Friday, July 29, 2011

Friday Finals Why I do not like auctions

When I first started selling on Ebay, all I did were auctions. It was exciting to see how high the bids would go in those last minutes. At the time, I wasn't buying to resell so whatever I got I was happy with. Those items would have been donated to Goodwill anyways. Now that I have a store and am buying to resell, I try to stay away from the auction listing. However this week, I decided to clean out my older items and list them at .99 cent auctions. This was a huge mistake on my part as 9 of my listings sold for just that. I could have gotten so much more had I just relisted them in my store and waited it out. Here are the highs and lows of my week.

Highs:

Fisher Price Sort and roll school bus sold for $24.99 BIN


The 70's game Sold for $30 - shipping ($6.88) BIN


Kasey The Kinderbot Sold for $29.99 - shipping ($10.31) BIN


Pyrex Cracker jar sold for $25 - shipping (I haven't printed the label yet so I don't know how much shipping will be. It should be under $10) BIN


Other highs include: (all were BIN)
Kohls Kangaroo $19.99 - shipping ($2.77) (This sold on Addoway)
VTG Fisher Price Play House $11.99
VTG Mickey mouse Sheet $12.99 - shipping ($4.75)
Vtech Bumblebee $15 - shipping ($5.19)

Now for the lows: These were all auctions
Little Einsteins talking Leo $7.50


Nutbrown Hare $1.04


How to Host A Murder Game $1.04
Kohls Mouse $.99
Scottish Paddington Bear $.99 I had him for a long time and was just ready to get rid of him
Wiggles Jeff  $.99
Power Rangers Sheet $.99
Tigger lovey $.99
Bratz purses $.99
Dora Candyland $.99
VTG Mickey Mouse Yahtzee $.99
Singing Dorothy $.99

I should have keep the wiggle dolls in my store. Also I'm sure I could have gotten more for the Mickey Mouse yahtzee. Lessons learned.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Thrifty Thursday Finds

Went back to the thrift store to get some items I didn't buy the other day. The sugar shaker I wanted I could not find but I found some other good things.


I had bought the salt and pepper shakers and ashtray to resell but I don't think they are worth much. The shakers are from West Germany but they are glass and not crystal :-( The ashtray is from a Hotel in New York. It says Hotel New Yorker. Along with a banner that says around the world. I'm not a smoker but I will probably use it for change or something.


I was very excited to find the vintage clock radio. My dad had a similiar one when we were growing up. I love finding vintage items. The clock and the radio work and the best part, it was marked only $1


The books I am keeping for Ryker. Again, everything I bought was $2.11 Not sure why the guy keeps charging me this amount but I am alright with that.

linking up to Her Library Adventures

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

GoodWill Finds

Finally was able to get to Goodwill this morning.



I am keeping the No No Jack book for Ryker and selling the rest in my Ebay store. I have a complete double size set of the Holly Hobbie sheets and a complete set of the Wall-E sheets. I hope to at least get $20 a piece. I also found a Jansport book bag. I'm not sure how much a used one will go for but if it does not sell, one of my kids can use it for school.

Goodwill does have a better selection of items but no one can beat the prices of my favorite thrift store. I hope to go back tomorrow and get some books I saw there yesterday and a computer toy that has been there for awhile.

Happy thrifting!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tuesday's Thrift Store Finds

Found all this at the thrift store for $2.11


I am keeping the bookends and the sandals and will sell the Little Golden books when I get more for a lot. I am selling the costumes on Ebay. They have a special today to list auction style for one penny. I am having a hard time getting my last listing to work. I don't know if it is because so many people are taking advantage of the listing special or if there is something wrong with my ebay account. It won't let me upload any pictures. I will try again later tonight.


If these costumes do not sell at auction, I will just add them to my store for BIN or BO. If the bear one does not sell by Halloween, I will let Ryker wear it.


Saturday, July 23, 2011

What not to sell on Ebay

You can not, I repeat, can not sell your children on Ebay. It is frowned upon and your listing will be removed. (I am joking btw but read the story)

http://rapidnewsnetwork.com/australian-mom-puts-out-ebay-ad-for-her-children/1316/

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Thursday Thrift Store Finds

Although it has been extremely hot all week, I managed to walk over to the consignment shop yesterday and picked up this keepsake box. It looks just like a treasure chest. It has a postcard of New York on it which I thought was pretty cool.

click to buy

Today there was a slight breeze which made walking over to the thrift store more bearable. I found all of this for only $2.11 Apparently you do not need to know any math to be a cashier as this should have been higher.


I am keeping the Pyrex measuring cup, the Tupperware shape sorter, the brand new pillow cases and the vintage soap dish. I love the way the soap dish looks. Plain but elegant. I'm sure in this household, it will be broken soon though.

The box of vintage doll furniture, cost me only $1. Some of it is missing pieces but I hope it will still sell on Ebay. I have no idea how to price this but I added Best Offer so hopefully someone will purchase it. I was hoping it was the furniture to the Fisher Price house I have but most of it is Tomy.

click to buy

I took a chance on the 70s Game. It is a trivia game and was still sealed in the factory shrink wrap. When I looked on Ebay, there were 2 others like this and they were priced at $49.99 I priced mine with Best offer and free shipping. Completes show one sold for $25 This was marked .50 so any offer will be profit for me.

click to buy

The other chance I took were these cross stitch books. They don't sell for much but perhaps I can make a few dollars. These must have been free.


What did you find this week?

Happy thrifting!

linking up to Yard Sale Mommy and to Apron Thrift Girl Also linked to Her Library Adventures

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wednesday Weekly Woo Hoos

Like my fellow bloggers on The Selling Sisters I have decided to do a weekly woo hoo blog. Feel free to post your weekly woo hoos in the comment section below. A woo hoo is anything you were excited to sell. It could have sold for big bucks or it could just be something you were happy to get rid of. Whatever it was, I want to hear about it.

July 14 - July 20

My highest paying sale was off of Ebay. I sold the rest of my Bratz dolls on Craiglist for $45 This means my initial investment of $10 turned into a profit of  $94.83 ($104.83 -$10)



My next best seller was a Flip and Learn alphabet. This sold for $35 - shipping ($9.68)


I sold a vintage microscope set to a buyer in Canada for $25. This was sold as is because I did not know if it worked or not. I believe it is from the 60's. I really loved the metal box and wasn't really interested with what was inside.


My 2 Care Bear pillow cases sold for $9.99 each. ($19.98 - shipping $2.60) and a Cars twin sheet sold for $10 I also sold a large Barney for $10

My last sale was a lambchop plush. Isn't she cute?  I got $14.99 - shipping ($2.26)


I did have to refund a buyer $34.95 this week for a vtg Snow White sheet that had a few spots on it. I'm not sure how I missed those but she was nice about it and I got positive feedback.

Happy selling!

Monday, July 18, 2011

What to buy: character sheets

Whenever I go to Goodwill, I always check out their linen aisle. I am looking for character sheets and pillow cases. It doesn't matter if they are a set, if they are flat or fitted (although in my experience flat single sheets sell better than single fitted sheets) or their size. You want to find sheets with bright colors, little to no piling and no stains or holes. If you do happen to come across a great sheet with stains, you still might consider purchasing it. As long as the whole sheet isn't stained and it's a good price, buy it. Some people use these sheets for craft projects such as shopping totes, backing for quilts and toddler dresses.

Vintage character sheets will get you a higher price. One to look for is the Smurfs. With a new movie coming out, there are sure to be a new generation of Smurf fans. I sold one a few months back for $34.95 You want to list your sheet at BIN with BO. Auctions will most likely not get this high.


Mickey Mouse and Snow White are two other vintage sheets to look for. Make sure you look closely for stains. On my Snow White sheet, there were some small spots I did not see. My buyer did though and returned it for a refund. I relisted it as a cutter and mentioned the stains. The other sheet I sold her was fine and she was happy with that one.

sold for $35

sold for $30

Newer characters can also bring in a profit. I tend to avoid Barbie, Power Puff Girls, Power Rangers and Spiderman. I am sure there are others to avoid but these are the ones I haven't been able to sell. Sponge Bob seems to do well. A lot of buyers make little sundresses out of these sheets. Very cute!

2 sheets sold for $27

Also be on the look out for Cars sheets. With the second movie, a lot of moms are looking for these for thier little Cars fan. These do not get high prices though and sell better as a set. I sold just a flat twin for $10 but the set I doubled my money.


Don't forget the pillow cases. Like the sheets, crafters use these for their projects. Be sure to use cutter and fabric in your title. Moms also buy these to replace the ones their children have. I sold two Care Bear pillow cases for $19.95 to a mom who was very happy to find them.


So there you have it. Be sure to do your research when listing yoursheets to get the best price possible.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Ebay Store

One of my readers, Kim, from Moms Paycheck asked me to do a blog about the pros and cons of opening an Ebay store. From my understanding she does mostly auctions and is on the fence about a store.


So is an Ebay store the right choice for you? If you list more than 50 items a month at a fixed price, then a store is a more economical choice. Here is the math. 50 FP without store 50 x .50 = $25 With a basic store 50 x .20 = $10 + monthly fee $15.95 = $25.95. You would need to list more than 50 items to see the savings. If you want to do just auctions, then a store is not a good choice because you no longer get the 50 free auctions each month.


click pic to view store

Now on to the pros and cons of a store. I asked some other store owners and here is what they came up with.

PROS:

* Organization  You can organize your store by specific catergories such as clothes, toys, house hold goods etc. You can than organize each catergory by size, brand, woman's etc. You get the point. Buyers can search your store much easier by catergories.

* insertion fees are less with a store

* 12 free pictures per listing

*  Sales reports

* Mark down manager You can put your items on sale and a red line will cross off your old price and show the buyer how much they are saving

* Newsletters You can send newsletters to your buyers showing your new items or what is on sale.

* Promotion boxes You can promote certain items in your store or show when you are having a sale.

* Ability to put your store on vacation

* A store makes your business more professional and established.

* You can price your item for what you want

An eBay store allows impatient consumers, who are looking for a bargain but want it now, to purchase quickly without having to bid and wait for an auction to close.

click pic to see my feedback profile


I could only come up with a few cons. I love my store and would never go back to not having one.

CONS:

* set monthly fee in addition to insertion fee For a basic store it is $15.95 per month with a .20 per listing insertion fee. You need to list more than 50 items per month to see the savings. If you list more than 250, you will want to upgrade to a premium store. This is $49.95 per month but the insertion fee is only .05 per listing.

* You need to earn enough profit to cover the cost of your subscription.

* You no longer get the free 50 auctions but you still qualify when ebay runs their specials.

* Inventory may sit for awhile waiting for the right buyer to come along.

* You need to promote your store. Not sure if this is a con but promoting your store (making a fan page on Ebay, adding it to your email signature, using twitter) will bring you more business.

So that is it. I hope I answered your questions. If not, leave them here in the comments or come on over to Ebays underground discussion board. and start a new thread.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Friday's Fantastic Finds

Like my fellow bloggers over at We Sell on Ebay I have decided to do a fantastic finds Friday. I went over to the Dime and Dollar this morning with Robert and Ryker. This is a little farther walk than to my favorite thrift store but I am glad I went. Here is what I got.


I love the vintage table lamp($4.00) and I am going to keep this one to replace the lamp Ryker broke. It is pretty heavy and should be Ryker proof. The Mike plush talks when you move his arm. I'm going to sell him on Ebay in my store. He is for sale on Amazon for $42. I hope to get at least $25 for him. He cost me $1.50


These vintage post cards are unused and were only 10 cents each. They had a shoe box full of cards but Ryker kept throwing things off the shelves and other people were giving me the evil eye so I could not look through the entire box. One is the Gateway to Chinatown in San Francisco, the next is an aerial view of Fisherman's Wharf and the last is a mini album of Sea Life park in Hawaii.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Thursday's Thrift Store Finds

Tried to leave this morning to go to the thrift store, but it started to rain so we walked back home. Went later in the day and found the following items. Nothing great but I only paid .50 cents for all of this. Yes, that's Ryker's chubby little arms reaching for the book.



I love the Pyrex cracker container and I will probably keep that unless it sells for a good price on Ebay. The little statue dish thingy didn't make the trip home. She chipped her hand and the crown on her head. I'm not even sure why I was drawn to this in the first place. She has no top for goodness sake. The books I'll keep for Ryker. I love the Everyone Poops book.



Yeah Baby 500 feedback


After having an Ebay store for 6 months, I have finally hit 500 501 feedback. Yay me! I wish I could say all of them were positive but I have had 2 neutrals and 1 negative that was removed, so that negative does not count.

My first neutral was a set of baby blankets I sold. The buyer never paid so I had to open a case. I am pretty sure she gave me the neutral just to get back at me for opening a case against her. Petty, I know right? My second neutral was left without the buyer contacting me. This was a lot of Taggies soft cloth books. The buyer in this case claimed the items smelled of smoke. I don't smoke and I wash everything before mailing. So not sure what happened there.

The negative I got removed came from a buyer who bought a Talking Piglet from me. I had listed the plush as new. It still had the tags and its hands were still attached to his feet. (Before playing with it, one would cut the thread attaching the hands to the feet.) Her claim was the item was not new, did not talk and had stains on it. I asked her to return it for a full refund and she refused. She wanted a partial refund of $19. (This would mean Piglet would have cost $10) I told her I would have never accepted an offer that low but I was willing to let her keep the item and I would refund her $9. She accepted this agreement but left me negative feedback anyways. I immediately called Ebay to get it removed. After reading her messages, she had threatened to leave negative feedback if I did not refund her, Ebay sided with me and removed the negative. Plus I got my final value fees back. If she had not threatened the negative feedback, it probably would not have been removed since buyers are free to leave whatever feedback they want. The seller has no choice but to leave positive feedback for the buyer, even if that buyer is the buyer from hell!! It's better to simply not leave them any feedback at all.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Wednesday Woo Hoos

Like my fellow bloggers on The Selling Sisters I have decided to do a weekly woo hoo blog. Feel free to post your weekly woo hoos in the comment section below. A woo hoo is anything you were excited to sell. It could have sold for big bucks or it could just be something you were happy to get rid of. Whatever it was, I want to hear about it.

My biggest sale this week (July 7-13) was a Care Bears Cousin Pig. This little guy sold for big money. $86.24 - shipping ($3.11) He is hard to find and one of the most sought after cousin. When I found him at Goodwill, I wasn't going to buy him. In fact, I put him back on the shelf. I changed my mind right before checking out. Luckily, he was still where I put him. I will definitely keep my eye out for him.


My next biggest sale was off of Ebay. I had listed some bigger toys on Craigslist and had a lady purchase all three of them for $60. I felt like a bad mommy when I saw Ryker looking out the window as the lady pulled away with his toys in her truck. There was a Fisher Price Laugh and Learn house, Fisher Price Laugh and learn shopping cart and a Little Tykes mailbox.


In the hopes of selling more plush, I put all of it on sale for 25% off. I sold a Fisher Price Thermal Bear for $14.96 - shipping ($2.26) and a BABW Triceratops dinosaur for $18.72 - shipping ($7.15) If I had a poly mailer big enough, I could have saved a few bucks on shipping that.



Other sales included a Care bears pillow case for $9.99 - shipping ($2.09) A Carters blanket $12.50 - shipping ($3.11) a Boppy Pillow $17.95 and a Vtech Vsmile Infant system for $19.99

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Thrift Store finds

Yesterday, Little monkey and I walked over to our favorite thrift store. Although the temperature was a blissfully 75 degrees, it felt alot hotter than that. And of course the t.s is an old warehouse with absolutely no kind of cooling system in place so I was a hot drippy mess. Perhaps smelling bad would deter creepy guy from talking to me. No such luck! I went in a side door and he spotted me right away. I hate to be rude, but I am there to shop not chit chat. Unless you have a great item I might be interested in, I really don't have time for you. Ryker's melt down time is approximately 20 minutes so I have to look quickly. Here is what I found.


A lot of 11 Little Golden Books $1.25
Dora Candy Land Game $.50
Mickey Mouse Yahtzee $.50
Cast iron trivet free
McDonald's Cereal bowl with spoon for Ryker $.25
Stainless steal coffee and tea canisters $1.00
VTG Microscope Lab in steel box $1.00

So total was $4.50 right? Nope. Apparently the cashier failed freshman math because she only charged me $3.69. I didn't realize this while paying because Ryker had already broke down and I wanted to get the hell out of there.




Monday, July 11, 2011

I love My Sister

My sister, Sarah, went to Iola this weekend for one of the biggest swap meet and car festival in WI. While she was there, she found me this vintage phone for my seat. It even works! Unfortunately, there is no phone jack in my living room and I have to keep it up so Ryker doesn't destroy it but I love it! and it only cost her $5.



linked to Apron Thrift Girl

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Item not as described

If you sell on Ebay eventually you will get the dreaded "Item I received is not as described" email. It's unavoidable. There is always that one buyer who (I swear) must have a black light and goes over all his purchases with it, or the buyer whose definition of preowned differs greatly from yours or the buyer who simply does not read your description. Whatever the case is, your job is to make them happy. So how does one respond to these emails?

Your first response may be to simply refund the buyer his money. But wait! You don't want to hand over your hard earned money to a possible scam artist. Be especially wary if they want to keep the item but get their money back. If it is truely damaged, why would they want to keep it? In your response, you want to do the following 3 things.

First: apologize
Second: acknowledge error
Third: Solve the problem

Be sure to take the emotion out of it and treat your business as it is: A Business. Be professional.

Before refunding any money, have your item returned. You can pay for return shipping but Ebay does not require you to do so. Once you get your item, be sure to refund through paypal. Also make sure you send the buyer a cancel transaction request. This will insure you get your final evaluation fees back and the item will not show up as unpaid on the buyer's end.

If the item is still sellable, simply relist and wait for that right buyer to come along.

Friday, July 8, 2011

My Telephone Seat

Ever since I read Laura's blog over on My Dear Trash, I have become obsessed with finding a telephone seat. Don't ask me why. I do have a landline but there is no jack in my living room so the seat would not be doing its job, but I had to have one. Well yesterday as I was leaving my favorite t.s.,  I spotted one. This one, right here, below.



I asked the guy how much he wanted for it and he said make me an offer. I told him I didn't have enough money but I would be back tomorrow (today) with my sister and he told me we could work something out then. All night long I thought about that seat. What if someone else snatched it up before I got there? What if he wanted more than I was willing to pay. The seat is in great condition with a few scratches and when I looked on Ebay, I saw its twin for $79.99 and that was in terrible shape. No way was I willing to even pay half that.

Fast forward to today. My sister picked me up around 1 and we went to get my seat. I went straight for it. I offered the guy $15 and he accepted. Then he told me how they hardly ever come across these and that a few months ago a lady came in and bought this one. She recently moved and redonated it. Then I was thinking, Man I should have offered him less. He already got paid once for it. I wonder how much she paid?  I asked the guy if there was someone who could carry it to the car and guess who shows up? Yup, Mr Creepy from the day before. But now my sister is with me so he starts a conversation with her. Ha ha. You deal with him.

I go to pay for it and put Ryker up on the counter. Apparently, Ryker has monkey arms and hit something on the register that made it ring up to $32 something. The cashier cleared it out but then the boss man gets all pissy about it, gives me the evil eye, and says to him you have to write that down or it won't balance at the end of the night. I apologize like a zillion times but honestly, I don't think Ryker touched the register. I had him quite aways from it, but like I said he has the monkey arms so who knows?


Meanwhile, my sister and creepy guy are trying to load the seat in the trunk of her Ford. I feel bad for leaving her with him but that's the price you pay if you want a great deal. And a great deal I got! Plus I really don't have to redo the seat if I don't want to. I would like to put a different fabric on it, but I am quite lazy. Perhaps I can get my sister to do it?

linked to the thrifty groove

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Creepy guy at the thrift store...

Seriously, STOP hitting on me.

I walked over to my favorite thrift store today and had 2 teensy weensy (ok they were paper shopping bags) full of stuff to donate. I crammed them under Ryker's stroller with the hopes of getting rid of them there. When I arrived, I asked the guy where I can put my donations. He gave me a funny look and asked what they were. I said some clothes and other stuff. He replied "We are not taking any more donations. You'll have to try Goodwill or somewhere else." Yeah Ok I'll just walk the 9 miles to get there.

Dilemma, dilemma. What to do? I certainly did not want to bring the items back home but I couldn't leave them there. Or could I? I went to the back of the store (this place is a huge warehouse with 2 sides) and when no one was looking, I shoved my bags under a table and covered them up with a tarp. (I really hope t.s. guy isn't reading this and if you are, I most certainly did not do that.... oh and stop hitting on me. You are creeping me the fuck out) So can I actually get away with this? Did they see the big bags when I came in? Who the hell am I fooling? You'd have to be blind not to. Would they noticed said big bags were no longer under my stroller?

Getting away getting away... I looked around for about 30 minutes when not creepy guy found me and started talking to me. He apologized about not being able to take the donations (oh yeah you took them. You just don't know it yet) and about how they have so much stuff. He also told me they could no longer sell clothes because of something to do with the lease. It wasn't in the contract or some other bull shit. Anyways, I was starting to feel a little guilty about sneaking my items into their store. I quickly got over that when I found this beauty. Who doesn't need a stretched out Coke bottle?


Seriously, how cool is that? (I am becoming more of a hoarder each and every day) Some other items I picked up included some Polly Pocket crap (I'll save until I get some more to sell in a lot), Blue's Clues Christmas ornaments in house case, a hand held electronic game Robbie picked up along with another view master. The last two items are not pictured because Robbie took off with them.


I only paid $1.10 for all this awesomeness. and my bags of crap... still undiscovered under the table I hope.