Thrift Shopping For 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.

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?