Thursday, December 27, 2012

Learn To Make Your Own Inventory

If you are thinking of expanding the inventory you offer, you may not have to look far. You may have sourced inventory in the past but there is an alternative. Maybe making your own inventory is the way to go.

This could be a great option if you are in a remote location from the stores where you usually source your items. Maybe the weather is keeping you close to home or creating items is a way for you to wind down. Either way the outcome could help you increase your inventory.

If you are thinking this is a good idea but do not know what to make or how to make it, you should take a look at Crafty is a directory of crafting classes you can attend online. The site offers classes on everything from knitting and crocheting to cake decorating and weaving. For the experienced, crafter the site offers projects and patterns to help you find new items to make.

Once you have your items, you could use them as gifts or sell them on sites like,, or Craftsy is currently offering free mini-workshops. Click here to see a list of the free classes.

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Monday, December 17, 2012

Be Safe While Sourcing

In the recent days, I have seen reports of some sellers becoming victims of theft while out shopping during this holiday season. While it is a great time for finding bargains and stocking up on inventory, it is also a time when others may be looking for people to victimize. Here are a few tips to remember while out and about, not only during the holiday shopping season but every day:

• Shop during daylight hours whenever possible. If you must shop at night, go with a friend or family member.
• Dress casually and comfortably.
• Avoid wearing expensive jewelry.
• Do not carry a purse or wallet, if possible.
• Always carry your driver's license or identification along with necessary cash, checks and/or a credit card you expect to use.
• Even though you are rushed and thinking about a thousand things, stay alert to your surroundings.
• Avoid carrying large amounts of cash.
• Pay for purchases with a check or credit card when possible.
• Keep cash in your front pocket.
• Notify the credit card issuer immediately if your credit card is lost, stolen or misused.
• Keep a record of all of your credit card numbers in a safe place at home.
• Be extra careful if you do carry a wallet or purse.
• Avoid overloading yourself with packages. It is important to have clear visibility and freedom of motion to avoid mishaps.
• If you take packages to the car, move your vehicle. A thief could be watching and may break into your vehicle when you return to the store.
• Place items in your trunk before you get to your destination. Don’t put your packages in the trunk after you arrive because someone could be watching.
• Do not leave small electronics or personal items visible in your car. This includes money (even loose change), credit cards, cell phones, purses and GPS Units. Police advise you to remove the GPS unit and if necessary, take it with you. That includes even the suction cup, if that can be removed.
• Beware of strangers approaching you for any reason. At this time of year, con-artists may try various methods of distracting you with the intention of taking your money or belongings.
• Report any suspicious behavior.

Hopefully these tips will help keep you safe during your shopping trips. Feel free to add other tips you may have by leaving a comment below.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

You Can Sell On Etsy Even If You Are Not Into Crafting

Image courtesy of the DaniKfashion Etsy Shop

As the Christmas shipping season starts to reach its peak, it is time to start thinking about next year. What plans are you making to build your business? If you are looking for a new place to sell the items you source at thrift stores or if you make items to sell, Etsy is a site you should consider if you are not already using it.

The Etsy marketplace is growing in leaps and bounds. Sellers have reported a large increase in sales. Those that have been around for a year or more have reported that sales have more than doubled.

Etsy is a fantastic community of buyers and sellers. At first glance, the website looks more like an online store than a community made up of many sellers. This more familiar feel is appealing to online shoppers. Maneuvering around Etsy is straightforward; sellers can showcase their items and are sure to attract the right buyers. The set up of Etsy seems to be more conducive to ensuring that sales are accurate. What is meant by this is buyers get a true picture and description of what they are purchasing. Sometimes other online sales communities do not give as clear a picture.

As a seller, you might wonder if Etsy will draw enough buyers. The proof is in the statistics and the news is great! Small businesses and individuals who sell on Etsy are boasting about their sales. With the holiday season upon us, Etsy is ready and has distinct holiday showcases in place. Buyers are sure to get original, in many cases handmade, gift items for the holidays.

As you review how you sell and where you sell, remember Etsy. Even if you do not make handmade items to sell on Etsy, remember that those crafters need supplies as well. From old sweaters to torn jeans or toilet paper rolls to old books, crafters often use uncommon items for their creations. Take a look around Etsy to see what other items could be sold to this creative bunch.

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Monday, December 3, 2012

Apple Opens eBay Store... Maybe

It appears that tech company Apple has joined the ranks of other retailers, like Toys R’ Us, who use eBay as a retail marketplace. A few weeks ago, a new eBay seller began selling refurbished (factory repaired) Apple products on eBay. The Apple-focused website believed the seller is indeed Apple. The seller has basically no established profile or identity. Its corporate information is hidden, the listings do not show where the items are coming from, and the seller has a 99.7% rating.

What clues convinced 9to5Mac the seller is Apple? The products offered in the listings have the same price as those listed. The items also have the same warranties and conditions as the products sold on the Apple website:

• Full one-year warranty
• Returned to like-new condition
• iPads/iPods include a new battery
• Received complete burn-in testing
• Original OS re-installed
• Repackaged with manual and cable
• Final quality inspection by Apple

9to5Mac has reached out to Apple to confirm but has not received a reply.

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