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How does one start an Ebay business?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by randallr, Aug 16, 2008.

  1. randallr

    randallr Senior member

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    I am very curious as to how people start Ebay businesses. Not thrifting, but a business where they can get NWT products for cheaper than everyone else. I would like to start a small Ebay business while I am in college because the hours would be very flexible and the rewards would be directly proportionate to how hard I work.

    I have seen Chorse123 and many others get a lot of NWT products, maybe he could give us some insight? I don't want to know where exactly you get it, but maybe whereabouts I can go and inquire.

    Thanks in advance guys!

    Richard
     
  2. Hard2Fit

    Hard2Fit Senior member

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    Start with outlet malls in your area.
    Stick to 'name' luxury brands.
     
  3. scenesreplayed

    scenesreplayed Active Member

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    most ebay businesses are also real stores, so they have the option of contantly having products for sale and can swallow costs for items not purchased.
    the best way for someone like yourself though would be too use your existing ebay account... and beging slowly, if you dont have one you will need to buy alot first... you will have a hard time selling anything with bad feedback, and the more feedback you have from purchases will make you more trustworthy as a seller.
    then once you sell, you will start to get low prices because of the risk of lower feedback it will take time and you will eventually get better prices.
    many retailers sell primarily through ebay but have store/or use suppliers from asia.
    if you look at most of the ebay businesses they usually almost entirely sell it as buy-it-now, which takes most the risk out of it, but i bet they dont sell as much as it would seem they do.

    the best bet is just to start selling, once you have better feedback start talking to local business about contacting suppliers or ordering extra stock for yourself, friends in retail should help with supply.
     
  4. erdawe

    erdawe Senior member

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    Where are you going to but that kind of inventory in college? Wnless you have the luxury of living in a large space
     
  5. Teger

    Teger Senior member

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    Find a product tha you can ship to the buyer directly from the manufactuer/stockist, avoiding inventory.
     
  6. randallr

    randallr Senior member

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    Stocking isn't an issue. I don't mean having 2k products for sale, but maybe 20-30 pieces at a time.
     
  7. AlanC

    AlanC Senior member

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    Start with outlets, but location has a lot to do with it. Notice that a lot of the higher volume here at SF sellers are in NYC.

    Don't knock thrifting. It's a good way to turn a profit and clothe yourself as well.
     
  8. overdog

    overdog Senior member

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    Stocking isn't an issue. I don't mean having 2k products for sale, but maybe 20-30 pieces at a time.

    With gas prices as high as they are, your best bet for turning a profit is probably either 1) living really close to a reliable outlet or 2) selling at a high volume. If you only pick up a handful of items to sell each time you visit an outlet, the gas prices quickly add up.
     
  9. randallr

    randallr Senior member

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    Alan, I do thrift but I find that I hardly find anything worth selling. When I do the returns are high, I just need to increase my volume. I was thinking about contact the local small operation men's stores in Cincinnati and offering to move their stock for a cut of total sales. What do you think about that?
     
  10. LeatherSOUL

    LeatherSOUL Senior member

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    Alan, I do thrift but I find that I hardly find anything worth selling. When I do the returns are high, I just need to increase my volume. I was thinking about contact the local small operation men's stores in Cincinnati and offering to move their stock for a cut of total sales. What do you think about that?

    That's a good idea but expect to get shut down by a lot of people. You need some sort of credibility.

    I tried to work with a local eBay store to get rid of old stock and unsellable items but they were horrible to deal with, not calling me back and such, and their fees were also ridiculous. I was basically going to throw them money on a monthly basis and they didn't seem like they wanted my business.
     
  11. Taxler

    Taxler Senior member

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    I have a neighbor who sells womens designer clothing. She makes a point of knowing all the sales staff at the clearance centers and department stores who give her advanced notice and access to the choice pieces that never make it to a rack. She also pays store employees to but stuff for her at their discount, and then splits the profit.
     
  12. Exit English

    Exit English Senior member

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    I have a friend who works for an ebay store thats kinda like that one in 40 year old virgin. they have a store front but everything goes through ebay.
     
  13. AnGeLiCbOrIs

    AnGeLiCbOrIs Senior member

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    Live near a C21. [​IMG]

    I just bought a bunch of Leonard Paris hand rolled woman's scarves for $xx.xx
     
  14. randallr

    randallr Senior member

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    That's a good idea but expect to get shut down by a lot of people. You need some sort of credibility.

    I tried to work with a local eBay store to get rid of old stock and unsellable items but they were horrible to deal with, not calling me back and such, and their fees were also ridiculous. I was basically going to throw them money on a monthly basis and they didn't seem like they wanted my business.


    Thanks for the information. What I plan on doing is using my university as a source of credibility. I will e-mail them offering to get rid of their old inventory for a certain cut of the profit.
     
  15. Holdfast

    Holdfast Senior member

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    The guys making serious money on eBay have a fair bit of stock at any given time, and devote a fair bit of time to both getting new stock and to the business in general.

    My own few sales essentially make no more than a little extra money to not feel guilty about funding my own clothing purchases. Unless you really go at it properly with dedication and time, don't expect to make a fortune. I would have to significantly increase the time I spend on it to start making meaningful money.

    If you really go for it though, do the research and the legwork and generally give it the personal time it needs, I can see how it would be possible to make more money. So, good luck!
     
  16. Hard2Fit

    Hard2Fit Senior member

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    The guys making serious money on eBay have a fair bit of stock at any given time, and devote a fair bit of time to both getting new stock and to the business in general.

    My own few sales essentially make no more than a little extra money to not feel guilty about funding my own clothing purchases. Unless you really go at it properly with dedication and time, don't expect to make a fortune. I would have to significantly increase the time I spend on it to start making meaningful money.


    +1 on all counts.
    Stock is the key.
    Don't (ever) quit your day job. . .
     
  17. Holdfast

    Holdfast Senior member

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    +1 on all counts.
    Stock is the key.
    Don't (ever) quit your day job. . .


    True, true. [​IMG]

    Still, I wish him luck.

    (one more thing: believe me, you'll get very bored of measuring jackets, very quickly! [​IMG] )
     
  18. randallr

    randallr Senior member

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    I am only in college and eventually plan on attending law school. This would just be something to learn from and make some decent money while in college.
     
  19. MiniW

    MiniW Senior member

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    I had an amazing ebay business through thrifting. I started in my senior year of college and actually spent one whole year doing nothing but ebay after graduating.

    I don't know how to start a business the way you want to do it (selling NWT items) but good luck. Here's some advice that you should take with a grain of salt. Stop doing eBay if it becomes more frustrating than rewarding, during college I made more than enough for weekly drinks, and that made me really content. Towards the end of the year that I only did eBay, I had rooms filled with inventory, I was driving to the post office 2-4 times a week filling out my little 4-door integra, plus I saved only minimal money from what I earned. (easy come, easy go)... Anyways, do it if you can manage it, don't lose friends over this by offering to sell all their crap and taking a big cut, and lastly save a good portion of your income for law school or something else worthwhile in the future.
     
  20. LeatherSOUL

    LeatherSOUL Senior member

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    It's a funny story, but I can actually say eBay lead me to where I am today. As a college student I bought and sold clothing from outlets, hard to get LV bags, and Japanese magazines on eBay. I bought Zenga ties for $19 at the Barney's outlet and sold them for about $50-60 each. The Japanese magazines were about $10 each but I'd sell for around $25. The LV Grafiti bags were the best. I doubled my money on those and even paid for a trip to Japan for me and my buddy.

    I guess I always had a buy and sell mentality. Selling on eBay can be a fun hobby for a college student.
     

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