tag size in the title. I got a return on a pair of jeans because I put the actual measurements in the title.
Good example – I just listed a pair of women’s Silver brand jeans. Tag says 27R. The actual waist is 31″. I regularly see variance of 3-5″ in women’s jeans. Ironically enough, most mens jeans are right on the money. More often than not, Men’s jeans are actually smaller than the stated tag in the waist.
11/06/2019 at 2:27 pm #70195RyanneKeymaster
- Location: Virginia
we’re not lying to ourselves, it’s the companies making the jeans who put the craziest sizes on these things (plus 90% of women’s pants have no pockets WTF).
old navy has sizes like 6, 8, 10, 12 etc
H&M it’s 29, 30, 31, 32. SOMETIMES and other times, it’s some other size scheme they came up with that month.
what to do!? i have no idea what size pants i wear, since the size of my waist and inseam are never actually represented in the size.
wish it could be as simple as men’s pants, waist, inseam.
11/06/2019 at 3:02 pm #70197
Don’t even start on Chico sizes. Holy Cow!
11/04/2019 at 9:18 am #70006
Items in Store 1310
Items Sold 17
Total Sales $536.50
Total Profit $480.00
Average profit $28.24
Average sales price $31.56
New Listings 66
This week I worked hard at listing coats and jackets. I want to get ALL of my coats and jackets listed. They can’t sell if they aren’t listed!
I had another crappy weekend of sales. It is such a bummer to have crickets in sales while listing like a madman.
I decided to compare the last 5 weeks of sales to the same period last year to see if things are really off, or if I’m just doing the business I normally do at this time of year.
Last year: 89 sales for $2607 on an average inventory of 1087 items
This year: 93 sales for $3009.50 on an average inventory of 1254 items
So things aren’t really as bad as they seem. I would hope I’d have more growth than that based on the increase in available inventory, but it is what it is. ebay really seems to be a diminishing returns game. I really need commit to figuring out a cross posting strategy to gain more eyeballs on my products.
I hope that my increased listing activity starts to pay off this week. Have a great week everyone!
11/04/2019 at 10:35 am #70015
To be fair, you only have about 160 items more in your inventory than last year. In my world, thats not much inventory growth.
I’d say your sale bring $400 more this year form last is about right for just 160 bigger inventory.
11/04/2019 at 10:42 am #70018
I was more looking at the number of sold items. The cash variance is based on the ASP, which is independent of how many items I sell.
The trend of items sold is flat.
11/04/2019 at 10:34 am #70014ChristineRParticipant
- Location: Southern California
Total Items In Store: 257 Ebay, 40 Mercari
Items Sold: 6 Ebay, 2 Mercari
Cost of Items Sold: $39 + $3 free shipping + some items ours
Total Sales: $157 Ebay + $25 Mercari
Highest Price Sold: $54 New platter (paid $25 clearance)
Average Price Sold: $26 Ebay, $18 Mercari
Money Spent on New Inventory: $0
Number of items listed: 1 – sad face
Buyer issue: Pressure from a Mercari shopper to split a lot and then switch to free shipping on an $11 item “because other sellers will do it” (so to give her the item for free.) No thanks – silent treatment!
Speaking of silence, it was cricketsville so almost all of these sales came from make an offer / promotion or a 10% sale on Ebay that I ran midweek. Definitely helps to stir the pot. I believe making offers to watchers is a very powerful tool. I’m so glad Ebay finally caught up on that. ASP down, but I need to move some stuff. Also I noticed this week on the Ebay app that it suggested three items to reduce price – it gives you a button to reduce by a certain amount. I tried clicking those. Got an offer right after on one of those, a tiki mug. I figure they must suggest high view items that are likely to convert.
Regarding the list and forget discussion, I don’t have time to relaunch stale listings but if I did I would. I do think Ebay generates results that are not necessarily totally logical and individual seller-friendly and I do believe that certain actions affect your listings’ treatment under Cassini. It would make sense that new listings are treated differently than stale listings. They pretty much tell you in the fine print they don’t show all of the listings all of the time. I don’t think anyone can say for sure whether or not it works for others. As discussed, it might depend on the types of items in your store and the pricing level vs. comps. Best for anyone interested to try it out, and for those who have tried it to share results. That’s what I love about this Forum. If you try it, be sure to watch your multi-quantity numbers resetting.
Question: will ebay override your charging sales tax for your own state or is it safe and necessary to take that off? I don’t believe that is clear. Also, for tax Paypal purposes, it seems like they should not have it create revenue for you.
Have a great week!
11/04/2019 at 2:06 pm #70033Steve ListParticipant
- Location: Richmond, Calif.
As of October 1st, eBay started collecting tax on all my sales in California where I am located. My older listings have manually entered tax rates but for the past few year or so I have used the tax table, but only filling in the entry for California. Now, on both styles of listings, eBay is collecting the sales tax. I’m not sure how to report the information on my California Sales Tax return because you list “Total Gross Sales” then subtract out the “Sales in Interstate or Foreign Commerce” and the remainder is the “Total Taxable Transactions.”
So it appears that you do not have to do anything to your listings as it seems eBay takes the tax out either way and just ignores what you have checked off in that area – maybe they should just remove the options altogether along with the tax tables.
One additional note, I’ve always charged sales tax at the rate where I live, the same as a brick & mortar, but I have no idea if eBay is charging that rate (8.25%), the state wide rate of 7.25% or the rate where the package is delivered, which varies between 7.25% and 10.5%.
11/04/2019 at 1:17 pm #70028
Jay – My mom has totally collected hotel soaps over the years. I once bought her a package of hotel soap, like what you once found at a thrift store, as a funny gift. My family and I, though, don’t travel enough to not have to buy soap. However, my husband works for a cosmetic company, and they have a few soaps we get for free from his company store (along with hair & skin products).
Week of Oct 27 – Nov 2
* Total Items in Store: 1542 eBay, 37 Etsy
* Items Sold: 20
* Cost of Items Sold: $24.75 + $0 Commission
* Total Sales: $384.72
* Highest Price Sold: $40 Vintage Springbank Scotch Whiskey pitcher
* Average Price Sold: $19.23
* Returns: 0
* Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
* Number of items listed this week: 52
Decent enough week, but today I received notice of two returns worth about $62. Bummer.
11/04/2019 at 1:28 pm #70031
Also wanted to mention that I am going to an eBay event in Brooklyn Wednesday evening. I imagine it is a sort of mini eBay Open. It will be about 3 hours, and I did not have to pay for it (although I will have over an hour driving and some bridge tolls). I’m not sure whether I have many questions for them, but I hope to soak up information.
What’s Happening at UpFront
6:30-7:00pm | Register and Connect
7:00-8:00pm | eBay Presentations
8:00-9:00pm | Roundtable Discussions
9:00-9:30pm | Desserts and Other Sweet Things
11/04/2019 at 3:04 pm #70037
Im glad eBay is doing these smaller regional events. My big questions are about the the new eBay payments:
–When will we all be forced over?
–When the full push happens, will eBay payments works for everything? (Global shipping, all categories, etc)
–Will eBay payments pull out each transaction fee as it happens like Paypal does now, or will sellers get one big bill for the month, adding to the already big eBay monthly bill?
11/04/2019 at 5:36 pm #70042
These are basically my questions as well. I would expect that this would be covered as part of the agenda. I’ll report on it if I find something new or specific.
I’d also like to know whether they would consider a company policy of not making any software changes in the forth quarter. As far as I know, I wasn’t affected by this latest fiasco, but I don’t like the idea that it happened this time of year.
11/04/2019 at 6:16 pm #70045
“I’d also like to know whether they would consider a company policy of not making any software changes in the forth quarter.”
Please ask them this!
11/05/2019 at 12:24 pm #70090
I am in California also and I’ve been collecting sales tax for a couple of years. I didn’t change my listings due to the sale tax change and everything seemed to be working normally. I am on California Dept of Tax and Fee Administration (cdtfa) mailing list and I remember seeing one of their email newsletters saying that with the recent change (with Marketplace facilitators, like ebay, collecting tax) you can just put your Californian already-taxed sales amount in the “Other” field when you submit your Sales Tax return. Sounds like a pretty hokey solution. I’ll see if I can find that email with the exact quote. I couldn’t find it on their website. I only submit sales tax returns once a year (in July) so it will be while before I do that. Btw, I don’t recall ever entering “Sales in Interstate or Foreign Commerce”. The tax return that I’ve submitted only ever cared about the amount of my sales to California. I haven’t entered total sales on my sale tax returns.
11/04/2019 at 4:19 pm #70039jon_allenParticipant
- Location: Newfane, NY
Tip for sending the wrong shoes: I store my items in labeled bins. Bins are numbered and recorded in listing SKU. A lot of people do this. But for quickly finding the correct item – every time. My listing number is tagged on each item. So if you have 2 pair of shoes that are nearly identical – you verify the listing number before packing the item.
I sell industrial switches. They all look alike but the rating for each may be different. Listing number on each item has worked well – now that “Good Till Canceled” keeps the listing number the same forever.
For those tech savvy people with a label printer, the QR Code containing the URL with the listing number (http://www.ebay.com/itm/nnnnnnnnn) can be read and decoded in the ebay app like any barcode.
11/04/2019 at 4:24 pm #70040
Good info. In this case, we didnt send the wrong shoes. We just bought a pair of shoes at a thrift store that were not the same exact size (7B and 7C). A rare problem we overlooked.
11/05/2019 at 9:14 am #70076campmocsParticipant
- Location: Maine
Another great week for sales… I was out of town for a few days so I have fallen behind on new listings. I met with a tax professional last week… she made me feel pretty confident in things that i’m tracking and COGS at yard sales etc. She also said I can use cash based accounting for taxes which should make things simpler.
Items in Store 662
Items sold 30
Gross Sales 900
Highest Price Sold 180
Average Price Sold 30.6
New Inventory Costs 74
11/05/2019 at 9:26 am #70077
11/05/2019 at 9:33 am #70079chaoticgoodParticipant
- Location: Kansas City, MO
Another great podcast, Jay and Ryanne. I almost called in with the same comment about Poshmark sellers. They can be really “extra.” For my Poshmark sales, all I can muster is some tissue paper, and a little note on cute paper (leftover scrapbooking paper). But I’ve received packages tied up with ribbons and beauty samples and hair ties. Sort of silly, but also sort of nice.
Here’s my week: Oct. 28-Nov.2
Items Sold: 10 on Ebay, Poshmark and Mercari
Items in stores: 150 Ebay, 190 Poshmark (one more than last week)
Total Sales: $ 104.xx before fees and some free shipping
COG: Minimal… $3?
Items listed: 8
Highest priced item: $20 for a set of egg coddlers
I’m running a 3/$15 “sale” on Poshmark on some stale inventory. It’s not yielded any results yet, but I’m going to let it run through the weekend.
I’ve also started my Etsy store this week. My goal is to list 10 items a week until I get to 100 and then decide how big to get. I’m attracted by the lower fees, now that I have a better handle on shipping.
11/05/2019 at 12:34 pm #70092
Thanks for the podcast R&J
Total Items in Store: 3334
Items Sold: 34
Total Sales: $953.57
Cost of Items Sold: $148
Average Price Sold: $28.05
Average Cost of Item: $4.36
Highest Price Item Sold: $107.95 KLM BOLS BLUE DELFT miniature HOUSE SET of 8
Number of items listed this week: 63 worth $1473
YTD Sales: $42494
YTD sales compared to this time last year: +7%
Average age of items in store (in days since listing): 426
Average number of days between listing and selling this week: 304
Median age of sales (in days, between listing and selling): 110
Sell-through rate (for the week): 1.02%
Hats sold this week: 22 (64% of sales) worth $362.17 (37% of sales $)
Thanks for clarifying your “list and forget” strategy R&J. Though you don’t actually forget about your listings because you run sales, relist old items, send offers to watchers etc. Completely forgetting about old listings would be a mistake for most sellers I think.
I was interested to hear about the results of your price-reduction experiment. Too bad it didn’t work out. For obscure items, there isn’t always someone looking for them so reducing the price for a week or two wont necessarily get a sale if nobody is looking for your item during that period of course.
I dont use the list-really-high-but-add-best-offer approach because unless items are truly unique (ie: no other sellers) price is important. Best-offer is good for sophisticated buyers but plenty of people wont use it. I generally just price based on similar sales. I think it’s unusual for me to have something I think is truly unique.
11/05/2019 at 12:42 pm #70095
Yeah, there’s a big difference between totally forgetting and riding inventory every day. We all find our own place.
Do you price your items on the low end? If comps come back between $20-$50, where do you price?
11/05/2019 at 7:58 pm #70117
Do you price your items on the low end? If comps come back between $20-$50, where do you price?
I bet that half the people who post here regularly could write pages on what goes through their heads when choosing prices. I have 2 approaches. One for hats and one for everything else.
For hats, I don’t have enough time in my life to research each one so I have a fixed price for most hats unless:
i) I think it’s special for some reason and I’ll use comps or a hunch to price it higher
ii) The hat has a tiny market (eg: “Joe W’s Painting Service, Someplace, IA”) in which case I start the price lower.
I reduce hat prices over the course of 3 years from the date it was first listed
For everything else (non-hats) I typically price slightly higher than the average sold price. I don’t aim for top dollar but I do want to get as much as I think I can reasonably get without waiting forever. (Non-hat items take up more space so I try not to sit on them as long as I sit on hats). If I saw a range of $20 – $50 I would look more closely to understand the average price for a comparable to whatever I’m listing. I wouldn’t automatically price at $20 or $50 without doing the extra research.
11/05/2019 at 12:35 pm #70093almastyParticipant
Hey ya’ll, I’m tired. Q4 is exhausting, but I’m grateful! I haven’t had a chance to listen to the podcast yet, but I hope to soon.
Just got my 60th sale ever on Etsy! Even though an entire nearly year’s worth of sales doesn’t match what I make on Ebay in a week, I find it fun and a good back-up. It’s also a good place for interesting duds that can sell for higher than Ebay or Amazon. I’m currently hovering around 120 active listings on that venue.
I went out and bought more stock this weekend, so now I’m behind on my current listing goals. I’ve created a new temporary storage area in an inconvenient spot in order to make myself focus on just listing that specific pile of new stock first. I got halfway through the pile from the week before, so it’s fine. I have other good Q4 stock I would like to get back to working on by the middle of November. After that, back to listing other recent stock and back to the backlog. I think my favorite estate sale company is shutting down soon (ahhh nooo), and I hate sourcing in the winter, so I should be able to get a ton of work done over the next few months with little new stock coming in to interfere with working through the backlog.
11/05/2019 at 6:13 pm #70105
How many members here at SL still list on Bonanza and trueGether?
Just doing a little quick poll-survey.
mike at MDCGFA
11/05/2019 at 8:43 pm #70124Mark SParticipant
I still list on Bonanza and TrueGether. Well, ebay store is linked up and lists automatically.
Bonanza has been fairly consistent – 3% of what my sales are on ebay. Meaning, if my gross sales on ebay (not counting shipping) were $10,000, then Bonanza sales would be $300. That is well worth it to me because my annual ebay sales will be approaching $40k this year.
Note: Bonanza was not ending my sales in ebay. We contacted Bonanza and they had us redo (I froget what that was exactly) and that fixed everything. Everything has been great since.
However, TrueGether has been a waste of time lately. I haven’t had a sale since June 2018. However, at some point all my items got dropped (not sure when), so I am going to wait and see if my TrueGether sales turn around.
11/06/2019 at 10:21 am #70173
Mark: kind of why I asked. i used to have everything listed on Truegether and also Bonanza. That was back when I was using WonderLister. Bonanza kept getting things way out of Synch with Ebay and not delteing solds and that in turn was throwing WL off base. I finally just got rid of Bonanza and went ahead and dumped TrueGather for no other reasons than no sales would come all year and also seemed like JandR and others here abandoned TrueGether themselves so ditched both.
Now with SixBit and the fact that it handles our Ebay, Etsy and soon to be revitalized Shopify store, I didn’t know if maybe just having all our items out on Bonanza and truegether would indeed provide just some more Google exposure to help with organic Google rankings for our domain name which is included in all of our item descriptions. Also all of our photos are named.
With all the issues Ebay is having and every guru out there talking about Ebay’s 3rd quarter results and on top of all of that all the Ebay glitches, everybody is saying it is prudent to be diversified, be on as many various platforms as you can handle, stay spread out and promote and social media along with internal proper SEO use for everything.
This is easily done for Ebay, Etsy and Shopify through SixBit. I just didn’t want our inventory to start to get all messed up and have things still listed on other platforms. If I accidentally sell something on Bonanza that is out of stock I don’t care, but don’t want that to happen on my main 3 platforms.
Our main three plus thinking about adding Mercari, Sattchi Art and maybe RubyLane then would Bonanza and TrueGether help or hurt in the Google organic traffic game.
I can handle the 3 main within SixBit and do like Troy and handle the Mercari like he does with poshmark by manually altering our sku code to include codes for it. Unsure about the Sattchi Art or RubyLane though.
So was just wondering if anybody still fooled with Bonanza and trueGether at all for any reasons, especially since so few Sales came from them.
mike at MDC Galleries
11/06/2019 at 10:39 am #70175
@Mike and Mark: We are (theoretically) still on those platforms. I really don’t think about them, and we get very few sales from them.
Love the diversification. Ebay is now about 85% of our sales, with 10% on Poshmark and 5% on Etsy (though Etsy only really shines in Q4).
Yep, use the “-MC” for Mercari listings and you are set. We do “-PM” for Poshmark and “-ET” for Etsy (no longer duo on Etsy as the sales were too low to justify the $30/mo SixBit fee). Every morning I enter the Poshmark/Etsy sales into SixBit (which removes them from Ebay) and then scroll through the orders on eBay for -PM and -ET sales to manually remove from those sites.
Then I go to Check Listings in eBay and put -PM in the QBE line of the SKU column. It will show all items that are marked in SixBit as being in Poshmark. I make sure the total in SixBit matches the total on Poshmark (Posh Stats). I do the same with -ET to the total listings on Etsy. This makes sure I don’t have something listed somewhere that already sold. I even check the total running listings on eBay with SixBit to make sure everything is submitted.
I did Mercari for a while but had very few sales. I think your stuff will go better there.
11/06/2019 at 3:38 pm #70201
Hey troy. been thinking of you guys. Hope all is well with you and Veronica. Susan not doing too well but Friday is her last radiation treatment then that 2nd operation and then last 13 weeks of final chemo rounds. Keep praying for her.
I thought that is what you were doing with the platforms that SixBit doesn’t handle automatically. Just adding a code onto the end of your SKU. I was trying to think it all through.
Yes SB handles Ebay, Etsy and Shopify. The Shopify is going to cost extra on top of the Duo. They used to call it the “Enterprise” level. And goes from $99.99 to $139 per month. BUT they have recently changed their terminology and where as the former Duo handles 2 platforms, now the wording says for the $139 level it handles quote “UNLIMITED” sites and handles a bunch of platforms. A little confusing, but wonder if they can handle 4 or 5 platforms or do they just mean multiple accounts on 4 platforms. They are now handling Ebay, Etsy, Shopify and Amazon.
I am going to call them tomorrow and see if I can get it straight what they do and do not cover and if they have any suggestions on the others.
BTW you are correct, Etsy is doing better now. About $5,776 Yr to date on Etsy on 95 items sold = $43.73 per sale and 216% up over last year [YoY] as compared to $12,395 in Ebay Sales with about $4k of some other stuff thrown in from a couple small side design-art work jigs. So Etsy is sneaking up to about half of what I sell on Ebay and only 650 listing instead of the 1,200 I have on Ebay. I wonder, when I get all items cross lsited, will that other 600 listings actually allow me to outsell my Ebay store over on Etsy? Hhhmm…
But Ebay and PayPal fees [including promoted listings have moved up to about 24% of our Ebay sales at $2,952. [no shipping-just fees and some ads]. So much for Jay’s 15% to 17% from days gone by. Then throw in Federal Taxes taxes on top of that [if you don’t expense it down to zero like we do] and like we have always said, if you want to make $50k in this business you probably need to sell closer to about $100k to end up at about $50k annually.
That is why I cringe when I read about newer people quitting their jobs so early in the start up of the reselling business. Jay tries to warn them all the time. Do this until you can generate enough NET after Taxes and Fees and Supplies to provide enough income to live off of.
This is the biggest reason I want to re-establish and re-vitalize our Shopify store, even though a slow grow, atleast we can keep so much more of our sales dollars.
What do you think about using the custom fields and create one titled “Auxillary Platforms” and just enter the -pm -me -rl in that one field. Then could filter on that one field for the correct code it sold on and do the rest that you do manually from there. That way it would keep the code out of the SKU field. Or do you think it is better in the SKU field and then do an “Advanced Search” for the SKU number and use the “contains” qualifier and enter -pm to get all the Posh Mark listings? Just wondering how to work it all out.
The Ebay Item Specific glitch has hit hard goods now in the Home Decor category. On relists or even batch changes from SB many bounce back with an error message that I can’t revise due to missing IS. We have all those IS but most are in our custom Item Specific fields. it is just the new fields Ebay is creating it has not been populated over and wonder if it even will. so far have 69 bounced listings that I tried to do a revision on. Just wanted to remove “best Offer” and nope, can’t until I enter all the IS in their “new” fields.
Between all of Ebay and Etsy both making a bunch of 4th quarter changes and failing to get it right from the get go, I am just getting tired of it.
Catch you later…
mike at MDC Galleries
11/07/2019 at 10:16 am #70241
@Mike: Sorry that Susan isn’t doing as well. I just sent some prayers for her to get better soon.
Here is the main reason that I keep the -PM and -ET in the SKU field: ease of use each day. When I do the morning reconciliation, I just go to the eBay orders page, and scroll down the SKU of each sale looking for -PM or -ET. When I see on, I have Poshmark or Etsy on the other screen, find the item on that site, and move to “Not for Sale” (Poshmark) or deactivate (Etsy). I do that so that if they don’t pay or we get a return, it is a simple click to move to “For Sale” (Poshmark) or Activate (Etsy). I don’t have to completely do the relist.
Plus, with Etsy we have the SKU on the item so easy to enter into SixBit, and on Poshmark we add the SKU to the bottom of the Item Description. I see that Poshmark now has a SKU field, but for now, quicker to see in the Item Description. Quick and easy.
Just note…Make sure to stay on top of the recon between platforms. Sometimes I have spend a few hours on the weekend finding that Orphan that causes an out of balance. Doing each day keeps the universe of potential items to research small…
11/06/2019 at 1:05 pm #70191ClarityParticipant
I am still on Truegether and Bonanza. I don’t sell a lot there but it is easy for me to list there. Between the two of them I’ve sold a little of $2,000 this year so far. So, no complaints from me.
11/06/2019 at 3:12 pm #70198
Thanks.. That’s about $200 per month on average. That is OK. You won’t retire off of it but covers the the little time spent.
Still pondering.. but since they will import everything in [no work on my end], and if i code in SixBit like Troy I can track it with not much effort may be worth it just to have a 3rd and 4th back-up to Ebay.
mike at MDC Concepts, Inc. – MDC Galleries and Fine Art in Atlanta
11/06/2019 at 4:38 pm #70205
The content from Mr. Auction Professor is the reason why we are moving to diversify to other platforms and cross listing as quickly as we can and also re-set up our Shopify store.
The base premise is only his “opinion” based on Ebay’s 3rd quarter numbers and his own thoughts, he parallels my thinking fairly closely. I had already arrived at about his same point and with a 3rd party app like SixBit and a little manipulation of embedding a platform code into our SKU numbering system, we can maybe list on 5 or 6 platforms and still track it fairly easy and handle it.
This link goes to a recent YouTube he made and is only about a 13 to 14 minute listen.
Now staying focused just on the online reselling unique, one of a king items online, process, are any other SL members diversifying, within the e-commerce reselling platforms and if so what and how.
I don’t mean taking profits from selling online and then going and buying real estate, store fronts, Pizza franchises 🙂 LOL or the such. I mean what are you doing within the stay online and market items in online stores or your own domain to continue to be able to claim a full time income from online selling. Do know of and use SEO a lot, ads, have multiple cross listed platforms, know lot about tags and key words.
What is your plan to grow your online business, scale it up? Directly to Jay… if you and Ryanne did not know anything about video conferencing and did not do that at all for extra income and had never invested in your airBandB business model and you only had your 9,000 item inventory and your Ebay store, what would your game plan be to handle and over come the scenario
of only being on Ebay as your only income stream.
Is your inventory producing the same income given than small as it may be, the consumer price index and cost of goods we all live on still go up a few percentage points each year, Ebay and PayPal are taking more. Would you just sit back and still feed the 9,000 item beast with new purchases, list them, sell what you can just from Ebay, ship them and then as you say “rinse and repeat”?
I am not bashing Ebay, but after listening the Professor Auction, and several others on the same topic, my confidence in Ebay to be my only main income source is waining. It still is #2 right behind Amazon, but shouldn’t sellers move into a more and newer world to expand and branch out into the more diverse and younger e-commerce world. In other words are we just “marking time and aging in place” when it comes to selling online?
I am 71 years old. Have thousands of items in inventory. In 15 years from now at 86 years old, am I going to be found dead one day, laying in the garage, on the floor with a “numbered Bin” and a “pile of broken Limoge dinner plates” on top of me because I had to climb a ladder to pull some old used ceramic plates off the top shelf?? 🙂 LMAO Or will I have built up a substantial online e-commerce business, have a few helpers and sell on 5 or 6 platforms and have a buzzing business which I can over see and direct.
So where do we all go next to expand and move forward.. maybe into “The twilight Zone”.
Boy that was a rabbit hole, but may be a few hidden topics for an up coming podcast hidden in there. 🙂
Mike at MDC Galleries
11/06/2019 at 5:47 pm #70206
Its a fair question. Maybe the future is selling on multiple platforms. Its great software like Sixbit helps crossposting easier, but I imagine its going to be a lot of work managing listings on multiple sites. Not impossible, but not as breezy as some sellers make it seem.
It doesnt sound fun to us. Sounds like a grind. If selling on multiple platforms became the norm, I think we’d just quietly leave the scene. Scavenging works for us because we can list on eBay, store the inventory, and sales happen as they happen. Its pretty passive.
Ive never seen a seller transparently share their net numbers of the money they make on multiple platforms without eBay. Does it add up to a steady living? Poshmark and Etsy seem find, but I only see people talk of $500-$1000 month. If you spread yourself thin over multiple platforms, can you make a living? I need to see the numbers.
Shopify. I have no interest building our own website. Anyone who tries it will realize all eBay was doing for them. All the backend stuff. All the advertising and getting customers. You know how hard it is to create a “brand”, or fight in the SEO world to get your items seen? Money, time, your life will fly by.
We could live off the income we make from eBay if we dumped all our various projects, but thankfully we do have the luxury to not depend on eBay income since we’ve shoveled those projects into business that arent online selling.
I think true diversification is not having all your business be the same business. Selling on eBay is the basically the same as selling on Etsy as selling on Poshmark as selling on Amazon. If your sourcing dries up or people decide they dont want your items, no platform will save you.
If diversification is the goal, then having income streams from something totally different is key. Maybe its running a local food truck, or laundrymat, or being a graphic designer, or running a day care.
11/07/2019 at 11:23 am #70250almastyParticipant
As a bookseller, if you’re not FBA it would be dumb to just stick to Amazon. You have to list on Amazon, Abebooks, Alibris, Biblio at a minimum if you’re doing it yourself. Alibris has about 50 sites it crossposts on for you, so at least you don’t have to do all 50+ yourself. These sites include Barnes & Nobles, Textbooks.com, a lot of tiny sites that only get sales during the 2 textbook seasons. There are also other smaller sites you can list on, but it’s not necessary with those main sites combined.
Some sellers cross-post their inventory to Ebay. I don’t. I maintain a separate inventory on Ebay.
I do find it exhausting maintaining individual inventories – at this point, there are 4, but only 2 serious ones – Amazon and Ebay. Amazon is both the easiest & most difficult to maintain. There are less items out there suitable for the site than for Ebay (with all the gating and competition), but when you do find good items for them, it’s incredibly easy to just let them sell themselves. I don’t have the fight in me to go out there like I used to in the beginning to stock it on a daily basis. I have actually been quietly trying to sell off my Amazon inventory over the past few weeks to fellow booksellers, but I haven’t gotten any bites yet. It takes time. My asking price is spot on, so it’s not that. I do really well on the site, it’s not dregs by any means, but I don’t have the time/space/necessary attitude to run it as well as I would like to, and that means everything for maintaining a long-term inventory full time. If your heart’s not in it anymore, it’s hard to just keep at it, no matter how good the money is. I am also eyeing the bookcases full of Amazon stock and thinking “I could fit so much Ebay stock in place of these items!”
To really do well on separate inventories on separate listing sites is an insane amount of work. Most people can’t get a good handle on 1 listing site, let alone multiple ones. It is easy to say “I can just go over there,” but it takes YEARS of effort to get up to the point of matching even the lows of what you can do on your original listing site. It’s not easy. It’s not instantaneous. It’s like going back to the beginning of setting up your initial reselling business when you were working f/t – you have to put f/t hours and effort into 2 venues.
I am really enjoying selling on Ebay, so I’ve moved most of my focus to Ebay. It’s working. It’s fun. That’s why I shake my head when I read a lot of negative posts or see the titles of youtube videos that are negative about Ebay. It’s all click-bait. The majority of the people making the negative videos make the majority of their money on Ebay. It’s nonsensical. If you are willing to work hard on Ebay, you will do well. That’s it. Stop blaming any and everyone else for your own problems. Ebay is wonderful compared to Amazon.
I don’t know anything about cross-posting non-books between sites. I would think if they were vintage, one-of-a-kind items, that whatever site you picked to host them on would work as long as the site had the right visibility for your items. That’s part of your job, to figure out which one works best for you.
11/07/2019 at 11:38 am #70253
I use ecomdash to manage inventory between eBay (2 stores), Amazon, and Shopify. I like that they update every 10 minutes, compared to once every hour or even every 24 hours since I have many low quantity or single quantity items.
I used to do this manually, it got to be too much of a hassle and time drain and I still ended up with out-of-sync situations and oversells. Sometimes a person has to buy more time and peace of mind.
- This reply was modified 2 years, 2 months ago by Old Dad.
11/07/2019 at 11:55 am #70257
11/06/2019 at 8:05 pm #70218scott2Participant
- Location: Merida, Mexico
Jay, same here, I can deal with one or two platforms but that’s it. After that it starts to be like a JOB hahaha.
I am of the mindset that you HAVE to diversify, not just selling on different platforms but investing in different things, because all businesses go through cycles and when you are all in on one thing and at the bottom of the cycle things can seem bleak.
I recently put my house on the market here, (have not posted on here in awhile, busy with house prettying up projects) markets hot so it’s the time to take advantage of that for me. When that sells we have our 5 year plan laid out which will include about 4 different activities that will all produce passive income on top of selling online. I’d rather create a few income streams than have a few jobs…
Happy hunting all!
11/06/2019 at 8:17 pm #70221
The real estate market does seem very hot 9which worries me). Houses in our poor rural area are about 30% higher than just last year.
If you sell your house in a hot market, where do you live now that houses are expensive to by?
11/06/2019 at 10:36 pm #70229MyCottageParticipant
Mike, Jay, etc,
At present, we are ebay only, although I sometimes will put something on Facebook. I do not disagree with the idea of diversifying, (whether via diverse streams, as Jay suggests, or diverse platforms, as Mike suggests, or both). Right now, we have enough to do just trying to get caught up on ebay for Q4…sometimes life intervenes , and our best laid plans go off course.
I don’t feel a pressing need to diversify….this quarter…but ebay IS making me nervous. They spent much of Wenig’s tenure—literally, several YEARS… promising big improvements once they got “product pages” taken care of, and they are now basically back to Square One with that, and …as the latest Item Specific mess demonstrates…they STILL don’t have a real handle on it. The new guy…well, the guy who has returned to ebay, Jordan Sweetnam or whatever his name is…does seem to be stressing—FINALLY—the importance of eBay’s huge variety of merchandise, including the collectible stuff, the used stuff, etc. BUT: They just aren’t growing, they are spinning their wheels while their competitors grow around them.
All of that wouldn’t bother me TOO much, because I’ve gotten used to it, but the Elliot Management situation is the Wild Card. I think we have to recognize the very real possibility that if ebay doesn’t DRAMATICALLY turn things around, ebay will be sold off and perhaps dismantled. A sale to the right buyer could actually be the best thing for us as sellers…or the worst. There’s just no way to know, and I think every day that goes by without signs of REAL growth—-GMV growth—is another nail in ebay’s coffin. Yes, they can goose revenue with Promoted Listing revenue and eventually Managed Payments revenue, but they can’t continue to lose market share. At some point, investors are going to insist on evidence of a real turn around. Frankly, the Board gave Wenig more time than I expected they would….maybe because he kept telling them the turn around was getting closer, just be patient….but I think they are running out of patience. I’m guessing ebay has maybe another year, at best, to show it can turn things around. A strong Q4 would help, but I wouldn’t bet on it happening….especially with the IS mess right now.
Ultimately, I think they need to make some pretty drastic changes, or sink.
11/07/2019 at 11:37 am #70252scott2Participant
- Location: Merida, Mexico
Jay, we plan on settling in and renting for 2 years outside of the city center where we currently live. Downtown redone homes are mostly being sold to foreigners and big money folks from mexico city who almost all purchase them to air bnb them out. Once you get out of the center of the city rents are much lower.
If I put 20% of the sales price in to municipal bonds that would pay our rent every month for a nice house out of the city center. BTW, muni bonds pay 8% after tax here.
11/07/2019 at 12:09 pm #70261
Thats right. I forgot you’re in Mexico.
Yes, sell in the expensive place and buy in the cheap place.
Real estate arbitrage!
11/09/2019 at 5:37 pm #70394pops roadsideParticipant
- Location: CA
Jay often talks about his vision of their reselling business being a “machine” that takes on a life of its own as long as he keeps it fed and maintained. it reminds me of the “flywheel effect” Jim Collins wrote of in his book, good to great. Many of you may be familiar with it and it may bring back haunted memories of your previous corporate life as it does me. sorry about that. hope its not redundant…Here’s an abbreviated excerpt.
“Picture a huge, heavy flywheel—a massive metal disk mounted horizontally on an axle, about 30 feet in diameter, 2 feet thick, and weighing about 5,000 pounds. Now imagine that your task is to get the flywheel rotating on the axle as fast and long as possible. Pushing with great effort, you get the flywheel to inch forward, moving almost imperceptibly at first. You keep pushing and, after two or three hours of persistent effort, you get the flywheel to complete one entire turn. You keep pushing, and the flywheel begins to move a bit faster, and with continued great effort, you move it around a second rotation. You keep pushing in a consistent direction. Three turns … four … five … six …
Then, at some point—breakthrough! The momentum of the thing kicks in, hurling the flywheel forward, turn after turn … whoosh! … its own heavy weight working for you. You’re pushing no harder than during the first rotation, but the flywheel goes faster and faster. Each turn of the flywheel builds upon work done earlier, compounding your investment of effort…
The huge heavy disk flies forward, now with almost unstoppable momentum”
11/10/2019 at 9:29 am #70409
I like the idea of the flywheel. Spin it up, let it rip 🙂
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