Tuesday, October 6, 2009

E-bay the CityMomma/CountryMomma Way

I think I mentioned that I finally got my act together and started selling my "big girl" clothes on e-bay, one piece at a time. It's not the most efficient way to clean out one's closet but it's a little more lucrative than taking it all to the Goodwill and when you actually have to replace the clothes you're getting rid of, any extra bit of money helps.

I'm not sure that I'm going about it the best way so I'm open to any e-bay suggestions that anyone out there might have. Here's what I basically do... I gather up items that I think will be appropriate for this time of year, a large amount at a time. I photograph them and upload the pictures to my computer, (I find the photographing to be the most time consuming aspect of this process.) I then list them when ever I have a few minutes here and there, usually about four or five at a time. My theory is that as long as I have items listed and especially if I have "watchers" or bidders that they'll take a look at my other items and possibly find an interest in them too. I start my prices at about $3 or $4 for a top, $5 to $6 for pants and maybe a little higher for stuff like sweaters, suits, jackets or dresses. My shipping costs are approximately $6 to $7 and I have a shipping discount if people buy more than one item. Most of my items end up selling right around the prices I have listed, maybe a teeny bit more. I'd love to get more but that isn't really happening. I can't complain though, I think it's going pretty well. I have bags and bags and bins and bins of clothing that could be sold and I'm also contemplating selling some baby clothing so this is a process that could go on for a while. I will say the e-bay learning process has been fun and addicting!

Any ideas anyone? My e-bay name is CarenannC so if you want to check out my listings or want to give me any feedback. Please go and check them out. I usually sell individual items but I'm not against lots and did have a bit of success with one lot I sold so I might try that out again too. I'm a little unsure about relisting items or what I should do if items don't sell so I'll take advice on that too. Help me out here people! I'm open to all e-bay suggestions. Thanks!


Jennifer H. said...

Hi, Caren! Definitely try the lots of clothing. I think people don't really want to pay $6-7 shipping for one shirt. I think to ship 3 shirts would be about $6-7. Check that out so you wouldn't be losing money. This was helpful for me, you can buy a shipping scale on e-bay. It wasn't expensive. Keep your starting bids kind of low, so people want to jump in. You want more bids to drive up the price, of course!! Experiment, lady! It doesn't seem like a lot of money you're making on one item, but it does add it up. Also, any money you can make on clothes is good!! Most times we usually give clothes away. Hope that helps!!

Darlene said...

Hi Caren,

I used to sell Lexi's outgrown clothes on e-bay ALL the time. I don't anymore because of all of the costs (e-bay & paypal) and the shipping prices. I now just put her stuff in a HUGE children's consignment sale that is twice a year.

I agree with the shipping scale so you can get a more accurate price on shipping. I still look on e-bay and occasionally buy, but not when the shipping prices seem high. I also used to buy a box of Tyvek envelopes (rip and moisture resistant) and put tops, shorts (smaller things) in that for cheaper shipping and never had ANY problems with that.

If I had several things (a lot) I would actually package them and go to my post office and pick somewhere across the states for the highest shipping price it might be, and then let them know in my e-bay post if I was more than $1.00 over on shipping I would refund it to them. That lets people know you are not trying to make any money on shipping. To me it also got really hard when it stopped just being a flat rate for the weight and they charge different prices for different areas. Of course, many times the same person would win multiple items and I would stuff them all in the box to pay the cheapest flat shipping rate.

I'll go check you out on e-bay & see what you have.♥

Caren said...

Thanks Ladies! Those are helpful tips! I use the Priority Mail Tyvek envelopes, they're free at the post office and most things ship for around $5 or $6 with them. It's a little bit more than not using priority shipping but because the envelope is free, I figure it's all evening out because the envelopes Ive priced are about $1.50 a piece. I'll work on getting some "Lots" together for my next listings.