your four-year-old son creates a new game. It’s called “Post Office.” And it consists of him carrying a basket around your house, collecting things to take to the Post Office to mail, and then leaving the basket by your front door.
So am I taking a month off from thrifting? I don’t know. But for today, instead of checking out the GW Outlet across town like I had originally planned to do, I went back home when my son was in preschool and photographed a bunch of items to list on both eBay and Craigslist.
Baby steps, right?
|(Not actually my VV. I “borrowed” this image.)|
I made my weekly trip to Value Village this morning. VV has switched up their sales in the last couple months. Mondays used to be $1 tag day (which I LOVED), but they’ve done away with $1 sales completely. Now on Mondays they have one tag that is 50% off and all other used merchandise is 25% off.
Yes, I am so cheap (er, thrifty) that I generally shop the clearance racks at thrift stores! But now that the $1 tags are no more, it is encouraging/forcing me to expand my horizons. Instead of focusing on what is “cheap” I am looking around for more brand names that I might be able to buy at higher prices but make a bigger margin of profit on. I am not good at this. Yet.
I call this “expensive thrifting” because even with the 25% off it still hurts to pay some of their prices. I usually end up spending around $14 and take home four or five things. This week was no exception. Here is what I picked up this morning:
Puss In Boots (pd $2.99)
So, Puss seems to be worth the most out of everything I picked up. Mine is not NIB but it is in good condition. Of course, my son has played with it all morning long and even though I told him when we bought it that it would be going away in the mail to someone else, I can tell he’s not going to be happy when (if, mommy guilt) that happens.
Shrek (pd $2.99)
I was kind of iffy on even picking this one up because I figured there would be lots-o-Shreks out there. Looks like I could make my money back but not much more. I’m keeping him in the bag for now so that I can return him next week if I decide that’s best. If I let Hinton hold on to Puss for awhile I may decide to keep Shrek as well and try to sell them together at a later date. Maybe they would attract more bidders as a pair?
Mr. Incredible (pd $2.99)
I had no hesitation picking this one up. The Incredibles came out long ago enough that I figured these are hard to find and people would be looking for them. Wrong. A few for sale but not a single completed sale. This one I will take back to VV when I go next week.
vintage Little People sheet (pd $4.49)
And I’m bummed about this one as well. For some reason VV’s sheets are on the expensive side (regularly $5.99 for one sheet!). I thought for sure this would be an eBay hit but completeds show otherwise. But, there aren’t any other LP sheets for sale right now so I think I will hold onto it and list it with a high BIN and see if I get a taker. Maybe add an OBO which I’ve never done before.
So, the moral of this story is . . . I need to find somewhere else to thrift. I tried out the GW Outlet a few months back and was not impressed, but I think I need to give it another try. Maybe Tues or Thurs this week when my oldest is at preschool. I also need to figure out a way to go to VV kid-free. It’s open until 9 p.m. Maybe next week I’ll try venturing out after my husband is home from work and see how that goes. Maybe I’ll actually have a chance to tackle some of the racks of clothes.
Another week gone. This week of selling was cut short a little bit because all of my auctions ran for 5 days instead of 7. My original goal at the beginning of the week was to sell 5 of my 76 listings. Towards the end of the week I decided that my ongoing goal for sales will be 10% of my listings in any given week. I have no idea if this is high or low in comparison with what anyone else tries to sell, but for me I think it is a fairly obtainable goal. For this week 10% would have been 7 or 8 sales. I ended the week with 11, so I was happy with that. Of those 11, 7 were repeat listings, 4 were new listings. I also listed a BIN item on Sunday that sold on Monday that I shipped out with the rest of last week’s sales.
So are Sundays really the best day to list and have your auctions end? Well, I can’t say for sure, but at the start of Sunday I only had bids on 4 of my items, and by the evening it seemed like every time I checked another item had a bid on it. Several items had multiple bids. Maybe because it was a Sunday, maybe because of the upcoming holidays, maybe a combination. Regardless, I’m not complaining.
This week I sold a couple plush, a couple kids books, a Jansport bag, two pairs of infant shoes (to the same person), a girls holiday dress, a Thomas toy, and a couple other items. Around $130 in all. Again, my per-item sales price was not very high. But it’s better than nothing, for now.
Monday was kind of a hectic day for me since 8 of my sales had been paid for, and I was trying to get them all out that day. But it was also a one-cent listing day, so I was trying to get new listings up too. It was not fun to have them land on the same day. I’ve discovered that the shipping process is my absolute least favorite part of the whole eBay experience. I’m starting to dread it. It takes forever, and it has become kind of a grind for me. But, it’s all part of the eBay package (haha) so I’ll stop my complaining and move on.
I still have 2 sales from last week that have not yet been paid for, and one person who paid with an echeck, which is a new one on me. I e-mailed her to let her know that I had received her payment but that I was following the suggestion in the e-mail I received in waiting to ship her package until her check has cleared. Hopefully it doesn’t take too long.
As I mentioned before, I did spend a chunk of time listing on Monday. Between Sunday and Monday I got 18 new listings up, and relisted 65 items, for a total of 83 listings. I’ve sold one BIN item so far, so in keeping with my (around) 10% goal I will hope to sell 8 more items this week. We’ll see how it goes . . .
I just shipped my first international sale. Is it really that easy? I printed the shipping label from home, as usual. I was surprised (and happy) when I was able to take care of the customs form at the same time. I read through all of the info and saw that I couldn’t drop it in the USPS box like I usually do (not a surprise). My usual PO is closed on Saturdays, and I could only imagine that the main PO would be a zoo, so I tried out a location that is part PO, part gift shop.
First off, there were two customers being helped when I walked in and no one waiting in line behind them, so that made me happy. And then a THIRD employee came out and helped me! Crazy. Obviously not a “normal” Post Office. Wonder how many people actually shop in their gift shop, and how they make enough $$ to stay open? Anyway, I handed the guy my package and the shipping label which I had not yet affixed to the package.
“Is there something more I need to do?” I asked, telling him I’d never done this before.
“We don’t do this either,” was his response.
Say what?! “Well, we take the packages after they are ready to go,” he clarified.
O-kay . . . I signed and dated the label. He read over the rest of the paperwork that had printed out as I taped the label on. He said it looked good to him. Here’s hoping it doesn’t get sent back to me!
On the info that printed out it also said you could schedule a pick-up and just hand it to your carrier. I think that is what I will do next time, when I’m hopefully a little more organized,.
So . . . is international shipping really that easy? If so, everyone should be doing it!
Well, if eBay continues its free listing days on (most) Tuesdays, it seems that Tuesdays will become my listing days, and Wednesday will be my shipping days. Yesterday eBay offered 5000 (!) free listings. I got 76 items listed. Only 8 or 9 of them were new (I had hoped to get up 20 new listings but missed that goal by over half), the rest are repeats. If I get 5 sales this week I think I’ll consider it a success. I don’t have many exciting or (potentially) profitable listings right now.
The twist for this week is that the free listings were only for 1, 3, or 5 day auctions. I’ve only done 7 day auctions before. But, I actually like the idea of the 5 day auction because when you list on Tuesday the auction will end on Sunday. I’ve heard (although I can’t say for sure) that Sunday is the best day to have your auctions end because that’s the day that the most people are shopping.
I had 13 sales for a total of around $190 over the last week. As you can tell, my per-item-sales-price isn’t that high. I need to figure out how to raise it. (Work smarter, not harder, right?) Ten of the 13 were new listings, only 3 were repeats. Once again my highest ticket item (around $30 + shipping) was purchased by someone international (this time Japan) and once again they did NOT contact me beforehand. I would be happy to sell and send my items to them, but it annoys me that they don’t contact me first when I very clearly state that they need to. After I finish up this post I am going to do some research on USPS and figure out how much it will cost to get the item to them (a vintage flat sheet – my first time dabbling in this area).
Eleven of the 13 sales have been paid for thus far, and I got them all in the mail today. Yay me.
I’ve done no thrifting this week (I usually hit at least Value Village every Monday morning, but this week I was partying it up at Chuck E. Cheese for my son’s 4th birthday instead). And I haven’t had the itch or motivation to go elsewhere. And, I will do no eBay listing tomorrow because I don’t want my listings to end on Thanksgiving. It will be nice to take a mental eBay break, even if it only lasts for a day.
So, until Friday, then.
After three fun, party-filled days for the now 4-year-old, it’s time to get back to business. I haven’t listed anything on eBay since last Tuesday. I still have 31 free listings for the month (because last Tuesday’s free day didn’t require you to use your 50 freebies first – awesome!) My husband is taking the 4-year-old to see Puss-in-Boots this afternoon. I’m hoping the baby will sleep. So here are my short-term goals:
-prep to mail (and take to PO) two paid items needing to be shipped
-e-mail eBayer in response to question about size of skirt
-e-mail eBayer to make sure they are clear on what size a shirt is (since I think my listing is confusing)
-list at least 10 new items
Off I go!
UPDATE: 11:17 p.m.
So . . . of course I didn’t have as much time to get stuff done as I was hoping for this afternoon. The little one took a very short nap, and the movie my son and husband went to see was only 1.5 hours long so it seemed like they were back in a jiffy. But, I did get the two items packaged up and off to the PO, as well as my e-mails sent. Nothing new has been listed yet, but I’ve got several ready to go (but am now holding off on listing them until tomorrow – 5000!? free listings!) Crazy. I’ll try and get 20 new ones up throughout the day, and relist all of my non-sellers as well. Happy eBay Tuesday!
You are correct! I am so embarrassed…or just pregnant. I wore it and tookit to the dry cleaners and forgot about it. I am so sorry!!!!!
Thanks for working to resolve this issue. The buyer has closed this case. You don’t need to do anything else. The hold on this PayPal transaction has been removed.