Making money “thrifting for profit”.
You may have seen videos about buying used items from thrift stores and using an ecommerce platform like eBay, Poshmark, Mercari, or Amazon to resell the item. This is “thrifting for profit”.
You won’t need lot of money to get started, but you will need to reinvest in your business in order for it to grow.
Now let’s analyze the process.
There are several videos on you tube about “thrifting for profit”. Just go to a thrift store, buy a bunch of stuff and start making your millions right? It is not as easy as one might think. Plus, very few you tube gurus will share their secrets on what to sell for high profits.
The Thrift Store misconception.
Many thrift stores have heard stories of people making huge profits by selling thrift store finds. This unfortunate because as a result some thrift stores tend to over price the items they sell. Some stores even have employees checking ecommerce outlets and pricing competitively with ecommerce. There are a few things the thrift store management is not taking into account when pricing donations in this manner. Considerations like the listing price vs. the sold price, seller refurbishing, repackaging, shipping, ecommerce fees, card processing fees, fuel, parking or the time investment needed to find items worthy of selling on an ecommerce platform.
Where does a Thrift Store get its inventory?
We all know it is donations, but where do these donations come from:
1. When a store needs to clear non selling inventory to make room for new product, the business will make donations. These items usually end up being the lower end overstock items. However many thrift stores still try to get close to the original retail price for these items, so the result is little to no profit for you as a reseller.
2. Thrift stores donate to other thrift stores to make room for more product. When the first thrift store does not sell the product in their market the product is passed on.
3. Donations from people who decided to clear out the storage or garage by having a garage sale. Getting rid of the unsold stuff is a simple trip to the local thrift store.
4. When we lose a loved one there is always things that the family does not want. At estate sales anything not sold at the sale is likely to become a tax deduction through donation to a non-profit thrift store.
With this in mind we realize thrift stores primarily end up with low value throw away items most people do not want. Does that mean there is no money in thrifting? Or that everything at the thrift store is junk. Absolutely not if you are willing to put in the time and work. There is plenty of money to be made. One persons junk is another persons treasure.
Is there any profit?
Our experience is the average profit on a wise thrift store purchase is about $10 to $15, however there is a learning curve to finding the best items for profitability. Due to our limited storage space, we look for things that are small and will make about $20 profit. Once in awhile we find a treasure that brings in a $100 or more, but this is very rare.
Do not always look for a dollar amount, keep in mind margin. When you find an item that is in demand, selling at $17.00, will ship for $4.00, has selling costs of approximately 15% and only cost you $1.00. It has a great margin.
Remember you want to buy for profit not projects. In other words look for items that need little to no refurbishing.
Look for Mom and Pop thrift stores. They tend to price more reasonably than the large chain stores.
There is some difficulty in finding quality inventory at a thrift store, as a result it takes practice, time, research and experience to earn the highest profit margin.
Are you just getting started with ecommerce or eBay? Thrift stores are a good place to learn what to look for. “Thrifting for profit” is possible, don’t give up.
Watch for the next chapter to see where to go from here.
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