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picking

Featured

Bargain Bandit Tuesday 1/15/2013

Today is Tuesday and that means it’s time for my Bargain Bandit episode. Every week, I share information about some of my recent sales, show off some favorite picks, and shout out to fellow you-

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Bargain Bandit Tuesday 1/15/2013

Games You Should Pick # 7: Pirates of th

Hi everyone! I thought since board games are my specialty, I would do a Game of the Week feature where I talk about a different board game and why you should be picking it up. We’ll call this fe

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Games You Should Pick # 7: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest Pirates Dice Game

YouTube Round-up 1-5-13 to 1-11-13

In this weekly feature, we’ll post links to various videos on YouTube that were posted in the past week. These videos may be helpful to pickers just starting out or to seasoned veterans. Or they

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YouTube Round-up 1-5-13 to 1-11-13

Highlighted eBay Post: Clue (1963)

In this weekly feature, which will be posted every Thursday, I will talk about a current listing of mine. I’ll explain why it’s a good pick-up and why it might still be for sale on eBay in

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Highlighted eBay Post: Clue (1963)

How-To Wednesdays: Checking Board Games

Every Wednesday, we’ll do a short how-to where we’ll tackle a topic in the reselling space and try to give clarity on it. eBay and other selling platforms, as well as picking itself, can b

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How-To Wednesdays: Checking Board Games for Completeness

Highlighted eBay Post: Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone Levitating Challenge

9
by on December 20, 2012 at 6:41 pm

In this weekly feature, which will be posted every Thursday, I will talk about a current listing of mine. I’ll explain why it’s a good pick-up and why it might still be for sale on eBay in an attempt to help other people understand the process of selling on eBay and the items I pick up. Please comment and let me know what you think!

Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone Levitating Challenge

Harry Potter Levitating Game (1) Harry Potter Levitating Game (2) Harry Potter Levitating Game (3) Harry Potter Levitating Game (4)

Harry Potter items are one of those ‘always collectible’ types of products. This is a copy of Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone Levitating Challenge. A player sets up an obstacle course and then attempts to get the ball through it, which is levitating in the air thanks to blowing air. The player controls how much air is blowing at any time, so the objective is to raise and lower it accurately, without dropping it altogether or running into an obstacle.

This item is not overly popular, but at the same time, there aren’t a whole lot of them for sale on eBay. The problem with selling this is that, even though Harry Potter items are still very collectible, this item is not one that is in great demand. Not many were bought and sold at the time this item was released, mainly because the gimmick doesn’t appeal to many people, especially collectors. New, unopened ones come up on eBay periodically and the price point is low, no matter if it’s new or opened.

This copy of the game is in good condition. The game has been tested and works well. It is complete, including the original instructions. The box has some tape damage, shelf wear and creasing. There was a battery acid leak but it doesn’t affect the ability of the game to function and has been cleaned up thoroughly, although I disclose this on the listing. Everything else in the game is in fantastic condition.

The reason this copy of the game has not sold yet is likely for two reasons. First, demand is very low on this item. Second, with demand being so low, people are more likely to buy a copy that hasn’t had a battery acid leak or has a box in better condition. I may have to lower my price point even more than it already is to actually sell it. Right now, I have it listed for $10.99 plus shipping. It’s difficult to lower it any more, because I did pay a pretty penny for this item. Electronic games are always a risk unless you are going to open the battery section on site, because leaks happen and it can definitely lower the value of an item.

If I do manage to sell it for $10.99 plus shipping, I’d be looking at about $5 profit on the item, because of what I paid for the item and fees I’ll be paying on the cost of shipping it.

Highlighted eBay Post Articles

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How-to Wednesdays: Keeping Track with Spreadsheets

10
by on December 19, 2012 at 10:37 pm

app.ht3Every Wednesday, we’ll do a short how-to where we’ll tackle a topic in the reselling space and try to give clarity on it. eBay and other selling platforms, as well as picking itself, can be daunting. If you have a topic you would like to see in the How-To Wednesday topic, please leave comments and we will try to add it to the schedule. Thanks for reading!

In The Gal Picker Show episode on 12/19/12, Tracey and I (Staci) talked about our respective spreadsheets that we use to keep track of our inventory and sales. Keeping track of inventory and sales is a very important part of picking for many reasons. First, it’s helpful to know how much money you are making. You don’t want to be in a position where you think you are making money, but in reality, are losing money. Keeping track of inventory and sales can help spot trends you might not otherwise see and also lets you know if some inventory items are better left on the tables and shelves, rather than being bought. Finally, but most importantly, keeping track of sales helps a great deal with tax and end-of-year income. The last thing anyone needs is the IRS coming after them for unreported income.

Recording my purchases and sales is part of my overall process. When I first get items in, I record my purchase price and purchase date in the spreadsheet. This is before any cleaning of the items takes place or pictures are taken. Recording all items, regardless of whether they end up being worth anything or not, is important, because even mistake purchases are part of the overhead in this business and you want to make sure every dime is tracked.

Once the item is recorded in the spreadsheet, I also periodically go through the for sale portion of the spreadsheet and mark whether the item is already listed on eBay and also move items that won’t be able to be sold, either because of condition issues, or because it’s simply not worth anything, to the not-to-be-sold sheet. This is part of housecleaning that needs to be done in order to make sure that the spreadsheets remain useful and up-to-date.

After an item is sold, the information about the sale needs to be recorded. This includes the sale price, the sale date, the shipping cost, eBay and PayPal fees (if any), and sales tax collected (if any.) This should all be recorded in a separate sheet that is refreshed each year.

In a separate sheet, it’s also a good idea to keep track of all overhead expenses, like the cost of boxes and shipping materials, promotional materials, and any other miscellaneous expenses. This will make doing taxes at the end of the year much easier, if you’ve already got the information handy! For your handy reference, here’s a blank version of the spreadsheet I use. It’s in Excel format:

DOWNLOAD MY SPREADSHEET

How-To Wednesdays Articles

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Games You Should Pick #3: Buffy the Vampire Slayer Board Game

13
by on December 17, 2012 at 8:03 pm

Hi everyone!

I thought since board games are my specialty, I would do a Game of the Week feature where I talk about a different board game and why you should be picking it up. We’ll call this feature Games You Should Pick. To make this interesting, I’m only going to talk about games I’ve actually managed to find and sell. There’s all kinds of games you should be looking out for, like Fireball Island and Dark Tower, but I haven’t managed to find either of those yet!

This week’s game is the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Board Game.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a very popular horror television series from the late 90s. It was a movie first, of course, but the movie didn’t come close to being great whereas the TV show is pretty amazing and has a huge cult following, still to this day. This board game was released in 2000. One player takes on the role of the evil characters, while everyone else becomes a good character from the show. Each side has an objective to reach and the first one to do so, wins. There are a few different scenarios that can be played.

This game is very much still in demand. Although the gameplay is a bit lacking, it’s very collectible. Even average condition games will sell quickly. The important thing is that the game is complete. Box condition matters for value, but no matter what the box condition is, Buffy games will always sell as long as they are complete.  A sealed copy of this game can easily go for $50. Mint but opened copies should sell well at the $40 mark. Games with condition issues, either with the box or with the playing pieces, or both, can go anywhere between $15 and $30. Once again, I do not suggest ever selling this at auction, because while the demand is greater for this than other games, it’s still not high enough to warrant an auction.

I have sold two copies of this game. I found both of these games at thrift stores. The first one I sold to someone in Australia for $19.99 plus shipping. It wasn’t in the best of condition and the game pieces were very well played with. The second one sold domestically for $24.99 plus shipping. It was in better condition, although it still had some issues that prevented it from being in excellent condition. The interior contents were in better condition with the second one. Both of these games sold quickly, which is definitely the nice thing about this title and why it’s a great pick-up.

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Games You Should Pick Articles

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YouTube Round-Up 12-8-12 to 12-14-12

0
by on December 14, 2012 at 11:43 pm

In this weekly feature, we’ll post links to various videos on YouTube that were posted in the past week. These videos may be helpful to pickers just starting out or to seasoned veterans. Or they just may be very entertaining. If you want to know who you should be watching on YouTube, this is a great list to start you out! We’ll be posting it every Friday for the week prior. If there are multiple videos on the person’s channel this week, we are linking only one, so be sure to subscribe to anyone you find interesting and check out the rest of their videos!

Must Watch Video of the Week

Avoiding eBay fees YoutubeMarket lets get this ball rolling + 1 to Silverpicker +1 to Spokanepickers – thecollegepicker
Note: I would not advise using the gift method because this could jeopardize your PayPal account. However, there is a lot of conversation happening among the YouTube community that was begun by this video about how to make YouTube a really great selling platform, so because of this, it’s our video of the week.

Haul & Sales Videos

Massive Goodwill Haul With Puzz3d, Baseball Gloves, Mortal Kombat, Umbrella StandPickingProfits
My Picks to go on eBay, including a PRADA shirt that just sold for $75.00 ! ! !  – garagesalervaughn
Retro Retail: Haul video, Lee Reloading Equipment, Clothes, Introducing Sam to the communityRetroRetail
Update Video: Holiday Sales, Ebay & Amazon, Hauls, and A Special Appearance by Max the Pug! – annabellasgiftshop
Nice Sm. CHRISTMAS HAUL FINDS, by The California Picker on California Pickin CaliforniaPickin
Sales Update #2geminigal07
LATEST AUCTION HAUL VIRTUAL PICKING AND THRIFT STORE HAUL.. SHIRTS AND MUGS…. – BrandNewPicker
Make Easy Money – The finds from last weekend’s ride along – BONAFIDE HUSTLER – Bonafide Hustler
Ebay Sale Update Video – $8 turned into $299 – terminal99
12/12/12 Haul video and some shout outs William Stoner
Trailer Finds #3 Farm Manuals, Spice Tins, Wedgwood & Gamesdakotatreasurehunter
We rant, shoutout, haul, pickups, ebay, chit chat – somelikeitused
SIDE OF THE ROAD (Danby Silhouette Bottle Built-in Wine Cellar) FIND $$$ juan santana
Antique Booth Talk & Answering questions and commentsTheWarwickWarrior
Sales report 12 10 – Cripple Picker
Goodwill Haul, Tiffany & Co, Tickle Me Elmo, Djembe, Boots, Canon, etc. – Resale Renegade  – ResaleRenegade
Picking haul 12-08-12 Micheal Bomberger
This weeks arrivals ebay / thrift store / marktplaats – thewarlord1944
Thrift Hunter Garage Sale Finds Watch Knife Gold Sterling Estate YardThrift Hunter
Fish Tank Fever – A Pet Store Pickup Video – SpokanePickers
A&C TRIO | Vintage Game Haul #14 – antiquesandcollectab
Childhood Flashback PickingPolictical Picker
Thrift Store Haul : LEGO Duplo, Mario Bros,Ties and Christmas Poohs !Buytosellpicker
$1 to 50K Ebay/Picker Challenge: Episode 171dollarto50k

Helpful Videos

PICKING 101HUDSONVALLEYPICKER
Trash Talk & Treasures” with Brent & Wally Episode 16 SPECIAL ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSION!!!!!ounitproductions
Morning Cup of Joe with GlobalVoodoo Episode 6 – globalvoodoo
Trade Deals at the Junk Yard? Do you Swap Items at the Scrap Yard? Discussion Question HIGHLIGHTKennyChumsky
Cyber Hoarding! The New Wave of OCD collecting! PINTEREST the next dimension for Hoarders!hoardermart

Entertaining and Interesting Videos

SEXUAL INNUENDOS FROM YOUTUBE PICKERS Pt. 2….ENJOY!!!yogipicker (Warning, MA Content ;))
Contest and More! – ThePickerGoose
PNN 9 – theyankeepicker
FINDING HOT ITEMS FOR EBAY! FIND A VEIN! START A STREAK!!  – thevintagefetcher
The Gal Picker Show w/ Tracey & Staci (12 12 2012) TheGalPickerShow

krausehouseofcards YouTube Channel Videos

On the Road with Staci (12/9/12) Ep. 4 – A Couple of Auctions
Auction Haul – 12/9/12
The Bargain Bandit 12/11/2012 – Y1, E27 (Yard Sales to eBay)
On the Road with Staci (12/14/12) Ep. 5 – Thrift City Visit

Previous YouTube Round-Ups

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How-To Wednesdays: Shipping Weight

15
by on December 12, 2012 at 10:55 pm

Every Wednesday, we’ll do a short how-to where we’ll tackle a topic in the reselling space and try to give clarity on it. eBay and other selling platforms, as well as picking itself, can be daunting. If you have a topic you would like to see in the How-To Wednesday topic, please leave comments and we will try to add it to the schedule. Thanks for reading!

usps-logoCalculating the shipping weight of an item is a very important part of maximizing profit and selling items responsibly on eBay. To do this, you will need a reliable scale. You can get them pretty cheap off of eBay. The scale I use is the Accuteck® All-In-One Series A-PT 50 Digital Postal Scale Silver. This scale weights items up to 50 lbs. It is accurate to .1 oz up to 25 lbs, and .2 oz from 25 to 50 lbs. I bought this scale from eBay seller ever*hotbuy, who I would highly recommend for scales. He has smaller and bigger weight scales too, so check him out, if you are in the market for a scale.

Now that you have a scale, what next?

You will need to have an idea of what the SHIPPING weight of an item is. This is the weight of the item plus the box, packing material, and any other items you may place in the box with it. With some items, you’ll get a feel for this. For example, coffee mugs are almost always going to be 2 lbs. Yahtzee Handheld games will be around 13 ounces, making them first class mail items. With other items, you may have to do some math. If you have a standard sized board game that weighs 2 lbs 4 ounces, this is probably going to be 4 pounds shipped. That is because a box that fits a board game is going to weigh at least 12 ounces and when you add in packing materials so the board game doesn’t get damaged during the shipping, you will be well over 3 lbs. My safe bet with board games is to always add a full pound to the weight of the item, then round up to figure out my shipping weight. If it’s a really oversized board game, the box itself will weigh over a pound. Understanding the weight if boxes is very important, so when you get a box you will use regularly, you should weigh it and make a note of it for your future use.

Once you know an item’s shipping weight, it can be very easy to handle the shipping methods on eBay. If you do fixed price shipping, you will be able to estimate the furthest distance you may have to ship, or perhaps choose an average distance, to account for people in varying distances. I do calculated shipping most of the time, and I find this is the fairest method, both to the buyers and to myself. People who live close by will not pay as much shipping, and as a result, I do sell a lot of items to people in the same state as me. People far away will pay a real shipping cost of what it will be to send to them, which is great for me, because then I’m not losing money because of the cost of shipping.

Free shipping can be thought of like fixed price. Take the average price (or the highest price) of shipping the item and add it to the cost of the item. Be very careful not to underestimate shipping when offering free shipping, because you don’t want to end up with less profit than you planned. Also, be very, very careful with free shipping on board games. If you are selling them at an auction, remember that most board games are going to cost around $10 to ship, so you should never start out an auction for less than $15 if you are including free shipping, or you will be losing money on this item if multiple people don’t bid on it. Most board games will not have a big demand, so auctions are always risky.

How-To Wednesdays Articles

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YouTube Round-Up (12/1 – 12/7/2012)

11
by on December 7, 2012 at 8:40 pm

In this weekly feature, we’ll post links to various videos on YouTube that were posted in the past week. These videos may be helpful to pickers just starting out or to seasoned veterans. Or they just may be very entertaining. If you want to know who you should be watching on YouTube, this is a great list to start you out! We’ll be posting it every Friday for the week prior. If there are multiple videos on the person’s channel this week, we are linking only one, so be sure to subscribe to anyone you find interesting and check out the rest of their videos!

Must Watch Video of the Week

“Trash Talk & Treasures” with Brent & Wally Episode 15 (with Ann from Annabella’s Gift Shop!) – ounitproductions

Haul & Sales Videos

Urban Diggers Thrifting Haul Vintage Toy How To Make Money at your Local Thrift Store – Urbandiggers
Nothing special video… Just some updates on CD purchases and Craigslist Meeting Tips – MikesCollection
Turning Yard Sale Finds into Profits!! ($4 into 90) – TheRev30
Estate Sale Pickups Resale Updates *Part 2* Making Money on Ebay – somelikeitused
Spokane Pickers Large Video Game Pickup – SpokanePickers
Found some old porcelain , navy uniform from the Netherlands and 2 old vinyl`s – thewarlord1944
Collectibles. Flea Market Garage Yard Estate Sale Finds Pick-Ups – 11/30/12 – 2ndhanddaisy
Yard Sale Trail 2012 November Sales Video – Brian Cook
SEMI-WEEKLY AUCTION HAUL I BOUGHT TOYS!! ANTIQUE CARPENTER PLANES AND MORE!! – BrandNewPicker
Bonafide Hustler Ride Along – Thrift, Garage Sales for Ebay and Craigslist – Bonafide Hustler
Space Style Coffee Table Sold – terminal99
Yard Sale Haul sell ebay money Fishing Bow Outdoors Equipment Hunting – ThePickerGoose
A&C TRIO | First eBay Item Listed!!! – antiquesandcollectab

Helpful Videos

One Way I Get Free Shipping Boxes – Resale Renegade – ResaleRenegade
Selling Coffee Mugs On Ebay: Why I Do It, What I Look For, How I List, and How I Ship! – annabellasgiftshop
4 things you need to start any eBay business! – thecollegepicker
How to take photos of Clothing to Sell online on eBay and more! – globalvoodoo
intro to storge unit buying – juan santana

Entertaining and Interesting Videos

Buying an Education; Rewards for not being Envious or Resentful! – Castleandattics
introduction.avi Cripplepicker introduction, and a couple of sales – Cripple Picker
Morning Discussion and Resale opportunity for you – TheWarwickWarrior
Sailing Your Vessel – theyankeepicker

krausehouseofcards YouTube Channel Videos

On the Road with The Bargain Bandit #1 11/30/12
On the Road with The Bargain Bandit #2 12/01/12
On the Road with Staci (12/2/12) Ep. 3 – Board Game Pick-up
The Bargain Bandit 12/04/2012 – Y1, E26 (Yard Sales to eBay)

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How-To Wednesdays: Do You Need an eBay Store?

9
by on December 5, 2012 at 11:12 pm

Every Wednesday, we’ll do a short how-to where we’ll tackle a topic in the reselling space and try to give clarity on it. eBay and other selling platforms, as well as picking itself, can be daunting. If you have a topic you would like to see in the How-To Wednesday topic, please leave comments and we will try to add it to the schedule. Thanks for reading!

Deciding whether to open an eBay store, and which store to open, can be tricky. eBay has attempted to make it easier by providing a calculator, which is extremely helpful and you should definitely check it out.

The questions you need to answer for yourself are these:

How many items will I be posting each month? At a certain threshold, getting an eBay store just makes sense, although sometimes, it may only be a savings for a few dollars. Knowing how many items you want to post in general will make it easier to determine if you need a store.

Will most of my items be auctions or fixed price, or a mix of both? With auction only listings, getting a store won’t make sense until you start posting about 100 auctions a month. At fixed price, the basic store (which is $15.95 a month) will start to be a little cheaper around 60 listings each month. Around 250 fixed price listings, the premium store ($49.95 a month) becomes more cost efficient. If you are only ever doing auctions, and rarely do fixed price listings, you will probably never need anything more than the basic store.

How many of my items will actually sell each month? We can list all we want, but many times, items do not sell the first or even second time we list them. One thing you will need to figure out is how many items you will expect to sell every month. If you expect to sell around 50% of your items at auction, and are not listing that many (under 100), staying with the free store is probably the best. If you only sell things you are certain will sell, and post about between 50 to 100 auctions, a basic store might be better, because eBay does give a discount off of final value fees with auctions with the basic store.

Another thing to keep in mind, with all these questions, is that if you get a store, you lose out on the free promotions eBay does all the time. They rarely do a promotion for eBay store subscribers, and the ones they do have for stores are generally not useful to all eBay sellers. eBay does a lot of promotions allowing non-store subscribers to list as many items as they want for free, either at auction or fixed price. So even if you do list over 100 auctions and 50 fixed price items a month, but are selling items that may not sell well, an eBay store may still not be a good idea, since you won’t be getting enough sales to make the extra cost worth it.

There is another advantage to an eBay store, and that is the eBay storefront. This typically will only be useful, though, to people who have a lot of items they are selling, and to those who promote their store steadily, through their sales and outside venues. The storefront can be a great marketing tool for savvy sellers.

I hope this makes the decision about getting an eBay store a little clear. Feel free to ask questions or make comments. I love hearing from my readers!

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