May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor

 

Happy Sunday everyone!  I know most of you probably won’t be reading this until Monday since the weekend is usually a busy time for thrifting, listing items on eBay, and spending some quality with your loved ones.  Regardless of where you are and what you’re doing, I hope you’re having a blast!

I just wanted to quickly share some of my most recent eBay sales and there were definitely some great ones over this weekend.

Until next time, have a great week and a safe Halloween!

Finds of the Week

Unleashing Your Inner Katniss

PeetaKatnissAs you know, Halloween is fast approaching and there are only a few days left for eBay buyers to purchase their costumes online.

If you do have costumes being auctioned, now is probably NOT the best time to be using the auction format since most buyers will be needing their costumes right away.  Better to use Buy-It-Now until Halloween.

Although I didn’t find any valuable costume-hoodies like I found in the past, I was able to find this nice Hunger Games Shirt from Goodwill.  This was a replica of the outfit that Katniss and Peeta wore while they were training and, with the 3rd movie releasing soon, I knew it was going to be a good seller.

Hunger Games

 

Item Cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $39.99

Asics Running Shoes

Gel

Item Cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $42.25

 Vintage KISS Jersey

KISS

Item Cost:  $8.99

Wining  Bid:  $69.00

I Wouldn’t Pay $62 for This, but Someone Else Just Did

 

Hi everyone, I hope this post finds you doing well and having an amazing week!

As I write this, there is yet another hurricane set to bear down on the islands this weekend.  Crazy right?!  It’s a little hectic at the supermarkets and the gas stations but it’s good to know that residents are taking it seriously.

So before the storm arrives I thought I’d share some of my recent thrift store sales, since writing a blog post will probably be farthest thing on my mind come this weekend.

“One Man’s Trash is Another Man’s Treasure”

I don’t know if there’s another phrase that sums up thrift store reselling quite like this one.

Although I wouldn’t characterize donations as “trash” since most of them are still in great condition, I think it’s safe to say that most of these items are “unwanted”.  They’re of no value to whoever donated it but yet there’s someone out there willing to pay $50, $60, and even $100+ for it.  I’ve been doing this for years and this concept still amazes.

Take this Herbalife shirt, for example:

Herbalife

I paid $3.99 for this jersey at Savers.  I wasn’t even sure what Herbalife was (after some Googling, I found out that it’s a nutrition and weight management company) but I thought it was worth a purchase because of the design.   I started the auction at $24.99 and, after 17 bids,  it ending up selling for $62.00!!

Or this vintage jacket.

G

Those of you who’ve My Reseller Guide already know that this is one of my favorite brands because it’s so easy to sell.  This particular one, however, was definitely showing it’s “vintage” side – the elastic bands around the waist and wrist were loose and if you look closely you can see some heavy discoloration.

Yet, despite all that, someone was still willing to fork over $49.99 for it!

Or this pair of Nike’s.

Denim

I bought this pair for $4.99 at Salvation Army and it eventually sold for $61.50. 

If it was in brand new condition then I wouldn’t be surprised by that selling price but this pair was pretty worn in – it was starting to fray along the seams (you can see some of them in the picture) and there was even separation around the toe box on both pairs.  And yet someone was still willing to pay that amount for it.

Isn’t it amazing what buyers are willing to spend on a $6.99 (ish) item from a thrift store?!

I hope you have an great weekend filled with amazing sales on eBay!

I’ll talk to you soon,

Meinard

 

How To Protect Your eBay Auction

by Meinard on October 6, 2014

Computer ShadowRight now, in eBay land, they’re lurking, patiently waiting until, with just a few strokes on the keyboard, they spring into action and they start to wreak havoc on our eBay business, and our sanity as well.

Make no mistake about it, bad buyers and scammers are all over eBay.  To be fair, I’m certain that they’ve always been there but I’m sure the numbers have swelled since the adoption of a number of policies that makes the eBay marketplace -especially their sellers – such an easy target.

I’m not here to rant about the policies.  At this point, we all know how they tilt the balance of power towards buyers and I’m almost resigned to the fact that it’s going to be that way moving forward.

Our power as sellers have become less and less over the years but it doesn’t mean that we’re powerless.  I don’t know about you, but I’m still doing everything that I can to ward off scammers from my auction.  Ebay has started to implement policies to help protect our auctions but, for the most part, the responsibility lies with us.

The following are just some of the practices that I use to protect myself.  While they’re not 100% foolproof, I believe they’ve helped me tremendously against bad buyers.

Communicate Strictly Through eBay Messaging

No TextingI don’t agree to buyer’s request to talk over the phone, chat through email, or through text messaging.  Ever.

Not that I’m anti-social or anything, but the main reason why I don’t communicate via these mediums is simple:  eBay can’t verify these conversations.

In the event that a dispute arises and customer-service becomes involved, they have the ability to read through all the eBay message between you and the buyer.  These messages have protected me on several occasions, but this option isn’t available if you decide to communicate with your buyers over the phone, text messaging, or otherwise.

I remember this one buyer who, despite me mentioning it in the description and providing the corresponding pictures, was upset that he received a pair of boots with a broken zipper.  Obviously upset, he wanted me to send him a partial refund to cover the cost of repair.

In the eBay message, he stated that the was upset that I “hid” the pictures amongst the other pictures and that I mentioned the defect in the middle of my description.  He goes on to say that he didn’t read the entire auction but that I was still liable as a seller.

I called eBay, they combed through our messages, and they read the message where he  mentioned that he didn’t read the entire auction; suffice to say, he’s going to have to pay for those repairs himself.

So the eBay messages and the pictures were really useful.  Which leads me to my next point…

Be Thorough and Accurate with Your Description

When it comes to auction descriptions, I would rather provide too much information than too little.

I learned this the hard way early in my eBay career when a buyer actually had an issue with one of my items because it had a few loose threads along the seams.  It wasn’t anything major – it was just normal signs of wear and there weren’t any holes or rips – but I learned quickly that you can’t take anything for granted when it comes to descriptions.

(On a side note, I still actually write “minor loose threads” on most of my clothing auctions because of this incident.”)

It’s also a good idea to remind buyers that your item is used so I would include something like this in your auction:

“This item is in used condition so please read the entire the description and look through all the pictures before placing a bid.”   

Here are just some of the things I make sure to include in my auctions:

  • Rips, holes, or tears
  • Missing buttons
  • Broken zippers
  • Discolorations
  • Loose threads
  • Measurements (mainly for jeans)

Bottom line:  If you find something worth noting, make sure you include in the auction.  Not only will it prevent unwanted surprises when the buyer receives your item, but it will also protect you should you receive one of those terrible “Item Not as Described” emails.

Add Tons of Pictures

You can save yourself a lot of returns, partial-refund requests, and not to mention migraine headaches by including good, quality pictures of your item.

You can now add up to 12 free pictures per auction and I definitely take advantage of it.  Regardless if it’s shoes or clothing, I try to include a picture of every angle so the buyer knows exactly what he or she is buying.  Also, be sure to include a picture of any defects that you mentioned in your description.

I know it takes extra time to take these pictures and to upload them to your auction, but I think it’s worth the extra effort.  Not only does it show buyers that you’re not hiding anything but it also prevents (some of) them from claiming that you misrepresented an item.

When combined with an accurate description, a set of quality pictures will go a long way to protecting your auctions from bad buyers.

Ship Only to the Address Provided by Paypal

I make no exceptions to this policy for all my auctions.  ZERO.  To the point where I have even refunded payments – as terrible as it was – because the buyer refused to update their shipping information.  And I suggest you do the same.  In addition to protecting you against fraudulent buyers, this policy adds another layer of seller protection from Paypal.

The following excepts are taken word-for-word from Paypal’s FAQ page:

“Why am I required to ship to the buyer’s address shown on the PayPal ‘Transaction Details’ page?

This requirement is for your safety. The address on the PayPal ‘Transaction Details’ page is registered with and checked by PayPal. When the buyer asks you to send merchandise to a different address, it may indicate fraud.”

“What if the buyer asks me to ship to an address other than the address on the ‘Transaction Details’ page?

If you ship to a different address, you will not be eligible for coverage. If the buyer wants you to ship to a different address, we recommend that you ask the buyer to resubmit the payment with the new shipping address.”

You’re going to hear every story in the book but it doesn’t take much effort to update an address on Paypal; in fact, you can do it in three easy steps.  So don’t be afraid to ask your buyer.

Put Scammers on Notice

Walmart greeters

Have you ever wondered why establishments like Wal-Mart Buy place greeters at the entrance and exit of every store?

Obviously, they’re there to create a friendly and inviting environment for their shoppers, but they’re also there for security reasons as well.

These establishments want would-be shoplifters and thieves to know that, should they decide to steal, that someone will be there to potentially catch them or, at the very least, see their faces.  It’s a good preventative measure and it’s become a popular practice in my retails stores.

Now obviously we don’t have anyone monitoring all the potential buyers who visit our auctions, but I found that a few well-phrased sentences work just as well as greeters in putting potential scammers on notice.

Again, these aren’t going to prevent ALL fraudulent buyers from targeting your auctions but, at the very least, it will let them know that you’re aware of their tactics.

Here are some of the my favorites:

To protect you against buyers who go around asking for partial refunds:

“No partial refunds allowed.  Returns are allowed for a FULL refund only.  Buyer pays the cost of return shipping.”

To protect you against buyers who use your items and then return and/or buyers who buy your items and then return a totally different item (usually one that’s in worse condition or broken):

“The item MUST be returned in the same condition as it was shipped. I inspect the item for any rips, tears, or defects prior to listing AND shipping. Also, pictures are provided of all sides/angles of the item and will be used during any dispute regarding the condition of the item.”

“Only the Paranoid Survive”

I’m not sure where I heard that phrase but it’s one that has stuck with me.  I may be paranoid about this stuff but I’ve read enough forums and seen enough YouTube videos to know that the potential for all these scams exist.  For me, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Although eBay has measures in place to protect sellers,  we still have to do our part to ensure that our auctions are protected.  I know it’s a big responsibility and sometimes we win and sometimes we lose, but I’m never going to let my guard down and I hope you never let yours down either.

How about you?  Do you have any security measures in place to protect your auctions?  Any scams or bad buyer behaviors that you want to share?

I’d love to hear about them and I’m sure we can all benefit.

Thanks and have a great week!

-Meinard

Get Stuff Done – We All Have the Same 24 Hours

 

Happy Monday everyone – I hope this blog post finds you with tons of USPS packages ready to be shipped and a much larger Paypal account balance!

It was another great weekend on eBay land and I can’t wait to share some of my sales.  But before I do that, I wanted to share my thoughts about a topic/concern that many of you have about reselling and that’s the time commitment involved.

Make Time, Not Find Time

ClockLet’s start with the obvious:  selling full or part-time on eBay requires time.  It’s definitely not one of those jobs that you “set and forget”.

Among other things, you need to thrift, clean, take pictures, list items, and then still find the time to pack and mail these items once they’re sold.

These are difficult task to accomplish when you factor in all our other responsibilities like our jobs, our children, yard work, running errands, etc.

But Is It Possible?

Absolutely!

I know we all have different circumstances but I’ve seen individuals (with a To-Do list that stretches for miles) get some amazing things done.  And they’re no different from you and I – they’re not time-management experts and they all have the same 24 hours a day just like you and me.

We can talk about different apps or strategies that we can use to make us more efficient but, in the end, it all boils down to one simple fact:  If something is important to you then you’ll find the time to do it, if it’s not important, then you won’t.

For me, I work a full-time job but I still make the time to get all my eBay things accomplished – no exceptions.

Whether it’s waking up an hour earlier to package  sold items, making a thrift run at Savers or Goodwill after a long work day, or staying up a little later to list auctions, I do it because it’s important to me and I know that the income I generate is worth all those sacrifices.  Plus, it helps that reselling is a lot of fun and it’s something that I really enjoy doing.

So I ask, is it worth it for you?  I hope the answer is yes.  Because if it is, I guarantee you’ll find the time and energy to do it!

Have a great week and good luck at the thrift stores!

Meinard

Finds of the Week

Obey Hoodie

Obey Hoodie

Item Cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $24.99

Klim Snow Jacket

Klim

Item Cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $39.99

Air Jordan Retro

CitrusXI

Item Cost:  $7.99

Winning Bid:  $49.99

LL Bean Leather Jacket

LLBean

Item Cost:  $12.99

Winning Bid:  $49.99

A Nice Weekend Rebound

 

Happy Monday!  Or not, depending on the job that you’re going to today :)

Regardless, one reason that I’m always ecstatic for Monday’s is because it typically means that another flurry of weekend eBay sales just happened.  Now, last week was somewhat of an outlier in that there was very few bids and sales.  To be honest, I was a little worried heading into this weekend that it would be a trend.

Thankfully, I’m happy to announce that weekends sales are back!

I had some great sales on Friday and that momentum just continued throughout the weekend.  As a matter of fact, it’s Monday so that means it’s 25% off at Savers today – and it couldn’t have come at a better time because my inventory really took a hit this weekend.  Time to re-stock!

I hope you had a great eBay weekend also.  This is the homestretch for 2014 so let’s work hard now so we can end the year on a high note.

Good luck at the thrift stores and I’ll talk to you soon!

Meinard

Finds of the Week

Brooks Running Shoes

Brooks Purple

Item Cost:  $4.99

Winning Bid:  $26.50

I always get excited when I find these next items at the thrift stores and they’re two of my favorites that I share in my Reseller Guide, and for good reason – they’re great items and the demand for these brands are amazing!  The jeans, for example, we’re listed Sunday morning and they sold within a few hours.  I probably could’ve charged a lot more too!

Jute

Bought for $6.99

Winning Bid:  $39.99

Cross

Bought for $6.99

Winning Bid:  $39.99

Nike Cut-off Hoodie Sweatshirt

This is one of my strangest sales this weekend.  I’ve been trying to sell this hoodie for a few weeks now and I’ve had zero luck.  I tried selling it for $24.99 BIN, $24.99 auction, and I even went as low as $9.99, and still no luck.  I must’ve attracted the right buyers because all of a sudden a bidding war broke out and the price skyrocketed.

You just never know what’s going to happen sometime!

Ronaldinho

Item Cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $51.00

 

Finds of the Week (9-18-2014)

 

I just finished watching the Thursday night NFL game and – my apologies to Tampa Bay fans – but man that was ugly.  Not only was it a Falcon’s blowout but I’m also kicking myself for starting the Tampa’s running back (Bobby Rainey) on my fantasy team this week.

How did he do?

Well, let’s just say that at halftime I actually had more fantasy points than he did (his -1 to my 0).   He did end the game with a respectable amount of total yards but nothing like the offensive explosion that I was hoping he would have.  But I digress…

Meanwhile, many of you have been contacting me recently to share your recent success stories and I couldn’t be more thrilled with some of the great items that you’ve been finding – so many great shoes, jackets, dresses, and jerseys!

So I thought I’d return the favor and share with you some of my recent thrift store finds.

Huge Response

Before I do that, I just wanted to thank you everyone who recently signed up for my 2-Week Mini-Course by visiting my new site:

www.thriftresellingtips.com.

The response was amazing and I guess I underestimated just how many of you were having problems with the sign-up form on the right sidebar.

Again, thank you for signing up  and I hope you find all those great items that I share on the site on the course.  For those of you who haven’t signed up for the mini-course yet and are still having trouble seeing the form on the right sidebar,  here’s the site again:

www.thriftresellingtips.com

You can enroll directly from there.

I hope you have an amazing weekend and I’ll talk to you soon!

-Meinard

Finds of the Week

Nike Running Shoes

(This is one of the items you can learn more about in the mini-course!)

Nike Cool Grey

Item Cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $31.00

Brooks Running Shoes

Brooks Ghost

Item Cost:  $8.99

Winning Bid:  $37.99

Ralph Lauren Hoodie

Polo green

Item Cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $39.99

 

2-Week Mini-Course Sign Up Made Easy

 

What’s up everyone, Meinard here just wanting to wish you a happy Monday!

I hope you had an amazing weekend filled with a tons of sales, a lot of downtime, and a little bit of everything in between.

It was a strange weekend for me.  While I did have a few nice sales, it wasn’t the flurry of weekend eBay activity that I’ve been accustomed to over the past few months.  We’ll see this coming weekend if this is just an outlier or if this is the start of an unwelcome trend (I’m hoping it’s the former).

Nonetheless, I made the most of my free time this and I solved an issue that’s been plaguing many of you over the past few weeks – the disappearing mini-course sign up form on the right sidebar.

As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m not sure why some of you aren’t able to see it in your browser.  I really have no idea why.

So, as an alternate, I created another site solely dedicated to signing up for my FREE Mini-Course.  Simply visit the following website:

www.thriftresellingtips.com

It will take you to a login page where you can have immediate access to the course.

As always, you can still sign up by entering your name and email address on the right sidebar of this blog but, if you’re not able to see that sign up for, then you have another option to access the course.

Is the Information Still Relevant

In short:  YES!!

You can read more about the course here if you are familiar with it.  Basically, after enrolling in the course, you’ll discover some of my favorite brands that I sell and strategies that I use to make huge profits on eBay.

Over the next two weeks, you’ll receive a daily email regarding a specific thrift store brand or item that you definitely should be reselling on eBay.  In addition, I’ll also be sharing tips and tricks to help you locate these items quickly and efficiently so you can find them before others do.

Here’s the new site again:

www.thriftresellingtips.com

So back to the question:  Is the information still relevant?

You better believe it is!

Here are just a few of the items that you can expect to learn more about during the course:

Sold for $59.99

free flyknit

Sold for $49.99

Sherpa

Sold for $43.00

(I actually just sold this jacket over the weekend)

Sherpa2

Sold for $49.99

spikes

And these are just some of the items that I share – there are even more great items you’ll discover when  you enroll on the course.

Here’s the new site again:

www.thriftresellingtips.com

I created my FREE 2-Week Mini-course almost a year ago and the information I share is still making tons of profits for me and hundreds of other resellers who have joined the course.

Until next time, have a great week and I’ll talk to you soon!

Meinard

 

Extra Time On My Hands plus My Finds of the Week

 

Hey fellow thrifters, happy Friday – I hope this post finds you doing well and with tons of bids and sales on eBay!

I’ve been very busy the past few weeks with work-related tasks and it’s been taking away from my eBay and internet business time.  I haven’t been able to thrift, list auctions on eBay, and update the blog as frequently as I normally would but I still managed to find some time in-between for all of those things.

So today, I was EXTREMELY excited to have a free day because I would finally have time to thrift at my favorite spots and my entire afternoon was cleared to make time for the dozens of great thrift store finds that I was anticipating (key word there) to find.

Smooth Sailing…or Not

You know how some days just works out exactly as you planned?  Where everything runs smoothly and everything just falls into place?

Empty BagWell, today was not one of those days.

I anticipated (there’s that word again) to find dozens of great items and to spend the entire afternoon listing them so that they’re ready by the weekend rush, and then guess what happened?  I didn’t find a single item at any of those stores!   Zero. Nulis. Cero. Null. Sifar.  No matter how you translate it, it all means the same thing – a big, fat zero!

It’s been so long since I left a store empty-handed, so when I leave three stores without anything, it’s pretty shocking.  But I’m confident(hoping may be a better word) that this isn’t a trend and I’ll just chalk it up as being “one of those days”.

To take advantage of my newfound extra time on my hands, I thought I would share some of my recent finds with you.

Many of you have also contacted me recently to tell me that you’re having trouble signing up for my free 2-Week mini-course.   I’m not sure why the signup form on the sidebar isn’t showing up but I’m currently working on something that should make the process much easier.

In the meantime, I hope you’re having much better luck than I had today at the thrift stores and I hope you’re smartphones are constantly alerting you with new bids and sales over the weekend!

-Meinard

Finds of the Week

Youth Air JordanRising Sun

Item Cost:  $2.99

Winning Bid:  $28.50

Vintage Team USA Basketball Jersey

Olajuwon

Item Cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $31.99

Nike Women’s Running Shoes

Flyknit

Item Cost:  $7.99

Winning Bid:  $51.00

#NeverForget

 

It’s been 13 years since the terrorist attacks occurred in New York but I still remember where I was and what I was doing that day.  I remember waking up and going downstairs and seeing this image of a building up in smoke.  I remember family members watching intently and only after reading the headline did I realize exactly what was going on.

It’s one of those events that will be permanently be etched in my mind.

The New York skyline has changed since then and there are now buildings and memorials constructed in place of the Twin Towers.  It’s crazy to think that 13 years has passed since then and I hope time has healed some of the hurt that people have suffered.

So, for me, on the anniversary of this tragic event - no Finds of the Week or anything eBay-related.  It’ll just be a day to remember that this event happened and to call to mind the thousands of families that were affected.  Hopefully you’ll do the same.

Talk to you soon,

Meinard

What a $200 Pair of Air Jordan’s Looks Like

 

If you go to one of your friends and ask the following question, “What would a $200 pair of Air Jordan’s look like?”  What do you think the response would be?

If they’re like most people, they’ll probably say a combination of the following:

  • They would be clean.
  • They’re the latest model.
  • There’s no scuffs or creases.
  • All the accessories would be included (laces, shoe box, lace locks, etc)

Maybe something that looks like this:

Clean Jordan's

All Good Guesses…but Wrong

All those responses make sense but if you look at Footlocker.com, Champssports.com, and Finishline.com, you will not find a single pair of brand-spankin’ new Air Jordan’s that retail for $200.

NOT ONE!

Weird, right?!

So with that being said, how was I then able to sell this pair of aged (13 years old),  well worn (laces needed replacing and uppers were creased),  and raggedy (gum stain on the soles) pair of Air Jordan’s for $200 over Labor Day Weekend?

Cement

Cement Sole

The short answer:  Retro’s

Retro’s are re-released versions of Air Jordan models and, in most cases, they’re actually worth a lot more than the current models.

Cement AirThis particular pair was released in 2001 and thanks to one tiny-little-difference (the “Nike Air” in the heel instead of the Air Jordan logo) it’s actually worth a lot more than the most recent models.

So to go back to the original question “What would a $200 pair of Air Jordan’s look like?”

Frankly, they look no different than any other pair that you would find at the thrift store.

Like I said, this pair was creased and worn down on the midsoles and uppers, I needed to replace the shoe laces because the lace ends were frayed, and the soles have some gum stains that were probably made back when they were first released in 2001 because they’re permanently glued to the bottom.

All that, and the buyer was practically begging me to sell it to him for $200!

I know I’m ALWAYS encouraging you all to start selling Nike’s and Air Jordan’s, but it’s only because I know firsthand how much they can positively affect your bottom line.  Take Jim, for example.  He almost reached his goal of $2000 in sales last month thanks, in large part, to his newfound focus on selling sneakers.

Read:  Check Out Some of Jim’s Great Sales

They have and probably always will be a major part of my business and I don’t see that changing any time soon.  Not when Nike continues to make year sales that range in the BILLIONS of dollars!

You don’t have to start right away but, please, take action.  You can start by taking a stroll through the men’s and women’s shoe section just to look around.  Who knows, you  might find the exact same pair that I sold staring at you right in the eye.

You never know, it could happen.  Why not to you!