Thrift Shopping For eBay

Monday, September 28, 2015

Learning From Other eBay Sellers

Suzanne A. Wells

I have been selling seriously on eBay for one year now. Before that I just dabbled here and there. But one thing I have learned for sure over the years is that you can learn a lot from other eBay sellers. I belong to a Facebook group called, "Stay at Home Moms Selling on eBay" and the founder of the group, Suzanne A. Wells, has been selling on eBay and making a living at it for quite some time now. She posts articles on the online website "The Examiner" and I always find them helpful. Last week I read an article she wrote about selling "ugly" shoes on eBay. The title interested me because I have been dabbling in selling shoes on eBay and my sales have been not too shabby!

My SAS Sandals Find

So I read her article, the basis of which was a lot of people have special needs regarding their feet and although there are some ugly shoes out there in the world, people will buy them for comfort, especially people who have diabetes and need special support shoes. I wrote some of the names down in my little notebook, and one of the names I wrote down was SAS shoes. They are designed for comfort. You can imagine my surprise and excitement when the very next day, I found a pair of SAS sandals (see above picture) in my local thrift store for $2.00! Personally I don't find them all that ugly, but I snapped them up and went home and researched how much they were selling for on eBay.

Although there were no shoes listed in the size 7N that I had found, I found a few of the exact same pair listed for between $26 and $40, some with shipping included and some without. I decided to list my SAS sandals for $35.00 with shipping included on Friday. They sold Sunday (that's in two days) for $35 and I expect that shipping will be $8.00 to $10, and after subtracting my initial $2.00 investment, I should make at least a $23.00 profit! Not bad in my opinion. I wish all of my items would sell that quickly.

Learning From Others

But the point of this post is that it can be quite helpful to learn from other eBay sellers, especially if you are just starting out. If you know anyone who is doing well selling on eBay, I suggest you talk to them and get some pointers. Also, you can go to the Facebook page for the Stay at Home Moms Selling on eBay group and join. Even though it says it's a closed group, they accept new people. That group has so much to offer and I have learned a lot from them.

Also, I would suggest that you check out YouTube videos for people who sell on eBay. They show you items they have bought and how much they have sold for, or how much they expect to get from each item. My favorite is a guy named Steve Raiken, but he puts his videos on YouTube under "Raiken Profits." The guy is a fountain of knowledge for how to earn on eBay, and he is from my old stomping grounds in Connecticut.

Do you know of any other good websites or people on YouTube that we can all learn from? If so, please leave the information in the comments below. Thanks, and happy selling!

Friday, September 25, 2015

Putting Your eBay Store on Vacation Really Works

Taking Break From eBay

I just got back from a fifteen day cruise with my husband. We were gone for 18 days all together. I have an eBay store and part of the reason I decided to get a store was so I could put my items on vacation as we travel frequently. After I got the store, I started hearing stories from other sellers about how putting their store on vacation caused a dip in sales for up to two weeks. That panicked me because I don't want to lose that kind of money. So, I did some research and asked people I knew that had a store. They told me that if possible, even when my store was on vacation, I should still get on daily and revise items and continue listing as much as possible. I had done this when we were on vacation within the United States. But it meant I couldn't actually get away and relax.

But for the cruise, I wasn't able to do this. We took a transatlantic cruise on the Royal Princess which started in England, then went to Holland, France, Spain, Portugal and the Azores. While we did have internet access, it takes so long to get online while on a cruise ship, and then longer to access websites, that it would really be wasting money to do anything on eBay while away. So I made the decision to put my eBay store on vacation, and not touch it till we got back, so I could actually take a vacation myself. I was feeling a bit burnt out anyway so really needed a break.The photo above is of me on the ship as we set sail from Southampton,England.

Whew, What a relief!

We were due back on Monday, September 21st, and I had a little extra time left on my shop internet account, so I went into my eBay account and took my store off vacation. I was surprised and thrilled the next day when we returned to see that I had a sale the same night I took my store of vacation mode, and two more sales on that day, the day we returned home. So in my situation, putting my store on vacation gave me a much needed break and it didn't seem to hurt my sales at all. I am thrilled and relieved that I will be able to do this in the future, and really get a true vacation. Do you have an eBay store? Have you put it on vacation and how did it work for you?

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Spent $3.25 and Made $29.85 on eBay

I have to say I really LOVE selling on eBay. But you have probably already figured that out if you have read any of my other posts. I have so much fun finding things at thrift stores and reselling them for a profit. And the most fun I have is when something sells at a price that surprises me. That's what happened recently.

Selling Wallpaper Border

I had read on an eBay Facebook site that I belong to that wallpaper borders sell well on eBay. Huh, really? I didn't think anyone used wallpaper borders anymore. But when I saw some at a great price at a local thrift store, I decided to give it a try.

I found a plastic bin filled with packages of old wallpaper borders at the thrift store I go to quite often. I didn't really believe they would sell well, so I bought a set of four packages blue Marimekko 4 inch wallpaper borders, and then an extra one that was partially opened so I could show what the design was. There were plenty more, BUT I wanted to just proceed cautiously in case they didn't sell after all. The rolls had been around awhile and the UPC stickers on them were yellowed. A couple had rips in the plastic wrap but they were scrubbable and washable so I figured they would clean up well. I listed the 4 rolls on eBay, with the opened one displayed on top. I was very honest about their condition in my description. At first, I listed them at a price of $14.95 for the 4 rolls. I had no bites for a couple weeks so I started playing around with the price lowering it until it sold. The 4 rolls sold for $10.95 a few weeks after I listed them, and I threw in the open roll as well because it was still usable. So for that sale, I spent $1.25 on 5 rolls and sold them for $10.95.

List, Sell, Repeat!

The other day I happened to be in the same thrift store and found the same bin. There were another 4 rolls of the same blue wallpaper border in the bin, again each for 25 cents. There were only 4 this time so I could open a roll and show the design but I was hoping people would get the idea of what it looked like from my pictures. I also found a set of 4 rolls in the same Marimekko design, but in a putty color. I decided to give those a try as well.

I listed the 4 blue rolls for $10.95 again on a Saturday night. I woke up Sunday morning and checked my eBay site to see they had already sold. That night I listed the 4 putty colored rolls and...you got it, they sold within 24 hours as well! So all together I spent $3.25 for 13 rolls of wallpaper border and earned $29.85. Not a bad turnaround if I do say so myself!

Research and Learn

One of the most important things I have learned through my experience selling on eBay is that in order to do well and increase sales, a seller must always be willing to learn. I spend a lot of time on YouTube watching videos of successful eBay sellers. I also belong to a couple of eBay Facebook groups and people post questions all the time and we all learn from each other. What makes you a successful eBay seller?

Thursday, July 2, 2015

My Life as an eBay Seller

I have been selling items on eBay on a regular basis for 21 months now, and I must say I am having a ball. It has been a roller coaster of ups and downs, but the longer I sell on eBay, the more I learn and the better I get at it. At first, I only sold items that I had around the house to get rid of them and earn some extra money. I found some Facebook eBay groups, and have been coached by a friend I met online and learned how to increase my sales slowly but surely.

In March of 2015 I decided to open and eBay store. Initially, my sales dipped a bit for a few weeks after I opened my eBay store and I thought maybe I had made a mistake. But after a few weeks, things started to pick up, and have been doing well ever since. Even though we are currently in summer which is traditionally a slow eBay season, I am doing better than ever. Am I rich because of eBay? No, but I earn money each week. Some weeks I surpass what I earned weekly as a substitute teacher. And let me tell you, being an eBay seller is a lot less stressful than substitute teaching, or working a 9 to 5 job that I don't like.

Once I decided to sell on eBay as a way to earn regular money each week, I knew I had to find sources for what to sell. I started going to Goodwill stores on a regular basis and added thrift store shopping to my repertoire. I love going to thrift stores and finding almost new, and sometimes new with tags clothing that I can pass on to my customers. People have called me "addicted to thrift stores" but what they don't see is the bigger picture. I shop at thrift stores as part of my job. It is fun, and I can make my own hours. Here's a picture of my favorite thrift store. It's local and most clothing items sell for $2.00 each with vintage and household items selling for 25 cents to $5.00.

Right now I have only an eBay Basic Store which allows me 150 free listings per month in any category, and 100 free listings in the collectible category as auction style. I may go to the next size store in the future but this works best for me personally right now due to a lack of storage space. My goal was originally to have 150 items listed at all times, but because I have been able to take advantage of eBay's free listing offers periodically, for the past month I have been at 200 items and my sales show that the increase has helped a lot. My goal is to always have 200 items per month listed, and when autumn hits, I will try for more since that's the best period for eBay sales.

Here's a little glimpse into my life as an eBay seller:

Monday: Wake up and check my eBay store to see the sales I had Sunday night. Sunday night is traditionally the best time of the week to get sales because people have had the weekend off and have been scoping out eBay and usually make purchases on Sunday nights before they go to bed. I get excited when I see I have sales. I spend the day packing sold items from Saturday afternoon and evening and Sunday and head to the post office Monday afternoon to send off my packages. I live 10 minutes from a post office so it's convenient. Monday night I list a few thing on eBay and also revise a few more items that I already had listed as I have learned constant daily listings/revisions keep my items active within the eBay system and are more visible to buyers.

Tuesday: Check my eBay sales from the previous night. Head to the local thrift store that is closed Sundays and Mondays and they restock all of their items on Mondays which means the best choices of items are on Tuesdays. This is especially true on the last Tuesday of the month because the previous Saturday they had a pick up in a local community and have lots of great items to choose from. I come home and wash the items in baking soda as that takes any thrift store scent out, then in a regular wash. My birthday is at the end of July and once I turn 55 I will be eligible for 1/2 off all items at Goodwill in my part of Georgia so I will be going shopping at one of the area Goodwill stores each Tuesday starting in a few weeks. Tuesday nights, I take pictures of the items I purchased and list them on eBay.

Wednesday: Check eBay sales. Go out to lunch and grocery shopping with my husband. Come home and put groceries away before checking my eBay sales. Had a sale while we were out to lunch...yay! In the afternoon I pack any sold items and go to the post office to mail them. At night I list a few more items and revise a few. Watch a You Tube video of a guy named Raiken Profits who I have learned a great deal from in terms of what to sell. I check sales before going to bed.

Thursday: Check for eBay sales in the morning, email either of the 2 clients I am now selling items for if they had a sale. Go about my day and pack and ship any items that have sold before the post office closes. At night, list a few more items and always revise a few. Check for any sales before going to bed.

Friday: Hit any nearby yard sales, estate sales or thrift stores to get more stock to resell. I usually do this every other week as I don't have enough storage room to go weekly and store all my bargains. I come home and wash all clothing in baking soda then in a regular wash. Hang all clothing so I can spend the weekend taking pictures and listing and revising items that are already for sale. Go out to eat with my husband. Check eBay sales and get excited when I see I have had 1 to 3 sales. Friday nights have now become my second best sales period. I have heard it's because people get paid on Fridays and like to buy on Friday nights. I list or revise a few items before bed.

Saturday: Check eBay sales and pack everything that has sold from that morning and the night before to get them mailed before the post office closes at noon. Saturday night I usually list a few more items and always revise. I check for sold items before bed, and there are always one or two that happened while I was out with my husband or just watching TV.

Sunday: This is my biggest listing and sales day. I usually check for sales after church and get extra happy when I see one. I have an enjoyable and relaxing afternoon and list and revise at night. I check sales before going to bed.

And there you have it: an average week in the life of this eBay seller. I currently only list 1 to 5 items a night and revise 1 to 3 a night as well. I like to spread my listings out over the week and it takes an hour of concentrated time to list 4 items. It's about 15 minutes each to do it right, which includes:

*Taking pictures of the item (I try for a minimum of 4 for each listing)

*Researching how much the particular item has sold for in the past and what similar items are currently listed for so I know what I should list it for.

*Putting a well-worded listing on the eBay site and including pictures.

About once per month eBay offers a special deal where you can list an incredible amount of item for free for a 5 day period. They decide if the listings will be an auction, which is limited to 7 to 10 days or Buy It Now for a 30 day period. During those times, I shop and extra time and spend the whole 5 days of the offer listing as much as I possibly can.

Over the 21 months I have been selling on eBay I have done a lot of research into which niche works best for me. I have found it to be men's shirts in sizes large through 5X. I do sell other items as well, including coats, shoes, belts, ties, women;s clothing and some antiques/vintage items. But I am happy to have found my niche and am starting to get repeat customers.

I love finding nice items that I know my customers will enjoy. And I am not an eBay seller that has extremely high prices on their items because I'm a bargain hunter and love to share savings with others. Here's an example of a great deal I was able to pass on to a customer. The Chaps shirt in the picture was for sale at Christmas in Kohls for $60.00. I know that because I saw it and loved it but am too frugal to pay that much money for a shirt. I found one at a thrift store that was a size 3X (not my size) for 75 cents and sold it to a customer who absolutely loved it for $11.95. She raved about how nice it was in her feedback, and that made me feel great that I could pass it on to her at a reasonable price.

I love selling on eBay because it allows me to have time at home with my husband (and my dog), have a flexible schedule, and to still earn money. I probably average 2 to 3 hours per day on my eBay business and can put my eBay store on vacation whenever I need to. If I want to earn more money, I just need to put in a little more time. If I can't get to the post office one day, I will ship 2 days of purchases the next day because I have the flexibility to do that. It's a great way to earn a living.

By the way, I just checked and in the 40 minutes it took me to write this and add pictures, I made an eBay sale! Can you say,"Ka-ching?!"

If you are an eBay seller, how does my schedule compare to yours? If you aren't an eBay seller but have been thinking about it, what's holding you back?

Thursday, June 4, 2015

List Every Day for More eBay Sales

These bike bib shorts did the best of all my items in May. They were new with tags, and the price tag was $100. I sold them for $52.

I had heard that listing every day increases sales ever since I started on eBay. Even if it's only one or two items, that action gets picked up by Google and eBay and generates a higher viewing slot when people are searching for items.

Auction Listings

But originally when I first started selling on eBay, I only sold items by auction only. And I was told that items sold the most if they ended on a Sunday night auction. So I listed items each Sunday for a seven day listing, to end the following Sunday night. That worked fine for me. And for any of you who are doing that, I have also found that ending an auction on a Friday night works well too. People that get paid on Fridays are shopping on eBay Friday nights and I have had a lot of success with listings ending on Fridays as well as Sundays. The trouble with having your auctions ending on only certain days means you can't list every day. You can only list items 10 or 7 days, etc. before you want your auction to end. But that was when I was only dabbling on eBay to make some extra money.

Show Me the Money

But now that I have decided to branch out and start an eBay store to earn more money as part of my regular income, I have learned it is true that listing items every day really works to have consistent sales. During the month of May, I had an opportunity to list up to 2,000 items as a "Buy It Now" listing. I had been trying out the "listing every day" method, and found it to work well. Then when I got the 2,000 listings offer, I went to town and just kept listing items. I had to go out thrift store shopping twice to add to my inventory, but it has truly worked. I am selling and average of 1 to 2 items each day of the week now and it is very exciting. I have heard that as long as you go in and revise a few items on a day when you can't list , that works well also to keep the eBay activity going on your account.

Comparison Chart

To show you the financial difference, here's a chart to show you how much better I have done since I started listing every day:

March Sales: $247 with 16 items sold

April Sales: $262 with 23 items sold

May Sales: $433 with 35 items sold

What a difference listing every day has made. It is clear to me that keeping my eBay account active makes a huge difference in my sales. Are you listing every day on eBay? What technique has worked best for you to improve your eBay sales?

Monday, April 27, 2015

What's in Your Closet That Could be Earning You Money on eBay?

Ralph Lauren Wool Vest

About three months ago I bought this wool Ralph Lauren vest at a thrift store for $2.00. For some reason I hesitated to list it on eBay and it just got hung up in my spare closet with all the other items. Last week I was going through the closet and found the vest again. I looked it up on eBay and saw that the same vest had sold for $34.95 in January! Wow, and it had been sitting in my closet. I could have had some money in my pocket instead of a vest hanging in my closet!

Ralph Lauren Men's Shirt

Next to that vest in my closet was a Ralph Lauren button down men's shirt. I really liked this shirt and hung it in the closet, figuring I would list it someday soon. I forgot about it and also last week saw it hanging in my closet. So I pulled it out of the closet too, and listed it on eBay.

Items Can't Sell if They Aren't Listed

Both of these items sold within one week of my listing them. I started the vest as an auction and a bit low because I felt like since it is not the time of year to wear a wool vest, I would start it at $19.95 and maybe a few bids would come in. Only one came in halfway through the week, but I sold the vest for $19.95. That money is better in my pocket than hanging on a hanger, don't you agree?

The Ralph Lauren Shirt sold for $13.50, and the starting bid of $12.95 came in for it within two days after I listed it. All told, that is $33.45 that I made in one week, on items that had been hanging in my closet.

What items do you have in your closet that you could be earning money on right now?

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Every Sale Counts on eBay

I had a certain monetary goal I wanted to reach by this week from my eBay sales and from freelance writing. I really wanted to meet that goal yesterday but I didn't make it. But that's okay, I really have till Monday to reach it. I decided to list as much as I possibly could this week, said a prayer yesterday morning, and hoped for the best.

Within 2 hours, I had a sale. I have had this Hard Rock Cafe Jacket listed for two months. I got it for $2.00 and was optimistic it would sell right away. I tried it at all different price points as an auction starting at $19.99 all the way down to $9.99 at one point, considering similar jackets were going in that range. Finally I decided to list it as a "buy it now" or BIN as it called in eBay lingo, and hope it sold at some point. That was my sale yesterday, for $13.95. I certainly did not make a killing on it, but after I took out my initial cost, I still earned $12.00 toward my goal this week.

This morning I woke up and was checking my email and saw I had another sale. It was for this LL Bean jacket that I have also had listed as an auction for a few months. I just recently dropped it to a BIN status, and raised the price from $12.95 to $15.95 and it sold! Again taking the $2.00 off for the initial price I paid, and I still earned $14.00 for it.

In less than 24 hours, I earned $26.00 toward my goal. And actually I still have 148 items listed in eBay and since the best selling time is usually on the weekend, I have high hopes that I will hit my goal by Monday morning. Even small sales periodically all add up to making financial goals through eBay. If you have wanted to start selling on eBay, what are you waiting for? You too could have earned money in the last 24 hours!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Great Sellers on eBay: Ralph Lauren Men's Clothing

I have had great success selling used men's Ralph Lauren shirts and jackets on eBay. To pay for these items straight from the store now seems quite ridiculous to me when I have seen that they are plentiful at thrift stores. Most of the items I see in thrift stores are in fairly good condition too. I wish more people would take advantage of being able to get bargains at thrift stores on brand name items. They could save money AND dress nicely.

For instance, this Polo Sport jacket, a division of Ralph Lauren, was hanging on a Salvation Army thrift store rack. As soon as I saw the label, I got excited about it. I checked it over well and didn't see any rips, tears or stains. I was quite excited to only pay $2.49 for this jacket. Once I got it home, I did notice some dark marks on it, but one wash with Tide and Biz (great for getting stains out of clothing) and the jacket was like new.

I listed the jacket originally for $29.95 after comparing it to similar jackets online. It didn't sell for a couple weeks. Because I am impatient and don't want to wait for a long time for buyers to decide they want my items at a premium price, I marked it down to $24.95, as a "buy it now" listing. Within one week of the markdown, it sold at that price. I was thrilled to say the least! After I took out the amount I paid for the jacket, plus the approximately 15% I had to pay in eBay and Paypal fees, I still earned a profit of $18.72. Not bad in my mind for something I am having so much fun doing. Not only do I get a thrill from finding these bargains, but it's also a thrill to sell items and know I have helped someone else find something they want on eBay at a fraction of the price they would have to pay in a store for the same thing.

Although long sleeved Ralph Lauren dress shirts can easily bring in $12 to $15 each, I am currently doing well with Ralph Lauren short sleeved button down shirts which I sell for $9.95 each. Here's one of my favorites that was recently purchased.

Now I could ask for more, and I would probably get it too, especially on the long sleeved shirts. But I am a bargain hunter by nature and the fact that I wouldn't pay exorbitant prices for brand name items means I am not going to charge others really high prices just because I have paid a small amount for something and it has a brand name on it. I have only recently opened an eBay store and I am hoping that I will have repeat customers once they buy from me and realize my prices are not really high. I think people shop on eBay to find bargains anyway. What are your thoughts on pricing items on eBay?

Saturday, March 28, 2015

The Larger the Size The Better it Sells

When I first started selling items on eBay I started with items around my house that I had no use for, or that were collecting dust. After that pile started dwindling down, I started researching what else I could sell on eBay which would actually earn money for me. I read that you should have a certain niche in order to do well. Having a niche helps bring back customers who will repeatedly buy from you because they have bought similar items from you before. I couldn't figure out what type of niche to have.

Finding My eBay Niche

I joined a few eBay groups on Facebook which I found very helpful. Some of them suggested you sell anything you can get your hands on that will make money. Others were still recommending the niche category. I stumbled upon selling men's clothing as a niche because I watched a video on YouTube about it. The guy recommended selling men's clothing because it's easy to store (you hang it in a closet) and it sells well. The clincher here is that he suggested finding the larger sizes of men's clothing as they sell best. Apparently men who are very large find it hard to find their size in clothing they like, and it's also hard to find stores that are easily accessible in person so they often shop online. I decided to give it a try.

Great Shirt, Great Sale

For the next few weeks I bought every 2XL, 3XL, 4XL and yes, even 5XL sized men's shirt I could find that had no stains or tears. I listed them, and within a few weeks they all sold. I was thrilled. Although I try to sell brand names, in these really large sizes, design and size count so they don't have to be brand names. I loved this Hawaiian shirt that I found in a thrift store near me for $2.00. I thought the color blue would look great on most men, and with a size 4XLT, how could I go wrong? In the is case, the T on the end means Tall so it was 4XL AND tall, for a really big guy. I was right...I listed it for $14.95 on eBay, with a "buy it now" or BIN price of $21.00. After 3 weeks, it sold for the $21.00. Apparently whoever bought it didn't want to wait for an auction to end, and swooped it up before someone else could grab it. Now that's the kind of eBay buyer I love!

Feedback is important as an eBay seller, so I shipped it right away, and I got great feedback from the buyer, stating what a great shirt it is. I do sell women's clothing as well, but I sell all sizes of women's clothing, including petite and haven't noticed one size selling better than others. So, larger sizes, especially in men's clothing, sell quite well. What do you sell on eBay? Please feel free to leave a comment below.

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Monday, March 23, 2015

Park Avenue Thrift Outlet is Amazing

Discovering My New Favorite Thrift Store

While I was trying to find directions to a thrift store I had been to once since moving to Georgia, I stumbled across a thrift store "outlet". Immediately my radar went up and I read as many reviews as I could find. The store I was trying to find is called, "Park Avenue Thrift" and they have tons of men's, women's and children's clothing and them some books and housewares. I went once and the prices were okay as far as thrift stores go. The prices at Goodwill here in Georgia are higher than those back in Connecticut. While shirts and blouses when I left CT in August of 2014 were running $3.99 each, in Georgia Goodwill stores shirts and blouses are $5.75. The outlet I discovered is called, "Park Avenue Thrift Outlet" and boy what an amazing place it is. Apparently they take all of the clothing that hasn't sold in their numerous regular thrift area stores for the week before, and bring it to this thrift store. I read the reviews and couldn't wait to get there and see this place for myself.

Unbelievable Prices

Before I tell you about my actual experience there, let me first fill you in on how the store works. The most money you will pay for any items at the Park Avenue Thrift Outlet is $2.00 each. Although they do have a few household items and a very small book area, most of the items there are clothing for adults and children. Here is the breakdown of what the items cost there:

*Fridays $2.00 per item

*Saturdays $1.75 per item

*Sundays $1.50 per item

*Mondays $1.25 per item

*Tuesdays $0.75 per item

*Wednesdays $0.50 per item

*Thursdays $0.25 per item 8am-1pm After 1:00 pm on Thursdays, they restock the store with items that did not sell at the other stores, and start the week over again.

I read online, and confirmed it with a cashier at this store that Friday mornings is insane at this store. First of all, customers are waiting in line outside of the store before it opens. Women come in looking for brand name shoes and purses and will actually fight each other for these items. That sounds crazy to me and fortunately I don't sell purses on eBay, and shoes are not something I know enough about to fight over so I will stay away on Friday mornings.

My Thrift Shopping Experience at Park Avenue Thrift Outlet

I read about this place on a Thursday night and knew I couldn't get there till Tuesday. I was chomping that the bit with excitement about going. And believe me, this store did not disappoint. I checked the directions and found that this store is 50 minutes from our house, so I told my husband I wasn't sure what time I would be back.

Upon arriving in the parking lot I noticed a big sign in the window that spells out what the prices are each day, and was able to confirm that Tuesday was the 75 cent day. I opened the door and was immediately overwhelmed with the size of this store. There were racks and racks of clothing laid out in a huge store with very high ceilings which make the place seem even larger. I would like to note here that when one is shopping for a family only, this would not seem so overwhelming. But when you thrift store shop to resell on eBay, the whole world of sizes and brands open up to you, and it can be a bit overwhelming, but oh so much fun.

I am just starting to dabble in selling shoes, so I headed there first. Since this was later in the selling week, I didn't see any brand name shoes there so I then headed to the men's department, which is actually the category I do best in on my eBay sales. They say it is good to have an eBay niche, and men's clothing seems to be mine. I shopped here for four hours and yes, I was tired when I went to check out. At 75 cents per item, I was having a hay day and just couldn't believe I could get items this inexpensively.

Thrift Store Shopping Tips

If you ever go to the Park Avenue Thrift Outlet, or any other thrift store, there are a few things you should know in advance:

1) Examine each item carefully because since these are the ones that didn't sell, there's a reason on some of them. Some items have rips, others are stained. You will have to judge for yourself if you want to spend money on something with a stain you may not be able to get out. I would recommend bringing reading glasses/ a magnifying glass to read the small print on the labels, and a small flashlight to look for holes because some of the darker clothing may have holes you can't see in the store lighting. The above LL Bean Ladies fleece jacket had a food stain on it, but it looked like a surface stain and I was pretty sure I could get it out. And I was right, it cleaned up perfectly and is for sale in my eBay store.

2) Most of the clothes have a funky "thrift store" odor to them. Did you know in order to get a funky odor out of clothing, even a mildewed odor, you first wash the clothes in warm water mixed with baking soda, and then a second time with regular laundry detergent? It works like a charm, and on clothes that need to be dry cleaned, you can hang them out in the sunshine first then take them to the dry cleaners and you should be fine.

My Thrift Store Haul

Anyway, I left the store with 41 items of clothing and only paid $31.80, including tax. Saying I was thrilled is an understatement. Not all of these items are going on eBay, but the majority of them are. Keep in mind that each item I have listed here cost me only 75 cents(plus tax). Here's the list of what I got that day, some of which is in the picture at the top of the page:

1 Woolrich men's black fleece jacket

1 LL Bean Women's red fleece jacket (above)

1 Jones New York 100% wool woman's striped shirt jacket

1 Talbot's bright green sleeveless sweater

1 Jones New York women's black tweed blazer

1 Jones New York women's tweed wool blazer

1 Duck's Unlimited snapback baseball hat

1 Polo jeans men's cotton sweater

1 Tommy Bahamas men's sweater

1 Woolrich cream colored men's sweater

1 Ralph Lauren purple men's long sleeved polo shirt

1 Chico's Design women's sweater vest

1 LL Bean women's sweater vest

1 LL Bean men's plaid button down dress shirt

1 Ralph Lauren men's button down dress shirt

1 Orvis men's button front shirt

1 Eddie Bauer men's button down dress shirt

4 women's Hawaiian shirts

1 Chico's ladies' 2 pc. pant suit

1 Ralph Lauren brown tweed blazer with suede elbow patches (I might keep this one myself, I LOVE it)

1 J. Crew gray V-necked men's sweater

1 LL Bean heavy knit oatmeal sweater

3 Chaps men's button down dress shirts

1 City Casuals men's dress shirt that is new with the tags still attached

1 Pendleton purple 100% wool women's short jacket

1 Travelsmith women's tan blazer (see below)

I have put a few pictures of my favorite items above. Too see them better you can find most of them listed in my eBay store, Faithful Heart Treasures.

http://stores.ebay.com/faithfulhearttreasures

Can you believe it? All for 75 cents each. I had so much fun, but then you can probably tell that. I will update you when some of it sells and let you know how much I got for each item.

What Are You Waiting For? Start Selling on eBay

If you aren't selling on eBay yet, what are you waiting for? The first 50 to 100 items you list each month are free, depending on the category. Feel free to follow my posts by putting your email in the search bar above, and following the instructions when you get a confirmation email. Then, every time I write a new post about some bargains I get or a new thrift store I have been to, you can read along and learn new tips on how to go thrift shopping for eBay too!

Monday, March 9, 2015

The Great Thrift Store Haul

Last week I went shopping at the local thrift store where most of the items that I buy to resell on eBay cost $2.00. Most of the items that I sell currently are men's and women's clothing, and I am just starting to try to sell shoes for adults as well. The night before I went shopping, I stayed up late watching some videos on YouTube about the best things to buy at thrift stores to sell on eBay. I even have a little notebook and took notes in it. I have the notebook divided into a men's section, women's section, and miscellaneous section. I brought the notebook with me and stuffed it into my pocket to refer to it if needed. And yes, I did refer to it a few times.

I am sure you are on the edge of your seats now just waiting to see what I bought so here is the list with a few pictures. I have listed most of it and if all goes well, even though I spent $40 plus tax on all of it, I should make a profit of somewhere between $350 and $400 once it sells on eBay! And I had so much fun shopping for it all too! The best part of buying to resell items is that I don't have to look for a certain size. Anything I see that I think will have good resale value, no matter what the size, is fair game on my shopping trip. I can't believe I got all of this so inexpensively, and even if you don't sell on eBay, you might be interested in just seeing the deals that are out there in thrift stores.

Here's what I bought with the price I paid right after it:

1 Men's Ralph Lauren 2 pc. suit $4.00

1 Diane Gilman 2 pc 100% silk suit (skirt and blazer) $4.00

1 Eddie Bauer absolutely gorgeous women's ski sweater, 100% wool $2.00

1 Nordic Designs 100% wool cardigan sweater $2.00

1 Chicos Aqua jacket $2.00

1 Ralph Lauren Royal Blue men's button down dress shirt $2.00

1 Island Outfitters men's polo Hawaiian print shirt $2.00

1 Ralph Lauren men's orange polo shirt $2.00

1 Ralph Lauren men's blue and white button down dress shirt $2.00

1 Lacoste women's tennis skirt $2.00

1 Brooks Brothers men's button down dress shirt $2.00

1 Brooks Brothers men's button down dress shirt $2.00

1 Brooks Brothers men's button down dress shirt, blue and white striped $2.00

1 Outback Rider men's Denim shirt $2.00

1 pair women's Clarks shoes $2.00

2 pair women's Cole Haan shoes $2.00 each

1 pair men's Cole Haan shoes $2.00

I listed it all as auctions that started last night so nothing has sold yet but once it does, I will make sure to give you an update. My very favorite item I bought was this beautiful 100% wool ski sweater and if it was my size I would definitely be keeping it.

Did you find anything good to keep or sell on eBay at thrift stores this week?

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Pendleton Is A Good Brand Name to Sell on eBay

I know someone who lives in Washington state and sells on eBay full time. In fact, I owe him my start on eBay because he encouraged me continually until I followed my eBay dream! He has mentioned to me that the brand Pendelton sells well on eBay. During my treasure hunting days at thrift stores and Goodwill, I always keep my eye out for this brand. It's good quality, the name has been around a long time, they are durable and often used for hunters and fishers, and in cold climates.

One day while shopping at a Goodwill I came across not one, but two Pendelton men's shirts. Both were 100% wool, and looked to be in very good shape. I bought them for the seemingly high price of $5.75 each. That may not seem "seemingly high" if one were to buy this short for a husband, father, brother or son, or any other male in your life. But by thrift shopping standards, for people who are reselling on eBay, that is high. But I wanted to make money and I knew this was a good brand so I decided to chance it. I brought them home and listed them.

Here are the shirts that I bought that day:

I like to do auction style listings that end on Sunday nights. I listed them both separately as auctions with a starting bid of $14.95 each. They didn't sell right away, but the second week, I was excited and surprised to see a bidding war going on for both of them, with separate buyers. And to my surprise, at the end of a Sunday night in January, the cranberry one sold for $24.50 and the red one for $21.50! When I subtracted the expenses of buying them, here's what I came out with:

Cranberry shirt: $24.50 minus the $6.00 purchasing price including tax, and the 15% eBay and Paypal fees = a profit of $14.82

Red plaid shirt: $21.50 minus the $6.00 purchasing price including tax, plus the 15% eBay and Paypal fees = a profit of $11.82

For some people, that is not enough of a profit to make it worthwhile, but for me, I am having a ball uncovering these treasures and passing them on to other people at a reasonable price. Those process that they paid were much more reasonable than if they were to buy those Pendleton shirts brand new. To me it is definitely worth it. Would that profit be worth it to you?

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Vintage Needlework Kits Sell Well on eBay

Yard Sales Are Good Sources For eBay Items

I started selling on eBay in the latter part of 2013. Once I had sold everything lying around my house I realized that I needed a new source of items to sell on eBay. The consensus from my online research was that yard sales and estate sales were great sources to find things to resell. Many people don't know what a goldmine they actually have in their homes and sell stuff inexpensively. I particularly like going to yard sales given by groups of people such as the Boy Scouts or at churches because lots of people bring their items there, and you can find a lot more variety than at just one yard sale put on by one family.

My Boy Scout Sale Find

One of the items I found out sells well are needlepoint kits, especially vintage ones by the Janlynn and the Bucilla Company that have not been opened. Shortly after reading this online, I went to a Boy Scout yard sale. There were lots of great items there and I was quite excited to find 9 items I liked. The way most of the Boy Scout sales I have been to work is that you find what you want, bring it to a checkout table and ask how much. They give you a reasonable price. The lady quoted me $10 and I happily paid. Because it was more like a donation to a charity than a purchase, I didn't haggle a price with her like some people do at yard sales. At $10.00 for 9 items that made the cost of each item I bought come out to $1.11. One of the items I bought was a Janlynn Needlepoint kit (above). I was excited to get it home and see how much it was going for on eBay. I didn't have a SmartPhone so couldn't check the prices there. I listed it for $24.95 for a 7 day auction, and was disappointed when it didn't sell in the first two weeks. The third week I dropped the price to $19.95 and it sold immediately. That was a profit of $18.84 minus about 15% for eBay and Paypal fees, brought me a profit of about $15.84. I didn't do much work for it, and it was easy to ship in a padded envelope. If I had waited it out and just let it sit in my eBay store, I am sure I could have gotten more for it.

Checking Out Antiques Stores in The South

The next amazing deal I got on a needlepoint kit was in an antiques store. Usually one might think that an antiques store has high prices. I have found that the price of antiques in the South is less than what one would pay in an antiques store in New England. Shortly after moving to Georgia from Connecticut, I found an antiques store in October with about 12 different rooms of goodies. I saw a needlepoint kit for a Christmas stocking by Bucilla and although the price was $12.50 I thought that with Christmas coming, it might go for a higher amount. I was thrilled when the clerk told me that everything in that seller's stall was 25% off that week. That made the purchase price $9.37, and you can bet I was excited.

I took it home and saw that there was a varying range of prices for these stockings so I listed it again at $19.95, with a "buy it now" price of $39.95. It sold within two days of the listing for $39.95! Then I got a message from the buyer saying she wanted to complete this stocking for her grandson by Christmas so she would appreciate it if I could ship I out as soon as possible. You can bet I sure did! Christmas items go very well on eBay especially in the Fall. The amount of profit I made on the stocking, minus purchase price and eBay and Paypal fees was $24.58. People would have to work 2.5 to 3 hours in most minimum wage jobs in order to earn that money. With a keen eye and a knack for doing research and finding the right items, it is possible to have a blast and make good money on eBay.

If you are interested in following along to see the items I buy at thrift stores and yard sales to resell, please feel free to do so, or leave comments about your deals on eBay as well.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Living the Thrifting for eBay Dream

Welcome to my blog about thrift store shopping to find items to resell on eBay. I will be sharing with you all about my great finds as I live the dream of having my own eBay business.

My name is Karen and I will be the first to admit that I am a thrift shopping addict! I used to pop into a thrift store now and then to shop for myself, but now I am going thrift shopping to sell items on eBay and it is one of the most exciting things I have done in a long time. I look forward to going shopping and can't wait to bring home deals and list them on eBay.

When my children were young, I thought it would be a wonderful thing to be able to sell items on eBay full time so I could work from home and be there for my children. But for some reason I was afraid to take the first few steps to do it. Over 15 years went by and then I met someone on the internet who was selling on eBay full time, and with his coaching, gave me the motivation to get started. I have now been selling on eBay for approximately 18 months, and the more I get into it, the more fun I am having and money I am making.

I get SO excited when I find good deals at Goodwill stores and thrift stores that I want to share it with all of you. My intent with this blog is to share the deals I am finding at yard sales, estate sales, Goodwill stores and thrift stores so you can see the types of deals that are available out there. I can't believe that there are name brand fantastic items out there for prices like $2.00, $3.50, all the way up to $10.00. I have never paid more than $10.00 for these items but I sell them for a lot more. And I am still learning as I go. Here are a few examples:

This shirt was bought for $2.00 at a local thrift store, and sold on eBay for $31.00 after a budding war.

I will be adding posts each week as I continue with this blog. If you would like to follow along with the deals I get, please sign up to follow me. If you know of anyone interested in following along, or selling on eBay themselves, feel free to send them the link. And any comments about either thrifting or selling on eBay are welcome.