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Buying and Selling on eBay: Tips, Tricks, Problems & Questions - Page 375

post #5611 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by jebarne View Post
 

 

...

 

So what a buyer doesn't see are all the fees, time, expense that go into this business. What I've concluded from you guys since I've been coming on here is that for it to be worth your time, you need to have a targeted return for every item you buy. Spend $1 to make $3 or whatever your target return is. One of my few thrifts was a pair of florsheim shell longwings. pretty beat up. while they only cost $3.50, it took me almost 5 hours to clean, moisturize, polish etc. Yes, I know I'm slow. So, even if I sell them for a big amount (Wes suggested a BIN around $180 with a likely BO around $60) I don't get an hourly rate that makes it worth my time to look for stuff. . At $60, I'll make $50, pre-tax. 

 

So if someone knew that I paid $3.50 for the shoes and offered me $35 for them thinking it is a 10X return, I'd turn it down until I had tried to sell them for a couple months at the higher price. If I hadn't put the time into the restoration, then I might take the $35.  


...

Exactly. I have some shoes for sale on eBay and I got a $10 offer on a pair. I ignored it and got a message basically saying, "I'm 99% sure you got these at a thrift store or a garage sale for less than my offer. With $10 + shipping, I know you'd still make a profit." While he's sort of right, he doesn't know that I got them for cheap and spent a few hours restoring them. A lot of stuff that gets bought needs a little work, whether it's getting a button sewn on, getting rid of stains or even just steaming/ironing. I feel like most buyers don't take any of that into account.

post #5612 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by My Main Man View Post
 

Exactly. I have some shoes for sale on eBay and I got a $10 offer on a pair. I ignored it and got a message basically saying, "I'm 99% sure you got these at a thrift store or a garage sale for less than my offer. With $10 + shipping, I know you'd still make a profit." While he's sort of right, he doesn't know that I got them for cheap and spent a few hours restoring them. A lot of stuff that gets bought needs a little work, whether it's getting a button sewn on, getting rid of stains or even just steaming/ironing. I feel like most buyers don't take any of that into account.

 

You should have said "Yes, you're correct. I picked them up at a thrift store for $8. That store is an hour's drive from my home, but apparently about 20 hours drive from yours. Should I charge you the time it took me to get them, the running cost of my vehicle, etc. or would you like me to charge you how much it would have cost you to go pick them up. I'm good with either one, just let me know and I'll invoice appropriately."

post #5613 of 15189

I don't think there's any reason for buyers or sellers to be annoyed with each other in the bargaining process. Here are my thoughts from a bargaining theory standpoint, not directed at anybody in particular.

 

Buyers:

 

Sellers have costs too. If you're increasing their costs in terms of one dimension of time, effort, risk, etc. you need to make up for it in another. They are all different in terms of how long they are willing to hold onto something and how much it costs in terms of time, space, etc. to do so. They will change their mind about these things when they change their mind and not before. Seller strategy can differ and cater to different buyer types too. If you're on a budget, don't hound a seller that is clearly after the impatient buyer willing to pay more for an item that is sent immediately.

 

Sellers:

 

If you're too afraid to let the market set the price in an auction (lack of bid depth or otherwise), you have to live with random offers. Most people aren't on ebay to get hard to find items, they're looking for stuff on the cheap. If you're selling gently used Park Avenues for $240 BIN you're just congestion to most buyers and liable to attract a lot of "lowball" offers closer to a typical auction price discounted a bit. Retail is not any more of a valid price reference point than your actual cost is.

 

It all comes down to matching buyers and sellers so that everybody is satisfied. Most matches (contacts) will not work out and that's just part of the process. Buyers and sellers just need to keep it in mind and not get worked up about it. Best to be polite and look like somebody that isn't playing any games. All the idiots, whether buyers or sellers, will eventually get hammered into reality when they can't make a deal so until then just let them be.

post #5614 of 15189
Sent an item and tracking says 'undeliverable as addressed'

Does that mean it will get returned to me? This thread worries me here as I'm pretty sure I had ship cover on it
http://community.ebay.com/t5/Packaging-Shipping/Undeliverable-As-Addressed/qaq-p/3142963
post #5615 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by jebarne View Post

I agree that the market sets the price. Cost determines how long you're going to want to be in this business. The Spread. Return on investment and return on your time.

For those of you who do this as a primary or secondary income, cost has to come into play. You all know this better than I do, but if you sell an item for $25 and someone offers you 15, your fees are $3 and your shipping is $5, you're down to $7. If you paid $3.50, you net $3.50. Most people here wouldn't go hunting for that amount of return. 


Right but you also just made 100% profit on your initial investment and covered all your costs (if you count your time and effort as free, which many small business owners do). Most businesses would be exceedingly happy with that. That said, a product is worth what the market will bare, and if you can get more for it, there's absolutely no reason you should be shamed for doing so.
post #5616 of 15189

Been a little MIA, but wanted to post this correspondence with a buyer.... good/bad/indifferent, it's how I handle things.

 

Buyer Quote:
sorry buddy, I have to apply returns because of the size, it's too big that i cannot wear , really sorry again for the trouble!

 

My Reply Quote:
 Hi xxxxxx,

I am very sorry to hear that these do not fit. I have a no returns or exchanges policy for all of my ebay listings for a number of reasons. Being that these were NWT jeans (unaltered) and both the tag size and actual measurements are included in the listing I unfortunately can not offer a return for this item. As I work hard to be a Top Rated Seller, if you are planing to resell the jeans, I can email you the pictures so that you can reuse them in your listing.

Regards

Brian

 

Buyers Reply Quote:

 fine, can u jst email me some pictures of the pants, thx

 

:teach:

post #5617 of 15189

This is not getting the views I expected. Any suggestions to get them up? I know the pictures could be significantly better, but they are no worse than any others I've taken, and those have all gotten lots of hits. It's really a nice jacket:

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271281770823?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1586.l2649

post #5618 of 15189
quote name="jgill79" url="/t/309281/buying-and-selling-on-ebay-tips-tricks-problems-questions/5610#post_6623124"]This is not getting the views I expected. Any suggestions to get them up? I know the pictures could be significantly better, but they are no worse than any others I've taken, and those have all gotten lots of hits. It's really a nice jacket:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271281770823?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1586.l2649
[/quote]

Personally I wouldn't include the "For Lagerfield" and put more searchable details about the jacket.
post #5619 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by JabbaTheSlut View Post

quote name="jgill79" url="/t/309281/buying-and-selling-on-ebay-tips-tricks-problems-questions/5610#post_6623124"]This is not getting the views I expected. Any suggestions to get them up? I know the pictures could be significantly better, but they are no worse than any others I've taken, and those have all gotten lots of hits. It's really a nice jacket:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271281770823?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1586.l2649
[/quote]

Personally I wouldn't include the "For Lagerfield" and put more searchable details about the jacket.

 

Thanks, Jabba.

post #5620 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgill79 View Post


Right but you also just made 100% profit on your initial investment and covered all your costs (if you count your time and effort as free, which many small business owners do). Most businesses would be exceedingly happy with that. That said, a product is worth what the market will bare, and if you can get more for it, there's absolutely no reason you should be shamed for doing so.

 

100% profit sounds good in the abstract. However, the opportunity cost of the hour it takes to make that profit might be higher doing something else. For example, I pay my lawn guy $30 per week. Takes him an hour. factor in mowers, gas, oil, trailer, he's making $10-12 an hour. 

 

Not arguing your point, but I think that's why many people here have minimum deal targets. Most part-timers aren't set up to do high volumes of low margin deals. If you're measuring, shipping, photographing, tracking you really have to factor in the additional time you're not available for family, friends, other hobbies etc. Plus the fact that half the spouses are pissed that boxes and bags of clothes creep into all parts of the house. Most are really motivated to show a reasonable profit so the support continues.

 

Me personally, I love learning new things. I'm enjoying the occasional thrift hunt. Learning what sucks and what doesn't. But when I sell all my own personal stuff that I can't consign, I'll move on to something else I want to learn. But still, making money is how you keep score, so for now, I want to get better, I want to learn more, and I want to have fun. So Far, So Good. If I were going to go after this big time, I would look for pallets of close out items, contract an agent in the garment district for samples or some such, hire an assistant to manage the postings, shipping and email, and I'd focus on finding stuff exclusively. 

 

I look at this like I look at playing the guitar or playing golf. I can enjoy those at my own level of competence, without comparing myself to Tiger Woods, Eric Clapton, or Spoo, Brian, or Wes. These guys have taken years to develop and earn the knowledge, the skills, their online reputations. Rather than withhold these abilities, they generously contribute to the online learning clinic that this forum has become for so many of us. 

 

So when a successful guy like Wes, with 400 items for sale, an acknowledged finder of great things, and a great stager of his items tells me he starts at 3X cost plus fees and shipping, I take that as a baseline assumption. So now when I'm evaluating a purchase, I look at it and ask myself if I have an 80% chance of getting a minimum of 4x (allows for fees and shipping) the cost. If I don't think so, then I shouldn't buy it. Even something decent that would require more of a time investment (like getting a specific brand of button and sewing on) if it is only 4X the cost, its probably a pass. On something like that, the opportunity cost may move my thinking to 5X unless its a really expensive item that will be worth the time.

 

The Proof? all you guys have a pile, or boxes, or bags of stuff awaiting repair that you're delaying because you have easier stuff to post and turn. If it was a Kiton jacket that needed a $30 repair for you to make $300 - $400 profit, it would be at the top of the list.

 

Again, my opinions only, based on observations. 

post #5621 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by jebarne View Post
 

 

100% profit sounds good in the abstract. However, the opportunity cost of the hour it takes to make that profit might be higher doing something else. For example, I pay my lawn guy $30 per week. Takes him an hour. factor in mowers, gas, oil, trailer, he's making $10-12 an hour. 

 

Not arguing your point, but I think that's why many people here have minimum deal targets. Most part-timers aren't set up to do high volumes of low margin deals. If you're measuring, shipping, photographing, tracking you really have to factor in the additional time you're not available for family, friends, other hobbies etc. Plus the fact that half the spouses are pissed that boxes and bags of clothes creep into all parts of the house. Most are really motivated to show a reasonable profit so the support continues.

 

Me personally, I love learning new things. I'm enjoying the occasional thrift hunt. Learning what sucks and what doesn't. But when I sell all my own personal stuff that I can't consign, I'll move on to something else I want to learn. But still, making money is how you keep score, so for now, I want to get better, I want to learn more, and I want to have fun. So Far, So Good. If I were going to go after this big time, I would look for pallets of close out items, contract an agent in the garment district for samples or some such, hire an assistant to manage the postings, shipping and email, and I'd focus on finding stuff exclusively. 

 

I look at this like I look at playing the guitar or playing golf. I can enjoy those at my own level of competence, without comparing myself to Tiger Woods, Eric Clapton, or Spoo, Brian, or Wes. These guys have taken years to develop and earn the knowledge, the skills, their online reputations. Rather than withhold these abilities, they generously contribute to the online learning clinic that this forum has become for so many of us. 

 

So when a successful guy like Wes, with 400 items for sale, an acknowledged finder of great things, and a great stager of his items tells me he starts at 3X cost plus fees and shipping, I take that as a baseline assumption. So now when I'm evaluating a purchase, I look at it and ask myself if I have an 80% chance of getting a minimum of 4x (allows for fees and shipping) the cost. If I don't think so, then I shouldn't buy it. Even something decent that would require more of a time investment (like getting a specific brand of button and sewing on) if it is only 4X the cost, its probably a pass. On something like that, the opportunity cost may move my thinking to 5X unless its a really expensive item that will be worth the time.

 

The Proof? all you guys have a pile, or boxes, or bags of stuff awaiting repair that you're delaying because you have easier stuff to post and turn. If it was a Kiton jacket that needed a $30 repair for you to make $300 - $400 profit, it would be at the top of the list.

 

Again, my opinions only, based on observations. 

 

Oh, I agree completely. The other factor to consider is the breadth of the audience you reach. Wes, Brian, and Spoo all have followings, and get their goods in front of a lot more people than most of us can, especially those of us who are just starting out. For them, it makes sense to start their baseline at 3x because out of the 100s (1000s?) of people who see their items, you are more likely to find someone over time willing to pay out that amount. But as you are trying to build a following, an audience, if you will, you might try to attract some attention, both of buyers and of eBay by offering some items at a lower cost, say 2x. When I am selling enough to justify an actual store expense, and have established myself as a seller with a discerning eye towards quality who has a following of individuals who regularly check my goods, and eBay recognizes me as the same and helps feature my goods, I can justify raising the prices to 3x-5x.

 

As you say, only my opinions, based on observations (and very little experience). I am trying to be a sponge.

post #5622 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgill79 View Post
 

 

Thanks, Jabba.

 

Its a nice jacket. Not my size or I'd bid on it. Just went back an re-read Spoo's post 5140 on putting key words in the title and you've got most of them. If you take out Lagerfield, what do you add? Made in USA? Premium Fabric?

post #5623 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgill79 View Post

This is not getting the views I expected. Any suggestions to get them up? I know the pictures could be significantly better, but they are no worse than any others I've taken, and those have all gotten lots of hits. It's really a nice jacket:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271281770823?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1586.l2649

Minor point, but I prefer to leave a jacket unbuttoned on a hanger. Unbutton it, let the front overlap with the button side on top. You get somewhat the same look but it slims the jacket and it takes away that fold in the middle.
post #5624 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by jebarne View Post
 

 

Its a nice jacket. Not my size or I'd bid on it. Just went back an re-read Spoo's post 5140 on putting key words in the title and you've got most of them. If you take out Lagerfield, what do you add? Made in USA? Premium Fabric?

 

(edit: quoted wrong poster - was for jgill79...)

30+ views ain't all that bad for a blazer among a sea of tens of thousands, without the blazer being a Kiton and the seller not being a Spoo.  Personally I have no expectations, just hopes.

Made in USA does appeal to some buyers.  As does a blurb about condition being "excellent" or "flawless" &c.

Noticed you have the Country of Manufacture as France, but it's clearly made in the USA from that UNITE label.  

Sometimes an item gets views, sometimes it doesn't until you relist it and suddenly for some reason there is more interest - eBay is a fickle mistress.

post #5625 of 15189
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLnoob View Post
 

 

(edit: quoted wrong poster - was for jgill79...)

30+ views ain't all that bad for a blazer among a sea of tens of thousands, without the blazer being a Kiton and the seller not being a Spoo.  Personally I have no expectations, just hopes.

Made in USA does appeal to some buyers.  As does a blurb about condition being "excellent" or "flawless" &c.

Noticed you have the Country of Manufacture as France, but it's clearly made in the USA from that UNITE label.  

Sometimes an item gets views, sometimes it doesn't until you relist it and suddenly for some reason there is more interest - eBay is a fickle mistress.

 

I just reposted it in the eBay selling forum and here, so the views have bumped up quite a bit in the last couple hours. It was 3 before I did that. Oh well! Ii appreciate all the input from everyone, though! Thanks for calling out the "France" problem. 

:)

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