ISSUE 59: Jan., 2009
Yard Salers: Jan. 2009: Happy New Year, Sales, Best Tips and eBook of Flips
Please forward to a friend!
Happy New Year! There are many challenges ahead in 2009, both here in the U.S. and worldwide. But we're not going to take on all that right now here at Yard Salers. We're going to tackle our problems one at a time, as we've always done, and focus on things we can do which are within our control.
Speaking of which, I'm experimenting with a new format for the newsletter which I hope will speed things up and enable me to get more issues out in '09. Here are today's topics:
New Best of Flips eBook
It's the Economy, But Some People are Thriving
Going Out of Business and Closeout Sales
New Site: Bonanzle
New Report Lists Sites for Listing Auctions
One of my goals for 2009 is to get more new ebooks out there and update the ones I have. To that end, I have put together an ebook of Yard Salers' Readers best flips, and accompanying tips and rules of thumb, which I will tell you more about later. (I am offering the ebook at a special low rate for newsletter subscribers...only $4.50. If you want to cut to the chase, it's here).
This newsletter would have been out sooner had it not been for a ton of stuff that sold out of my eBay Store in the last week. I just took on an almost complete set of Spode dishes to sell on commission for a client, and I had it listed for the holiday season. But while my sales were OK, not great, none of those dishes sold in December.
January has been crazy so far, though. In the span of three days, the dinner plates, a set of luncheon plates, salad plates, a cranberry bowl and sauce bowls all sold. (I also sold some other pottery and china from my Store, some that had been sitting there for months).
So I was running around, gathering up the boxes I had on hand from Christmas presents, corralling bubble wrap, and best of all. bunching up the old wrapping paper into balls to use as packing material. I love it when nothing goes to waste.
I've taken other stuff on commission as well, but this was the first large set of china that I've taken on. My goal is to do a great job with this client so she will recommend me to other folks. More thoughts on selling on commission for you will be coming in future newsletters.
But let's look back a bit. I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. We had a nice, quiet Christmas and went out of town for a few days, where we went night skiing rather than day skiing in hopes the snow wouldn't melt around us on that warm Virginia Saturday.
On the way back we stopped in the town of Leesburg, Virginia, which has many quaint shops, including lots of antique and thrift shops. However the rest of the family does not share my love of pottering through such shops looking for finds, so I had to keep it snappy. It was OK, though; most of the things in the prominent shops in Leesburg, from what I could tell, were marked up pretty high for all the passing tourists, and there weren't many super bargains to be had.
I had my eye on what looked like a deep-carved Bakelite shoe clip. I was attracted to the deep-carved and Bakelite part of it, but I was unsure how the whole shoe clip thing would come off unless I positioned it (or converted it to) a brooch.
Before our Leesburg trip, we hosted Christmas Eve at our house. Remember how I was saying in the last issue that I had found many of my gifts for people this year at estate sales? This was the case for the garden gnome I found for my sister, Signe, at an estate sale in Maryland. There were a series of 4 or 5 adorable little men sitting and standing outside this rural home, and the guys running the sale let me have mine for $2. He was sitting on a toadstool and smoking a little pipe. (Yes I am talking about an inanimate gnome..not a real human being, lest I am giving the wrong impression!)
Unfortunately, I did not think to take a picture of him, but I can take one next time I am at my sister's.
This, I believe, is my sister's favorite gift, surpassing the set of Longaberger placemats and napkins I scored at the big Longaberger estate sale (also in the last newsletter).
Of course, my sister and I have had a running sort of joke (that is increasingly becoming more serious) of exchanging this jolly little men each year at Christmas; one year I gave her the oversized book "Gnomes" (also an estate sale find), and one year she gave me "mooning gnome" who...er...shines his own kind of moon in my herb garden. (My husband is not...er..crazy about it and keeps turning his moon to face the wall).
I also followed through on my earth friendly, low-cost reusable gift wrapping idea: wrapping gifts in a colorful scarf from an estate sale, secured with a vintage brooch. I did this one for my writing club, where we do a holiday book/gift exchange each December, and all the members loved it:
Here's how it turned out:
The presidential inauguration is imminent, and some of the talk here in DC is about how people are listing their homes on craigslist, some for absurd sums of money. One of them is asking $25,000 a night, calling itself "one of George Washington's farms near Mount Vernon." There are genuine farms formerly belonging to part of Washington's overall estate around here, but I thought they were for the most part museums or community structures such as the American Horticultural society, but I can't say I'd heard of this one.
Most of the asking prices, however, are more down to earth...$700 a night and up. still not cheap by any means. We're a bit leery of offering up our home to strangers, but if they were people we knew or friends of people we knew, I'd consider it.
It's the Economy, But Some People are Thriving
The economy continues to struggle, but you didn't need me to tell you that. What I wonder is how your eBay sales are doing...have they slowed down; was your holiday season the same or a lot worse than last year's?
Most retailers and online sites reported sales were down, but a few folks actually reported sales being up. Among those, amazon.com, who said they had their best holiday season ever (!). In line with that, I noticed more sales coming from my amazon selling account. Because it is so fast and easy to list books there, I often put appropriate books, videos, etc up there first. But a lot of the rare, collectibles books I still think are better placed on eBay (or such) and do better with a photo.
Along with the sudden influx of January sales from my eBay Store, several books started flying off my amazon shelves that had festered there for months. One of my theories is that all these sales are coming from people using amazon gift cards they were given for Christmas.
So if you haven't already listed stuff you have sitting around that would be good for amazon,I don't think it's too late to take advantage of this delayed holiday rush.
I've also started looking for new, shrinkwrapped cd's and dvd's at estate and yard sales. Especially box sets. The latter can go for so much more than a single disc or book, and you'd be surprised how many of them are floating around at these sales once you start looking for them. Whether a lot of people simply have books, records and the like that were gifts they never opened, or bought themselves and never opened, I don't know. And the other nice thing is that I've found they aren't usually priced any more than the non-new cd's. I paid about $1 each for 4 cd's at a sale yesterday, and it was the same price whether they were new or used.
One friend of mine bid on hundreds of unopened cd's and dvd's at the tail end of one estate sale when the sale runner was eager to unload them. He got the whole kit and kaboodle for $120 or so, and while not all of them were worth listing, many of them were, and they were flying off his shelves from amazon.com during the holidays, some bringing $50-$100. Yeah, some vintage and/or hard-to-find dvd's sell for that much!
But back to the economy.
Another biz who did very well? Wal-mart. That one isn't hard to figure out; people want bargains now more than ever. And the Wall street Journal reported that video game seller GamestopCorp. reported same store sales were up by 10% in Nov. and dec. But overall, people are cutting back on spending,
according to the Journal.
But while people are scaling back in a lot of areas in their lives, certain key products this year were so in demand that they resisted the recession: iPods, iPhones, Wii games. The "must-have" gadgets and electronics that have become iconic in our lives. I was reading in the Washington Post about how a lot of the creators of iPhone "apps" -- some of them just silly, fun little bits of code that make your iPhone sound like a wind instrument, say, have become millionaires just by selling tons of these apps in the App Store for $1 each.
Going Out of Business and Closeout Sales
We talked some about liquidation/going out of business sales in the last newsletter. I'd be eager to hear your experiences with finding bargains at these types of sales.
One yardsaler wrote in with a cautionary note that some stores hire liquidators to run their closeout sales, and these folks actually charge more for some items than similar items in similar
But I think overall there are going to continue to be bargains out there for the sharp-eyed.
There is some exaggerated information out there about stores actually "going out of business" vs. cutting back and closing some stores. A good roundup is here:
Before we get to the rest of the newsletter, two reminders:
- Be sure to modify your listings to take out other payment methods than PayPal. eBay is going to start enforcing this (I'm told). (That sounds fun for them!). You can bulk edit listings in Selling Manager Pro; check your eBay feature or other eBay tools you may use to see if they have a bulk edit feature.
- Also if you have any ivory for sale (I know I did), remember to take that down too. As of January 09 (like now) eBay no longer allows ivory sales.
Prints Make Profits: incredible profits from your armchair!
I read Stuart's book and found it excellent in both the quality of the advice and the detail..he really shows you step-by-step how to find prints to buy at low-prices and resell for healthy prices. The best thing? There are plenty of print markets out there for everyone!
Big Bucks Flips: The New eBook!
Get it here.
A hundred and two dollars for an old plate found lying on its side on the ground near a box, bought for fifty cents? How about $560 for an old amplifier picked up at a thrift shop for $7? What made this amplifier so special?
And what does this person know about bidding at live auctions; the key to acquiring items there again and again?
Now these and other tales of happy and savvy sales are rounded up into one neat volume for you, complete with the accompanying tips that can have you going out and making better flips, or flips for the first time if you are new to selling online. You also get photos of top-selling eBay results for items similar to the ones discussed; and a special Bonus: Julia’s Favorite and Most Reliable Flips of Items that You are Actually Likely to Come Across.
In this new, 2009, fresh-off-the-digital-press special report, "Big Bucks Flips: Reselling Yard and Estate Sale Finds," you get 56 pages that I guarantee will make you more than your money back - or we will cheerfully redund you the purchase price. In fact, you should make many times your small investment on this ebook.
Currently only $4.50 for Yard Salers subscribers.
Thanks and start making more money on flips!
Get it here!
The Yard Salers Ning social network has been active lately! To check out the ning Yard Salers social network go here:
Don't forget the facebook group for Yard Salers:
- http://www.new.facebook.com/group.php?gid=27871336031 if you are already a facebook member.
Or, go to facebook, select the "Groups," and search for the "Yard Salers." Once you have clicked into the group, you simply join using the "join" link. (You do need a facebook account to do all this).
Without further ado, let's get to the rest of it!
Coming Soon: The 2009 Update to The First and Most Thorough eBook of eBay Prices: "What Sells on eBay for What" (aka "Julia Classic.").
If you're new to Yard Salers or haven't yet read this ebook jammed with prices and tips for flipping stuff on eBay, you can still get the subscribers' 1/2 price of $12.49 -- an instant download -- by going here. HALF PRICE.
New Site: Bonanzle
How's it going? I wanted to let you know about this new site I found called "Bonanzle." It bills itself as a place to find "Everything but the Ordinary," which means they're geared toward helping you find any item that isn't shiny, new, and mass-produced.
Bonanzle also has live chatting built into every store, which makes it kind of like a street fair where you can talk to (or bargain with) the sellers in real time.
It takes (literally!) one click to get started selling there. Give it a shot sometime and let me know what you think.
Check it out at: http://www.bonanzle.com/users/new
P.S. My items are for sale here: http://www.bonanzle.com/booths/daddysattic
Report Lists Sites for Listing Auctions
I just wanted to drop a quick note to let you know that I really enjoy your newsletter. I'm an eBay seller (jlmccutcheon) and understand some of the frustrations eBay sellers have at times. I love eBay - but do use Bonanzle to list items that don't sell on eBay. Anyway, in response to Suzanne in the last ezine issue:
/Does anybody know of another online site that we could list auctions on, because we have had it with being told or forced into having to accept ebay's paypal./
I have put together a little PDF that covers some other online places where you can sell your stuff:
It's a small report, but I've had a lot of my clients ask the same question as Suzanne, so I decided to put the information in a quick reference format.
Keep up the great job on the ezine. I love receiving my copy and have learned so much. Merry Christmas!
~~ eBay Trading Assistant ~~
Thanks so much for writing and the kind words! So glad u like the newsletter.
The report looks great! I'd like to post a link to it in my next newsletter if that's K with you (and my blog).
Garage sale and wholesaler expert Pat Bateman has put together a fabulous ebook about making regular income with yard sales, finding wholesale goods to sell, using drop shippers, and more. Right now I'm offering it at a special preview price for $8.95. PayPal me at firstname.lastname@example.org and you will receive the ebook via email, usually within hours.
Succeed as an eBay Affiliate:
Build A Niche Store (BANS) is a store / website development platform which enables you to create content-based sites that generate income through the eBay affiliate programs.
Flip to Start Us Off the Year
I mentioned before we only have one flip to show this issue...reminder for everyone to send flips to me for the next contest! I have vintage eBay swag and more paperback books about eBay to give away.
Read on for Dee's find:
How goes it? Got a question for ya and a couple of flips I recently had.
Ok...question....I read in your new ebook (yup read it! great!) that you took French. I have two pictures that I bought at a Salvation Army Store one time that have drawings of butterflies, and all the words are in what I think is French. I would like to know who the artist is and what the name of butterflies are and if it is worth anything. I might sell if worth something...if not I will keep. I would like to paint the frame if I keep but don't want to do this till I know what I have...lol. If you could help me I would be grateful!
Ok....here are my flips. Both items came from my dad's collection so I don't know what he paid for them. Most likely he bought them in box lots because that is what he usually did. He went to auctions all the time while I was growing up and sometimes I would go along. This is where I get my love for auctions and box lots...lol. I his early years, he never paid much for anything, later he did buy more collectible stuff. Anyway...here they are...
First one is a Maytag wrench. I had two of them not realizing the size of hole was different. Listed both for starting bid of $8.99. One didn't sell so I put it in my store and it just sold for $5.00 here is item number on eBay...270312104346.
The other start getting hits and bids and I was pleasantly surprised the it had 6 bidders with 16 bids and sold for...drum roll please.....103.70!!!
Who knew!?!? Here is item number....270308368890. The ONLY thing different was the size of the center hole. I sold some of his other wrenchs and got some good prices. Others are now in my store. So keep your eyes open for old wrenches with company names on them. Ya just never know!
[Dee's wrench, above, which closed at $103.70 on eBay with 16 bids.]
Second flip is an old catalog...which I know are good sellers. You have pointed this out to your newsletter readers. I started this one low ($5.99) cause it was in really rough shape...didnt figure it would sell at all, but gave it a shot. Sooooooo glad I did. It is a Heller Allen Catalog of engines and pumps. It got 11 bids with 5 bidders. It finally sold for....drum roll again please.....$91.00! And it was in bad shape!!! WOW! Here is the item number - 270307880405. Both of these items were listed and sold in Dec.
I have a ton more stuff of his to get listed...and then a ton of my stuff. Just listed some items for my husbands aunt...hope they do well.
Please let me know if ya can translate for me. I would like pics I can do that too...thanks in advance...
How goes? You've been doing really well it sounds!
Wow...that wrench is so cool...who woulda thought it would be the size of the hole that would matter but with tools you never know. What an interesting-looking wrench too..I've never seen that.
Would love to use those in the next contest..thanks! Also be happy to translate (or attempt to translate) the French words..lol. Send 'em on, or pix, or whatever u like. :)
That catalog example is amazing too, Whenever I see an old catalog I snap it up bec. you just never know. They're also just fun slices of history.
Thx again Dee for being such an amazing newsletter supporter and reader...send on the French!
Happy New Yr.,
Entrants all, pls. email me at email@example.com with your USnail address. :-)
Next issue we'll have more fabulous prizes! So mail in those entries.
What's the PERFECT eBay product? Learn How To Make Money with information products on ebay.
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[For more writing and photos throughout the month, check out Julia's bidbits blog at http://www.bidbits,net ]
"Selling on 'The River': Hedging Your Bets on Amazon"
Selling on "The River"
Between eBay and amazon, you're looking at over 100 million visitors per month. Why not harness the power of both?
At $29.97, I think it's a good value. And you also get:
- "25 Things eBay Sellers Must Know about Selling on Amazon" and
- SPECIAL BONUS - "How to Scout for Top Sellers with Your Cell Phone."
SUBSCRIBE TO BOOKTHINK'S QUARTERLY MARKET REPORT OF COMMON, PROFITABLE BOOKS.
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The eBay Seller's Guide to Finding Profitable Hidden Bargains at Garage Sales
Find out here.
Would you like your own fully customisable ebook website pulling in profits day after day, month after month, year after year, complete with video tutorials showing you EXACTLY how to get set up and running? Find out here.
That's it for this issue. Until next time! - Julia
Questions about My eBooks Ordering
You can certainly purchase from me directly, as can anyone. Most of my ebooks are now available via the website's bookstore at www.yardsalers.net/bookstore. Any others you have questions about, all you have to do is email me and let me know which ebook(s) you want, if you are a subscriber and thus eligible for the discount, and then PayPal me to my PayPal id at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'll be tweaking and updating the ebooks page on my web site soon.
Do you have a Flip of the Week? I'd love to hear about it! Email me at email@example.com and let me know.
Nonfiction Books that Sell for $50 - $250 on eBay:
I am always open to reader articles, so if you want to write about something relating to yard sale-ing and eBaying, just flag me down! I will of course give you credit, using your eBay ID, web site, or any other contact
eBooks by Julia L. Wilkinson:
[All my ebooks are offered at 1/2 price from their regular prices to the subscribers of this newsletter. If interested in any of them, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.]
- How to Spot Fakes: email me!
Blogs, Blogs, and More Blogs
Check out My amazon.com Author Blog
Those of you who just can't get enough of my writing (are there any of you?) will be happy to know I now have a new blog on amazon.com. Amazon.com has created an "author blog" tool for authors to...well, blog. You'll see it if you bring up either of my books on the amazon site, but for good measure, it's at: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1593270550. (Scroll down to "amazonConnect").
My TypePad Blog, "Bidbits"
You can also check out my typepad blog, "bidbits": bidbits
Do you have your copy of Julia's book, eBay Top 100 Simplified Tips & Tricks?
It's available on amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com. If you do want to order the book, I'd appreciate if you'd support Yard Salers and
eBayers by using my affiliate link below.
Copyright 2009 Wilkinson LLC
Thank you for subscribing to Yard Salers. Yard Salers email newsletter may be freely distributed in its entirety, so please pass it on. You may reprint any of the articles in this newsletter for any purpose as long as no portion of the article is modified without permission, and this tagline is included:
Yard Salers, www.yardsalers.net
Publisher, Julia Wilkinson, author of the award-winning "eBay Price Guide." and "What Sells on eBay for What"
No part of this publication may be reproduced or stored in a retrieval system, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the publisher. Yard Salers makes diligent efforts to obtain accurate and timely information. However, Yard Salers disclaims any liability to any party for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions in Yard Salers, whether or not such errors or omissions result from negligence, accident or any other cause.