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The official thrift/discount store bragging thread - Part II (Return to the Thunderdome)

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by SpooPoker, May 18, 2015.

  1. JohnAAG

    JohnAAG Senior member

    Messages:
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    May 19, 2016
    Location:
    Central America
    The reason I sold my business was because the competition was getting ridiculous. Not only in terms of numbers, but everyone was undercutting everyone else to the point that if you were trying to run a halfway professional operation, there were no margins left. I was lucky I sold when I did; since then it's just gotten worse. A lot of those newbie competitors have died out, but (as is normal), the market now expects those lower prices to remain. Anyone that's left is working twice as hard to earn half as much. Personally, I'd had enough and got out when the opportunity presented itself.

    I'm very new here, but I really love this thread and the community you've created. I'd hate to see it disappear, if only because I enjoy seeing all the great finds. Its educational value also can't be overstated. But, as with anything business related, being open and transparent comes with risk. I'm not sure how you can preserve that spirit of generosity and protect yourselves more. Post your finds here, but keep the business talk for a private group somewhere?

    As someone who is completely new to thrifting, I can offer this: those of you who do this for a living work damn hard at it. I cleared a lot of low hanging fruit in my area in my first 3 weeks. But now that I have to dig a little more to find anything worthy of mention? It takes effort to stay motivated. If basic human nature is anything to go by, most of the people in your areas that have to dig for hours to find one good pair of sneakers won't be at it long.

    Regarding selling, I'm not sure if the rules of business have really changed as they apply to what you do. As far as I can tell, Spoo, LInda and the other bigger names have been at it for years. They've also focused on creating brands that have received a fair amount of attention and exposure. So their target markets know who they are and comes to them. And they deal in high volume and built their businesses around that strategy. I can only speak about Spoo, because I've spoken to him a little, but there is also the massive amount of time he's taken to educate himself on his product and apply that knowledge to his business.

    My feelings about technology are pretty balanced (my company worked in the educational software market). Yes, it's lowered the barrier to entry for more competitors. But it has also widened and deepened the market for everyone. The winners will be the ones that understand the tech, leverage the opportunities it provides, and look as professional as possible while keeping costs low.

    I think that last point is most important when riding out any business challenge. Sure, the barrier to start selling is low. But selling consistently and with good margins has always been hard work and probably always will be. Staying on top of all the latest market information? Taking the time to craft successful listings with the right titles and keywords and professional pictures? Dealing with the whims of PP and ebay? And trying to satisfy all the unhappy and downright bad customers? I wonder how many of the new competitors really understand that there's way more to success than just finding cool shit. And once they find out (if ever), how many are willing to commit themselves to the workload.

    Just my two cents. All the best!
     
    5 people like this.
  2. Fueco

    Fueco Senior member

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    Where The Buffaloes Roam

    A friend once quipped to me that she was in the wrong business when she heard what I do. I asked her how many hours per week she worked... She changed her mind when I said 70+.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. double00

    double00 Senior member

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    Not Where but When
    12. i got some other stuff in smaller sizes pm if you dare.
     
  4. Nataku

    Nataku Senior member

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    Nov 10, 2006
    Location:
    Land of 10,000 Lakes
    

    Hard to say what it was like elsewhere, but here I was batting 100 every time I went out. High end furniture, killer records, good vintage stereo equipment, awesome vintage clothing and all sorts of high-end MC. Stuff would just sit for days.

    There weren't any spic and span thrift stores that had brand new buildings built just for them. Most were in run-down strip malls, were dark, unorganized and had a distinctive musty odor to them. Funny as most Goodwill stores these days are nicer than some other brick and mortar stores.

    There was no competition with the exception of your occasional antique dealer. Most customers were retired folks looking for funny coffee mugs and toys for their grandkids. Another example is one that I haven't seen in a long time; folks with "free clothing" vouchers given to them by the city or state.

    Even the demeanor of this thread has changed so much over the past 10 years. I remember when I first joined, flipping was looked down upon. The main guys on here were looking for nice stuff for themselves. If you mentioned you bought something to flip or asked the value, you'd catch some heat.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
    3 people like this.
  5. Versace Guy

    Versace Guy Senior member

    Messages:
    434
    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2014
    I've noticed that most good stuff I kopped have tags no more than a day old nowadays. It used to be those stuff will sit in store for several days till I pick them up, now the timeframe is on the hourly basis. Kitten? Pfft, people didn't know about stuff like that before, now don't expect that to be on the rack for more than an hour. Once people start adopting the next level game, it will be apocalypse for everyone else. Like all businesses, you either gotta adapt or whine. There will always be money to be made for the forward thinkers.
     
  6. drlivingston

    drlivingston Senior member

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    Dirty South
    Truer words have never been posted on this thread.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. suited

    suited Senior member

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    Aug 18, 2008
    

    The barrier to entry might be financially low, although that depends on the quality of your photo setup among other things, but the barrier of entry is somewhat high in terms of the consistency and work ethic needed to make any kind of decent money. Also, income inequality isn't going away because it's an inherent part of human society. There has never been a society that did not contain both poor and rich classes of people.


    I've thought about this, too. I figured that in at least in my area, over time there must be diminishing inventory on items like suits/sport coats. As older people donate their items, younger people are 1) not wearing that type of clothing as much as their older predecessors and 2) not replacing older people at a fast enough rate to keep the donation flow the same.



    I also don't understand the idea of publishing a video that instructs other people on how they can make it harder for you to pay your bills.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2017
  8. Versace Guy

    Versace Guy Senior member

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    Jun 25, 2014
    People who post those videos actually don't make money flipping, they make the money with the videos. They poison the well of the water they don't themselves drink.
     
  9. Jackstraw001

    Jackstraw001 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    88
    Joined:
    May 22, 2015
    ^^^^^
    This
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. SpooPoker

    SpooPoker Internet Bigtimer and Most Popular Man on Campus Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

    Messages:
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    Location:
    LuxeSwap
    350 NWT suits arrived

    [​IMG]
     
    33 people like this.
  11. Fueco

    Fueco Senior member

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    Location:
    Where The Buffaloes Roam

    I'm going to disagree with that. Older search results get pushed further and further back on Google search. The less new stuff shows up, the less likely people are to find this thread in the results.
     
  12. eazye

    eazye Senior member

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    Truth.
     
    6 people like this.
  13. HansderHund

    HansderHund Senior member

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    Austria
    4 people like this.
  14. eazye

    eazye Senior member

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    The good thing about all of this is I can get sick jawnz for pennies on the dollar. No Linda required.
     
    6 people like this.
  15. Canyon

    Canyon Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    75
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2016
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    With all the talk of newbies getting in, feel kinda bad posting that I just made my first eBay sale. But wanted to thank everyone here for all the advice and help these past few months.
     
    4 people like this.
  16. impuntura

    impuntura Senior member

    Messages:
    2,497
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2014
    Got a bunch of stuff will post on weekend but thought you guys would enjoy this,especially Spoo.
    Look at those MOP buttons.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    And a vintage brass wine rack for 15 bucks for the condo ,my gf was ready to spend 350.sigh
    80% of which is thrifted ,once we are settled in I will post some pics.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    10 people like this.
  17. Principle

    Principle Senior member

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    Feb 15, 2014
    Location:
    Banks of the Pawtuxent
    That looks like it can fit magnums. Get all magnums.
     
    1 person likes this.
  18. Fueco

    Fueco Senior member

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    Where The Buffaloes Roam
    

    TWSS

    [​IMG]
     
    5 people like this.
  19. impuntura

    impuntura Senior member

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    2,497
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    Mar 23, 2014
    Quote:That's what she said ...
     
    2 people like this.

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