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My company is forcing everyone to use all vacation by years end. Typically, you can always roll over a year’s worth of vacation. The longest tenured workers get 6 weeks of vacation, and since the pandemic cancelled vacations some workers have 12 WEEKS of vacation to burn!
I assume this is the case at alot of companies to free up liquidity, or worst case, ease their financial burden on vacation buyouts when they have to lay off a large amount of people in first quarter 2021.
Feet in the picture? That may bump up your price $100 or so depending on the buyer. Lol!
Got to try the Southern Split this weekend. French press with heavy cream. It gets 2 thumbs up in our house! I’m no wordsmith, but wife and I agree it is very rich and smooth. The typical bitter aftertaste of cheap coffee is not there at all.
The one question I have is that the smell of the coffee in the bag is different than I’m used to. I expected this out of this world smell when I cracked open the bag. I’m used to ground coffee smelling amazing but tasting like bitter crap once brewed. Now I’m befuddled because this coffee doesn’t have that magical smell, but tastes wonderful once brewed.
I tried doing some google searches and I’ve seen other people ask this same question regarding locally roasted vs national brands, but no definitive answer.
Any thoughts on this Ryanne?
Items in Store 1564
Items Sold 24
Total Sales $721.00
Total Profit $594.00
Average profit $24.75
Average sales price $30.04
New Listings 76
October is really turning out to be a dud compared to September. I agree that people must just be really burnt out on virus and politics and that is why sales are not where I expected. Not to mention the stimulus never happened.
Yesterday I did all of my listing photos and I had a moment of panic. I updated my app on the iphone and mobile photo uploading was RUINED! I had to log a case with ebay in hopes it gets fixed. With the new ‘recent” tool photos upload in a default order no matter what order you select them. So all my photos are in reverse order. If I went to the tradtional photo album area to select photos, completely wrong photos were being uploaded!
I did find a workaround. You click on photo album, then click “all photos” at the top of screen, then click “all photos” again. This will allow you to upload photos the same as prior to the update. That’s ALOT of clicks to get to upload photos…annoying.
In regards to the $1000 machine, I checked my numbers and this year I have a $1000 a week machine too! My weekly total sales average to date this year is $1142.79 and my average minus COGS is $1022.69.
Last year my average minus COGS was only $685, so that’s a HUGE jump.
In regards to the being frugal talk, my major frugality comes via clothing. I’ve converted my whole family to buying used. As I type this, I’m wearing expensive Clarks dress shoes, a $100+ Dri Duck jacket, American Eagle Khaki pants, and a Nike golf polo. All of it is from Goodwill at a total cost of about $11. The only new clothing I buy is socks and underwear. Lol!
Since I’ve lost 120 lbs, I’ve been able to swap out my wardrobe with stuff I already had in my ebay inventory. The best day ever was when I realized I could wear normal width shoes. I went on a shoe ‘shopping spree’…at home in my inventory building.
My wife was slow to come around, but she is 100% on board now. Her wardrobe is amazing. She shops for herself and the ebay store every Saturday and Sunday. When she clears out her closet to make room for new stuff I list everything she discards since it was originally purchased as inventory anyways. Shoes? She has ALL the shoes. How any woman can afford to buy shoes at retail, I just don’t understand. My wife has a closet full of $100+ shoes that in total cost less than a single pair at retail. Again, I sell them when she tires of them so it is always a net profit rather than a loss.
I’ll use 2-3 offers to test their minimum and if I still haven’t hit it I will write the seller and ask what their minimum is. Usually results in an offer that I can consider.
Every single item is different.
Lately I’ve been accepting any reasonable offer, especially on clothes and shoes. I’m swimming in unlisted inventory so anything going out the door is a good thing.
I do not put a minimum offer on most items, but I typically do put them on items that are priced high or that I know have a high sell through rate.
I’ve noticed in the mobile app that many times the second number doesn’t register when clicked. So lets say I type $25 and hit send, and it will stop at $2. I have to catch myself and redo it before sending. It’s like the app is lagging and doesn’t recognize the entry.
I noticed last night that there was a routine pair of shoes in a tyvek mailer that FedEx was 25 cents cheaper ($8.50 vs $8.25). That’s a big deal. I may need to start grabbing some free fed ex supplies to keep on hand if this cost battle continues.
Items in Store 1512
Items Sold 26
Total Sales $867.00
Total Profit $771.00
Average profit $29.65
Average sales price $33.35
New Listings 70
Man I hope 4th quarter starts to pick up soon. I keep hearing all the stories that online holiday sales are gonna blow up huge and early this year. I really hope so. Having said that, my year over year numbers are way higher than 2019 and 2018 for October. My typical uptick doesn’t happen until Thanksgiving. I’m greedy though – I want it NOW!!
I had a fun listing yesterday. I was in a mood to start grabbing random things and listing them, and happened across a bag of new cross stitch kits. They always sell and are easy to list, so why not bang them out real quick. They typically don’t sell for alot. Well I got to this one bigger kit and typed in the UPC. I got nothing, so I typed in the brand and some relevant keywords and sorted by highest price. Holy crap, there were multiple $200+ sales! I hadn’t even paid attention to what the kit was so I flipped it over make sure what I had was the desirable kit. It is a Christmas tree skirt cross stitch kit. I have the only one of this pattern on ebay, so I went big.
For the record, I audibly gasped when I realized the potential value of this kit! And to think it’s been sitting in my “not interested in listing” bin for years…
Not much else going on in my world. Still freaking out about how much unlisted stuff I have. Still conflicted on if I should keep sourcing.
Have a great week everyone.
While I have no plans to leave my day job, my FU money has empowered me to stand up for myself from day one at this job. Without that FU money, I’m quite sure I would have let myself get steamrolled for fear of losing my job. I’m currently waiting for HR to finish a job posting for my next roll here that will put me in charge of all technical aspects of our foundry.
FU money is a very powerful thing indeed.
I used to consider my average time 10 minutes. I’ve improved my efficiency and outsourced some work which I’ll detail here.
I’ve outsourced cleaning and photograph to my kids – 50 cents each task so no time there. About 80% of my shoes require no cleaning at all. Of the ones that do require cleaning, about 60% just require a real quick wipe down. The rest need scrubbed and/or dirt/rocks picked out of the heels. Outsourcing this to kids was a huge time saver. When I did do photography I had that down to 2 minutes or less a pair. The part that drove me nuts was the time spent uploading the photos into ebay. Again, huge time saver.
Listing is 2 minutes average. Templates, sell similar and ebay auto filling item specifics from the title speeds this way up. The only times I’ll slow down is if I have an extra special pair that I want to do a deeper dive on price research but that is a rare exception.
Picking/shipping is less than 2 minutes a pair. The more I have to ship in one session the farther down I can drive that pick/ship time. Shoes are incredibly straight forward to ship. Padded flat rate, regular tyvek, or extra large envelope. The rare exception bigger boots or expensive shoes. These get a priority shoe box or 2 other common sizes I have ready to go. The box doesn’t take much longer than an envelope.
I spend 5-10 minutes max going through shoes at thrift stores no matter how many pair I buy, so time invested per pair greatly varies. The only time I slow down is if I find a pair of shoes I’m not familiar with, and that doesn’t happen often. Sometimes I buy 15 pair, sometimes 2 pair. It only ever takes me a few minutes since I have it down to an art. The drive time would get dispersed amongst all the items I source, not just shoes yeah if I just sources shoes that would drive up my average way up for sure. I also tie thrift runs into my normal commute and errands so drive time is negligible. I rarely make a planned trip to only go to thrift stores, and the stores I do regularly visit are located next door to places I am going anyways. Taking all that into consideration I feel that a minute a pair to source is fair.
I am a spread sheet engineer nerd, so I have ran time studies on my work to determine my average times. I’m obsessed with getting as efficient as I can. I even got my daughter to do a time study on her photography so she could calculate her hourly rate (thus show her she makes more per hour if she improves her skills). She is at 3 minutes per pair ($10/hr) now as long as she stays focused.
You don’t run a store my size with a full time day job and 5 kids in the little spare time I have without figuring out how to be as efficient as possible.
I loved hearing your talk about coffee sales, profit, etc.
Ever since I’ve been at this ebay business I’ve viewed small businesses in my area differently. I walk into a small local business and it dawns on me they may only have 10-20 customers a day, and each customer pays $10-15 max. Sure they may have busier days but I don’t see any real path to significant profit after expenses. I honestly don’t even see how some of them afford to pay their employees.
I’m all the time working out various businesses business model in my head to see just how much money the likely make and/or could make.
As for me and any future business plans, I am ruined by what I call the “shoe” rule. Shoes are my bread n butter. I know my average profit is $25. I know my average total time invested in each pair is 5 minutes. So my theoretical hourly wage for shoes is a WHOPPING $300/hour!
I understand it is not exactly apples to apples as the shoes work is a pipeline that can take months or years to pay off. Honestly it’s more of a series of micro investments than a commodity sales business.
So enough babbling and time for my question:
How many customers a day do you truly expect to have at your coffee shop and what is your estimated profit per transaction?
I know it is outside the scope of Scavenging, but I’d LOVE to hear you discuss the numbers of the coffee business more on the podcast.
Items in Store 1468
Items Sold 23
Total Sales $1,305.00
Total Profit $1,240.00
Average profit $53.91
Average sales price $56.74
New Listings 1
Spent alot of time playing a new switch game with the family this weekend (Killer Queen – awesome), so not much listing. I did get a bunch of cleaning and organizing done that ABSOLUTELY needed to be done. I also did all the research on my Boyds Bears lot I got 2 weeks ago. They are ready to list this week. Nothing extremely valuable, but a few $50+ items. Some of them are pretty long tail it seems. Total list value should be around $700.
Volume was way down this week but my ASP was way up thanks to some high dollar items. The iRobot Looj sold at full price for $350. Score!! Sales like that are why it is soooo hard to stop scavenging. I would have missed that sale if I stuck with no-scavenging September. I scrolled through my sales for the month and counted over $1000 in sales from things I bought and immediately listed in September.
In other news, I finally finished all of the We’re Alive podcasts. Now I can get back to catching up on Scavenger Life. The last one, “We’re Alive: Goldrush” was freaking outstanding. I swear I had a smile on my face the whole time through 10 episodes. An odd thing to say about a zombie holocaust drama, but it was a different and completely unexpected style story.
Yes you just print the label – easy peasy. You can save a ton on 1st class international on pirateship. In some cases it is about half price with the simple export rate.
I personally use it for 1st class labels (to get more CC points)
and for west coast shipping of large envelopes (mainly shoes) to take advantage of cubic rate shipping.
As a shipping nerd, you really should set up Pirate ship and use it. It takes a few extra clicks when shipping compared to ebay labels, but every time you do it you are saving a couple bucks. It’s worth it.
We always a hard NO on consignment. We arent even nice about it. No way no how!
This times 100. I’m always happy to give free advice and answer questions for people who want to list their stuff themselves. I will never ever do consignment for friends/family. Too much can go wrong that can ruin relationships.