Hi all. For today’s blog I thought I’d respond to a few questions I’ve had recently from readers asking where I source stock from for my eBay business so I’ve listed below the most common places I source stock from. I appreciate some of them may be viewed as controversial sources!
Where do I source from?
I have a few different places that I source stock from for reselling. My primary sources are as follows:
- Charity shops – I like buying from these as I’m supporting a good cause and can often pick up some bargains in the niches I focus on (retro collectibles, gaming and clothing). A lot of the charities I source from run their own eBay stores as well so I tend to pick up stuff that they want to get rid of quickly.
- Carboot sales – these are a great source of stock at bargain prices for me. I’m lucky that there’s a couple of big boot sales within driving distance of me. Although I’m not a fan of the early morning starts on a Sunday! Unfortunately, they’re now closed for the winter so I can’t source from these until March.
- Retail stores such as Home Bargains. I like to have new items for sale in my eBay store as well as second-hand items and so I find clearance stores like Home Bargains great to source collectible toys/games from which I can sell on eBay for a profit. I usually ship these items abroad using eBay’s global shipping programme.
- Facebook marketplace – I find this to be a bit like a massive online car boot sale – there are items being posted for sale all the time and sellers are usually open to offers so there are some good bargains to be had. I also use facebook marketplace to sell stock as well.
- eBay auctions – most people who buy on eBay tend to prefer the buy it now option as opposed to risking the lottery of an online auction. This means that I can often pick up items at auction cheap and then put them back on eBay for sale at a much higher price. I automate my eBay bidding using a software tool called Gixen and put the maximum price I’m prepared to pay into the tool so that I don’t end up overpaying for anything. So if you’re selling on eBay then don’t forget it can be a great source of stock!
- House Clearance stores – most towns have a house clearance store. Prices can vary wildly in them but there are some good bargains to pick up. They turn over a lot of stock so tend to charge flat fees for items rather than researching the prices of what they have for sale. I’m often rummaging in them to source games and DVD boxsets to sell on. They’re also usually open to haggling especially if you’re buying a few items from them in one go.
- Freegle and freecycle. There are lots of people who are looking to create space in their house and so put stuff up for free to people who are willing to come to their house to pick it up. I’m always honest that I’m buying stuff to sell on when I contact people who’ve listed stuff on these sites and most people are happy with that. This may be a controversial source for some I know but it’s still worth looking at.
Other options for sourcing:
The seven areas I’ve identified above are the ones I’ve found must fruitful to source from and use most frequently. However, to satisfy the ever-increasing demand of customers as my eBay store increases in size there are three other options that I’m also exploring for the new year.
- Auction Houses. Buying from an auction is something that I’m keen to do a lot of in the new year. There are two regular auctions close to my home and I know a lot of other resellers source from auctions on a regular basis so this is something I want to do in the new year. Even better is that a lot of auction houses now put their auctions online so I don’t even need to leave the house to bid!
- Other selling apps such as Gumtree and Sphock. There are a lot of people who put stuff up for sale on gumtree and Sphock in the same way they do with the facebook marketplace. So they’re another good place to source from. However, I usually forget to check them so I need to get better at this.
- Direct from the wholesaler. If you’ve got a lot of cash (and storage) then you can go direct to the wholesalers in the same way that retailers do. This means that you’ll be paying less than if you were to buy stock from retail stores to sell on. However, most wholesalers sell by volume so given the constraints, I have in terms of storage and cash at the minute, this isn’t something I’d be looking to do unless I took the business full-time.
- Direct from the manufacturer – this is the holy grail for resellers. If you can find a product that sells and you can deal direct with the manufacturer then the potential for making a profit is huge. I think to make a success in this field though you really need to find a product that has a long-term market and you have to keep an eye on your profit margins as eventually, your competition will catch on! If this is something you’re interested in though then it’s worth checking out sites such as Alibaba (which you can get to by clicking here) which can put you directly in touch with manufacturers.
Conclusion and thoughts for the new year:
Hopefully, the above has proved useful if you’re considering reselling but not sure where to get stock from. This will be my final blog post for 2018 so I thought I’d share a few of my aims for the New Year before signing off. Next year I will be focussing on the following:
- Expanding the eBay business. It’s been my great success of 2018 so I want to build on that for 2019 by sourcing more and better quality (i.e. more profitable) stock from new to me sources such as auctions.
- Start the money mental clothing empire. When I blogged about starting your own online business (which you can read about here) I mentioned that one of my aims was to start an online clothing store selling t-shirts at first and then expanding into other fields. Since then the eBay business has taken over my life somewhat so this has been on the back burner. But recently I’ve heard good things about selling designs through Amazon merch so I shall be bringing back this idea and looking to get started with Amazon merch in the new year.
- Blog more about mental health. My focus on the blog in recent months has been on money earning activities but I do need to blog (and vlog) more about mental health as well. I think because mine’s been relatively good for a while I’ve not felt the need to but I know this is something readers regularly ask for more of.
- Grow my youtube channel. I’d like to hit 100 subscribers soon. Youtube changed the rules recently so that I now have to have 1000 subscribers before I can make any money from it so I figure 100 subscribers would be a good target to aim for on the road to 1000! Incidentally, if you’ve not subscribed you can do so by clicking here!
I think that’s enough things to aim for in terms of the business and the website for now to keep me busy well into 2019 and beyond! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this and if you’ve identified any other potential sources of stock for resale that I’ve not covered in the above or have any New Year aims you’d like to share yourself feel free to do so in the comments below!
Happy New Year.