01/05/2020 at 2:33 pm #72490
Join the conversation in the forum>> Our Store Week Dec 29-Jan 4, 2019 Total Items in Store: 8422 Items Sold: 45 Gross Sales: $1,607.64 Cost o
[See the full post at: Scavenger Life Episode 444: Is Cross Posting The New Reality?]
01/05/2020 at 3:45 pm #72492
2019-12-29 – 2020-01-04
Total Items In Store: 3369
Items Sold: 16
Cost of Items Sold: $ 60
Total Sales: $ 594.27
Highest Price Sold: $ 75 (VCR)
Average Price Sold: $ 37.14
Money Spent on New Inventory: $ 21.19
Number of items listed: 17
Gut Sales Report for the week: Slower sales, but that was expected.
Challenge of the week: I still have a lot of items I need to process and list.
Scavenge of the week: Nothing
Safety Update: After all the talk about keeping my inventory safe, I had an accident. Well, it wasn’t what was discussed: Containers falling on your foot, books falling on your head, containers falling on you. No, I went to measure a bag in a container and the metal retractable tape measure retracted and sliced my finger. Not sure what the morale of this story is, either “You can never be too safe” or “No matter what you do, accidents can happen”. I guess I prefer to say that the safer you are, the less likely it is that accidents will happen.
01/05/2020 at 4:15 pm #72493
Mark: And if OSHA ever found out you would be required to wear a yellow hard hat, yellow safety vest with day-glow stripes, metal toe shoes, wear metal mesh gloves, use a slow return re-tractable tape, Long pants and take a safety course on how to wear and use such safety appearral and if you buy all certified safety equipment it would run hundreds of dollars per outfit but you could still get hurt.
Saw a cartoon once of an OSHA Approved safety device to protect an employee from acceidents using a hammer. It would weigh 100 pounds, cost thousands of dollars and the employee would have to be strapped into it. LOL.
So be careful out there. It is cheaper to stay safe than be protected by government programs. LOL. Just being silly, it has been a long day.
Mike at MDC Concepts, Inc.
MDC Galleries and Fine Art in Atlanta
01/06/2020 at 6:36 pm #72581
lol! Leave it to government regulations to ruin things.
I am going to pay attention to the smaller things that can trip us up too. I think I have covered the big ones. Jay – I rearranged the falling bins, so I am now good.
01/06/2020 at 6:32 pm #72580
I hear you, I have scratched myself with the packing tape gun . . . and my most common injury is spraining my wrist from stuffing things in a padded flat rate envelope . . . hazards of the trade, LOL!
01/06/2020 at 6:38 pm #72582
Some of the teeth on those tape guns can be sharp. One that I have is as sharp as a razor (or so it seems). I have stopped using that one.
Now I just have to watch out for paper cuts with all that paper I am handling, lol.
01/05/2020 at 5:08 pm #72499
I really appreciate that you guys spent some time talking about cross-posting because this is something I have been thinking about lately: the fracturing of the online secondhand retail market. It worries me because for a large part, it seems like it is disrupting the market (taking sales volume away from eBay and Amazon) without adding much to either the buyer or seller. We can leave Poshmark and Etsy out of it because they offer a more crafted, efficient experience for people shopping for higher end and crafty things. But the never-ending direct eBay competitor-aspirants – Marcari, OfferUp, LetGo, etc – are bad for everyone. For the buyers, they offer a much smaller selection for prices that aren’t better than ebay. For the sellers, it is as you said: the volume that gets sold is so low that it doesn’t compensate for the opportunity cost of spending time creating cross-listings.
Personally, I cross-list to Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist. To my eye, Facebook Marketplace is the only new selling platform worth getting excited about. It doesn’t just disrupt; my impression has been that it has the power to meaningfully expand the broader secondhand market. I have seen scores of people my age (millennial) who share the strange standard prejudices against eBay and Craigslist (randos, danger in internet anonymity and non-accountability), become perfectly comfortable to buy something secondhand from their neighbor if it is through a Facebook account. My impression has been that this is creating both non-traditional sellers (much less daunting to try to sell something for the first time when it is a simple process through a Facebook account you already use every day), and non-traditional buyers (there is something reassuring when the seller is someone who lives near you with a Facebook account you can access anytime you like).
Unlike eBay, Facebook and Craigslist don’t have any strict listing requirements. What my Cross-Listing looks like is that while I list on eBay, I keep a tab open for each site. When I list something I think would sell locally, I copy/paste the title, description, and 1-3 photos. People are usually even less attentive to descriptions on local platforms, but when someone has any questions/requests, it is even more efficient to communicate over Facebook Messenger or Email than it is over eBay Messenger.
01/05/2020 at 5:26 pm #72503
Facebook really has made it easy and doesn’t ask much. Barrier to entry is very low.
I also agree that each generation wants to recreate their own space. Craigslist was an exciting place in the early 2000’s when usually you’d buy out of the newspaper classifieds.
It’ll be interesting to see which of these platforms last.
01/06/2020 at 9:00 am #72539
Facebook ABSOLUTELY has listing standards. I have had numerous listings pulled down due to bogus “prohibited item” violations.
Last week they tried to pull down my listing for an old Nintendo system because it was soliciting “adult services”. What?!? On the bright side it was the first appeal that has went in my favor.
01/06/2020 at 10:40 am #72550
They use algorithms to not only scan the text of you listing, but also the photos. And if it’s flagged once, they also flag your photos and if you reuse them, it’s auto-flagged. This is a huge problem in my record collecting groups – anything with a semi sexual name, something that looks like a gun/weapon, or something that references items that are often illegally trafficked… you know how many records/band names violate this? EVERYTHING by the Sex Pistols, a lot of jazz that has double entendres, U2’s “Boy, the cover of Nirvana Nevermind, etc. The list goes on and on.
Gotta change those to “Sax Pastels” or cover the Nirvana baby’s ding dong with a post it note.
01/07/2020 at 9:48 am #72604
I listed a mannequin for sale. A female mannequin AND I had a sports bra on it in the photos. They flagged it. I appealed and even pointed out the sports bra in the appeal. They denied my appeal.
01/05/2020 at 5:09 pm #72500
Dec 29 – Jan 4
Total Items in Store: 2823
Items Sold: 33
Total Sales : $611
* BELOW yearly average of $896
Highest Price: $100 (Kodak Brownie 8mm Movie Camera)
Average Price: $18.50
Cost of Goods Sold: $23
Costs of Goods Purchased this Week: $0
Number of New Items Listed this Week: 88
Another sort of soft week of sales. I definitely sold a decent quantity, but just a lot of $10-15 items. I’ve been steadily listing these buttons and I think I really hit my stride. I started out doing auctions because that’s where I noticed a lot of the higher solds happening, but I quickly realized that my buttons weren’t really worth the $50+ prices that these true antique ones were going for. So I’m sticking to BIN with slightly higher than average common button prices. So far though I’ve made about $180 off of these things and still have hundreds to sell.
Unfortunately, I got a 3-day restriction yesterday. Apparently I was dinged for having listed a hazardous material for the second time in a period of time. The first time a couple months ago was a vintage miniature fire extinguisher. I guess they used to be filled with stuff that caused health problems. This time it was a mercury tilt switch for electronics. Honestly didn’t know mercury was banned from eBay. I was kinda bummed out about it but at least I’m still making sales. I just can’t list any more buttons until Tuesday. I really wish eBay would have noticed that this was an honest mistake rather than resorting to instant punishment. It kind of feels like middle school again.
01/05/2020 at 5:28 pm #72504
Was it just a restriction to list new items? Or did they take down the whole store?
01/05/2020 at 5:32 pm #72505
Thankfully, just to list new items. The wording in the email about it read as if my whole store would be invisible to buyers for the whole 3 days, but I’ve been selling stuff still so who knows.
01/05/2020 at 5:36 pm #72506
Those buttons will sell. Just slow sellers.
01/05/2020 at 6:20 pm #72510
Earlier today, I noticed when I was over at the ‘What Sold’ forum, I clicked on your store and nothing came up. At first I thought this a glitch, now I see. Maybe you are shut out for a time? Sucks.
I scored a big handful of old school fever thermometers some years back and they were promptly taken down. I relisted without the words Thermometer and mercury and sold them.
Wouldn’t take that chance now.
Hope this works out to your greater profit in the end.
01/05/2020 at 6:38 pm #72515
Aw damn, you’re right. I just tried to access my store in incognito mode and couldn’t find anything. That’s so weird cause I just sold a thing this morning. Well now I’m upset…
01/06/2020 at 7:18 am #72528
That sale may have been an open offer?
Again, with you on this, we all feel the pain in part. I’ve certainly had many warnings. The wrong cop pulled you over.
01/06/2020 at 9:02 am #72540
Odds are buyers can still access your items directly through a google search.
01/07/2020 at 8:13 pm #72633StevieParticipant
- Location: Ohio
Finally signed up for the forums because I had to ask – how did you manage to list and successfully sell a thermometer without using the word ‘thermometer’?
01/08/2020 at 10:15 am #72643
That was back a long ways, and I’ve since learned the USPS greatly frowns upon shipping Mercury in any form, so I just stay clear. I suppose there are some hazardous materials special mailing hoops to jump through, but no thanks.
People collect various ‘vintage, old school, medical measurement devices, medical glass instruments, fever testers and such’. Lets say I used good key words in the title even without calling the device what it was. It worked. Like speeding with radar, until you get caught.
There is too much other stuff out there to sell.
Last year on Etsy, I received VERO for listing VOLKSWAGEN toy cars, BLUE ANGELS inflatable planes, and had a listing taken down for a licensed Washington REDSKINS lapel pin. These items are no problem on eBay, as far as I know, been listing them, and just sold one of the Blue Angel planes.
But its a long dark tunnel talking about Restricted, Regulated, VERO, and similar items on any selling platform. Makes my brain hurt, especially when there are grayish areas to stray into. Best to brush up on the facts now and then, listen to your gut, and not get froze out with fear when selling.
01/05/2020 at 5:13 pm #72501
Hello, and a great podcast as usual. I sell on two platforms yet I don’t cross list. If I have multiples of an item, I may list on both.
12/29 – 01/04/20 (no cross listing is done between platforms)
eBay store: totommyto
Total store items: 836
Number of items sold: 11
Total eBay sales (not counting s/h): $422.20
Cost of items sold: $33
Highest price sold: $125.00 – 1930’s lot of old auto/fire Insurance policies, paid $8, went to a really pleasant buyer in China who paid full price and paid Priority International shipping.
Average price sold: $38.40
Returns: 1 – $40 Guess watch returned from Israel, ‘Buyer changed his mind’.
Money spent on new inventory: $30
Number of new items listed this week: 9
Sell through rate for the week: 1.3
Number International sales: 1
Etsy store oldfleatoymarket
Total store items: 635
Number of items sold: 7
Total Etsy sales (not counting s/h): $136.10
Cost of items sold: $5
Highest price sold: $27 – small shabby wooden gold framed mirror, paid $1
Average price sold: $19.44
Money spent on new inventory: 0
Number of new items listed this week: 3
Sell through rate for the week: 1.1
Number International sales: 1
01/05/2020 at 5:15 pm #72502Steve ListParticipant
- Location: Richmond, Calif.
My Numbers for Dec. 2019
Total Listings: 1078
Items sold: 67
Gross Sales: $1769.36
Cost of Items sold: $271.93
Highest Price Sold: $90 – 2 sets of Noma Bubble Lights
Average Price Sold: $26.40 – Average Cost: $4.05
Spent on new inventory: $209
Number of items listed: 64
I’ve been trying to cut back on my death piles but an estate sale I went too (late in the day) had stuff I just couldn’t pass on. I got 5 sets of bubble lights, some old Motorola phones including 4 brick phones, some 1930s plane negatives and over 1000 1950s Kodak red border slides. The lights and phones sold very fast so I might of priced them too low, but still I’ve made $535 in sales from this lot so far and still have the negatives (on auction), slides, and what are either end tables or speaker stands to go.
01/05/2020 at 6:03 pm #72507
2019-12-29 – 2020-01-04
Total Items In Store: 7,382
Items Sold: 107
Cost of Items Sold: $ 57
Total Sales: $ 1,221.86
Highest Price Sold: $ 75 (US Army All-American Jersey)
Average Price Sold: $ 14.98
A bunch of small-dollar sales over Facebook Marketplace/Craigslist, but those are trickier to keep track of.
Moderately better week than I’ve been seeing this winter. Sales starting coming right after Christmas, still catching up with shipments.
01/05/2020 at 6:08 pm #72508
do you have the ability to ship on facebook?
01/05/2020 at 6:17 pm #72509
Yes, but I only ship through informal arrangement. I accept payment over Facebook, Paypal, Cash App, and Venmo. People give me their address, and I create a shipping label through a previous order on eBay – I’m sure this violates some sort of policy; I’m planning to create a Stamps.com account. This doesn’t constitute a large percentage of my FB sales, but it’s always interesting when people can send payment on trust alone. I buy quite a lot through Facebook, and I’ve had people ship to me as well.
Facebook did create a formal payment/shipping system. I haven’t used it myself, but I am a part of a group created by the Marketplace team for about a thousand high-volume sellers. People on there complain that the system is messed up in all sorts of ways, and caution not to use it until it is properly developed. I created a thread on this question there. Might be able to screenshot it if you’d like more info.
01/05/2020 at 6:22 pm #72511
you create a label through a previoius ebay transaction? won’t that email your buyer a tracking number to this other random person?
01/05/2020 at 6:26 pm #72513
Yes, as a buyer whose order I did that through recently informed me :X I thought I was being clever by doing it through orders that didn’t include tracking. If Stamps.com offers the same rates, I’m just going to do it through them next time I have something to ship. Those orders were always rare enough that I never bothered to establish a serious process for it.
01/05/2020 at 6:30 pm #72514
01/05/2020 at 6:44 pm #72516
I’ve looked to Paypal before for this, but I think they didn’t have First Class as an option. Do you remember whether this is the case now?
01/05/2020 at 8:21 pm #72518
01/05/2020 at 6:46 pm #72517TimoParticipant
- Location: Metro Atlanta
You will definitely confuse your eBay buyers by using eBay shipping like that. Might also mess up some of your eBay metrics. It could look like you have late shipping.
Like @Ryanne states:
You can use Paypal.com/Shipnow to print labels for USPS. They offer a fair price for shipping. I use this for first class and priority.
Or you can create a free account with Pirateship.com.
You can also create your own account with UPS (or Fedex) and print labels via their website.
These options are all subscription free.
01/05/2020 at 8:33 pm #72519simplicioParticipant
Not being a clothing seller, I am fairly bearish on extensive cross-posting. Ebay works for most of my needs, amazon is handy for books/media, and kijiji for big stuff. Beyond that…
I think you want to spend your time in the place where it has highest value to your business. For me, and I suspect for most sellers, the lowest hanging fruit is almost always in sourcing – getting better at it, doing more of it, finding new places to go. I feel like extensive cross posting is going to hit diminishing returns real fast after you post to 1 or 2 sites. Not only is there the time spent listing in multiple places (maybe 10 minutes per site, which adds up), there is the additional logistical nightmare of ending items on the other sites when they sell, which not only takes time but, when it goes wrong, causes customer issues (which are themselves time consuming).
Anyway. I had a really good week on ebay. Buying spree continues but managed to maintain positive cashflow.
Sales c/w shipping income: CAD$3,516. COGS: $730, Fees: ~$481, Postage: $390 –> Gross profit: $1,915
Expenditures: $2,164 –> Cashflow: $871
Listed: $2,700, 25 listings
Notable sales: 2 great sales this week: a huge lot of valves for $960 (had these for ages, got them at auction for $100 or so), and 2 PLC controllers for $900 (this is a recent ebay buy – I paid $300 for 12 or so similar units and sold 2 for $900 – so the lot is nicely paid off and still lots more to sell).
01/05/2020 at 9:14 pm #72522
Great podcast, I wanted to answer a question on managed payments. I have opted in, there is no per transaction fee and they do not charge fees on sales tax if I am reading it right. Here is a link to the details:
01/06/2020 at 8:21 am #72533
oddly this says two different things on the page, am i reading this right?:
If (a) you have successfully completed the managed payments onboarding process (in accordance with Section 4) prior to 00:00:00 (12:00 AM) Pacific Time on June 4, 2019 and (b) your eBay account has remained continuously enabled for managed payments: Your payments processing fees are calculated as 2.7% of the total order amount, including shipping, handling, sales tax and other amounts owed (the “payments processing rate”).
If you successfully complete the managed payments onboarding process (in accordance with Section 4) on or after June 4, 2019 (starting at 00:00:00 (12:00 AM) Pacific Time): Your payments processing fees are calculated as (i) the payments processing rate plus (ii) $0.25 per listing sold (the “per listing payments fee”). Notwithstanding the foregoing clause (ii), for sellers who onboard to managed payments on or after June 4, 2019 the per listing payments fee is waived through September 30, 2019 at 23:59:59 Pacific Time (11:59 PM plus 59 seconds) and will take effect beginning October 1, 2019 at 00:00:00 Pacific Time (12:00 AM).
Payments processing fees do not include any sales tax, which will be added to this fee on your invoice if applicable.
01/06/2020 at 4:49 pm #72576
I read it three times, and now I am more confused. It does seem to be contradictory. Can anyone translate this?
01/06/2020 at 9:09 am #72541
So managed payments will save me a whopping…. 5 cents on transaction fee and .2% on the processing fee?
I’ll stay on the pass-wagon until they force me. My GSP sales add up to way more than that potential savings of about $150.
01/06/2020 at 4:47 pm #72575
Yes, I am on managed payments, and if I could do it again, I would not switch. It killed my international sales. I think you are right to stay!
01/05/2020 at 9:42 pm #72523plucky_luckyParticipant
- Location: TX
Concerning Cross Posting. I work along. Am retired and eBay is a great addition to my income. Have sold on eBay since 2003 and have almost 2000 items. I, too, sell anything that I think will sell. My passion is vintage glassware so Etsy works great for me. Have been on Etsy about 10 years. I also cross post on Poshmark, Marcari and Bonanza. Bonanza doesn’t give me many sells but it is easy because what I list on eBay automatically goes to Bonanza. When an item sells on one it goes off the other one. Etsy is my favorite next to eBay. My love and passion is vintage glassware. Etsy is great for this. Once you get used to Etsy it’s easy peasy. When I list a vintage item on eBay I just copy and paste to Etsy. I mainly list clothes on Poshmark and Mercari. Been doing this 2 years. Don’t sell a lot on either of these but do sell some. I just don’t spend lots of time sharing, etc. The only thing is to stay on top of everything. If it sells on Etsy get on eBay and delete and vice versa. If clothing do same with Poshmark, Mercari, etc.
Listened to your podcast today and this topic was of interest to me since I have done it several years. Just takes time and stay on top of it. Now you ask if I make much money on the other sites? Only on Etsy. Some weeks I do as good on Etsy as eBay. My income isn’t as much as yours or lots of others. I average about 2500 a month on all collectively. Just gives me extra fun money in my retirement and I love what I do. Am a widow and along so keeps me busy and out of trouble. lol
01/06/2020 at 4:45 pm #72574
Thank you for sharing, that is so interesting about etsy and the glassware. I have a lot of it, but haven’t used etsy in years.
01/06/2020 at 9:22 am #72543
Items in Store 1518
Items Sold 44
Total Sales $1,778.00
Total Profit $1,630.00
Average profit $37.05
Average sales price $40.41
New Listings 167
Yes you read that right – 167 new listings! I was home taking care of wife and all 5 kids for 3 days this week. They slept alot so I got plenty of extra time doing ebay in the down time. Needless to say, New Years was quite uneventful.
Sales were amazing this week and I was really hoping to net a $2k+ week… but then the weekend happened. Crap sales on the weekend. Boo!!! Hopefully all of that listing pays off this week.
In other news, I got a new business credit card and have switched to using Pirateship exclusively for all USPS shipping and paying with said credit card. The card I chose gives me bonus rewards points for shipping purchases and I can confirm Pirateship is categorized as shipping in rewards. I’ll earn 2 extra hotel night stays this year just off my shipping costs. Woot!!!
I did run into a hiccup though – this card is an Am Ex and Goodwill does not take Am Ex. Doh! I think for a workaround I’m going to purchase a prepaid visa with my rewards card and use that at Goodwill.
I’m not setting any specific goals right now, but I am VERY focused listing as much as possible and limiting my inventory purchases. I want to start killing my death piles and turn them into profit generating inventory.
01/06/2020 at 10:06 am #72545
Did you get an actual business credit card, or just a new credit card for your business.
The reason I ask this is because typically business credit cards, do not have the same consumer protections that a standard consumer credit card has. A business credit card may hold the owner liable for much more in the way of unauthorized purchases.
167 new listings.. nice week.
01/06/2020 at 10:53 am #72552
Yes a business Credit card.
It is an Am Ex and from what I have read, Am Ex does not hold you liable for fraudulent charges.
01/06/2020 at 12:35 pm #72557
“Understand your business credit card fraud protections
The Fair Credit Billing Act generally limits liability for unauthorized charges on personal cards to $50, but offering that same protection for business cards is optional for credit card companies.Jun 7, 2019”
The financial guys on the radio, including Clark Howard, caution people about getting a business credit card due to the lack of consumer protection.
It sounds like you’ve read the fine print. You may be fine.
01/06/2020 at 4:42 pm #72573
I did not know this. I use my business AMEX for everthing, ugh. I need to read the fine print, thank you for bringing this up.
01/06/2020 at 10:03 pm #72586
My understanding is that the consumer protections for credit cards is statutory. In other words the law stipulates the protections and limits on liability for consumer credit cards.
“For small businesses, credit cards provide resources owners need when they don’t have the cash. However, since small-business credit cards have been excluded from protection under the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009, better known as the Credit Card Act, small businesses must be careful and know the dangers this type of credit can pose.”
I’m not trying to create problems that don’t exist, but there would have to be a big incentive for me to opt for a business credit card over the consumer version and give up the statutory protections.
Happy Selling.. to all.
01/06/2020 at 5:59 pm #72579
Hey Retro.. Just hear say from my end but isn’t AMEX a Charge card not a credit card. A friend has an Amex business card and he says whatever amount he puts on the card has to be paid in full, 100% at the months end, unlike a “credit card” which allows the user to make the minimum payment, [if needed] and interest gets charged on the unpaid balance.
If this is true, that would be the deal breaker with us. But we have always have a business VISA or MasterCard with Cash Back points to redeem for cash back into our account.
just asking more than anything.
Mike at MDCGFA in Atl.
01/07/2020 at 10:06 am #72607
Amex has charge card options, but they are limited. No, this is not a charge card.
01/06/2020 at 6:41 pm #72583
Were the 167 new listings killer items or do you think just the fact of listing them gave you the push? Usually with me it is the latter, but sometimes it is a combination.
01/07/2020 at 10:04 am #72606
Actually my sales died once I had most of those listings up. Ebay is a weird beast…
Weekends typically suck for me. Monday-Thursday are my biggest selling days.
01/08/2020 at 5:51 pm #72679
The same with me. The weekends used to be when things sold, but now Monday-Thursday seem to sell more. But it flip flops sometimes. Like you say, Ebay is a weird beast…
01/06/2020 at 10:26 am #72546
I do not cross post between my Etsy and eBay stores. I might be looking at moving some of my eBay inventory over to Etsy just because I’m annoyed with eBay at the moment. I don’t know if I should look into the cross-listing software or not. I would move the listing over and then delete the old one. That will be something for me to think about in the next few weeks.
Week of Dec 29 – Jan 4
* Total Items in Store: 1507 eBay, 34 Etsy
* Items Sold: 22 eBay, 1 Etsy
* Cost of Items Sold: $39.50 + $15.80 Commission
* Total Sales: $481.34 eBay, 17.75 Etsy
* Highest Price Sold: $84 Vintage Starrett Inside Micrometer
* Average Price Sold: $21.70
* Returns: 0
* Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
* Number of items listed this week: 0
My sales often pickup after Christmas. People are getting what they really want, or they are spending their eBay gift cards.
01/06/2020 at 1:04 pm #72562
Whats happening with eBay that makes you want to leave the entire platform?
01/07/2020 at 8:36 am #72587
Oh, I didn’t say I was going to leave the entire platform!! I had a couple of hiccups in October where I had to cancel a sale. They were stupid issues that actually weren’t issues, but I messed up. It wasn’t a big deal, but my account rating was dropped from TRS to Above Average.
Last month, I had a false INAD return. When I went to issue the return, eBay had it set up so that I didn’t have to refund the original shipping, and all I did was click. The buyer called and complained, and she left negative feedback. I called eBay to explain what happened, and they removed the negative feedback. However, my status says that I will be considered Below Average for next rating period.
The whole thing is ridiculous. I plan to call eBay (maybe today) and see if I can’t change that. If not, I’d at least like to move a portion of my eBay items to Etsy so that I don’t have to pay the charge for listings over 1000. I also don’t want to pay the extra 5% in commission fees, but if they won’t change anything, I’m stuck with it.
01/07/2020 at 9:18 am #72598
eBay leaves the “refund original shipping” option open specifically for occurrence of false INADs.
Example: if the buyer claims it’s defective because it didn’t fit them, or say the color doesn’t look the same in person as it did on their screen, those are remorse reasons that should not be INAD claims. If you offer free returns, you have the option to withhold the original shipping, and you are supposed to report the buyer for the faulty claim. The combination of the two actions will protect you from negative feedback, as part of the free returns seller protections.
Then when you get your service metrics report for that period you will see that, while that specific return is on the report, it was not counted against you in the evaluation. While the service metric projection is a good benchmark of your current progress, you can’t really rely in the accuracy of it. By the time it becomes the current report, ebay may have adjusted it down in many cases due to the false INADs, and increases in the peer group returns.
01/07/2020 at 10:12 am #72608
Anyway, I just called eBay, and we walked through the recent “resolved without seller resolution”, and I explained how I was involved and how I resolved each issue. The seller rep removed two defects plus one of my cancelations from October. I don’t see anything updated in my statistics yet, but I should be good to at least keep the above average rating.
In the meantime, I noticed that 7 items from Dec 30 & 31 show up with tracking never uploaded. In my orders page, they definitely show uploaded tracking. I buy most of my shipping through eBay and occasionally through Pirate Ship, so all tracking is uploaded automatically. The CR said that this was a known glitch, and these aren’t counting against me.
01/07/2020 at 9:38 am #72602
I don’t have free returns. I’ve thought about adding it, but I wouldn’t have had free returns on something large and heavy like the item I’m talking about. I suppose I could report the buyer, but I don’t think that would help considering I didn’t have free returns.
All I did was bring up the return and press the button. I didn’t notice the box.
But, I hear you. I will consider free returns, but I think I’ll wait until I get TRS back.
01/06/2020 at 10:32 am #72547
I’ll start posting weekly again now that the holidays are over and I’m back on schedule! For now, my December numbers (which were quite good for my store).
Total Items in Store: 1050
Items Sold: 127 (1 Bonanza, 3 Discogs, 23 FB)
Cost of Items Sold: $1848 (35.6% of sales)
Total Sales: $5186
Highest Price Sold:
$300 Led Zepp II MFSL
$200 Nirvana Unplugged
$165 Radiohead Ok Computer
$140 RHCP Californication
$130 Biggie Life After Death
Average Price Sold: $40.84
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $0
Number of items listed this week: 38 (took on some family items and I’m taking 25% commission)
Really a whirlwind holiday season – a lot of sales, a good bit of family travel, a lot to do end of year for the day job, etc. Hectic, but all worth it in the end – maybe my highest volume of sales ever for a month and likely highest dollar sales. January through the first week has slowed considerably – swear I will start posting weekly again now.
Noticing above, my COGS are incredibly high. I like to keep them around 20% or lower ideally, but throughout December I was selling higher dollar items that had higher COGS, but wasn’t selling lower dollar items with little to no COGS to balance them out. Can’t complain, even though at 35%, I’ll buy something for $35 and sell for $100 all day long and I bet most of us would too.
This week I also plan on reconciling my FY’19 numbers. At first glance, 2019 was one of my best years in terms of gross sales nearly hitting $36k. I need to calculate all my COGS and ROI %.
01/06/2020 at 1:04 pm #72561
You’ve really created a great business selling LP’s. Those are great sales.
01/07/2020 at 8:52 am #72588
Thanks, I have – but have probably skewed my store too far. Need to make a real effort to balance out my inventory. Right after Christmas, went to a few estate sales and focused on getting high quality, but non-LP inventory. Got a few really neat pieces:
Hersheys chocolate mold
WWII Army division decor
1940s Marx Tin Toy
Sealed vintage Guerlain Shalimar
Also bought a lot of about 50 NFL Hall of Fame autographs at an auction for a few dollars each. Just got them authenticated (all good) and will be listing within a the next week or so.
01/07/2020 at 8:54 am #72589
How much does it cost to get an autograph authenticated? Do they give you a little certificate for each one?
01/07/2020 at 9:27 am #72599
There are hundreds of authenticators out there, but there are only really 2 that are the gold standard/hold gravitas in the collecting world: PSA/DNA & JSA. Both of these companies have sparkling reputations & have a database system that is really attractive to collectors. Every authentication has a unique serial number that can be looked up/verified and also tamper-proof markings on the items to ensure you can’t duplicate or switch. Yes, they provide a certificate for each item – the standard is a small card the size of a concert ticket or baseball card and the premium (for rare or unique items) is a full page letter.
In general (although there are exceptions), authentication is $20-$25 per item (can go up for something like a full team signed baseball or autograph of George Washington, etc). PSA/DNA is located in Las Vegas (they’re the ones you’ll see frequently on shows like Pawn Stars), JSA is located in New Jersey. You can save on both way shipping and take advantage of on the spot authentication if you go in person. I took all of my items to a JSA appearance in northern NJ – saved at least $100 on the shipping & insurance, plus because I brought so many items, got a discount to $15 each. It was expensive when all said & done, but with COGS $5-$10 per item and authentication at $15 each, I feel like most of what I have will sell for at least $50 and some will be well over $100.
01/06/2020 at 10:50 am #72551Steven SParticipant
- Location: South Dakota
I’ll bet the buyer who left the Neutral FB thought better of it and removed it themselves. And that’s why no notification about it was received.
01/06/2020 at 1:05 pm #72563
Could be. Wish eBay communicated why neutral or negative feedback was received or removed.
01/06/2020 at 4:41 pm #72572
Ebay does send out a monthly defect report that indicates if they removed a defect or negative feedback for you. It doesn’t have the details, but still a great thing to know now that some of it is automated.
01/07/2020 at 8:59 am #72593
Huh, where is this monthly defect report?
01/07/2020 at 9:08 am #72595
01/07/2020 at 10:28 am #72610
@ the Seam Store:
Hey, I don’t see the report you mention in any e-mail messages, both Outlook or my Ebay Messages. Maybe only sent to select sellers or maybe only anchor stores?
mike at MDCGFA
01/07/2020 at 10:31 am #72611
Hmm, Perhaps its only for sellers who offer free returns….I don’t recall if you do or not. Or maybe it the new report hasn’t been fully implemented across all sellers yet.
01/07/2020 at 10:39 am #72614
Probably the latter. We do offer both free shipping on a majority of items and free returns. So maybe as you said, new and not fully implemented.
Thanks for the reply.. mike – MDCGFA
01/06/2020 at 1:41 pm #72565TimoParticipant
- Location: Metro Atlanta
I don’t think one can change a feedback that has been posted without asking the seller to send a feedback revision request first.
01/07/2020 at 9:09 am #72596
They could remove if they called ebay and said it was accidental.
01/06/2020 at 12:12 pm #72555
Week Dec 29, 2019 – Jan 4, 2020
Items in store: 4436 Listings for 7317 Items
Items Sold: 104 transactions for 124 Items
Gross Sales: $7130.04
Highest Price Sold: $160 John Varvatos Suit
Lowest Price Sold: $12….pocket square
Average Sale Price: $57.50
Cost of Goods Sold $398, Plus consignment payout, roughly $1305
Number of new items listed this week: 0, took the week off to run end of year numbers and determine inventory values for taxes.
$$ spent on new inventory this week $0
International Sales, 28%
Repeat Customers 13
01/06/2020 at 12:44 pm #72558MoCoyotesParticipant
- Location: St. Louis
Total Items in Store: 2988
Items Sold: 29
Cost of Items Sold: $28
Total Sales: $983
Highest Price Sold: $95 (Wooden German Incense smoker)
Average Price Sold: $33.89
Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $67
Number of items listed this week: 37
New year resolution…post our numbers every week. I’ve gotten out of the habit of it. This last year was consistent for us. December was not great, actually about 20% under 2018. But this year starting well, and the entirety of 2018 was good. I just gotta keep listing. We do other side jobs and sometimes throughout the year those side jobs become the primary job.
01/07/2020 at 8:59 am #72592
What kind of work do you do as side job?
01/06/2020 at 1:48 pm #72566Julie BParticipant
- Location: Georgia
Video games were mentioned in this week’s episode. I just bought a modified mini Super Nintendo System that has almost every Nintendo and SNES game ever made. I bought it on eBay. Apparently when the mini SNES came out a year or so ago, hackers figured out they could go into them and add all of the other games through some sort of open source website. I imagine that will almost completely kill off the 2nd hand market for used NES and SNES game cartridges.
I’ve been in hog heaven reliving my childhood playing Legend of Zelda and Dr. Mario.
01/06/2020 at 2:49 pm #72568
Emulators have been around a LOOOONNNGG time now and if anything it makes the 2nd hand market hotter.
I used to be big into repairing/collecting pinball machines. I real nice app came out for iphones/tablets that emulated real pinball machines quite well. That app made the real pinball machine market blow up. Everything doubled/tripled in value. Tons of new pinball manufacturers were going into business selling direct to consumers. Pinball collecting went from niche/cheap to being a rich man’s game.
Basically, the emulator is cool and all but the real thing is better. Same with Ninendo. People get all excited when they realize they can play every game ever made on their computer. Then eventually they get the urge to acquire the real thing.
01/06/2020 at 3:46 pm #72570Julie BParticipant
- Location: Georgia
Fortunately the modified SNES I got still uses the same controllers and works just as I remember the original NES and SNES working but without the darn cartridges to blow on.
One thing I noticed this Christmas while looking at friends’ facebook photos, it seems a number of people got what looked to be vintage arcade machines, both the stand up and tabletop ones that were popular in the 80s. I think some were actually new but could be some refurbished ones too.
01/08/2020 at 8:58 am #72640
Walmart sells them. They are made by a company called Arcade 1Up.
They are pretty neat little machines. I was quite impressed with their 4 player Ninja Turtles machine they featured this holiday season.
01/07/2020 at 9:02 am #72594
This story is much like the vinyl/record business. Yes, there are plenty of places to stream every piece of music, but that’s been fueling the discovery (& re-discovery) of music and driven the desire to physically “own” the music. Vinyl was the first to make a comeback and might be at the very peak right now, reel-to-reel tapes are incredibly hot, cassettes are just starting to make their comeback, and CDs certainly will be next. Streaming makes music convenient and portable, but having a collection you can actually use is very attractive to a lot of people.
01/06/2020 at 2:00 pm #72567jadowaParticipant
- Location: Franklin, IN
Week of December 29 to January 3
Total Items In Store: 5209
Items Sold: 153
Total Sales (w/o Shipping): $1576.26
Cost of Items Sold: $468.64
Total Profit: $1107.62
Highest Price Sold: $125.00 (Carole Towne Christmas Village People/Structures Lot)
Average Price Sold: $10.30
Money Spent on New Inventory: $0.00
Number of items listed: 188
My first sales report, though I have been following the podcast for a while now. I introduced myself a year or two ago, but just a quick intro… I have been a full-time online seller for 18 years (and 3 1/2 years prior to that part-time). I have always sold on eBay, but this will be the first year that I am no longer a seller on Amazon FBA which has always been at least 80% of my business.
Long story, but basically the NBA said I was selling a counterfeit T-Shirt. Amazon shut down my account immediately. I fought the NBA’s claim for 4 months at which time Amazon ordered me to remove my inventory from their warehouse at a cost of $15,000 or they could throw it away for me at a cost of $10,000. So, I had all 30,000 items returned to me (Amazon sent it back in literally 8,000 boxes – a process that I still have nightmares about).
In December, my lawyer finally got the NBA to remove their claim against me under threat of a lawsuit. Amazon opened my account back up for two weeks and then I get another email from them saying that my account has been closed again… This time because I owe them the $15,000 for returning my inventory.
Well, Amazon, because of your lousy policy of closing down a 17-year-old account (with sales over $1M each year for the last four years) on a single false accusation causing me to almost lose my business, lay off my employees and have my wife go back to a regular job just so we can make ends meet… See Ya – I’ll take my business elsewhere…
Funny thing is, I am a little relieved. I never really loved selling on Amazon like I always have on eBay. I am really optimistic heading into the new year. I don’t have to worry about employees, my wife went back to work as a Nurse and loves it since that has always been her passion (not to mention the insurance is great), and I can do what I have always loved… sell on eBay.
So, here’s to a great year!!
01/06/2020 at 2:52 pm #72569
Oh my gosh, what a nightmare!!!
This is the scary thing about online sales. My entire store could be shut down with the press of a button and it would be entirely out of my control.
01/06/2020 at 5:42 pm #72577
Jaw dropping story, shocking.
I’m with you and agree to a Great Year, prosper and be in amazing health.
Thank God for your eBay backup and for your Wife’s sleeper profession, and for your never say die, positive, take no prisoners killer attitude!
One to ride the river with in our midst.
01/06/2020 at 5:51 pm #72578
Holy Cow, what a story. This is just one of 3 or 4 reasons we do cross list and are working on our own Shopify store. SixBit does all our cross posting, tracking, deleting and providing full financials broken down by platform for $99 a month. We look at it is “Store-Business Insurance”.
But what a nightmare and cost.
But one BIG question, given Ebay has it’s VERO program. Are you an authorized seller of NBA Products. From your volume it seems you must get multiples or wholesale lots of pre-produced gear from a licensed printer or mfg. to stock a store as large as yours. Guess that is what the lawsuit would be about.
But 8,000 boxes at $15,000….WOW! Though only $1.88 per box mailing to you, still times 8k of them. Then where do you store them and the time to get everything sorted out and a new inventory set up locally.
You have our due respect on handling all of that. Good luck on it.
Mike at MDC Concepts, Inc. in Atlanta
01/07/2020 at 8:55 am #72590
What kind of items were you selling on Amazon FBA? Wholesale? Retail arbitrage?
01/07/2020 at 9:11 am #72597
Crazy story @jadowa! Were you actually selling a counterfeit/unauthorized shirt or was it a false claim by the NBA because you got them wholesale/closeout? Doesn’t matter to me personally, just wondering if all this upheaval of your life was getting caught or a complete misunderstanding.
01/07/2020 at 9:36 am #72601
That story is absolutely insane and exactly why no one can rely on Amazon for 100% of their income anymore. Amazon doesn’t care how much money you are making on their site – there are always a million other third-party sellers to replace whatever income you have generated. You can be easily replaced. Even if you have been selling on their site for 15 or 20+ years, you won’t get any sort of acknowledgement for it. Third-party sellers are treated exactly like warehouse workers – expendable and of little significance.
01/06/2020 at 8:01 pm #72585
Thanks for the podcast. I really enjoyed this week’s episode:
My numbers for 5 days only (from 1/1):
Total Items in Store: 3454
Items Sold: 33
Total Sales: $752.05
Cost of Items Sold: $71
Average Price Sold: $22.79
Average Cost of Item: $2.16
Highest Price Item Sold: $169.95 USS PUEBLO (ACR-7) WWI era US Navy Tally Donald Duck Flat Cap Hat
Number of items listed this week: 3487 worth approx. $655
YTD Sales: $752
YTD sales compared to this time last year: +-16%
Average age of items in store (in days since listing): 443
Average number of days between listing and selling this week: 290
Median age of sales (in days, between listing and selling): 191
Sell-through rate (for the week): 0.96%
Hats sold this week: 22 (66% of sales) worth $529.26 (70% of sales $)
My only high-value sale was also the most expensive hat I’ve ever sold. It was a lucky find at an estate sale. I paid a dollar or two for it.
I had a week vacation in the San Diego area and made time to hit about a dozen thrift shops. (I don’t normally source from thrift shops). I give much respect to anyone that can sustain a decent reselling business from thrift shops in a major metro area without sourcing clothes. I could never, in a million years, make that work I don’t think.
On the subject of thrift shops, I visited the San Diego Goodwill outlet. The bins only had clothes which isn’t something I am interested in. Off to the side they had auctions of gaylords (or the euqivalent) of other things. (I missed the opportunity to see what they were selling at auction but I believe it is things like books an accessories). The auction was held entirely in spanish. The auctioneer and all the bidders only spoke Spanish. That was a strange experience.
(To Jay’s point, my local Goodwill outlet doesn’t have a territorial feeling about it. There’s a race to the new bins but once that starts it’s every man/woman for themselves with no restrictions that I’ve ever seen).
01/07/2020 at 8:58 am #72591
At your Goodwill outlet, there aren’t regulars who claim certain bins as “their bin”?
I just remember a woman who had three bins that she didnt allow anyone to touch. And another guy who grabbed every single shoe he could find, put in a pile that no one could touch, and then would go through all the shoes to decide which ones he wanted to keep.
These people bring out the worst in me.
01/07/2020 at 10:19 am #72609
Jay: Same type of experience when we went to the Orlando, FL bins during a few trips down to visit our daughter when she lived down there a few years ago. While no one “claimed” a whole bins, people were pushing and wedging in between my wife and I. Also as we looked through stuff and trying to dig down to the bottom of piles, everyone just threw there discarded looked through items left and right and kept piling the broken and pieces of stuff over on top.
The other issue we had was with the shoulder to shoulder acticity we had to keep our cart behind us and we had several items taken out of our cart when our backs were turned. Finally Susan and I took turns, one of us belly up to the bins, and the other standing with the cart behind. We would grab an item then just pass it back, like a quarterback hand off and the other putting in the cart. We also used our estate bag cover that has sold on it and threw that over the cart.
We have only been 3 or 4 times. We don’t sell clothes and the higher end home decor, collectible items are few and far between and if found were all nicked and chipped up. No Limoge, Spode, Tiffany, Waterford, Roseville, Fenton pieces in any of those bins.
Even though we had our work gloves, many items were extremely smelly, water soured, urine or mold smelling. Susan didn’t like those trips at all and said she has no interest in ever going again. Just not our higher type of items.
Estate sales and Auctions is where we find the higher end types of items we prefer to sell. We may pay a little more, but our return is better. Last year we averaged $6.42 per item purchased and our average item sold price was $52. We just didn’t find items that would give us that type of return in “bins”.
Plus we like to go to auctions early, do a preview then go sit down and eat and take our time running a few apps and seeing the trends and comps, make a decision to buy or not buy and create a specific cut off point of which we won’t go above when bidding. Can’t do that kind of on the spot analysis at a scrimmage push, pull and grab environment.
Again that opinion along with $1.50 gets you half a cup of coffee! 🙂
Mike at MDC Concepts, Inc.
MDC Galleries and Fine Art
SmartParts Small Equipment Parts
01/07/2020 at 3:24 pm #72622
01/07/2020 at 9:34 am #72600
@Simon, on our last trip to SD in the Fall, I went to all the Point Loma area thifts. I found it to be very picked over (I only sell hard goods).
01/07/2020 at 3:23 pm #72621
@ChristineR – your experience matched mine. For my kind of reselling, I’d generally have much more luck hitting a dozen garage sales or estate sales than I had with hitting a similar number of San Diego thrift shops that were either very picked over or very junky or both. I couldn’t find any hidden treasures. I did buy some hats but I passed on a equal number due to the high prices.
01/07/2020 at 9:58 am #72605
As the resident Mercari cheerleader, I have to point out that it is a really good option for people with time constraints and arguably the easiest to cross-post on. It’s quick and dirty. There is no social media component, square photo requirement, and your sales are final after buyer approves or in three days after delivery. Returns are rare and buyers I suspect are way less high maintenance than Etsy. You aren’t necessarily going to get top dollar, but the relative ease and speed of Mercari I think appeals to a lot of younger buyers and sellers.
The big advantage over Ebay is that things happen faster because your items are way more visible, though there is also more pressure to drop the price. And, possibly there are younger people who are not into Ebay shopping, so maybe worth cross-posting certain items on Mercari especially if you have your help do it after you’ve created the Ebay listing. Using my millennial coworkers as an illustration, they are not shopping Ebay much – unless they get there from a search engine, and they are very enthused about buying and selling on Mercari. They are looking for bargains and are very price driven but want quality.
01/07/2020 at 10:35 am #72612
ChristineR—Is there any way to search “sold” items on Mercari, to get an idea of what sells? I sell mostly long tail hard goods with some vintage/used clothing….not sure my stuff would get much interest there….
01/07/2020 at 11:00 am #72615
@ChristineR: Same question for us as posted by MyCottage. Any type of Sales / Sold Data available for Mercari?
As far as getting items on Mercari, no problem for us because we use sixbit and have worked out a work around, just like T-Satt has to be able to cross list on all platforms and control everything from within SixBit. So, only questions is like MyCottage asks, what are the Sold numbers for the longer Tail Vintage items, quantity of sales and prices items are selling for. Though we will use the same prices we currently use.
mike at MDC Galleries and Fine Art in Atlanta
01/07/2020 at 11:09 am #72616
@MyCottage yes you can easily sort solds with a toggle button. There is a category for vintage and subs. I do feel like certain items do better on Mercari than others – that would be a good way to confirm which of yours might be a good fit.
I’ve not been super active reselling in the past 6 months, but I did try a few vintage items on Mercari with mixed results. I think in some cases you can get slightly more than Ebay for something that is under $30 if they are plentiful on Ebay just because there is so much less posted on Mercari and maybe the vintage buyers are less experienced. Also Mercari is phone-driven so they are better about notifications to potential buyers than Ebay. At least on Mercari you know your items are getting good views, albeit sometimes by stingy buyers.
01/07/2020 at 9:50 pm #72635
Thanks Christine! I’ll have to look into it….I’ll try to go through enough solds to get a feel for what sells…
01/07/2020 at 11:56 am #72617MoCoyotesParticipant
- Location: St. Louis
Our sides jobs are:
*We both do some carpentry and the like. Currently we are doing some renovations on a house Rita’s step dad owns
*Rita spins yarn and does other fiber arts and sells that on Etsy and to local folks
*We maintain and clean a 2-family Airbnb for some folks who live in NY. We are in St. Louis
*Rita is a high school and youth Lacrosse coach
*And whatever other weird side gigs pop up
01/07/2020 at 12:54 pm #72618jadowaParticipant
- Location: Franklin, IN
Yes, everything was authentic. That particular shirt had actually never been purchased on Amazon, so there is no way the NBA did a “test buy” – they just made the accusation and Amazon believed them.
I first started selling books, movies, and CDs via FBA in the early 2000’s well before they allowed sellers to sell clothing. When they allowed clothing sellers, I jumped on board and treated the sourcing of clothing like I did my media products. I just purchased large liquidation lots from large manufacturers and listed each item individually. It worked great for years without any problem.
Back then, it was perfectly acceptable by Amazon to have that type of model. It wasn’t until the last couple years that Amazon no longer wanted sellers like me. I’ll admit… I saw the writing on the wall a couple years ago and made the decision not to change my business model. My average purchase price was $2.00 and average selling price was $16.00. So, it was really hard to step away from that. So, ultimately it was my fault for failing to change.
But, now I am excited for the new chapter of my business and looking forward to what the future will bring.
01/07/2020 at 1:09 pm #72619LukastreasuretroveParticipant
- Location: Chevy Chase, MD
Great podcast this week. I’ve been thinking a lot about cross posting for many of the same reasons people have mentioned. I think I would have to find a pretty seamless solution before I would consider it in earnest. I’ve occasionally cross-posted to Craigslist or FB Marketplace, but I haven’t found them very useful. I mostly only post some larger items that I’d rather not ship, but find dealing with the low-ball offers that make up the majority of queries frustrating and more high maintenance that eBay. That said, I did sell a set houses for a light up village over the holidays on FB.
Here are my numbers for last week. Fell a bit but still higher than my average run rate. About half of the sales were Christmas items. Must be people filling in gaps in their collections as they put them away for the year.
Week Ending 01/04/2020
Total Items in Store: 1152
Items Sold: 27
Gross Sales: $1,206.17
Gross wo Shipping: $941.45
Cost of Items Sold: $50.78
Highest Price Sold: $100.00 (Murano glass Christmas tree)
Average Price Sold: $34.86
Money Spent on New Inventory: $0
Sold via promoted listings: 14
Promoted Percentage: 51.85%
Average Days Listed: 229
Longest Listed: 635
New items listed: 0
With the kids being off from school and the holidays, took a break from listing. Getting back at it this morning. I’m going to miss the Christmas boost.
01/07/2020 at 4:24 pm #72624SilverFoxFindsParticipant
- Location: Virginia Beach
I occasionally list on FB Marketplace, though not with as much selling success as I’d like. Any type of item, just usually those that are large and unwieldy to ship via eBay. I listed a Bose Acoustimass speaker set this past week, and am still not sure it’s visible to anyone, as FB flagged it as inappropriate. I’ve found with the sales I have had, typically if you don’t get a lot of responses within the first 24 hours, it’s not likely to sell. Craigslist was another place I listed before I moved here; it’s a much less active market here, so I’ve been experimenting with FB instead. But all of that is more parallel-listing, rather than cross-listing…
As more of a part-time seller, I’m less interested in leveraging sales by cross-posting b/c of either the extra work involved, or the cost (3rd party software to more easily enable it). This could change, but more likely, I’d just separate the types of things I sell, and list on the platforms I think would bring the best price – more of the parallel-listing. For now, I’m just keeping it simple.
JAN started out strong, thankfully, though as soon as I noted this grand return of January riches to my Mom, it dropped off, bah. 🙂 Still planning on the strongest month of sales in the last year; we shall see. In other news, my store item count is the lowest it’s been in over a year – need to remedy that in the coming weeks.
12/29/19 – 1/4/20
Total Items In Store: 797
Items Sold: 17
Net Sales (Total Sales – Selling Costs): $640.05
Highest Sold Price: $110 – 8 Vintage Johnson Bros English Transferware Bowls
Average Sold Price: $37.65
Cost of Items Sold: $26.35
Money Spent on New Inventory Last Week: $0
Number of Items listed last week: 10 or so
01/08/2020 at 8:55 am #72639
The bose subs sell very well on ebay if you are willing to ship it. I’ve sold two. They sell very fast.
01/08/2020 at 1:04 am #72638
I don’t comment much, but had to jump in on the subject of cross-posting. I use “List Perfectly” and I list on four platforms (Ebay, Poshmark, Etsy & Mercari). My store is very diverse. I sell whatever I want and in many different categories. The key to cross-posting fast is to start with Ebay for a couple of different reasons. If you start with Ebay, you don’t have to worry about square photos on Poshmark. Whatever you do with your photos on Ebay copies perfectly to the rest of the platforms, even if you use a photo brightener. Just have one shot that is a tad further away that you can use for your Poshmark main photo. I have the least expensive level of List-Perfectly. I don’t save anything to that site. I simply copy to each platform direct from Ebay because there is an option to bypass saving to List Perfectly. The key is to use a template for clothing and other items that you sell a lot of. I put all the measurements and details in the template. Everything carries over to the other platforms. It’s just a matter of minor tweaks for each of those sites to get the listing in there right (Etsy takes the most time). Posh and Mercari are simple to copy to. So basically with every listing that I do on Ebay, I also copy to usually three of the other platforms, and other platforms are available now, too. I higher recommend listing on multiple platforms because eBay is different now. You need other platforms to fill in for slow eBay sales.
I have a Google spreadsheet for my inventory where I use colors to identify which platforms I have listed on. As soon as something sells, I take it down from the other platforms. Yes, it takes a bit more time, but it’s worth it. Things sell on all of the platforms. Etsy is the slowest of all platforms for me.
I hope this helps. Oh, and I do shop at the Goodwill Outlets in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. I find great stuff, and I highly recommend going. I go off to wherever the massive crowds have left and find boatloads of good items.
01/08/2020 at 4:25 pm #72670
Thanks for your post. I have been wanting an inexpensive tool like this. This is very close to what I want. The main drawback that I see is that it doesn’t take the items down from the sites like Sixbit does and there doesn’t appear to be any accounting help for the platforms. But, the cheap price is appealing because I can test and see which other platforms may be a good fit without putting out too much money each month for the service.
You said, “Etsy is the slowest of all platforms for me.” Do you mean the amount of time to cross-post to Etsy or the slowest selling for your items? I know etsy has some different fields that ebay doesn’t have, how much longer does it take per listing to fill those in for Etsy?
Any more details you can give would be great.
01/08/2020 at 7:33 pm #72681
Hi Mark S. To clarify what I mean by Etsy being the slowest, is that I get the least amount of sales from that platform, but I usually get a higher price for the items that I sell there. Now I do not promote my listings on Etsy and that could be one of the reasons why my sales are so slow there. Also, with the way in which I suggested to make templates on Ebay, is because all of that information will be pulled into the body of each of the other platforms that you cross-post to. In my eBay templates, I include some of the item specs that are in Ebay fields instead of just checking the boxes in the Ebay listing. I do that so that nothing much more is needed when I cross-post. In Etsy, your title will work perfectly. You will just have to fill in some of the Etsy specific fields. In Poshmark, it’s a breeze. You just need to shorten your title a tad because they don’t allow as many characters, and make sure that you leave a little bit of space on the sides of the photo you want to showcase so that it will fit the Poshmark frame, perfectly. You can also move your photos around in Poshmark. I charge at least 20% higher on Poshmark than Ebay so that I have room to negotiate because everyone wants to negotiate there and the commission is 20% on Posh. On Mercari, you will just need to put the weight in, because that is their requirement. I do charge for shipping on Mercari. Mercari only charges 10% commission, and I love that. Different items sell better on different platforms, as I’m sure you know. You will learn which items sell better on each, so I would do some experimentation. Since you don’t have to pay any commissions on Posh or Mercari until the item sells, what do you have to lose? 🙂 I love List Perfectly. I do believe that creating eBay templates and listing first there, is the key to cross-posting fast. I hope this helps. Let me know if I failed to answer any of your questions.
01/08/2020 at 9:23 pm #72685
From what you are saying and from what else I have seen, it sounds like you do this one listing at a time. For example, you can import from ebay then cross-post or just enter the item into List Perfectly and cross post where you want.
I would prefer a batch approach like Bonanza where you just import your whole store at once. Now I know there are some differences between platforms, but if you could just set up rules to tell it how you want it done. I think I heard someone saying you can do that with macros, but that gets difficult.
Or, can you do 10 like items at a time, like 10 pairs of shoes that are similar?
01/09/2020 at 12:45 am #72693
Yes, It gives you a little menu that comes up showing the platforms that are available to copy to. At the beginning I copied to List Perfectly, but then they added the option to bypass it, so I bypass it for all of my listings. It doesn’t take me too much time to list to all the platforms, providing the item qualifies for all of them.
01/09/2020 at 8:05 am #72695
For those of you who are interested in cross posting but don’t want a monthly fee, there is a site called https://vendoo.co It is signup for a free beta version. So, not sure it is ready yet and you would probably be a tester for it, but it would be free for a period of time.
01/09/2020 at 12:34 pm #72713
I signed up and they immediately put me in the beta ready to link ebay, etsy, posh, and mercari.
They have a video that shows how to get everything set up and start listing.
It appears you create your basic listing including photos right on Vendoo, then it creates indiviually modified templates for each site for you to edit.
While it may be my work internet service acting up, loading the signup form took FOREVER.
Now I tried linking my ebay store and it is also taking forever.
No other site I am going to acts like this.
So I can’t actively try out their service yet. I may try again this evening.
For me to ever do any cross listing I have one big condition: They must have a built in ability to add white bars to all of my photos to make them square. I simply refuse to photograph in square format UNLESS the square format is complementary to the subject matter. Square makes ZERO sense for clothing and shoes. I don’t understand why Posh uses it! I have asked their Customer service if they would consider changing their default from “crop” on non-square photos to “add white space” and they said no. Ebay does it with color matched bars automatically. Why can’t they?
01/09/2020 at 11:09 am #72708
This year I decided to get better at taking care of my store, so I started working on the “needs updates” section of my Bonanza store. What a pleasure! The photo editing section is amazing, the information is easy to input into item specifics, the postage section gives you simple drop downs. I was awed and delighted. I’m definitely going to up my Bonanza game when it’s this easy.
Oh, but let me wax poetic on the photo editing! Crop options are multiple, you can use the free background burner, everything works cleanly and quickly. Honestly, I think I’d rather post to Bonanza and then import to eBay than the other way around, if there were such an option.
01/09/2020 at 12:15 pm #72712
We deleted our Bonanza store because we sold maybe 10 items a year on our 8000 item inventory.
–How often do things sell for you on Bonanza.
–Do you pay their fees for advertisement boosts?
01/09/2020 at 11:50 am #72710
I’ve heard those things about Bonanza….if Bonanza could draw the amount of buyers ebay draws, they’d be a great choice. I sometimes wish ebay would buy Bonanza and let their tech guys run some of ebay’s departments LOL
Maybe this will be the year I’ll give Bonanza a try…
01/09/2020 at 12:10 pm #72711
Ok, what is going on. Ryanne did you coax Jay into going out to one of your sheds and lock him in for a few days until you and your helper changed every single one of your Ebay listings over to FREE SHIPPING!
After all these years of Jay digging in his heels on Free Shipping and being a staunch advocate for “Calculated Shipping”, how in the world did you get him to give up the ghost on this subject.
Jay’s mantra of not building in the prices out to a certain distance like zone 5 or zone 6 and closer buyers having to pay more and as a seller further buyers costing you guys more.. I have to assume, you went all in…Free shipping on almost everything you have in your store, what criteria did you guys decide on using to cover the free shipping?
We have always built in a Zone 6 charge by weight and size, except for any DIM Weight and sizes. But now I see you don’t have too many items below the $10 mark and into the mid twenties, so I again I am assuming you guys built something into all the listings.
Did I miss that you announced this move or did it just recently happen and I just never noticed.
To Jay.. Welcome to the Dark side! Jack up the prices, add $10 to $20 to every listing, turn on make and offer and Free shipping and let it rip. LOL 🙂 🙂
Mike at MDC Concepts, Inc.
MDC Galleries and Fine Art
01/09/2020 at 12:36 pm #72714
Mike – I also “stalk” their store and noticed the move to free shipping & free returns. Maybe they will make that the subject of one of their podcasts.
I actually have some information for you. I gave you the Facebook link to an inexpensive bubblewrap supplier recently. I started getting emails from a different company that had the same business name at the bottom. I verified from Facebook that this company is a partner of theirs, and they sell the same product. I bought both the small and large size bubblewrap for less money than the Facebook price, so I thought I’d give you the website for when you need to order again:
01/09/2020 at 2:58 pm #72721
Thanks a bunch Sharyn: Bought dbl. rolls of the large and small bubble..bubble wrap. Much better than the stiff, sticky or static prone, half perf’ed junk I was getting before.
Thanks for the link and have it stashed away in my contact manager under shipping supplies.
Appreciate that and for getting us on the track to better quality wrap at a very low price.
Mike at MDCGFA
01/09/2020 at 3:36 pm #72724
Sharyn, Just took a look and if the same product then it is a few bucks less expensive than the FaceBook company.
We used to pay about $.10 per sq. ft. of small bubble and this breaks out to $.03 per SF.
Mike at MDCGFA
01/09/2020 at 4:06 pm #72729
I bought two items from their “buy 2 get the second 10% off” offer, so I got an additional $2.48. Not a big deal, but it was something. So, 700 ft of the small 12″ bubblewrap plus 250ft of the large 12″ bubblewrap for a total of $49.30.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by Sharyn.
01/09/2020 at 3:50 pm #72726
Jay, I don’t sell much on Bonanza, but I absolutely love their background burner. It’s free if you list with them and there are some times, e.g. white item, where the burner is worth it’s weight in vibranium. However, it has been absolutely no problem for me to list with them, I ship from PayPal so I don’t pay the shipping surcharge and no, I’ve never paid for anything on there. The one time I had a query their Customer Service was phenomenal.
Apart from the background burner, the other major bonus that I’ve found is that their posts are in the Google search algorithm and I’m being found on Google. In fact, when you go to your Dashboard, you can see a bunch of Google analytics and links to improve your listing for Google search. A lot of the sales I’ve received have been through the Google search function.
For the little work I have to do on the site (they pull everything off eBay) and the zero monthly fees I pay, and the bonuses I get from my free account, the 10% commission they earn from occasional sales is utterly worth it to me. It might be interesting to see if I get an increase in sales from investing in the business. Seeing as cross-posting is the topic ATM. 😉
01/09/2020 at 6:10 pm #72734
Good info. Amatino. I had forgotten about some of the side benefits of Bonanza. Even if you don’t sell a thing , it has some value and at practically no cost.
Also if something does sell on Bonanza, it synchs back to Ebay [but did mess up a few times for us], but when it is then deleted off of Ebay, our SixBit will pick it up and after a 10 minute cycle and do it’s thing by removing it from the software app and also pulling it down off of Etsy for us automatically.
I like the Google link functions, that will also help with increasing organic searches.
mike at MDCGFA
01/09/2020 at 7:01 pm #72735
Do you have any issues with Bonanza syncing with eBay? We quit Bonanza because they’re syncing was no longer working properly. They told us they didnt see a timeframe for fixing it. At the time, it was too much of a liability having to deal with a platform where we were selling very little.
Maybe its better now?
01/10/2020 at 12:41 pm #72758
@ Jay.. Same thing for us. Bonanza just missed a bunch during the synch process and that in turn alos messed up our SixBit after it synched with Ebay. SB sends an agent iquiry every 10 minutes to Ebay and Etsy to criss cross-exchange data and Bonanza kept messing up it’s synch with Ebay which caused a domino effect of errors.
We deleted Bonanza because of the time it was taking to back track and fix things manually in SixBit. And as you, for so few sales, who needed the head aches. So, been off Bonanza for several years.
mike in Atlanta
01/10/2020 at 9:24 am #72754
They went through a short period of not syncing. It hasn’t been a problem for a while now. I got into the habit then of opening my eBay account and checking the Ended Items when I pulled the Bonanza info. I’ve kept doing it since, Seeing as the orders are usually only one or two at a time, it’s quick. The peace of mind is worth the extra step.
I’m sure it’s a step most cross listers are going to have to incorporate anyway.
01/10/2020 at 1:17 pm #72759
A discussion popped up with us and our helper today when she asked about where we buy such a cross mixture of items.
This is a side bar of that the Cross-Listing Topic and that discussion.
Preface: Sure, cross listing shows your goods and wares to other buyers who may not frequent Ebay. But I say “Buyers” loosely here.
What if nobody wants what you are selling, PERIOD, no matter where it is posted or cross posted? Industries and niches do deplete or disappear entirely and for that reason, the decline in a sellers Sales are a result of something he has no control over?
Clothing sellers have been talking about low sales stating there is so much competition from other sellers, so many Guru’s telling stay at home people just clean out your closet and make a full time living, quit your job, etc., etc.
Well check out this link and keep in your mind… what if nobody wants used clothes anymore. New clothes costing less than old, used? So much discarded that the supply out strips the DEMAND by a huge amount.
We hear about all the buying going on at Goodwill, but we have discussed here on SL that some members, us included, know GW dumps a ton of stuff, grinds, shreds up stuff, etc. If truth be told, how many people who buy at GW stores, bins or thrifts are just re-sellers. Then all those people are just selling the same stuff, that so few people want it, or if they do, it must be sold cheaply and in volume to make a living.
CHECK OUT THIS ARTICLE… Quick, easy real. Then think about your store if all you have is a vast amount of clothes. Will cross listing on 10 platforms help you to sell more overall and how much longer can you survive.
I know there are sellers here on SL who make lots of money selling clothes, but at what type of physical effort and constant slaving away hour by hour. Sure, you may sell a $100 pair of socks you got for free occasionally but is that sustainable?
I have personally seen someone we all know here on SL that were over 6 figure sales make major changes in their high volume store from used clothes in the $25 to $35 with Calculated shipping go to $9.95 avg. price, running sales, offering free shipping, free returns and has Make an Offer turned on for the whole store.
So why, I ask. Well after reading the link above, it hit me, things like the article states that is running and happening behind the scenes is a 10-year process of “changes”, that slowly affect the whole perception of a Market. And if a seller hasn’t diversified the type of inventory then what once was a “niche” is either dying or dead already.
So, for complete clothing sellers, would cross posting on multiple platforms be of any benefit at all. You will be a newbie to those various platforms, no book-marked items, no followers. You are just becoming a seller in a market of used clothes nobody wants and you are spread thin, taking on more work to keep up with everything and all at the same time all the gurus are pounding their “quit your job, make your living on line” to newbies and driving even more competition.
Then on top of that, many newbies do not understand how to properly markup items, price their goods, or understand the difference between Gross and bottom line net profit. So, their answer is to just lower their prices.
I the long run, the variety that JandR focus on keeps them “Internally Diversified” and their sales stay relatively up because as the market “DESIRE” for certain things shift and they, as well as us, have a variety of items to present to that shifting buyer focus.
At what point does selling clothing almost fall in the category of stamp collecting and selling into that market. You can cross post to 50 different platforms and your sales may still be low due to an almost non-existent buyers’ market.
I don’t have any answers and really no hard line opinions on what is best, but if some markets are diminishing, would it be better to spend time to find things to sell, that are more in demand and not in a declining marked or caught in a race to the bottom that the buyers are creating not the Sellers?
OK… I know, a wall of text and I owe Jay for the bandwidth used. 🙂
Mike at MDC Galleries and Fine Art in Atlanta
- This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by MDC Galleries & Fine Art.
01/10/2020 at 4:03 pm #72761
Alright, as a very very very occasional clothing seller, here are my feelings in regards to most clothing dealers:
A lot of them have come into reselling by way of watching youtube videos. They don’t know the first thing about clothes. They wouldn’t know what’s popular, either vintage or modern, if they didn’t have BOLO lists shoved in their faces. They don’t know what 20 year-olds are wearing. They don’t know what 30 year-olds are wearing. As long as someone tells them what to look out for, they will create a mental checklist in their heads of these brands and lookout for them while looking through racks at the Goodwill.
Once they do find these brands, they don’t know the market well enough to know where to list these items. So, they cross-post. It doesn’t matter to them as long as they make a sale. Ebay, Poshmark, sure, whatever.
Once they have listed an item, they don’t know how to describe it. They can’t keyword it right, describe the condition well. Heck, they don’t even know how to properly clean the garment prior to selling. They don’t know how to display it well for photos. They just mimic what everyone else is doing, describe it incorrectly, price it incorrectly, and then complain when they don’t get sales because their gurus told them that those brands would be profitable, gosh darn it.
These people may be selling clothes, but they really have no clue what they’re doing. I think this could be extended to most resellers of most items, not just clothing. If an Ebay search, or an Amazon search, tells them to buy it, they buy it. They are not specialists, they don’t care to be. They are barely even generalists, they are just decent enough at data entry to enter a brand into the search on Ebay, photograph the item, ship it, and then move onto the next item. That’s all.
01/10/2020 at 4:44 pm #72762
Yep.. and the same goes double for Fine Art. Can’t tell thew difference between something that is not worth the paper it is printed on and an original hand done piece. And in the case of art most times there is no brand [or artist known name] to even use to do research on.
We have covered a lot here on SL about trying to bridge that gap to some very basic degree, but that is a far cry from having 6 to 8 years of college specialty courses on art making, techniques, processes and art history background.
And one of the big points I was trying to emphasis that I gathered from the article is that on mass market clothing items, it is stating that since 2000 the desire and demand for used items made of cloth is diminishing. China has made “new” so cheap, that “used” has no demand. Why try to sell a man’s dress shirt for $9.95 or even $6.95 and have to pay for the Free Shipping when a buyer can get a new mans dress shirt for $2.65. Not talking about designer items, just plain cloth shirts. And as Almasty said, most sellers don’t know much about what they are selling, they just bought off of BOLO lists.
This also touches on a few discussions Jay has had where you can order something from China for a dollar and get free shipping to the states. And I have done it a few times myself and it gets here in a few days.
So take what you are saying, most don’t know **** from Shineola about what they are buying or selling and trying to sell it to a market that is going away to lower cost new. Then with Flash sales, and in the moment instant Trends, the Chinese produce billions of tons of clothes for pennies, create a quick trend, sell all they can in 6 to 12 weeks then dump everything else that is left over into the used recycle market and start the process over again.
I have personally seen barges of used, recyclable materials sitting in the Hudson River when we lived in Ct. and they couldn’t get rid of it. Everybody wants to say they recycle but that is just another way of saying put it in the trash. Yes some things get recycled, but most doesn’t.
Question to every SL Member, when you shop do you actually look for a re-cycled product on every item you buy, knowing in a lot of cases, it even costs more?
Sure many SL members do buy used items so it stays out of the landfills, but who checks to see if the used items are recycled items.
Jay has said it before, as a country we consume like crazy. We create trillions of tons of waste and now it seems it is getting harder to sell used stuff. And just recently someone here was saying the younger and younger people don’t even come to ebay.
Why would anybody other than a camera collector come to Ebay to buy an old used 35mm Film Camera other than a “camera collector”.
But again these late posts were just in response to my reaction to that article, and is just a bunch of brain flash thoughts. But in the article it points out that this decline and the degree of the declines have spanned 10 years. None of us have that kind of time.
But we used to have some used clothes and bought them just like you said. Even still have a few pieces, but we have two mannequins we will be trying to sell locally and haven’t bought a piece of clothing in years. Why when that SL member I mentioned earlier will sell you any of their clothing, with a wide selection and variety, for $6-$9 with free shipping.
Even with Ryanne’s mother who taught/mentored Ryanne and was a heavy clothing reseller, is now at about 40% clothes and 60% other collectibles and hard goods and JandR out of their 8,400++ items are about 32% clothes. So what about the other 60% to 70% of both Ryanne and her mom’s store focus. Seems to be in other categories than clothing to me.
Jus been pondering all this type of stuff today and ceratainly have killed off time I should have been listing.
Oh, well..just babbling and wasting bandwidth.
mike at MDCGFA
01/10/2020 at 5:50 pm #72771
I agree that many people are now selling online but not everyone has the “skill”. They dont have an eye or know how to present the item. Its really just like the flea market sellers who just have a messy table or possibly valuable stuff (but likely a lot of junk).
01/10/2020 at 5:52 pm #72772
Selling clothes is a killer unless you have access to particular sought after brands. The days of going to Goodwill to grab mediocre thread garbage and making decent cash is gone.
Some sellers stil do well with clothing (theSeamStore!). But these sellers are artists who really know what people want to wear.
01/10/2020 at 7:32 pm #72774SilverFoxFindsParticipant
- Location: Virginia Beach
Agree with previous posters that there is a flush of new sellers jumping on the bandwagon thanks to the many social media influencers and Sellers they follow. Some will do it well, and many will not.
I myself do buy clothes and shoes on eBay, and generally prefer to buy a quality item secondhand, than create any demand for new items (and save money, and I hate to shop). Also in social media, there are plenty of folks and influencers who are pushing back on fast fashion (and climate change) and vowing to only buy secondhand, to go on buying hiatuses, or make their own clothes. There are hashtags and monthly and even annual pledges in this vein. So, they’re going to buy their items and fabric mostly from eBay and Etsy and other small businesses (they note as much in the posts they share). I think this trend will continue, though the Buyers will have a much more saturated marketplace to sort through – both a blessing and a curse.
Hadn’t heard anyone else mention this, so wanted to share. I’ve been craving more/new hobbies, and have started following various sewists over the last year. Also, several minimalists and frugal folk. Demand for secondhand is strong.
01/10/2020 at 8:17 pm #72777
Mike, the article you mention is by Adam Minter, author of a book mentioned on the forums before, and which I read recently: Secondhand: Travels in the New Global Garage Sale. He goes into more detail there…it’s really a quick read, well written and lots of engaging stories, but he definitely emphasizes the challenges faced in the used goods market, with some emphasis on clothing and electronics. It’s a fascinating read, and his reference to the Chinese (and others) producing cheaper and cheaper goods reminded me why I don’t have much sympathy for the ebay sellers who complain incessantly about ebay and “Chinese sellers”. This is NOT an issue created by eBay. New, low priced goods are not going to go away.
In some ways, I think we’re dealing with a double edged sword….more and more people are willing to buy second hand goods, but also more and more people are trying to sell second hand goods. And the second hand market is becoming a little more like regular retail….Goodwills are redesigning their stores to be more like a nice retail shop, for example, but also, trends come and go faster than before. It often seems that what is popular one month is out of favor the next. And I’m noticing the rise of what I think of as the equivalent, on a small scale, of brandname merchandise versus generic. If I sell something on eBay, it’s generic. If a YouTube guru with thousands and thousands of followers offers the same thing, it’s the equivalent of a brandname product, and will likely sell for more than I’m likely to get for it. While there’s room for lots of “brands”, I wonder at what point we hit a saturation point? The proliferation of YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, etc gurus/resellers seems to be growing at an amazing rate.
Another “trend” I’m noticing (or at least, it seems like one to me). I think it’s true that there may be fewer “collectors” these days, at least, as we used to think of them. But I’m seeing the rise of buyers who I think of as “Set designers/decorators” God help us if Mid Century falls out of favor with these folks LOL I think it is one reason we can sell such a variety of stuff. I’m sure there are some people who collect, let’s say, only Pyrex. But my guess is many of the people who buy Pyrex also buy, say, 1950s era wastecans because they want the entire house to look a certain way, like in the lifestyle magazines and TV shows….So, the breadth of what can be sold grows wider.
I’m just rambling…..I’ll shut up now….LOL
01/11/2020 at 7:46 am #72784
I don’t understand why, but the Instagram resellers are telling each other to have youtube channels as well as an additional stream of income. It doesn’t stop with the clothing sellers. Even the FBA “booksellers” are posting videos of hauls and all the steps that go into running an FBA business. They post on Instagram their stacks of books and have screenshots from scanning programs to show how much they’ll make on their books. Heck, sometimes they even post the thrift stores they found the books or clothes in with pinned map locations directly in the posts themselves. In turn, they’re attracting new sellers and telling them to have youtube channels. When will it end? I don’t know. They seem to be happy creating their own competition.
Social media can be used to help increase sales. They are doing it wrong. They use it to brag about finds, post about where and how to shop, and post how much money they may or may not be making. They don’t know how to market the items they have for sale because they don’t actually know what they are selling.
There are still a ton of collectors out there. What’s good is that most of them are now able to use the internet well enough to know how to search for what they want. Your generic instagram/youtube reseller will most likely not know what or how to sell to them because they don’t know what they’re selling or even talking about.
01/11/2020 at 4:55 pm #72798
I don’t understand why, but the Instagram resellers are telling each other to have youtube channels as well as an additional stream of income.
The reason why is because they can’t make enough money selling clothes. I sell a lot of clothes and watch some of the youtubers, and many of them seem okay with reselling tons of items in the $12-20 range (that they got for almost free at the bins), which to me screams “sweatshop”.
One non-clothing reseller (Real Nifty Vintage) posted a video where he was really open about the fact that the low-value vintage ceramic items that he sells just don’t make him that much money (per item), and his youtube income helps him stay in that business (of reselling the vintage stuff) that he enjoys.
01/11/2020 at 5:05 pm #72800
Sonia makes a good point. I’ve looked at a couple youtubers’ stores to estimate how much they actually sold month to month. Many people here make much more than they do.
I assume the dream is the “easy” money of making videos for ads, selling courses/eBooks, selling access to private facebook groups, or “mentoring”. But all that promoting is a lot of work as well, and mentally stressful.
Just put your head down and work.
01/12/2020 at 10:56 am #72807
I can’t knock the $12-20 hustle, especially with items that cost maybe $.25-$1. Those sort of sales do make for good cash flow. As long as those items are consistently selling, it’s not the worst way to make a living. Now, having to go to the Bins for at least 1-2 hours a day, plus 1-2 hours a day of photographing and listing, plus an additional hour for shipping does make it a grind. If the items are selling, it can be a decent way for a full-time seller to make a living. I personally dislike the Bins and wouldn’t want to make a living that way, but whatever works.
From what it sounds like, even this strategy isn’t really working for people anymore. That’s because they’re all posting youtube Goodwill Outlet hauls and sharing the exact brands and styles they’re getting. This leads to more competition. They’re all out at Goodwill Outlets across the country buying the same stuff and making even less than $10 apiece free shipping on the items, and then all having to tell each other to make youtube videos to share how “successful” they are to bring in viewers and make money that way. Even those “multiple streams of income” really don’t make sense in a long-term sustainable way when you think about it. It would be awful to have to be in the middle of that way of selling/marketing yourself as a brand in order to bring in what may or may not be a decent income. Working yourself to the bone in order to help out your direct competition and help them to pieces of your own income.
01/12/2020 at 11:22 am #72809
Agree 100% Almasty. We only do auctions and estate sales. Know what is still selling in our area of interest. Keep our cost, in most cases, around the $5 and under range and try to target $50 and higher items.
We do still have a bunch of small, weird, cheap stuff piled at the end of one table and are going to just either lot them out or discard.
But we are through with the “buy it for a dollar and sell it for $9.99 stuff. At our age, [71 and 69] and with Susan’s health we would just rather have the time together and not spend it in a 22×14 office over the garage 7 days a week, 12 hours a day.
HERE IS OUR 2020 PLAN:
1. I am going to focus more on helping the guy who took over my spray foam insulation business and doing some art. Throw in a few auctions and estate sales in good weather and call it a day.
2. Not even going to do the Shopify store. Just Ebay and Etsy [which sells very well for us at full prices].
3. Going to do like J and R are doing… Taking off “Offers” on anything under $120. I am tired of constant low ballers and having to counter them. I will run my FLASH Sales from 15% to 30% Frequently and send Offers from my suggested list. That is where our bargains will be and not from low baller incoming offers.
4. Have Free Shipping on most things except anything over 1,728 cubic inches [DIM Weight]
5. Cross list to Ebay and Etsy only using SixBit
6. Use Promoted Listings for an extra boost.
7. Quit watching all the YouTube Videos except for 1 or 2 special ones we like.
8. Spend a lot more time helping my old partner with online marketing of a new residential division for the spray foam business of which, I bill by the hour as many or as few hours as I want.
And that is about it …
I can see that JandR are going toward a more automated approach on their store by doing some of the same things for their own reasons and us for ours.
Mike at MDC Galleries and Fine Art
01/13/2020 at 10:50 am #72880
Your strategy is 100% correct for your business. Just junk the cheap stuff and focus on the more expensive pieces. If you’re paying all of your bills and are able to live, there’s no reason to work any harder. Enjoy yourselves. This Calvinist work ethic Gary V and co espouse makes for a pretty horrible quality of life.
I’m in my late 30s, so I’m having to work really hard at the moment in order to pay bills, save a little bit, pay down loans and try to squeeze some time for myself outside of reselling. If I can pay down my current loans (none for reselling, I have no problem buying stock based on sales), I will be back to my “lazy” self. Should be pretty soon now to get at least 1 off my back and make life easier.
My Etsy store for the past 18 months has been my build-up to an eventual shopify store. If you look at your stats, see how your traffic is doing. If you’re producing your own traffic mainly outside of Etsy, it’s time to move onto a shopify store. If the bulk of your sales come from Etsy, just stick to Etsy. I’m currently at 83% Etsy, 17% my own traffic, so I also have a ways to go before I move over to shopify. That being said, I really do enjoy having an Etsy store. It’s currently up to 150 listings. I might try to get it up to 250-300 listings by the summer.
It’s also refreshing to have items sell at full price on Etsy. I feel like a ton of Ebay orders at this point need a nudge either through a sale or a “send offers to watchers” in order to get them to move at this point. Buyers expect something for their trouble of buying your items! 😛
01/13/2020 at 11:05 am #72882
If you’re paying all of your bills and are able to live, there’s no reason to work any harder. Enjoy yourselves. This Calvinist work ethic Gary V and co espouse makes for a pretty horrible quality of life.
This is a huge thing people forget. The whole point for us working for ourselves wasn’t to be unhappy working ourselves to the bone.
Ryanne jokes that we’re always busy working. I’d say we’re always busy working on projects we’re so excited about. Its certainly can be stressful because it deals with taking risks with money, but we wouldn’t want it any other way.
I totally agree that if you’re paying all of your bills and are able to live, there’s no reason to work any harder. Just enjoy the one life we all have.
01/11/2020 at 5:05 pm #72799
They don’t know how to market the items they have for sale because they don’t actually know what they are selling.
What do you mean by this statement? Could you maybe provide an example? I must be one of those dumb clothing resellers, because to me a north face down jacket is just that, and when I list it as that on ebay with clear photos and measurements, it sells for a good price. What kind of marketing are you talking about that I’m not doing?
re: sharing of information (posting about where and how to find items to re-sell), that’s actually one of tenets Scavenger Life was initially based on – the sharing of all that information to help others and create community, with the underlying notion of abundance – that there’s enough for everyone. J&R shared (and continue to share) a LOT of information about their entire shopping-to-shipment process and I’m grateful to have benefitted from that.
01/12/2020 at 11:04 am #72808
Online arbitrage only exists on Ebay due to the laziness and incompetence of many sellers on the platform. From bad pictures to incomplete descriptions. Bad keywords. Bad pricing.
BOLO lists only exist due to the laziness of resellers. If they just did their own research on Ebay solds/Terapeak/Worthpoint, there would be no need for BOLO lists. If resellers just went into stores and looked at what was for sale and determined on their own what a “good” item is without having to watch Youtube videos telling them, they wouldn’t need to watch the Youtube videos in the first place.
Sharing of information is fine if you’re a generalist seller, because you’re not dependent on one specific form of income. The clothing sellers are posting nonstop on where they source from, what brands they buy, how much they pay for items, how much they list them for, what venues they’re selling on. They are practically holding the hands of newbie sellers and begging them to do exactly what they do in the exact way they are doing so, and eager new sellers are like “okay, thanks, I’ll do exactly what you do because you’re a full-time seller making a lot of money!”
01/12/2020 at 11:42 am #72810
Amen Almasty: You got a “Sermon” going and I am a believer.
I hear it at social and family gatherings all the time. People will say something about cleaning out or down sizing and the next thing you know, everybody is in the discussion and they are all talking about making money from home by selling things they no longer want, then they segue into where to buy even more stuff, then to wouldn’t it be nice to do it full time.
When anyone then asks us, we tell them that whatever amount they want to make, then they will have to sell triple that in order to end up with what they want. Nobody understands it at these family gatherings. Same reason i cringe when anyone, even here on SL says, I am ready to quit my job. I would say to them, let me see your business plan, Pro-forma and estimated P&L for the next 3 years before you do anything full time. Had this same situation this past Christmas over 2 days at sister in laws house.
Clueless.. Just Clueless. It is the blind, leading the blind, down a dark alley on a moonless night.
One of the neighbor’s said all she wanted is a few dollars and I said, “that is all you are going to get” and for the work involved you will make about $.10 an hour for your effort. I am very pessimistic about anyone doing this, in any shape or form, full time, if they don’t know anything about how a business is run, regardless of what “product” you want to sell.
So all that said, I will end with a altered version of the famous Paul Harvey news caster’s famous line… Hello Ebay Wannabe’s, I’m Mike Collins former business owner and current Ebay re-seller. You know what you already know about reselling — in a minute, you’re going to hear the rest of the story. LOL 🙂
Mike at MDCGFA in Atlanta
01/13/2020 at 10:39 am #72878
Remember when the only reactions to reselling online were “You do what?! No way! What do you really do?!” Now everyone wants a piece of it and they all believe themselves to be experts right off the bat.
01/12/2020 at 4:17 pm #72824
BOLO lists only exist due to the laziness of resellers.
What some people call lazy, other people call efficient, or just a difference in preference. Personally, I prefer to watch several carefully chosen youtubers to learn about what styles and brands are “in” now, rather than doing lots of ebay solds searches and following fashion blogs. It’s much faster and a lot less boring for me.
I’ve enjoyed Scavenger Life for a number of years b/c the vibe here has always been positive, and all about “do whatever you find works for you”. Can we try to keep it that way? Calling people lazy, incompetent, clueless, blind – not helpful.
01/12/2020 at 4:37 pm #72826
Sonia.. I didn’t comment on BOLO lists.
My reference to the clueless and blind, was a personal experience sharing what I heard and observed at a family gathering of people talking about doing online selling and yes, they were clueless to the process, sharing tons of mis-information and guidance suggestions.
I apologize if the wording of how I shared that experience here on SL bothered you, but it doesn’t change the fact of what I saw, heard and my opinion of it. That group was the epitome of running off about things they were clueless about and yes, they were all blind to the facts of how to do it, about Ebay and Etsy polocies and had no idea on how any type of business runs.
The overall point then, is still, know what you are doing, do your research on how to run a business, how the platforms work before quitting your day job thinking you will replace a full time job in a short amount of time. I know you know how much work is involved in doing what we all do.
But again, didn’t mean to be ugly about it. Out of my almost 800 posts here on SL, almost always, I have shared tons of positive information on how to do things. Enough that I could probably write a small book on how to accomplish buying, sourcing, art recognition, seeing color, packing, handling bad customers, etc., etc.
So, think I may have a little leway on expressing my opinion, and that is just what it is, on what I saw and heard from a group that had no idea or factual information about the subject of online selling. Wish you could have been there. I just went outside to get away from it.
Oh, and I said I too do follow a couple of YouTubers that do provide good information. AND, do you know what I think is one of the best BOLO Lists anybody could ever have… Just listen to over 10 years of JamdR and enter into a spread sheet every what sold item and the top dollar they got for it. I did that for 1 complete year about 5 or 6 years ago. Then sorted the list by category. Used that list for years. Had thousands of BOLO . What better list than items that sold for top dollar from all the SL members.
But, tis what it is.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by MDC Galleries & Fine Art.
01/12/2020 at 5:37 pm #72830
Mike, thanks for your polite and thoughtful response. You say you didn’t comment on BOLO lists, but you responded with a strong “Amen” to the post/comment on BOLO lists, laziness and incompetence. I guess that was not your intention, but that’s the way it read to me. Anyway, my comment on positivity/negativity was not made in response to just one comment/post by you or anybody, but to what has become a string of comments whose focus seems to be on how stupid and lazy and wrong-minded many clothing resellers apparently are, and I found it quite a downer, particularly since I do and/or support some of the “lazy” and “wrong” things that were mentioned, and they work for me. Re: your J&R-based BOLO list – I’m totally with you on that one; wouldn’t be where I am now without it.
01/12/2020 at 6:18 pm #72831
You bet Sonia. No harm, no foul. I too didn’t mean for anything to be negative. Actually I started out with the link that referenced the clothing industry in general and the impact of China and the diminishing market. Hope you read the article the link went too.
It made us well aware that we were glad to have given up on the used clothing market years ago, other than a few shoes, hats and couple of coats.
Check that article out. I just wanted clothing people to think about that market a little more broadly and longer range, than buying an item from a BOLO list or from what a YouTuber Hauler may post.
Then as far as BOLO’s go sure doesn’t hurt to have a reference list, but in my art and art print market and Asian Home Decor we seem to well guided from our own Master of Fine Art Degree, 35 years in the printing and art publishing industry and years of reading Kovel’s Antique Pricing Guide and studying their web site. Then we throw in enough general stuff as we see fit. Like my wife used to say at our Antique Booths, we need to have something for the kid’s too! 🙂
mc @ mdcgfa
01/12/2020 at 6:32 pm #72832
Believe me, if I had your particular education, experience and biz acumen, as well as physical ability to pack so many large and/or fragile items (medical issues prevent the latter), I’d follow you right (mostly) out of the clothing market. But given the circumstances I have to work with, I’ll just ride out clothing as long as it lasts, mixing in a fair amount of small/medium hard goods as I’m able. I hope to share some fun successes in hard(-ish) goods sometime soon on one of the Wednesday what sold posts.
01/13/2020 at 10:37 am #72877
I apologize if I caused personal offense. I honestly didn’t mean to. If anything, I was more thinking of booksellers (my niche) than clothing. It is just easier to say clothing because the instagram and youtubers in that specialty outnumber those in books (just barely). The FBA sellers are also multiplying exponentially on both Youtube and Instagram and will probably catch up any day now. They had waned during the FBA changes a few years ago, but seem to have overcome it now and are back to creating content again.
As a full-timer who has had to go through enormous changes several times throughout the past 15 years, much more so in the past couple of years, it was just a way of venting. I wish reselling could be 100% positive all of the time, but it is very frustrating sometimes when this is your full-time income and the only means you have to support yourself and you see someone on Youtube come very close to spilling one of your specific niches in a niche that you use to live off of. I don’t think it’s right to sugarcoat everything all of the time, and to be like what they are doing is 100% a good thing for everyone. I’m happy that the content they provide provides you with a means of living, but for me personally I feel like I’m constantly having to work hard and position myself well ahead of what everyone is talking about now in order to continue buying food and pay bills. It’s exhausting. I’m exhausted.
01/13/2020 at 11:02 pm #72917
Thanks for clarifying your thinking. What you describe does indeed sound very stressful and exhausting, and I’m sorry that that’s what you’re continually going through. I myself (small seller of only 3 years) have only recently come to the realization that big changes in the market may come sooner than I am ready for, which is very different from my feeling up till now, which was “Yay! I’m so glad I found this reselling thing. I could be happy doing exactly what I’m doing now, forever.” My ability to adapt to changes larger than just annoying tweaks to the ebay platform and new fashion trends is going to be tested sooner rather than later, I think. 🙁
I also agree very strongly with your point on (not) sugarcoating. I just think there’s a way to explain that some resellers’ behavior is causing problems for other resellers without insulting anybody. But that’s close to impossible to do in a vent session, so I hear ya.
Good luck in keeping your cash cow niche!
01/10/2020 at 10:10 pm #72779
I was reading an article about fashion this morning, and the comment was made that young people today are leaning more towards owning less stuff and being more conscious of the environment. My feeling is that this is not restricted to fashion. This will have a knock down effect in all markets.
01/10/2020 at 10:17 pm #72780
Amatino, Yeah, that’s what we keep hearing….but I remember when the media reported on young people as if they were all anti-materialist hippies….many of whom grew up to build and furnish McMansions….so, I’m not entirely convinced that what young people are saying and doing now is what they will be saying and doing when they get a little older. Maybe, but I wouldn’t want to place a really big bet on it.
01/11/2020 at 7:59 am #72785
I guess it depends on if they want to move to the suburbs once they hit their 30s/40s. A lot of them are forced to live in cities with roommates and barely any living space because that’s where the jobs are. Even renting a room in a desirable part of downtown Seattle will cost $800-1500 a month. 10 years ago, you could rent an entire apartment for that much.
All of the smaller cities with even some jobs are being built up and rents are going way up. $1,000+ a month to rent in Phoenix. Even Boise is expensive.
I think a lot of young people are saying that they are intentionally living this more “environmentally conscious “ way to make themselves feel better about how sort of lousy their lives are. Large student loans, jobs that don’t pay that well for how much they paid for the degrees, tiny expensive living spaces.
01/11/2020 at 8:11 am #72786
Living in the suburbs now is too expensive. Want a small, crappy house in the Washington DC metro area that’s far from downtown with lots of traffic? Prices start at $500k.
I think this is why we’re seeing the growth around smaller cities like Richmond Va, Pittsburgh, Madison, etc.
Also we are all bombarded with advertising day/night that says how great life is if we buy x. I appreciate the pushback where we tell each other that we dont need any of that stuff.
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