Friday, September 26, 2014

Buying a store one piece at a time

Me and my wife started our ebay business 2 years ago with little direction and we really just had no idea what we were doing or how it would turn out. We started off buying the most useless junk you ever saw. Then one day about a year ago while trying to find some kind of help, we met, in a virtual sense, Jay and Mikey who were running this podcast called Ebay Scavengers

We were just about to give up on ever getting a handle on what we were doing right and what we were doing wrong before we starting listening to these two guys. They both had already achieved the goals we were trying to get to and were more than happy to share their insights and in the almost step by step how to guide they were laying out, we slowly began to understand. 

Ok this is going to sound a little crazy but after listening to these guys, we just dumped everything we had bought to sell because it was junk and wasn't worth the time of day to even list and we just started over. Jay and Mikey then brought their wives in Wendy and Ryanne and this is when things really got interesting, they were talking about everything we wanted to know and not just vaguely but in detail.

Over the next several months we watched as our small ebay store of 30 items grew to around 500 items and all the while making money we had never seen before. While we still have a long way to go to get to where the Scavengers are we are well on our way and that's when it hit me, we are buying a business one piece at a time. 

Today we are selling around 1000.00 a month even with our small inventory and that has afforded us the means to continue to buy to items and expand our business into new higher priced items. We have around 300 to 400, i haven't counted, things waiting to be listed and are still buying. We are trying to get to 1200 which is our next goal. It's difficult because things keeps selling and our number of items listed goes backwards but this is a great problem to have.

The ultimate goal is to get to 3 to 4 thousand listings, that is for sure in the distant future because we can only add so many things a week. One thing is for sure, if it had not been for the generosity of the ebay scavengers ( now scavenger life ) in sharing their knowledge, I really doubt we would be as close as we are to being independent. 

For now, we will keep buying, listing and listening and God willing, by this time next year I can share what it was like to say goodbye to the boss. Bye for now, I have to go buy some more stock for the business we are building, once piece at a time.


Saturday, September 6, 2014


I was just thinking about how our ebay business has evolved over the last year and probably the most dramatic change was us getting away from junky items and describing our items the way you would see something described in a sales catalog if there was a sales catalog for used items.

What I mean is describing every single flaw down to the last detail and describing every single positive aspect of that item down to the last detail. We have 100% positive feedback and now we offer 100% customer satisfaction or a COMPLETE REFUND and you know what? we hardly EVER get a return and we sell shoes and clothes ! lol

I bought a better camera the first of the year, I got some background curtains ( white ) and a male and female mannequin and professional lighting and WOW it paid off big time! Great pictures are the best description you could give. I always use up my 12 free photos. 

Me and Deidre listen to Jay and Ryanne over at Scavenger Life religiously and if you haven't checked them out you need to if your going to sell on ebay. Anyway this is something they preach all the time is don't sell junk, sell good quality items and describe them well.

We have just started using an HTML template that I wrote. Yes I can write html because a long time ago in a land far far away I was a webmaster but back then it was way too soon for my skill, back in 1995 hardly anyone in my city even was aware of the internet and my skills were wasted. 

Who knew nearly 20 years later I could resurrect that skill to enhance our online sales. I will admit I am very rusty and some of the code I used back then has been eliminated with html 5 but not so much has changed that I was not able to quickly adapt.

Anyway having an html template makes your description look so much more professional and somehow more trust worthy it seems. At the very least it is much more pleasing to the eyes so if you don't know html it's pretty easy to learn and if you don't want to, then it might be worth paying someone you know to do it for you.

Bottom line is, make your photos look great, use all 12 photos if you can, describe your item leaving nothing out and DON'T SELL JUNK and even with the new stricter rules at ebay you will be just fine. Granted we spend much more time now per listing but when I post something on ebay I have 100% confidence in that item being exactly what my customer expects when it gets to there home. 

I will admit I was kinda worried for a while but no longer, I fell more confident than ever that we will be on ebay for a long long time and I hope you will too! 

I'm planning on going full time in perhaps another year or less, just depends on how long it takes me to get enough listings up. I am only able to list about 5 items a day right now being that I work a full time job but I feel like I am better off going slow and learning more before taking that final step.

If your planning on going full time, I would highly recommend you take your time because there is so much to learn (do research of sold items in your category and follow other veteran sellers in your category, see what they are selling). We thought we both would be full time on ebay by now but after a year of selling we are only now beginning to fully understand the business and we still don't know everything and we are still only at 450 items up because all the new stuff keeps selling, lol. Just goes to show you how much more you can sell with good descriptions, pictures and knowledge of what sells in your chosen categories. 

Anyway, that's it, I was just thinking about this and felt like writing so there you go, I hope someone out there actually reads this thing and gets something out of it.