Best Things To Sell on eBay, Buying and Selling to Make Money, General, Tips on Selling on eBay

A Unique Way To Use eBay For Self Promotion

Crystal Pumps by an eBayer named Crystal HeelsWe were just addressing how to find the best things to sell on eBay, and while we were doing some research, we came across the wildest thing! And I thought, “Wow! What a great concept!” One of those, “Why didn’t I think of that!?”

Let me explain. I was working on an outline for someone, to show them the step by step ways a user can find out “what’s hot” on eBay. So, while going through the sequence of steps myself, I decided to take a look at what was trending on eBay today. The amazing pair of women’s designer shoes that you see here in the screen shot caught my eye.

I finished up my notes, and quickly came back to these shoes and this seller. The seller goes by the eBay name of  MyCrystalHeels.

At the time of this writing, MyCrystalHeels was offering a pair of designer shoes that were customized with “Custom Strassed Swarovski Crystals.”

While I was writing this post, more than 1,700 people had looked at the auction, and the shoes were being offered at $4,995.00.

Now, they may or may not sell – time will tell – but one thing we noticed in the auction was that the seller had a line in the description that offered services for customizing one’s own shoes. All the interested party needs to do is get in touch with the seller for a quote.

So, in this case, let’s say for just a moment that the shoes don’t sell. BUT, what if that brought the seller so much off-eBay business that he or she doesn’t need to ever try selling another shoe on eBay? Take a look at THIS screen shot: The seller, MyCrystalHeels is offering her (or his) services to customer YOUR OWN shoes.

Notice that Crystal Heels is saying that if you want YOUR shoes customized, merely get in touch for a quote!

Now, I think that this is absolutely brilliant.

This shows a way to use eBay to reach out to a target market in a way that isn’t ordinarily done.

I’ve never done it. But you can bet it’s got me thinking!

And hopefully it has YOU thinking as well.

PS: You might want to also have a look at this book, which can help you find the best things to sell on eBay:

Simply Click Here =>How and Where to Locate the Merchandise to Sell on eBay

Best Things To Sell on eBay, Buying and Selling to Make Money, General, Thrift Store Buying and Selling, Tips on Selling on eBay

Sell Vintage Stuff From Thrift Stores on Ebay

Some of the best things to sell on eBay come from thrift shops!

What are the Best Things to Sell on eBay?

If you’ve been reading my blog or watching any of my YouTube videos for any time now, you’ll notice that I definitely find my share of vintage stuff to sell. I can tell you that even though I find a lot of my inventory from yard sales, which is really a lot of fun, I also buy from individuals selling on Craigslist.

Also, I find some really good stuff at Thrift Stores. And, if you saw my post the other day, you’ll note that we had just arrived in Florida for the winter. The next day we drove around the area to get a feel for the lay of the land, and happened upon a Church Thrift Store.

Even though we weren’t out to go buying since we were really still unpacking and stocking up on some groceries, we couldn’t resist going into the store.

I’m glad we did. Kathy, who has a thing for cufflinks (ahem… if you read one of our first posts, you’ll see why! Here’s the original post about Kath’s experience with cufflinks => Click Here for the “Cufflink Post.”), saw that there was a small case of men’s jewelry behind the counter.

While I went through the clothes (and found a cool vintage Red Cross Wool Coat that I’ll write about later) and books, Kath made a beeline to the men’s jewelry.

A pair of blue and green enameled cufflinks caught her eye, and she put them in the pile of stuff we decided to buy. It turns out that these are Christian Dior sterling cufflinks, and we brought them home and processed them to sell on eBay. Kath found these Christian Dior Cufflinks at a Thrift Store

Now the fun part… We cannot yet tell you what they sell for – if they sell at all!

Next week or so, I’ll put together a post showing all the stuff we bought at that Thrift Store – our first stop since arriving here in Florida – and will share our results with you!

In the meantime, please believe me when I tell you that there is definitely a method for shopping for the best things to sell on eBay. We don’t just walk into a place and grab every vintage piece of jewelry and clothing that we find. If you do that, I can assure you that you’ll be ending up with a TON of smelly stuff that you’ll wind up donating to another Thrift Store.

It takes patience and perseverance! If you would like a little help with this, may I recommend you grab a copy of one or more of the different guides available. There are a bunch on Amazon – just see the small number of guides I found below! (Click the image, and you’ll go to the search results I saw on Amazon.)


Buying and Selling to Make Money, General

Thanksgiving Day: Ready for Buying and Selling IN FLORIDA!

Hi everyone! This is just a quick note to let you know that on this very day, Thanksgiving Day, 2011, Kath and I have just arrived in Port Orange, Florida for the winter!

I know that we won’t be doing any yard-saleing before tomorrow or Saturday – or even mayby even NEXT week. But, I just wanted to let you know that we have arrived, and we are psyched to get going on our winter buying and selling!

We have some great videos and articles coming up – but wanted to every one of you a Happy Thanksgiving. We, personally, have a great deal to be thankful for.

I am thankful for my wife, Kathy, who encourages and helps me in my business. Oh, she also loves me! I am thankful for my parents, who taught me integrity and value. I am thankful that my beautiful daughter Sara has a healthy and happy little son (my grandson Tristan).

In one of Kathy’s blog posts today, she mentioned things that she is grateful for. I agree that it’s really easy to be thankful for the “easy things” like “food” or “shelter” etc.

Anyway, it’s getting late, and it’s about time for bed. But I did not want this day to go by without saying that I’m thankful for YOU, my readers and fellow entrepreneurs, for sharing the passion of buying and selling – the good times and the slow times – thank you.  To my customers, I thank you for purchasing from me and Kath.

I appreciate every one of you!


Buying and Selling to Make Money

And Some Days Are A Wash…Example of a BAD Yard Sale Day

That's IT? That's ALL we got for a day's Yard Saleing efforts? LOLEver have one of those “buying and selling to make money days” where you 1) get up before the sun, ready for a huge day of yard-saleing, and 2) you’re rarin’ to go with a pocket full of buying cash, and 3) you’re FIRST at just about every yard sale you hit, and………

4) You hardly buy a single thing?

Sigh. It happens. In fact, it happened this very weekend.

On Friday, Kath & I decided to try to get away for a day or so. Neither of us have had much of any days off this summer – nature of the beast in construction. So, we knew it was going to be a gorgeous weekend, and decided to head on over to the Maine coast.

It’s only about 2, maybe 2 1/2 hours to the coast from our place here in the mountains. We figured we’d leave nice and early, and get to as many yard sales as we could while en route to the beach. This way, we could actually get a little buying work done! Continue reading “And Some Days Are A Wash…Example of a BAD Yard Sale Day”

Buying and Selling to Make Money, General, Tips on Selling on eBay

Tools You Need for Selling – Part 1: Counterfeit Bill Tester

A Counterfeit Testing Pen is a MUST if you are selling at yardsales or on Craigslist!
Buy a Counterfeit Testing Pen – Click the image to see a similar one on Amazon

Tools. Yes, there are definitely tools that are required for successful buying and selling. And not just for eBay. Even if you are buying to sell at live auction houses or on CraigsList or your own yardsale – or even in your neighborhood newspaper, there are a few things that I personally feel you should have.

In my experience, you don’t need a ton of things, but there are a few things I feel you will find very handy to have!

For example, if you are selling on eBay, you need certain tools in order to process payments (for example, PayPal). Actually, sellers are now required to take PayPal, so if you are considering selling on eBay at all, just go ahead and get yourself set up with an account.

But, there are other, physical tools that are handy. I’ll talk about some of these in other posts in detail, but let’s look at a yard sale or CraigsList transaction.

Suppose you’re selling your piano (which, incidentally, we are doing right now). Now, a piano can be a fairly good sized transaction – anywhere from a couple of hundred dollars to a couple thousand.

So… for example:

If you put your ad on CraigsList, you will be saying something like, “Spinet piano – good shape… First $600 in cash takes it!” So, let’s say someone comes over with $600 in cash (by the way, you should ALWAYS insist on cash – NEVER agree to a “Western Union” or “3rd party pick up” situation… It will likely be a scam. More on this in another post).Photo of our Piano for our CraigsList Ad

So, you have someone at your door with 6 100-dollar bills. Nice! Before you shake hands on the transaction, you will take out your trusty Counterfeit Testing Pen and mark each bill to ensure that you aren’t getting a counterfeit bill.

This is NOT being paranoid. This is being a smart business person.
If you present anything larger than a $20 bill at a supermarket, see if the cashier doesn’t test the bill with a pen first. That’s not a reflection on your character at all!

I did a short video about this, which you can watch below this post – below the Amazon examples.

So, this is a VERY simple tool. It’s inexpensive. Yes, you can step up a level and buy a bill scanner that is a little more high tech, but at very least, you want a counterfeit bill tester. There are a few on Amazon (below) that are extremely affordable – Just click the image, and you’ll go to a page where you can choose from any number of them. It’s one of the tools I feel is very important.

Buying and Selling to Make Money, Tips on Selling on eBay

Selling Shoes and Odd Lots on eBay

You can never go wrong with Converse shoes!Hi everyone! I realize I haven’t posted in a while… My apologies! I wanted to share a video we made a few months ago about selling shoes and odd lots on eBay. It’s only about 2 minutes long, but hopefully it will give you a little insight on what we typically look for when buying used footwear.

We also sell shoes at our favorite consignment store as well – and we’ll have an article and video about that as well pretty soon. Now that the carpentry season is starting to wind down, I’ll hopefully be updating the blog here more often.

Anyway, we actually made this video back in April when we were still down in South Carolina – and even though it’s a few months old, the concepts are the same no matter what time of year.

For example, during the spring, while we may be more inclined to sell sandals and running shoes, the way we choose which types of shoes to buy in the first place are the exact same criteria we use when buying snow boots and other cold weather gear to sell in the fall. Here is the short video that explains this criteria. I hope you like it and find it helpful!

Buying and Selling to Make Money, General, Selling at Auction

Follow Up! Buying and Selling More through GOOD PRESENTATION

Buying and Selling to Make Money at Yard SalesIf you’re going to be buying and selling to make money on eBay or auction (or Craigslist), it is worth taking the time to make your stuff look good. A few weeks ago, we talked about the importance of having a nicely organized auction display. (If you missed that post, you can read it HERE – Importance of Good Presentation).

Yesterday, I received a check from the auction company for about $550. Not a bad chunk of change for hauling a bunch of stuff off to auction.How to Sell at Auction - Lot Your Stuff Correctly!

As we went through the list of what sold, and for what money, it occurred to me that the vintage kitchen utensils lot that we showed in the last post (see photo again here) sold for $20! Not bad for a couple of dollar items – or some free stuff – from a yard sale lot!

As we looked through the list of the box lots we sold, we were very pleased. Continue reading “Follow Up! Buying and Selling More through GOOD PRESENTATION”

Buying and Selling to Make Money, General, Tips on Selling on eBay

How to Sell on eBay Questions from a Reader

A Reader Writes with How to Sell on eBay QuestionsI really enjoy receiving letters from readers, and especially enjoy helping others learn how to sell on eBay. I recently received a very nice note from someone who is not only a reader of our “Buying and Selling to Make Money” blog, but also a viewer on my “John’s Yard Sale Finds” channel at YouTube.

This reader had some terrific questions about how to sell on eBay, and she explained to me that as a beginner, there were several things that were confusing to her, particularly around timing the end of auctions, determining postage costs, using PayPal – and just a few other things.

Posting her questions and my responses would take quite a bit of room here at the blog, so I devoted an entire article to the topic, which you can find here => How to Sell on eBay – A Reader’s Questions

It seems that a lot of people have wondered how much extra – if any – to charge on postage for sending items to their buyers. I have some pretty strong feelings about this topic, and I do address it in the article. Please head on over to it here => How to Sell on eBay – A Reader’s Questions 

Thanks for visiting!

Buying and Selling to Make Money at Yard Sales
Buying and Selling to Make Money, General

Back Home – Buying and Selling to Make Money is Different Here!

Buying and Selling to Make Money at Yard SalesAfter being away for over 5 months, I had forgotten how different the buying and selling to make money is from one area of the country to another.

Just as one example, a couple of weeks ago in South Carolina, we couldn’t visit nearly as many yard sales on an ordinary Saturday morning as we wanted to. We would carefully map out our route in such a way to give us the biggest bang for our buck, and we almost never got to all of the sales in the region.

We arrived back in New Hampshire this past Monday evening, and were eager to hit the circuit today – our first Saturday back home. The weather looked pretty decent, so we figured it might be a nice day for yard saleing.

Of course, it’s a lot colder up here at this time of year than it is down in South Carolina – so we didn’t really expect too many sales. But we really didn’t expect “nearly none.” We drove through the nearby town of Gorham where one or two were listed – but they weren’t opening until 9:00 – and we were on the road by 7:00 am.

In South Carolina we’re considered almost late by 7:00 am since many people are opening their doors by 6:00 am – and there are dozens of cars lined up along the curbsides of all of them. I’m sure they start so early there because the heat can get pretty stifling by late morning.

At any rate, we drove down to the North Conway area where there were a few more sales listed. But not that many. We continued on downstate – we were going to visit our daughter and grandson, so it was the perfect route to pick up the “unadvertised specials” along the way. We found a great rummage sale in a neat little town that we decided we’d actually consider living in once our own house sells up in the mountains. In fact, we met a neat lady who is selling a house there and she invited us to go take a walk around. Very interesting! So, besides filling up at least 7 bags of great clothes for consignment, we also made a nice connection in the area.

But, by and large, buying and selling to make money on the yard sale circuit is still a little sparse ’round these parts! Typically up here in New Hampshire, Memorial Day really kicks off the yard sale season. We’re looking forward to seeing what comes up in the next couple of weeks! In the meantime, all of you buyers in warmer parts of the country, enjoy the head start! We’ll be catching up soon.

What NOT to buy and sell on eBay - Purchases with no return on investment
Buying and Selling to Make Money, Tips on Selling on eBay

What About the LOSERS?

What NOT to buy and sell on eBay - Purchases with no return on investmentIt happens. Once in a while, you’re just going to buy something you clearly shouldn’t have bought. It happens all the time.

These are the losers.

Now, the issue isn’t always that they didn’t sell – but that the time spent buying and then listing it just wasn’t worth it.

For example, take the little candy tin pictured here.

It’s a really nice little tin, and it was made in Holland. It only cost $1 at a yard sale, so what’s the harm?

It’s ok to take a chance for just a few pennies.

I really thought this would sell for at least $10. After all, people like that “Wedgewood” look, and I figured that this was a natural for eBay.

So, up it went on eBay where it sold for …. $5. Five whole dollars.

Well, someone was really pleased with it – and they got a great deal. But, let’s look at the break down here:

  • Purchase price = $1.00
  • Research on line to see where I should list it
  • Take photo of item
  • Type up the item listing
  • Pay the listing fee
  • Answer questions about how much to ship the item here or there (we offer international shipping on many of our items)
  • Auction closes for $5.00
  • eBay takes its Final Value Fee
  • Send customer invoice
  • Prepare paperwork/receipts and package the item
  • Put item in mail

Now, once you add up the costs in time, materials, and effort, it is clearly easy to see how it would be tough to make a living on $5.00 items – unless your budget is only $200 – $500/week.

Unfortunately, I need much more than $200-$500/week to live (ah, the good ol’ days… I remember when my budget was only about $500 per MONTH!).

So, while the issue of spending the time and effort on an item that sells for $100 doesn’t feel too bad, it digs in pretty deep on a $5.00 item.

We posted an article that further discusses what to do about “the losers” here on the blog. Have a look here! => What About The Losers? 
IN THE MEANTIME… Enjoy the following video that we made about this topic!