Last month I wrote about becoming a Trading Assistant – if you missed that article you can recap here. Basically it’s an alternative way of sourcing products to sell on eBay and often the products will find you rather than you finding them!
So, following on from that, I want to give you yet another lazy way to source products!
A really good friend of mine (who I’ve mentioned before) is one of those people who continually talks about wanting to start an eBay business.
Unfortunately that’s all she does – talks about it! She never actually does anything about it. Time and time again I’ve offered to help her out but she gets so far – to the point where I think we are actually making progress and the next minute she’s changed her mind again!
So, what’s stopping her? Fear? Indecision? Time? Money?
Well, you may be surprised to know that it’s none of these things actually. She is in fact just incredibly lazy. She can’t be bothered to put in a little bit of effort to start what would be a really successful online venture for her.
Now, before you gasp and peg me down as a horrible, cruel, nasty name-calling person, I just want to assure you that my friend reads my eletters every week and she honestly won’t mind me telling you this because she knows exactly what she’s like and it’s a standing joke between us (in fact I’m secretly hoping that this might give her the extra wake up call she needs!)
The thing is, we are all lazy in one way or another. We drive everywhere, we eat ready prepared foods, we order our shopping online, we have cleaners, gardeners and so on - if there is a short cut or a lazy way to do something we’re all interested – and that includes me.
Unfortunately, in real life, to achieve what you really want you can’t just sit there, exude laziness and expect success to fall out of the sky and land straight in your lap!
The other day my friend said to me: “Amanda, I do really want to do the eBay thing but isn’t there just an easy way of doing it?”
I think I rolled my eyes, sighed and counted to 10 before answering. “No” I said. “Nothing is ever ‘easy’ as such, but it can be simplified…”
And then it was her turn to roll her eyes and sigh, so, I tried to explain…
There are definitely plenty of ‘less strenuous’ ways to go about finding products to sell on eBay. Ways that mean that you don’t need to leave your house or even the comfort of your own chair. Perfect for lazies!
Some of the best places to source products to sell on eBay are often completely overlooked, purely because these places are literally staring you in the face.
So, today I want to talk about just one ‘lazy’ way of finding great merchandise to sell online that loads of ‘non-lazy’ people probably don’t even consider.
It’s a method so simple and obvious that I totally understand why you might have overlooked it before. A method that can promise real profits once you understand how to find the best deals and one that will save you even more time in searching the streets or the internet for the best charity shop or wholesaler to stock the goodies for you to resell.
Did you know that the vast amount of online stores available to you as a consumer, also offer an incredible source of potential stock for you as a seller?
I’m sure that at some time or another you have purchased from one of the online retail giants such as Amazon, but have you ever considered that there may be deals to be found on these websites that could enable you to sell items on for profit? It’s true! There are plenty of products that you could sell for more on eBay than you purchased them for originally on Amazon.
So, if the idea of finding products to sell online without ever even leaving your own armchair sounds appealing, then it’s important for you to understand exactly where to look.
eBay has a reputation for being pretty much the cheapest place online for products in any and every different category. However this isn’t always the case. The thing is people just don’t bother to look elsewhere (another example of laziness!) because they think they are already looking in the ‘cheapest’ place.
So, you can cash in on this presumption, by actually selling products for more on eBay than they may cost at another online store, as there is a very high chance that many of your potential buyers won’t even look anywhere else for a comparison price!
Other people may simply be willing to pay a little more from your own eBay store to save them the hassle of traipsing all over the virtual shopping streets of the World Wide Web to find the best price.
Laziness again – it’s everywhere!
I’m not going to lie to you, finding the best products from the range of online retailers available will take you a little time. But it’s worth it, so to get you started I have put together a list of locations where you can start your research.
Where to find the best online retailers
- I’ve already mentioned Amazon but I’m going to do so again now because it really is a great resource. Remember that you don’t just have to buy products from Amazon itself through their website, as there is also the option of using the Marketplace to purchase items from users around the country.
- Once you have exhausted the search on Amazon.co.uk, why not consider having a browse on Amazon.com as well? Or other international Amazon websites? Obviously you’ll have to take postage into account when working out if you can snap up a deal from a different country, but never rule it out of the equation. Recently canny sellers have been importing iPads from the USA via Amazon where they can be bought much cheaper and then reselling them on eBay.co.uk
- Buying products from eBay itself is also a viable option – their Daily Deals are a great way to snap up popular items at knockdown prices ready to sell at a higher price once the daily Deal ends! Don’t limit this only to eBay.co.uk though as you could get some great prices by looking at items from the USA over at eBay.com. If you fancy yourself as a bit of a linguist you could even snap up some excellent deals from the continent – try eBay.de (Germany) or eBay.fr (France).
- Many other large retailers also offer discounts on products, such as Play.com, Gamestation.co.uk and many, many more. If you are looking for something specific be sure to have a look around these well known websites for a great deal. I’ve seen products on Play.com available at a cheaper price than on eBay, yet they continue to sell on eBay too.
- Price comparison sites don’t always include every retailer or every product, but they are always worth a look if you want a specific product for your own eBay shop. They may help you to find out if one particular shop has a deal on a product that you could then sell on for a profit.
- And finally, don’t rule out the small online shops. Many websites sell into small niche markets. These websites are great as they may not have a large following and you could snap up a product that fits in with your own selling strategy perfectly!
Take some time to have a look at these sources and compare different products with their equivalents on eBay. You won’t be able to sell anything and everything on for a profit, but I can guarantee that with a bit of shopping around you will be able to bag a bargain or two.
How to sell stock from online retailers for a profit
So, now you know where to begin, and of course it’s all well and good knowing where to look, but to really start increasing your earning potential you also need to know how to go about reselling what you find.
Your first consideration is, of course, what to actually fork out your hard earned cash for. The best solution is unique to you as it will fit with your own eBay business. Consider whether you operate in one particular niche then look for products that match those that you already sell.
If you are just starting out then make sure you compare any prices that you find with listings on eBay to ensure they are in demand and have a good profit margin.
It’s important to think about how many of your items you should buy as well. I know it may be tempting to purchase 100 of the latest gadget because it’s on special offer, but unless you are absolutely positive that you will be able to shift the stock, you should purchase a test batch first to see exactly how much profit you will make.
You may lose out slightly on the special offer its true, but losing the occasional promotion from an online retailer is better than losing a lot of money and being landed with stock that you just can’t shift.
Finally, remember the eBay fundamentals: a great title, description and photo will help you to successfully sell your stock for a higher price than you paid, maximising your profit with each and every listing.
So, have a look around online this week and see what you can find!
by Amanda O'Brien
Online Trading Expert
Amanda O’Brien is an extremely successful online trader specialising in eBay, Amazon Marketplace and niche sales websites. You can sign up for her free weekly eletter here: