Monday, December 30, 2013

A Puzzling Post



I've always liked doing puzzles and I used to buy a lot of puzzles to sell until.... one day I realized that a 1000 piece puzzle does NOT necessarily have 1000 pieces. It might have 999 or 1002 so counting the puzzles' pieces did not guarantee they were all there. What!? The next puzzle I sold, I built before I sold it to guarantee it was complete. Since then my inventory of puzzles sat as I don't have the space and time to build them. Recently, before Christmas I decided to list some 'as is'. I listed the ones that were collectable thinking I could maybe still get a decent price for them. Well they haven't sold yet but it got me thinking about puzzles again and I decided to write a post and share a few things I've learned about selling puzzles.

1. Obviously the most important thing I learned is that just counting the pieces isn't enough to sell it as complete. You should build it or specify that you haven't built it and can't guarantee that it is complete. I've seen very collectable puzzles sell for a lot of money even with missing pieces.

2. Some puzzle manufacturers will replace a missing piece. Here is a contact list of companies that replace pieces.

3. Most thrifts have the puzzle boxes taped shut so it is hard to know if it is in good condition unless you undo the tape. I'm always scared someone is going to catch me and yell at me LOL but usually I pay no more than a couple of dollars. 

4. Used puzzles can go for $100s even $1000s of dollars. It's worth it to learn the most desired brands and keep an eye out for them. Take a look at completed listings on ebay and sort by price.


Some good brands to look out for are. In general wooden puzzles seem to be more valuable.

Do you buy or sell puzzles on ebay? 




Saturday, December 28, 2013

Best Sales this Week

I had 16 sales this week. I was reading the Ebay for Business Facebook Page and the question was asked "what is the highest number of sales you had in one day".  Some people were answering that they have gotten 50, 100, and MORE! sales in ONE DAY! And here I am with my 16 sales this week.... Better than none and I've had some weeks close to none so I'm not complaining. On to the best of the week.

The best sale was this vintage letter sweater. I got this for $2 at an estate sale on half price day. It sat waiting to be listed for at least 6 months. I do that a lot with things that seem like they will get a higher price. I need to stop that....I think it's perfectionism. I feel like the better items I need to research more..set the price perfectly so I procrastinate. Anyway...even with a broken zipper and a small hole it sold for $34.99 plus shipping.




Next up are these Muppet Ornaments. Got them in a big plastic bag of ornaments which cost $2 for the entire bag. One of these ornaments had the end broken off the skate but they sold fairly quickly for $19.99 plus shipping. Now the rest of the bag of ornaments are total profit. 


Last but not least I got these Amish salt and pepper shakers for $1. They are signed. Sold for $19.99 plus shipping. 


What were your best sales this week? Did you have good sales the week of Christmas or did things die down? 



Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Happy Holidays



Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all my fellow ebay sellers. My Christmas wish for you is that you enjoy a day off from listing but that the sales continue to flow as you make money on a holiday ebay style! I had three sales Christmas Eve and am hoping for at least one today so I can just shake my head and smile at how it works.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Name That Tune?

Does anyone recognize the song that this music box plays? I think it was Pam who identified my last mystery music box tune. Are you there Pam?

Edited to Add: I found a resource where you can listen to tons of different music box songs here. Haven't found it yet but am trying. For some reason they all remind me of horror movies....

Edited to Add: A Wonderful Reader recognized the song and generously let me know. YaY! It is a hymm called Down from His Glory.


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Tweaking your Title

So I'm a big believer in the power of good keywords and the powers of tweaking. It seems like when I'm actively listing, printing postage or tweaking my listings I get a sale. It might just be coincidence but I figure that it doesn't hurt anything to be listing (good), printing postage (good) or tweaking...right? All good or harmless activities.

So this morning while I was tweaking I noticed something I haven't noticed before. I don't know if it is a new feature or just one I never looked at. If you go to one of your listings and scroll all the way to the bottom of the page you should see something similar to the pic below.



Where it says More to Explore is a list of related/suggested searches. When I looked closely at these suggestions it dawned on me that I should be looking at these also as suggested keywords for my title. After all, if the ebay search engine is throwing these out in relation to my listing then they must be connected...popular....good keywords for my product. Of course not always true.... but worth looking at. So I went through a few listings and checked the suggestions at the bottom. A couple of the listings I looked at had some good alternative keywords for my product that I hadn't thought of. I promptly revised a listing and added those suggested keywords. See the pictures below of the before and after.  I added the keyword "animal" Not a huge change but one that makes sense.

Title Before...


Title After..





While I was doing this I sold another item. Yeah! Which is the side benefit of tweaking.....At least in my superstitious heart but also I'm hoping I'm improving my title at the same time by adding keywords that ebay relates.

The other interesting thing I saw down at the bottom of my listing which I hadn't noticed before are suggested ebay guides. It was kind of interesting to see which guides were suggested and I actually saw some that I'd like to take a look at related to items I sell. So I might learn some things from ebay's suggestions as well.  Have you ever written any guides? I haven't but have thought of doing one. I just don't feel expert enough...

So these are just some things I noticed this morning while putzing around. It always takes me a while to really get to work in the morning but I try to at least be doing selling related putzing until I get to the real work LOL. This normally involves checking to see if I sold anything overnight. Checking my Pinterest board...checking my blog and the sidebar to see if any of the reselling blogs I follow have updated...etc etc. I can usually putz for an hour while I drink my first cup of coffee and get motivated to get out of my warm bed.

So I hope my theory works. I'll let you know in a later post whether I can tell or not...

Happy Sales to You :)

Monday, December 16, 2013

Best Sales this Week



I bought this Morgan Silver Dollar belt buckle at a thrift store. It was on a belt and priced at $2. I sold the belt separately for 15 dollars and it sold pretty quickly. The belt buckle took quite a while to sell. I had it priced higher but finally took a decent best offer of $40 with free shipping.


I love buying weird plush if it's cheap. One thrift store I go to has a bin of free plush. I guess they get too many plush donations. I've gotten a couple things out of the free bin and sold them. This plush wasn't free but was weird and big...and cheap. It is called Togepi and is a Pokemon character. Something I didn't know until I did some research. I paid a couple dollars for him and he sold for $29.99 with stained feet. I washed him but his feet just wouldn't come clean. Here is is.


Next up is a Stratego game. I loved playing this game as a kid. This edition comes in a wood box that looks like a book. Alternate Versions of Stratego are good sellers.... check out completeds. Mine had a lot of wear to the box so I priced it quite a bit lower than the others that were listed. It sold pretty quickly for $24 plus shipping. Oh it was also missing one piece which I bought from another ebay seller for less than $2! How cool that you can do that. 


Good luck with your sales this week!


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Global Shipping Change




Just read on the ebay for business facebook page....there has been a change to the Global Shipping program that allows you to use it only on the countries you want and choose your preferred method on the rest of the countries you sell to.

I was not using Global Shipping previously because I didn't want to use it on every country. I was hoping to just use it for certain countries that I was not selling to because they weren't covered by Shipsaver Insurance. For example Russia and Mexico. I had excluded those two countries and now can add them and use Global Shipping. I'm happy that they made this change and hoping to see an increase in my sales. Follow the links if you want to learn more about the change.

Do you use Global Shipping?

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Best Sales This Week

Vintage Olympus Typewriter - I've sold 3 vintage typewriters in the past couple of years. The first one was damaged during shipping. I hadn't insured it so I had to give a partial refund. They are a pain to package up weighing about 20+ pounds but can be found pretty cheap and sold for a good profit. This one did take several months to sell. I almost discounted it last week for Black Friday and resisted and it sold this week for full price! $149.00.


Ladies Skechers Work Shoes - paid $15 for them and I thought they would be worth more but I still made a decent profit. Sold for $39.99


Haflinger Wool Slippers - bought these for myself a few years ago and only wore them a couple of times. Paid a lot of money for them because of the brand. Sold for $34.95 but spent hours picking my dogs white hairs out of the wool with a tweezers....just sitting around they'd gotten pretty hairy. So those are my top sales for the week. It was a pretty good week. 





Friday, December 6, 2013

Reflections on Selling



Today while I was working I was thinking about the reasons I like to do what I do. Below are my top ten. Feel free to add yours in the comments.

1. If I want to stay up late one night, I don't have to suffer in the morning to get to work on time.
2. No alarm clocks necessary.
3. I live in Wisconsin where nice weather is hit or miss, especially in the winter. If it's a beautiful day I don't have to sit in an office staring wistfully out the window. I can decide at a moments notice to go do some work in the yard and enjoy the weather and soak up some sunlight.
4. I can have other responsibilities that I would not be able to assume if I had a 9 to 5 job.
5. I spend absolutely zero dollars on a 'work wardrobe'. There is no dress code here. In fact some days I start work before I've even brushed my teeth or hair! How's that for perks?
6. Like those in Mexico if I want a siesta after lunch...no problem!
7. If I want a glass of wine while I work...pop the cork.
8. Noone is breathing over my shoulder.
9. I can change things up whenever I want. "Brilliant" ideas don't have to be run by a boss. I can decide to start selling whatever strikes my fancy. If it doesn't work out I don't risk a bad review or potential raise. This allows the creative juices to flow freely.
10. NO PERFORMANCE REVIEWS!!

11. Thought of one more that can't be left out. I don't have to get up and scrape car windows and get in a cold car every morning of the winter. Woohoo!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

How to Recognize Blown Glass



Yesterday I learned something new from the thrift store lady checking me out. I'd purchased a very pretty and heavy glass mug which didn't have a price tag on it. I always get nervous when things don't have a price because some stores won't sell it to you I guess because they think you may have taken the price tag off yourself hoping for a better price? Or maybe they don't trust the clerk behind the register to price something. I don't know. But the person at the register quoted me 10 cents for the glass which I was thrilled to pay. The person bagging up my things said "you know that is a hand blown glass, you just got a great deal". Now I always act kind of naive about the things I'm purchasing so that I don't appear to be buying to sell but in this case I really didn't know it was blown glass. So I asked her as there didn't seem to be anything special about the glass mug. How could she tell? She was very nice and turned the mug over and showed me a circle on the bottom that is called the 'pontil'. It is where the piece was attached to the glass blowing rod. Here is a website that explains more about pontils.

My Mug



So I'm always learning more about selling. It's fascinating and you never know what subject you're going to get an education in next or where the information will come from. Sometimes it is from another shopper, sometimes from a blogger, sometimes from looking an item up on ebay. It's always a free education :)

Do you know anything about identifying blown glass or other handmade items vs factory made? What are the little 'tells'?



Monday, December 2, 2013

Parcel Select vs Priority

I don't know if it's just for top rated sellers or if everyone is getting it but I think everyone is getting a USPS shipping discount for the holiday season if postage is purchased through ebay?? So assuming this is the case..I've noticed lately that with the discount priority is usually significantly less than parcel select. In some cases by a couple of dollars or more. Something I just shipped was 2 dollars less when I checked priority. So when you go to ship your packages make sure you double check to see if there is a less expensive option.

I always offer parcel select in my listings which people often choose. On their end they don't see that I get a discount on priority so for them parcel select is a little cheaper. I feel a little guilty then to turn around and profit on shipping but they are then upgraded to a better shipping option...So anyway, make sure you check.

Sales have been good lately but this weekend was not what I hoped for out of the Black Friday weekend. And so far Cyber Monday has garnered only one sale.  Last week I had a $500 week which is awesome and what I want to achieve every week. I hope things pick up this week and I have another $500 week. Starting off slow though.

I really need to get listing. With Thanksgiving dinner, a movie and a coffee date I've spent more time playing when I should have been listing.

Below is an interesting little plate that I have not listed yet because I have very little information on it. If you can help please do. So far I've found out from a Facebook group that the front is in Latin and says 'they leave' or something similar. It's a small plate about 5" across. That's it for now. I hope your Black Friday sales were better than mine!!






Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving Post

What am I thankful for this Thanksgiving? I'm thankful for my fellow reselling bloggers and forum members who share their knowledge. I've been reselling seriously for 3 years now and I have learned so much. I can't imagine what I'd have done without all the help I received along the way and still do to this day. I've learned the ins and outs of shipping, taking photos, buying, dealing with difficult customers and more. How to get out stains, wrinkles, marks on books...taking off stickers. The list goes on and on. So today I'm going to share a couple of my favorite tips with you readers and a picture of a listing I made today. I'd had the item for over a year and didn't know what it was. Some people at this facebook group helped me out in short order. It's a Pipe Jar. Who knew? You put your tobacco in there to keep it all pretty lookin'. So if you see such a thing its not just a decorative candy dish (yes, I thought maybe...). Here is a link to the listing. I'm asking a lot but I just don't know how much to list it for so I have high hopes.


Next a couple of my favorite tips I've learned from other resellers.

1. To get price stickers off of paper without damage use lighter fluid. Dip a cotton swab in the lighter fluid and wet the sticker edge. Let it sink in a few seconds and then start working the edge with the swab. Most will come right up.

2. Have clothing that has wrinkled from sitting in a bin too long before it got a picture? Use a spray bottle with water, a touch of vinegar, and a little hair conditioner. Spray it on the clothing and then fluff out the wrinkles. I love this one.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. 


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Black Friday Coming Soon

Four more days to list before the biggest selling day of the year and the countdown to Christmas. I'm trying list as much as possible in the next few days so that I will have as much inventory in my store for the long weekend buying frenzy (hopefully). I've already been having much better sales the last couple of weeks so I'm hoping it continues to get better and better!

In other news I bought a big bag of Barbie and dollhouse furniture a while back and have been cleaning it up and getting it ready to list. I'm not sure why but I'm having so much trouble taking pictures of some of the pieces. The picture below is one example of the bad pics. I had great light.


Any advice? I took several pictures of this table and they were all blurry.

Speaking of pictures I'm looking into getting a new camera for my ebay photos. I currently use a Canon Power Shot which I have liked and used for a couple of years. I'd like to get better photos though. Any suggestions? What camera do you use?


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Some BOLOs for the Holiday Season

There's not much time to shop for items to resell for Christmas but I thought I'd list a few BOLO (be on the lookout) for items that Christmas shoppers are shopping for. I'll still be picking them up if I find them for a good price. The first item I bought last year at the after Christmas sales at two thrifts. They are those plastic electric candles that people put in their windows. You can find them singly or candelabra style. They are also called candoliers. Something I didn't know before. I've sold two lots of in the last couple of days..within days of listing.  Some people sell them with the bulbs but I don't have enough of the right size bulbs so I sold them nekid. I did use my bulbs to test each one to make sure they all worked. I have one more set to list but the sun is behind clouds today so they are going to have to wait until I get some better light. I sold the first set of 8 pictured below for 14.99 plus shipping. I priced them lower because two of the bottoms had chips. The second set had two more candles and none chipped and it sold for 24.99 plus shipping. They are easy to ship. I just put them into poly mailers and then into a box. I think I got all of them for under 5.00 plus I still have one more set to list. So I think I'll make at least $65 dollars from that 5.00 purchase. The last set I'm going to ask a little more for since they are selling so fast.


Another item to keep on your radar are the little santa outfits for babys/toddlers. Mine sold for 19.95 w/ free shipping within days of listing. I imagine the little red velvet dresses and vest/pants would do well too. I think people want these for pictures on Christmas but don't want to pay full price for new when it will probably only be worn once for a few hours. What items are on your BOLO list for Christmas selling? 


Saturday, November 16, 2013

Reselling Doubts

If you have a reselling business and ever have doubts and fears, head on over to Thrift Core. Van wrote a great post on her reselling business and the doubts and worries that come along with it. Make sure you read the comments too.

I certainly have my share of doubts about what I do. I won't go into them now because Van did a great job over on her blog. I can relate to pretty much her whole post. How about you? Do you have doubts and worries about reselling? Do you ever think about going back to working for the man?

I listed this little vintage Schmid music box recently. I've got a video of it in the listing. Does anyone recognize the song? Please leave me a message in the comments if you do. 






Thursday, November 14, 2013

Ebay for Business Facebook and Youtube Pages

I'm enjoying reading the Ebay for Business Facebook page and Youtube pages. They have Twitter too but I don't tweet. I barely Facebook either.

What do you think?

https://www.facebook.com/eBayForBusiness

https://www.facebook.com/eBayForBusiness/app_349313058487732



Monday, November 11, 2013

November 11th - Recent Interesting Finds

I bought this Vintage Shearling Vest at the Salvation Army when they were having a clearance sale on all clothing. It was something like 67 cents for any piece of clothing. I went through all the vests and coats to see what I could find. When I went to research this vest and took a closer look I saw that it was made in New Zealand and was real wool/leather. It is unbelievably soft and for some reason smells like caramel. I then got curious and had to do some research into what shearling wool was. I did something that I rarely do and listed this at auction...I'm really not sure how to price it so I'm hoping it will go higher. Shearling Vest

SOLD for $149.00 plus free shipping BIN


Another interesting find were these vintage Deka Cups and Bowls. I didn't think that much of them when I found them as they were really dirty. They were in a bag with a Cabbage Patch Doll thermos which was really what I was after. Turns out the thermos isn't worth much but the Deka Cups and Bowls are. The bigger the set the better. Some listings even have a pitcher as well. Do you remember these from your youth? Apparently some people do and are willing to pay but they don't ring a bell with me.

.

Friday, November 8, 2013

What?!? I Beat Ebay!

I started this blog Third Hand Shoppe exactly a month ago on Oct 8th. I know I'm a little late in the game as far as starting a reselling blog....BUT... I am thrilled to realize I beat ebay who just started a blog this week!!  LOL. Patting myself on the back..Their blog is so new I'm having trouble finding it again to link to it. Hah! It doesn't come up in a Google search for 'ebay blog'. Well I'm going to have to look harder 'cause that is what this post is about. Excuse me for a minute. .............................................Well that took a while. I had to go to the community boards and do a search. So here is the link for eBay for Business Blog. Did you know eBay has a blog now? What do you think of it? I've read a few of the posts and so far I'm not hooked but it's still new. I hope it grows into a good tool for sellers. I like the concept and hope it contains unique information. I mean I hope it isn't just a repeat of what is in our eBay messages and newsletters. So take a look. Tell me what you think.

And check out one of my more unique listings this week.

I found this artsy jacket by Liz & Me in the Halloween section at Goodwill after Halloween when they had 75% off. I think it's cute and hoping someone else does too.


Monday, November 4, 2013

Zim's Nutcracker - Do you Know his Name?




I bought this nutcracker the other day at the goodwill. I could tell it was made well but I don’t know anything about nutcrackers and had never before seen an unpainted one. He was a little more than I like to spend on an unknown at $2.99 but I looked him up on my phone and saw that others of that brand can sell well. So I purchased him. When I got home I started doing research and found out that this company makes other wooden objects and has relatively recently started making nutcrackers. They have all sorts of fun characters. You can buy them in kits and decorate them yourself. The problem is after looking at all the listings on ebay, current and sold and pictures on Google I cannot place which character he or she is. Maybe it’s rare and worth lots of money! That’s always my dream scenario. He/she has a  long gown/dress so he’s not one of the nutcrackers with pants which it seems most have…it seems that most of them are men. so I listed him here and am hoping some kind collector of Zim nutcrackers will come along and put a name on him for me. Or maybe he's generic. Ready to become whomever the buyer decides him to be.

Buying for an eBay store brings you in contact with so many different objects that most people pass by. It opens little windows into so many different worlds that I never knew were out there. I like that part of the business. How about you? Do you find yourself buying things you don't know anything about or stick to the areas/niches you specialize in?

SOLD for $30 plus shipping

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Hello? Hello? Is anyone there?

Sales have been bad the past week. It's hard to stay motivated to keep listing. Hard to believe that I can succeed. It feels like I don't exist. I know other sellers go through these peaks and valleys too. This is supposed to be the busy season! 

Fall is here too. I think that adds to my malaise. Days are shorter. Colder. Everything is dying. Forcast.....Overcast. Cloudy. Blah. Not good for picture taking either. Today I'm going to focus on tweaking listings and listing some books, video and patterns. Those I can scan which doesn't depend on the light.





How do you keep yourself going through the slow times?

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Donjo Sea Turtle Sculpture

I had an interesting find this week from the Salvation Army. This is a signed sea turtle sculpture by the artist Donjo. On his website http://www.donjo.net/ there is an interesting film describing the process that he uses in his sculptures (all marine life) and how he became a sculptor. I've never found or sold a piece of sculpture before. It's interesting to research a new type of item. You find out things that you never knew. I think it's cool that you can feel where the artist put his fingers when he formed the elements. You can put your own fingers there. It is sort of weird. In other news ebay is offering 100,000 fixed price listing the rest of the month. I need to get off my butt and take advantage of them because I was going to go over my free listing limit for my store size this month. Now I don't have to. This sculpture is listed here

SOLD for $125 plus it shipped international.


Friday, October 25, 2013

Walking Egg Cups - My Most Adorable Find This Month

I got these vintage egg cups for a measly $1.54. They were stuffed in a ziplock baggie behind some other things at the Salvation Army. I was surprised they weren't chipped seeing how they were stuffed carelessly in the bag. When you think of the pains we go to to ship delicate things it amazes me that those same things survive the treatment getting to and out of the store! With no further ado feast your eyes on their adorableness.


They have no makers marks. They look like Carlton Walking Ware but I think they aren't because it seems like all of the Carlton is marked. I had never heard of or seen the Carlton Walking Ware until I was researching my find. It is an adorable line of items introduced in the 70s.  Check out the listed on ebay.

I'm going to sell them singly. I think I can get more for them that way. I'd like to keep them for myself because they are so cute but I'll just enjoy them while I have them for sale.

Have you ever seen Walking Ware or unbranded pieces like mine? I'll definitely be keeping my eyes open for more whether it is the Carlton brand or no name.

Edited to add: I discovered upon closer inspection that one was broken and glued so I listed the three that were in excellent condition separately. 

SOLD for $42.60
I will miss them. They are so adorable. 

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Ebay's New Collections Feature

Ebay has added some new features recently. One that I'm wasting too much time on utilizing is the 'Collections' feature. It is similar to a Pinterest Board but you can only pin items from eBay. I've started a few collections. What I do is feature an item or two from my own store and then I add items from all over ebay to complete the theme of the collection. Below is a pic of one of my collections entitled Retro Pad. The latch hook wall hanging and bowls are from my store and other items are from around ebay. This is only part of that collection. See all of my collections here. If you follow a collection you get to see what items a person adds to their collections. If you follow the person you can see what new collections they start. I don't know if creating collections will help sell things or not. I've read opinions around the web on both sides, yea and nay. My thoughts are, it can't hurt (unless I waste too much time on them) and I figure if ebay wants to go that direction than maybe my participation will garner me a few gold stars. With ebay's mysterious system of who is in the black hole and who isn't I need all the help I can get. What about you? Are you creating collections? Do you look at other people's collections? Do you think ebay cares if you participate or not? I'd love for one of my collections to make it to ebay's featured Trending Collections. These collections show up right on the front ebay page....I'm not sure how you get there whether it's popularity or some ebay employee cherry picking the collections they think are cool. Either way it's a goal that would be cool to attain but for now I will forget about Collections and get back to the important daily goal. LIST and SELL!! List and Sell.


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Sales This Week and Door Colors

I had a spate of good sales last weekend which trickled down to just a couple this weekend. The good sales happened when I had a 'blue door' and the trickle when my door was red. If you haven't heard of or noticed your store door changing colors I can tell you that mine has been going from red to blue and back and forth for a couple of weeks now. There are other people talking about it on the boards. I heard that ebay said it's nothing. I have a hard time believing ebay would do something for no reason at all......a really hard time. So how about you? Have you noticed your door changing colors? Do you have any theories for why? I'll be watching my door a little more carefully now to see if I notice a change in sales when my door changes.

Here are a couple of my sales from the week. This first is a cute little Tommy Hilfiger snowsuit I bought at the thrift for $3. It sold for $23 to Lativia! I have read that snowsuits are a good seller so I've been keeping my eye out for nice ones. This is the first one I'd bought or sold. I think I did pretty well on it and it only took a couple of weeks to sell.


I also sold this vintage Rainbow Brite doll in one listing





and this set of small Rainbow Brite dolls in another listing.



Both sales within a few days of each other......weird. I paid just a couple of bucks for the pair of dolls and less for the large doll. The set sold for $28 and the large doll sold for $40 with free shipping. I'll be looking for more of these! Nice sales.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Helpful Resources for Resellers

In the last three years of serious selling I've learned a lot. I didn't know how much I didn't know in the beginning. My sources of knowledge in the beginning were mainly a few reseller blogs I followed (see some of those on the sidebar) and reading the discussion boards on ebay. Reseller blogs are a wealth of knowledge. From ideas on what sells to advice on the ins and outs of selling. Some people even do Youtube videos and podcasts helping other ebayers along. The discussion boards on ebay have their good points and bad. You tend to see a lot of ebay bashing on the boards. You can still get helpful advice there if you have a specific question because there are a lot of experts on the ebay boards.

My best source of knowledge has been a discussion board called Ebay Underground. It's not a really busy board but you could spend weeks just going through the old threads and learning very valuable stuff. If you don't belong to such a group you are missing out on a good source of information.

Ebay Underground can be found at http://ebug.proboards.com/. You do have to register in order to view the board.

I also highly recommend the podcasts on Ebay Scavengers. They are each about 20 minutes in length. They are informative and great to listen to as you are doing your shipping or picture taking. No registration required.

If you are a newish seller I highly recommend using blogs and discussion boards to gain knowledge and answer your questions.

Do you have any other good sources of information? If so leave a comment and tell me where you learn! I'm always on the lookout for more. 

Saturday, October 12, 2013

How a Reseller is Born



From childhood on I always had an eye for weathered things. I don’t know where that eye came from because noone else in my family shared it. It wasn’t probably until I could drive that I first set foot in an actuall thrift store. I subscribed to Country Living magazine as a teen because I loved to look at all the old rusty d├ęcor. One of my first jobs out of high school was working at a thrift store in the sorting area. There I was able to really start buying as well. I worked there for about a year and moved on to other pursuits in life, going to college and getting a job with benefits but still I was drawn to the offbeat. I always had some sort of weirdness in my cubicle and at that time learned to shop on ebay. I decorated my first apartments with hand me downs and thrift store finds. I didn’t have much use for new even if I could afford it. I loved the idea of hunting for treasures. Fast forward several years. I continued to buy on ebay and sold a few things here and there mostly books I’d read. Then I discovered blogs. Some of the blogs I read focused on upcycling, living a thrifty life and one in particular introduced me to the concepts of reselling as a living. At the time my job was in jeopardy and the idea of reselling for a living was so much more appealing than going back to work for someone else. This was three years ago and I’ve been reselling this whole time. I’m not yet where I need to be to totally support my lifestyle through reselling but I’m still trying and I love it. It’s not just a way to put bread on the table. I like the idea of being kind to the earth by reusing items instead of sending them to overflowing landfills. It fits right in with my ideals. I also dislike the consumerist/materialistic society that we’ve become. Reusing things makes me feel I’m doing my part to go against that tide and I love that there are so many others out there, evident by their blogs, that are pursuing the same ideals.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Getting a Handle on the Piles

My goal right now is to get a handle on my inventory and reorganize my workspace which means I've put a stop on shopping for new inventory for about the last month. I've slipped up a couple of times but even then kept it to small items or smalls as they are called in the biz. I've done way to much buying the past three years. In those three years I've learned a lot! and now I want to change up my inventory but I've still got old inventory to list. Part of me wants to just get rid of it all but that would be so wasteful money-wise. I'm really starting to see a difference. More floor to walk on..less piles...space on my shelves. I'll get there but it's slow and I so want to shop!! I did make a stop at Goodwill the other day and left with nothing. That is a very rare event.

I picture a workspace all organized and easy to walk through. No piles that fall over if I accidentally brush up against them. All my tools in one area. Packing table clean. Desk with space on it for more than my laptop. And no overflow into the next room. Sounds wonderful doesn't it? So that's my goal each day. I'm especially motivated this week because I have a family member coming to stay overnight next week. People who don't resell don't get the mess....

I'm trying to put together creative 'lots' of things to move some items that have been around too long.So here is one of the lots I created. I had all of these items listed separately for a while and they weren't selling. I'm hoping I can sell them all in one sale.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=131008273470&ssPageName=STRK:MESE:IT


Well back to work. Blogging can be a way of avoiding the mess too! 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Photo Editing with Clipping Magic

Another reseller turned me on to this photo editing tool called Clipping Magic.

I don't have the neatest work area or best setup for taking photos. Sometimes things show up in the background that don't belong there or my white backdrop looks gray....do you ever have this problem? In the past I've tried to find an easy free way to edit the background in my ebay photos. Well I can finally say I found one.

Clipping Magic is free and easy. It did take a little trial and error until I became comfortable with it but now that I am I love it. Let me show you a photo I did yesterday. This is my before photo. A large lot of video tapes. I wanted a solid background but the poster board I use just wasn't big enough...I didn't want to have to take multiple photos which would take more time..more photos to edit..So I uploaded this photo to Clipping Magic and in about 60 seconds......scroll down


I had this! Do you see how nicely it did the very uneven edge of the left stack?

So this is my new go to tool when I need to edit a background. I still use my other photo editing software to crop, lighten etc. I hope you try it out if you're in need of such a tool.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

First Post



So this is my first blog post.

I’m starting a reselling blog basically to help market my ebay store Third Hand Shoppe and give myself a little more presence on the www.

Also I love reading reselling blogs myself and I wonder if I could create a successful blog that others would find helpful and love to read.  So bear with me while I get my toes wet sticking my feet in the blogging pond. My goal is to blog every day because I myself LOVE a prolific blog.

My eBay store name is Third Hand Shoppe