Author Topic: We pulled the trigger....  (Read 2324 times)

SC93

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We pulled the trigger....
« on: August 18, 2017, 12:57:35 PM »
We bought a truck load of window a/c units. They are suppose to be delivered tomorrow. Half 6000 BTU and half 8000 BTU. I hope they sell fast. We've never sold window units before. Wish me luck. :)

simone

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2017, 01:08:29 PM »
which kind of market research have you done? what did lead you to choose AC units?

SC93

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2017, 11:08:52 PM »
After typing this, it sounds like I'm kinda being a smart (*) but I really am not meaning for it to sound like that. I truly think you asked 2 good questions.

Well, having owned several businesses, I've done probably almost no market research on any of them and almost all were a success and one made me LOTS os profit. Others could have done better but the way I am, if I start a business, even if it is going well, if I don't like it, I sell it. Roll with it..... market research doesn't really tell ME anything about what I'd be doing. A person can research for 10 years and it won't really determine a thing except that he/she wasted 10 years not making money. I've never really believed in the phrase 'projected sales'. I can sell. It doesn't matter if it is a product or a service, a 'good' salesperson is a salesperson.

The thing that lead me to a/c units was that the warehouse where I buy my washers and dryers from told me about a deal. I looked them up and the store price is just over 3x of what I can buy them for. So... we did it. lol I think we can sell them within a month but even if we have to hold some until next summer, they will eventually sell. Another thing is that I like to have a lot of the same thing to sell. If for example I have 1 a/c unit I can't really advertise it much because once it is sold, I don't have any more. And it wouldn't be worth spending any advertising dollars for just 1 or even 10 units. But if I have 250 of them, I can use all my marketing ability and have many different avenues of selling them. Once I retired from my main business of 19 years I was going to start selling small profit items. Then one day I was watching Craigslist Hunter and he said something that caught my attention. He said I could either sell 20 small profit item at for example $5 profit or 1 big profit item at $100 profit. So I chose the higher profit items.

I am more than open to this post leading in to conversations about selling things.

simone

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2017, 12:31:58 PM »
It seems you already are in the business, since you sell washers already. So it appears you already have a channel to do that.

I'm looking at a way to find a product to sell. Ideally buy it in one market, sell it in another. US to Europe, China to Europe, Europe to Switzerland. I'm based in Switzerland with roots in Italy. Any ideas?

SC93

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2017, 01:04:55 PM »
I have no clue how country to country sales works. The guys on the coasts of the US do send used washers and dryers to other countries but I have no idea what it would entail. Why not sell in your own country?

ender

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2017, 02:44:41 PM »
I looked them up and the store price is just over 3x of what I can buy them for.

AC units are almost continuously on a significant sale, somewhere.

SC93

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2017, 03:29:46 PM »
So are washers and dryers yet people still pay me 3/4 for a used set of what they would pay for a new set. As a matter of fact, Saturday morning I sold an Amana washer for $350.... Home Depot sells them for $299. Amazing what people will pay me for things they can get for the same price or cheaper at the store.

simone

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2017, 07:15:37 AM »
SC93, are you selling on ebay/craigslist?

SC93

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #8 on: August 21, 2017, 01:12:00 PM »
Ebay wouldn't really work for something as big as a washer/dryer plus they have too many rules. The reason I started my 1st business back in the 90's was so I didn't have to follow the rules. I just don't get why people sell on places like Ebay & Amazon if their goal was to be free. I realize everything has a few rules but I even try to buck them as much as possible.

Most of my competitors sell on Craigslist and a few spend a few minutes on Facebook as well but they don't have a clue how FB works so it doesn't work for them at all. I'd do FB ads for this business but it would be way too much. No way could I keep up with the sales it would bring in for this type of business. Now we have a jewelry business and Jewelry + FB ads = $$$$.

I don't even tell my partner how I get our sales. While it is a simple way to sell, for some reason no one does it quite like I do. We have a website as well but I don't put much effort in to it so it doesn't bring us much reward. I have 3 other ways I'm going to start advertising soon. I love trying new ways but the problem is that we are so busy now I can hardly keep up.

This is my after retirement business so I just like to play around with it.

Are you wanting to sell on Ebay? Have you ever sold anything on Ebay before?

simone

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2017, 03:24:55 AM »
Are you wanting to sell on Ebay? Have you ever sold anything on Ebay before?

by profession, I "sell ideas", never serially sold anything physical in my life.

As a side business I buy run down apartments, renovate them on my own and then, using a real estate agent, sell them on the market. But again, it is the real estate agent who actually finds the client and get a cut from me and him. Turnaround time is usually 8 months, gain is usually 35% (after taxes).

Now, I'm desperately trying to find something to sell, ebay comes to mind, but I've never sold anything there

As I told you, I have easy access to Italy, Switzerland, and to Lithuania (lived there for a while). And I have this idea that trans country sales are more lucrative.

2Cent

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2017, 07:05:59 AM »
I figure there are 3 types of businesses you can run. Producing, Trading or Selling. If you produce you make money by increasing the value of your product. If you trade you make money by buying cheap and selling at market value. If you're a salesman you make money by selling above market value.

Seems like you're doing both Trading and Selling, which should be great for your margins. :)

bwall

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2017, 07:18:18 AM »
by profession, I "sell ideas", never serially sold anything physical in my life.

As a side business I buy run down apartments, renovate them on my own and then, using a real estate agent, sell them on the market. But again, it is the real estate agent who actually finds the client and get a cut from me and him. Turnaround time is usually 8 months, gain is usually 35% (after taxes).

Now, I'm desperately trying to find something to sell, ebay comes to mind, but I've never sold anything there

As I told you, I have easy access to Italy, Switzerland, and to Lithuania (lived there for a while). And I have this idea that trans country sales are more lucrative.

Selling across borders is more lucrative. But, it is hard to find potential arbitrage products. If you want to increase your margins (although 35% is pretty darn good), I would suggest selling your renovated apartments yourself. It's not that hard--it's primarily placing the advertisement and showing the apartment. The buyers know what they want (and don't want) and either the apartment works or it doesn't.

You've already done all the hard work yourself. Why not also enjoy the commission as well? You can also use the feedback from the potential clients (buyers as well as non-buyers) as ideas for future renovations.

Or are you a typical pessimistic European who views sales as 'dishonest' work? ;)

SC93

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #12 on: August 22, 2017, 12:24:08 PM »
I'm not much help on selling across boarders. I have enough trouble with the dumbass Americans :)

simone

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2017, 05:35:54 AM »
You've already done all the hard work yourself. Why not also enjoy the commission as well? You can also use the feedback from the potential clients (buyers as well as non-buyers) as ideas for future renovations.

Or are you a typical pessimistic European who views sales as 'dishonest' work? ;)

ja, kind of...yes. I still consider "selling" something impure.

I have overcome this by developing tools which allows me to find Information asymmetries in the housing markets unfortunately I live 500km from the place I own apartments in, this makes it impossible for me to take care of the sale aspect of it.

LovinPSDs

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #14 on: September 07, 2017, 11:59:01 AM »

I am more than open to this post leading in to conversations about selling things.

So I'm very intrigued by this in general... Can you give me the very basic view of your approach? 

Small store front, warehouse, barn or garage?
Online sales only?
CL/FB as many locations?
Interested in where you find bulk purchasing prices as well.

Seems like a fun endeavor really....

SC93

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #15 on: September 07, 2017, 09:53:02 PM »
By the way..... no a/c units left.

LovingPSDs, Are you just talking about washers and dryers or selling in general?

LovinPSDs

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #16 on: September 07, 2017, 10:40:37 PM »
I understand the general process, but low sell at market or near price. My real question is on what scale and how are you doing this? I mean is this a store front in your 2 car garage or something in between? Seems like you've been around the block for this type of selling.

Let's say a guy wanted to move some A/C units. My advice on where one would start? My version looks like putting a few pallets of A/C units in my garage and selling them via Craigslist/Facebook and other Avenues local. How far off is my approach from where you are? Honestly I love the idea, not sure exactly where one starts.

Nice work on moving all the units by the way!!! I love a little calculated risk that pays off!

bwall

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #17 on: September 08, 2017, 08:46:38 AM »
You've already done all the hard work yourself. Why not also enjoy the commission as well? You can also use the feedback from the potential clients (buyers as well as non-buyers) as ideas for future renovations.

Or are you a typical pessimistic European who views sales as 'dishonest' work? ;)

ja, kind of...yes. I still consider "selling" something impure.

I have overcome this by developing tools which allows me to find Information asymmetries in the housing markets unfortunately I live 500km from the place I own apartments in, this makes it impossible for me to take care of the sale aspect of it.

"Selling as impure." This was one thing about Europe (specially, Germany) that always fascinated me. People would buy a house with the plan to die there and leave it to their kids (or whoever). They'd rather rent the entire time than buy, live in it for 10-15 years, and sell. I couldn't quite tell if they were marrying the house, or buying it. :)

How can you find apartments 500 km away in Switzerland? Or are you buying in another country?

Northstar

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #18 on: September 16, 2017, 10:21:10 PM »
I started a business a few years ago selling returned sporting goods from major retailers, buying truckloads at a time at 10-15 cent on the dollar and selling doe 50-75 cent on the dollar. Took 50k to rent the storefront and buy all fixtures and inventory and just stocked the store, sold like wild fire. Made the 50 back in profit in a month, and another 150k that year and then sold the business as I had other businesses going at the same time. Buy low, sell high. Liquidation industry is a gold mine and Americans love consumerism, buy buy buy buy buy. That's all we know lol. Washers/ dryers/ AC units/ cars/ houses/     Doesn't matter someone will buy anything. I was selling used tennis Rackets, fishing poles, and tents making more than some lawyers. I don't know how country to country would work but some research should serve you well, also seeing it as impure? You're just offering s product, it's up to the consumer to make the decision to purchase it you're not twisting their arm so the decision is on them nothing impure about it !

SC93

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #19 on: September 17, 2017, 06:21:41 PM »
Northstar, There is this place up north that sells raw pallets. A person could get all they need to start for a little over $10k including delivery. Most of the time when you get a pallet of stuff, the pallet has been gone through and all the good stuff has been removed. Raw pallets have all the good stuff on them..... jewelry, computers, tv's..... everything. I'm sure there are places like this all over. If a person is interested, all they need to do is spend a few hours on the internet. Some key words might be raw pallets or blackrat pallets/ store returns. There are probably other key words but I'm not a pallet reseller although I could see it happening in a few years for me.

Northstar

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Re: We pulled the trigger....
« Reply #20 on: September 18, 2017, 08:45:44 PM »
SC93 oh yeah there are a TON of shady resellers out there that cherry pick then pass the junk on to the customer, I went above them and would purchase entire truck loads of stores that were doing a reset or sometimes just returns all depending on how easy it was to get the stuff and the price. Most of my trucks were totally manifested came in packed tight and nice in big gaylord boxes. I loved it honestly just had to many irons in the fire at the time. But I could see myself back in that game one day, what I would really like to get into is the the game the guy I was buying from had nailed down, if he had a computer he could work from anywhere. Never touched the items just buying low selling high, something to think about lol. But it's such a grey area in the market no one likes to talk about their connections and contacts so it's hard to navigate the secondary market like that. But with some digging it's doable.