I love the eBay app. It is much more streamlined and user friendly than the eBay website.
I also have this feeling that items get more views if they are posted from the app. I have no evidence to back this up. However, the html is much simpler from the app so the items may appear higher in the search ratings.
I'll use the app to list if I only have a couple items to get through. It ends up taking the same amount of time as if I take photos with my digital camera, load them up and type away.
The thing I like most about the app is the ease of adding the best offer option to BIN items. It's quick and there is the option to automatically except offers of a certain amount, or decline offers of a certain amount.
I know you can do this from the eBay website as well, but the only way I can figure out to do it is by revising your listing later, not when you originally list it.
If you know an easier way to do it please comment and let me know! Do you use the mobile app?
I can't tell you how many times I've been tricked by old Avon at a thrift store.
Take these cologne bottles shaped like vintage cars I saw on the shelf at
Second Chance Thrift (SPCA) yesterday...
Practically worthless. At least not worth reselling, even though they look old and collectible.
Or these very cool looking rocks glasses celebrating the bicentennial of the Constitution...
A dime a dozen on eBbay. And again Avon.
Another good example (not Avon but just as tricky)...
This Campbell's Souper Stars cup.
Worth about what the thrift store sells it for.
These are the types of items I made the mistake of buying when I first started reselling.
However, this is also the stuff that generally doesn't make you money on Ebay. It was made to be/look collectible and therefore isn't as desirable.
Isn't it great that so much profit comes from the kind of every day items that we as a culture fell in love with for their design, functionality or usefulness, rather than what was produced to actually be collectible?
Some unbelievable eBay listings I came across this week…
While researching for the lot of wooden train items I bought at an online estate sale for about $6.65 I came across this listing which sold back in February:
Go check your train lots for any of these 17 guys…
I heard you can buy used dentures on eBay (for artists, make-up and special effects people), so I thought I’d check out the prices (for this post not to purchase, hehe). But I found something even better…
Nothing spells class like a wall mounted denture shaped bottle opener!
This sale had four unique bidders.
Christmas on May 26 for a seller in Germany...
Yes, that's a $2,000 Christmas ornament.
This last one had me wondering; if you had unlimited funds what would you purchase? I'd spend my money on travel.
There are several places to source: thrift stores, yard sales, estate sales, and auctions are the venues I mainly use. Sometimes Craigslist, but I get very annoyed at the logistics involved with Craigslist (the meet me here this time, oh never mind, this time, oh never mind I sold it to someone else/decided to keep it. I was selling it for my sister and blah blah blah… ).
Live auctions make me a little nervous, I like yard sales, I really like thrift stores, but estate sales are where it is at for me. I love going to estate sales because you can find amazing deals, there is many items in one place, the items are generally clean, and usually the items do not have difficult to remove price tags like the thrift stores here do. I really like this post on Apartment Therapy about estate sales:
Until a few weeks ago I hadn’t been to an estate sale in my adult life (I remember going with my Mom as a kid to at least one, I really wanted these pencils and they weren’t selling them. Isn’t it funny what we remember?) But they are already my favorite place to source items. This week I participated in an online estate sale, and this may be my NEW new favorite way to source inventory.
The sale was held online, auction style for three weeks. The sale closed this weekend and I picked up my loot today.
I got the following items:
Thomas and Brio wooden train lot Lionel Train Set (works) Children’s educational books, Brain-Quest lot Caruso steam rollers Laundry basket Turtle shaped sand box Jessica Simpson handbag Lot of Nerf and laser guns Lot of Hot wheels & Disney Cars Melissa and Doug Wooden Big Rig (Fits wooden tracks) Thomas Take-Along plastic roundhouse with trains and track And a few more miscellaneous items
All for $45!!!
The wooden Thomas alone should pay for the haul, and the rest is profit. Admittedly I’m keeping quite a few items for my boys.
Money in the Bank
So if you haven’t considered online estate sales, do! This one was held through a local company via Proxibid.com
Hope you had a fantastic long weekend. eBay sales were slow this past week (I'm sure you've been reading about this like I have), but picked up over the past 24 hours I had 5 sales and a couple bids… hope the same is happening for you!
Saturday my husband and I took advantage of my Mom being in town and went yard sailing without the boys. While out, my husband with his sharp eye, saw an envelope in box marked “EVERYTHING $0.25” - and inside was an awesome old collection of stamps!
Stamps from the US, Kuwait, Spain, France, Netherlands, Iraq, and more...
My Mom has been collecting stamps since the 70’s so we knew we’d give them to her. She was really excited because the envelope contained these two stamps from Ceylon (like the tea).
Of course we had to look up Ceylon, because although it sounded familiar, we weren’t sure where or what it was. We found out that it was a British colony from 1815-1948, and is now the country of Sri Lanka. So these stamps are at least from before 1948! We did look them up on eBay, and they are worth about $10-$20, but we have no intention of selling them.
We also went to a huge "Science Fiction Yard Sale" which apparently is an annual event on Memorial Day weekend. About fifteen vendors participated and it was set up in someone's yard. There were lots of science fiction books, action figures, autographed pictures, comics, etc. I don't know enough about science fiction, to have felt comfortable buying anything for resale.
While there I met Rebecca, owner of Ripping It Down. She makes awesome magnets, pins, key chains and more with recycled magazines and comic books! Her etsy shop is on vacation right now because she is doing several live events, but she said please message her if you see something you'd like. She does custom orders too!
Ripping it Down booth at the Science Fiction Yard Sale
I bought myself a very cool Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles keychain.
It was kind of a slow week on eBay, I didn’t list very much, and most was BIN. I was busy getting ready for our guests this weekend, so didn’t expect much activity.
My most exciting sale of this week was this Realistic transceiver (two way radio). I bought it for $9.98, thinking it was something else that I saw in the comps on eBay, that sold for much more. Turned out I was wrong, and this exact model was selling for about ten dollars.. Uh oh.
Luckily this sold this week for $29.99 plus shipping,
I was happy because I was afraid I had made a $10.00 mistake.
Another fun sale was this vintage Levi’s shirt which I paid $3.75 for.
Woodland print vintage Levi's polyester shirt.
Seeing this photo now, I should have let it hang some more... a bit wrinkly.
It sold for $9.99 with only one bid, not great but I more than doubled my money, so I'm not too upset.
I hope you’re having a great memorial day weekend, spending time with loved ones, and feeling grateful for the time you have with them. I know I am feeling truly grateful to have my family together this weekend. Please remember all the military service members who are not with us any longer, and the sacrifices they made for our country.
Reader Lisa asked if I had a list of Beanie Babies to look out for. I’ve written today’s post addressing Beanie Babies and their value. I do not search out Beanie Babies and the couple that I've sold were ones that I owned from childhood. In fact sometimes I feel a little sick of Beanie Babies. That being said I like anything you can flip for a pretty penny...I browse the eBay community message boards regularly, and have seen similar questions about Beanies, their value, etc, and often users tell the askers that Beanies are not worth listing. This is a huge generalization, and while I wouldn’t go buy all the Beanie Babies I see at thrift stores, there are certainly a couple worth looking out for if you can get them for a dollar or two.
When I was in elementary school Beanie Babies were the hot toy. I had some of the first generation Beanie Babies, not because they were collectible, but because they were fun and cool. My favorite was this guy: Grey Hippo, and in fact I remember actually playing with him quite a bit.
Photo cred eBay seller mother244 (I can't find my hippo right now)
A couple years later Beanie Babies became highly collectible. So whenever I got a new baby, I wasn’t allowed to take the tag off (not conducive for playing). Then the Beanie Babies Craze hit and my Mom took my Beanie Babies and put them in Ziploc bags and into a Tupperware container. What a bummer! I couldn’t even enjoy them anymore.
I am not a plush, or Beanie Baby collector, and therefore really not an expert on their values. I often see on other blogs people making great profits off plush, but the truth is, the few times I’ve tried to thrift and flip plush, its been a bust. Here is one of my fails:
Build-A-Bear Dragon Plush
I generally skip over the plush bins, but this guy was right on top and spoke to me.
Truthfully he had "quality" written all over him, and it stuck out to me.
Bought for $1.60, sold for $4.99
I made the classic, “Its name brand, and I think it is cool, so someone else will want it too” mistake. I didn’t even comp him I just threw him in my cart. When I got home I saw that he is very abundant on eBay.
Ah, so many dragons! In researching this post I saw that the week after
I sold my guy at auction for $4.99, someone else sold him BIN for $15.00!
What I would strongly advise against with Beanie Babies, is this “throw it in the cart, look it up later” method. There are hundreds of styles of them and they are all over every thrift store in America and chances are they are not valuable.
Also because of the Beanie Babies craze of the nineties, many people think their Beanies are worth more than they actually are. Therefore they are often overpriced.
First Beanie Babies Tag
I would only buy a Beanie to resell if it had a 1993 tag on it and I could get it for a couple dollars or so. Since I am not the expert, I’ll guide you to them, and if you’re interested in Beanies you can learn more about the tags here. Keep in mind that out of these early Beanies, some are more valuable than others. Beanies are an item that I would study up, before spending on. You will not make the thousands of dollars off them, that some were in the nineties, but you may make $20, $50, or even more if you know what to look for.
The important thing to remember that as with everything, Beanie Babies are “worth what someone else is willing to pay for it," and therefore, always check the comps.
Have you had success with plush? Did you have Beanie Babies in the nineties? Or are you totally sick of Beanie Babies even though its been 20 years since the craze?
I paid $15 for a large tote box full of miscellaneous items (about 40 items) at a warehouse sale a few weeks ago. I knew that one of the items this Norfolk Southern Railway mug, would pay for the contents of the box and decided to list everything at .99 auctions.
Currently listed for $19.99 (comps sold $14.50 plus shipping)
What a mistake! I’ve seen many items on eBay start at .99 and make what they are worth, and more. But evidently that is not actually the norm.
I think this may have to do with perceived value. Something I vaguely remember from marketing classes in college. If I’m starting a listing at $0.99 then many consumers may think that the item is flawed somehow. If I start an auction at $9.99 the items perceived value is automatically higher, and therefore the item becomes more coveted.
I certainly learned my lesson on this one. I will be pricing items with higher start bid prices from now on. Even though the $15.00 is not a loss, it is still a bad feeling shipping off something worth $20.00 when the buyer won it for $0.99!
One resale blogger I read talks about the “Goldilocks” price he sets for his shoes: $39.99. He thinks that the price is “not too high, not too low, its just right” for buyers. See his post about this topic here.
Have you found any great items this week? Have you had successes or failures with the $0.99 starting price point?
According to theclaimpost.com a mining claim is: “the right to explore for and extract minerals from a tract of land.”
I first read about gold mining claims being sold on eBay in this fantastic book: eBay Business for Dummies All-In-One by Marsha Collier, I read it back in Feb when I first started eBaying seriously, and now refer to it regularly.
Disney Music in the Park 25th Anniversary Video
Here is the Description from the actual listing:
“This is it. MUSIC IN THE PARK 25th anniversary video. The tag says it all....a limited number of these promotional videos were created. They feature all the music from MUSIC IN THE PARK set to video. VERY EXCLUSIVE footage. As a former Club 33 member, when I showed it in the club they were amazed to see this item. Please remember this is a VHS video, not a HD production. I just watched it with a few other Disney Fanatics and it brought a tear to their eye.”
This tape has been listed several times over the past month, no bids yet… If I spent $50,000 on a VHS I'd have a tear in my eye too.
Make a Face Pez Dispenser
This item sold a couple weeks ago (not this week) but I am including it because I am surprised this item sold for such a high price with only one poorly shot photo. It certainly doesn’t breed confidence in how safely the item will be shipped. If I had such a rare or valuable item I would certainly treat it differently. I'm sure Ms. Collier of the above mentioned eBay for Dummies would not approve. That being said it sold for a best offer of $1,200.
Thank you Ms Goodwill Haunting for the tutorial on how to find best offer accepted prices in this blog post.
Would you risk $1,200 on an item photographed in this manner? Have you come across any fun or outrageous listings this week?
I’ve had a Care Bear’s Vinyl Shower Curtain listed for 3 weeks. I paid $1.97 at a Goodwill in Pennsylvania when I was visiting my grandmother at the end of March.
The shower curtain has never been used, so I thought I could make a decent profit. I listed it at auction for $9.99 and it had a few watchers, so I thought for sure it would sell.
Retailed for $18.00 Back in 2004
Normally if there is only one watcher, I don’t assume an item will sell, because I watch items all the time that I don’t necessarily intend to buy, I am literally just watching them to see how the sale goes. But this listing had three or four watchers for three whole weeks. I was using up the automatic re-listings on the item. Then right after the third time around I got a message “Do you still have that shower curtain for sale?” I decided to list it again for a three day auction.
The buyer who messaged me opened bidding with $19.99. It ended up selling (to her) for $20.50 plus shipping.
Why would a buyer do this (open bidding so high)? I assume she was trying to scare away other bidders? I am not complaining I am happy with the final selling price, but wondering about bidding logic.
Hope your thrifting and sales are going well this week!
Yard-saling this weekend was okay for eBay, but great for the household.
As far as eBay resale stuff, I hit one yard sale full of NWT shoes and clothing. Along with a few other items, I got these new Merrell cross trainers for $2! What a steal. I have them listed BIN $29.99.
Merrell Mont Mavis
We found a bunch of things (that we actually needed) for us to keep, including; a new to us kids Huffy for $5, a portable Webber grill with stand (for camping, picnics, etc) for $12 (retails for $150), and a Kenmore upright freezer for $150 (retails $500). I’ve been searching for an upright freezer for the last year. We purchased this one at one of the three estate sales we went to Friday, and picked it up yesterday. After deals like this why would I ever want to pay retail again?
It’s painful paying full price for something that I know I can find at a thrift store if I am patient.
However, last week I went to Target and Old Navy for a couple summer clothing basics. I had my second son in November, and I’m not back in my old clothes yet. I do thrift many of my clothes, but I was having a hard time with the post baby body shopping, and kept ending up with clothes that just didn’t fit exactly right. So, off to Target and ON I went. It was so hard for me. Everything seemed SO expensive. I have to admit I actually paid $24.00 for a shirt, and although I love the shirt, and have already worn it several times, I cringe thinking about that price.
Have you found that thrifting for resale has made you more frugal?
This was my most successful eBay week so far. I feel like I have a good momentum, and seeing that it really is true “the more you list, the more you sell” - and I’m seeing that on average eBay gives back what you put in.
Some of this week's best sales include this new but open Amana Dado Blade Set, I think it was probably a display model. This is a tool that attaches to a table saw and makes wide grooves in wood. My husband bought this at an auction for $40. He already has one, and knew that it was worth way more than $40. I’ve had it listed for several weeks, waiting for the right buyer.
Sold BIN for $179.99 Free Shipping. Shipping cost $9.90.
So about $129 profit before fees. I would have never known to buy this,
thank goodness my husband recognized the quality brand “Amana.”
I sold the last of my valuable TY Beanie Babies this week. Slither the Snake 1993 Beanie - I’ve had him listed since the first week I started eBaying back in February. I have had several offers on him, but finally accepted one this week.
Sold with a best offer of $100 with free shipping (small flat rate box).
I’ve had him for twenty years, but assume he was a $5 toy back in ‘93.
I also sold a couple items through the Global Shipping Program. Including this vintage Swing-A-Way Ice Crusher in avocado.
So cool! With the original box, and the mechanism that suction cups
the crusher to the countertop still works.
I paid $4.75. I listed it with a starting bid of $16.99. That was the only bid it received, and of course I was hoping for more than a $12 profit. But I mention it in this week’s summary, because this buyer paid over $50 to have it shipped through the GSP to Israel! So for them, this was a $67 purchase.
I hope you had a great week of thrifting and eBay sales! Are you participating in the GSP? Have you had any sales through the program yet?
Yesterday we hit three estate sales. Two were literally in the neighborhood, and we found a few things at both including a bunch of wooden spools. The other one was an hour away, but we knew it was a nice country drive and the photos online promised lots of quality items.
I have the spools listed in two separate lots in my etsy shop
Because of the far distance the third estate sale was still packed with great stuff, despite getting there at 3:00 on the second day.
I picked up two games of UNO Hearts for $2 each. I still have to go through and see if they are complete. I also got three Taylor and Ng mugs for $6 total!!! When we got home in the evening I immediately listed several mugs. Including this Troy and Abed in the Morning mug, from the popular (but not popular enough to keep on the air) NBC show COMMUNITY. This week the show was canceled (again). So, when I saw the mug for $0.98 at CHKD yesterday I grabbed it without checking the comps. My dad is a huge fan of the show, and I thought if it didn't sell I would give it to him.
This show has a huge cult-following, and I am crossing
my fingers for a good return on my $0.98
So along with the above mug, I listed the three Taylor and Ng mugs. I checked the comps and saw the CHEVAL mug had sold recently for $21.50, $22.00 and $49.99. I went with the $49.99 Free Shipping, BIN and was I surprised, that while I was still listing a notification pop up. Your item sold and you got paid! And overnight the other two sold as well. It was a sticky situation, because the first buyer wanted all three, and was asking about combined shipping, and in the meantime someone else swooped in and bought the third mug! Luckily the first buyer was very understanding...
Le Cheval Taylor & Ng in blue
So that was my record. An item sold in less than an hour of listing! It more than paid for everything I bought at the estate sale too.
I almost looked these over at Family Thrift a month ago. I thought it was some old photo paper. But when I saw it was sealed I picked it up.
Transparency film for ink jet printers
Remember in school when the teacher would put printed graphs, etc on the overhead projector, and then write on top, and wipe it off but the graph would stay? Well that’s what this stuff is, clear paper for overhead projectors. This stuff goes from $10-$40 a box on eBay.
I bought two boxes at $2 each. They each sold for about $20, making a $36 profit. Not a bad flip. I said to my husband “BOLO for this stuff, and by the way BOLO is eBay speak for Be On The Lookout,” he looked at me strangely and said “I’m pretty sure it was law enforcement speak before it was eBay speak.” Haha! Oops.
Men's size 76 X 45 - These are very large jeans. When listing men's pants on eBay you have to "enter your own size" after size 48. No bids yet, but the seller has a successful history.
Clean of glue and labels baby food jars for crafting. These sold on the 12th. 30 jars for $34.99 Free Shipping!!! I showed this to my husband and he thinks its great and that we're going to recoup 90% of our food costs! Ha! There are many other similar listings that sold for only $0.99 - I think the secret is removing to glue and putting the exact same type of jars in the lot.
Giant crystal geode for $12,000. This listing ended with no bids. I know nothing about rocks, but this one is a "Great Price."
Have you come across any What tha eBay?!? listings this week?
I started selling on eBay in Feb on a whim. I was cleaning out a closet and came across some old TY Beanie Babies. I decided to find out their value. That was when I first learned about checking completed sales. I was surprised that some of my babies were still valuable. I’d been lugging these from apartment to house, to Japan (where we lived for four years), and back. I had no sentimental connection to them, they were just more of my “stuff” - so I took the plunge, and started selling on eBay.
1993 Peking Panda sold for $90 and haven’t looked back since!
I had a HUGE learning curve at first, which mostly centered around shipping costs. I would use flat rate to mail something really light. Or too big of a box. I quickly learned to use my kitchen food scale when packing.
The other half of my learning curve came from knowing the value of something. I always carry my phone and check completedes now. But at first I had the attitude that if I like something, then someone else will like it too - this doesn’t work with thrift store prices.
Now, I’ve been ebaying for four months and am really starting to understand what sells, and therefore am generating a profit. Much of my education has come from eBay sellers and resellers blogs. I am stalking Ms. Goodwill Haunting, Cray Cray for eBay, and The Recycle-ista regularly.
I’m generally a “lurker” and not a “poster” when it comes to social media. However, these blogs have been invaluable to my learning experience, as well as plain fun! I LOVE seeing how much money other resellers made on their finds. I want to share my scores too!
Recently I was doing a quick thrift at my local Children’s Hospital of the Kings Daughters (CHKD) Thrift store. Generally I find the CHKD thrift stores the most expensive in the area, but they have 20% off Military Mondays, so I’ll stop in every once in awhile.
I remember the day clearly because I bought an IBM Selectric Correcting Typewriter for $11.00, which is another post in itself. I also bought this XL Jiminy Cricket mug for $1.60, sold for $18.00 free shipping.
And this Moose mug for a quarter. I have it listed in my Etsy shop. It currently has five favorites, but no bites.
While I was loading up my car, a lady who I’d seen shopping in the store approached me in the parking lot.
“Excuse me, are you a reseller?” she asked, “I noticed the things you were buying, and they were things I would buy to resell too.”
What a fun moment! I ran home and told my husband that someone asked me if I was a reseller, and that I had proudly responded, Yes I Am!!!
When did you go from doing eBay as a hobby to being a full blown reseller?
We live in Virginia Beach - and there are TONS of thrift stores here. We are very lucky in that sense. Also, because it is a military town, the population is very transient. Great for resellers because there is always new stuff to thrift, and moving sales to shop.
I came across these glasses at an SPCA thrift store, and they were in my cart before I even stopped to look at the completeds on them. If they wouldn’t sell on eBay we would keep them because they were COOL. They sold for $62 to someone in Atlanta. Sets in better condition, with the swizzle sticks go for double that! There is also an ice bucket out there… so cool!!!
In Feb, I had success selling lots of my son’s clothing on eBay. So when I saw a CL ad for someone selling their daughter's 0-12 month wardrobe, I went and checked it out. I bought seven Tupperware totes of clothing, 95% of it was in EUC. It was all name brand, so I thought I would list in individually. I opened a store on Bonanza and spent lots of time photographing, organizing, and waiting… and waiting… and waiting.. checking my shop stats, and waiting some more. Hundreds of views later and zero sales, I turned my shop off, and switched back to eBay. I sold the clothes in LOTS of lots, with a few individual shoes and dresses here and there.
This past weekend, we had a yard sale, and I sold the last of the EUC stuff. Everything else went to the SPCA thrift store, and I was glad to see the rest go. Storing and organizing clothes is a pain!!! I will not be purchasing a large lot again, but appreciate what I learned.
In the future I will continue to sell my boys’ clothing in lots on eBay, and on Lot-e-da, a site I discovered along the way. I have some lots listed there, and have had some success. The listing process is fairly involved, but you know the clothes will be EUC if you’re buying. Their owner Anna, is extremely helpful. Lot-e-da, launched in January and is building momentum. So share with your friends and fellow resellers, there is a great site now for selling gently used kids clothing.
Have you had success with other selling sites like Bonanza?