Today's post is contributed by fellow seller Bruce Jeansonne, who runs the eBay store US Camo Etc. Bruce has close to 1,000 listings in his eBay store and has extensive experience working with wholesalers where he obtains his eBay inventory. Bruce does a fantastic business on eBay - selling over 900 items a month. He is a true success story! (Take a look at his store here.)
Successfully selling of new items on eBay or any other online avenue usually means finding and building a relationship with wholesalers. Finding the right wholesaler for your business can put you on a path to successful sales and profits or lots of work with little payoff.
Do a quick search of the web and you’ll find a huge number of “wholesalers” ready to set up an account for you. Many of these are not true wholesalers but re-sellers that deal in bulk quantities. These types of re-sellers usually do not require the buyer to present a copy of their business state tax sales license (which you should have to stay in compliance with state laws). A few may require an annual fee to purchase from them. These re-sellers purchase directly from “real” wholesalers and then sell to others. Thus the price one pays for product from these types of resellers is more than actual wholesale but less than retail. Profit margins for items sold in an online store purchasing from this type of supplier tend to be very small.
Purchasing from a reseller may be a good option if you want to test the waters on selling new items. It’s usually quicker and easier to set up an account and though you won’t make the better margins, if you find that this type of selling is not for you… easy in and easy out. You didn’t have to spend much to get a few items and most resellers will have a greater variety of merchandise… so start with merchandise you can use yourself, if you decide you do not want to continue selling at the least you can make use your own products.
In order to maximize profits, one should purchase from a true wholesaler. Most, if not all, wholesalers will require you to fax or mail a copy of your state sales tax license in order to set up an account. Once an account is opened for your business, it’s time to place an order. Depending on the wholesaler, you may be required to make a first purchase of a minimum amount… possibly as little as $500 or as much as $1,500 or more depending on the wholesaler and the type of product you are purchasing. Usually after the first purchase, order minimums will $100-$200 or an extra fee or percentage will be added to your total. This minimum and/or fee is to help offset expenses dealing in small amounts of items. Wholesalers are in business to sell in quantity so small orders typically will not be profitable for them, thus the minimums. In addition, a minimum annual amount may be required in order for your account to stay active.
Good wholesalers love to see a business grow and tend to be more helpful with questions and customer service than resellers. Many specialize in specific lines of products and usually offer superior knowledge of their product line.
Both selling options can work together to get you started in selling SUCCESSFULLY online. Happy Selling!
You can chat with Bruce on my Facebook group where he is a regular contributor and gives great advice to both new and experienced sellers.
Click here for a list of 395 eBay friendly wholesalers along with 5 important facts for choosing profitable wholesale products to sell on eBay.