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Thrift Store Prices too High? 5 Strategies for eBay Sellers to Buy Inventory

Thrift Store Prices too High? 5 Strategies for eBay Sellers to Buy Inventory



hey you may friends at Suzanne a Wells thank you for coming back for another video today is September 29th 2017 and I wanted to share with you five strategies for buying inventory when thrift store prices are too high this is a common problem out there I've experienced it myself I stopped going places when their prices are too high to turn the desired profit on eBay and I will agree that goodwill is just getting ridiculous with what they're charging when I started doing this it was around 425 450 for shirts pants skirts all of the the basic items and now they're up to $6.00 on shirts pants skirts dresses are almost $8 and you know you don't have to buy from the big chains there are other options so let's go over that high thrift store prices can often mean you cannot make a profit on eBay so maybe you live in an area where it's it's affluent it may be a community or a city or a town and the thrift stores are getting more aggressive with their pricing and you just can't buy things for what you used to and you definitely can't turn them for the same profit on eBay and I don't think it's so much the thrift stores are wise to resellers coming in and buying and reselling because a lot of them have their own accounts on eBay and they'll to print out the eBay prices and you know and have them displayed and you know they can go on eBay and sell their stuff too but I think we're gonna see a rebound on this at some point we're like goodwill and Salvation Army is gonna realize that they're gonna make more money on volume if they keep their prices down because if we don't buy their stuff within a certain amount of time they've got to move it out of there and you know it goes on to the next stage in the system whatever that is you know being bundled and sold sold in pallets or whatever so I think they're still kind of trying to find their sweet spot on pricing and you know who knows that prices may go back down again you know resellers online and on YouTube often talk about they don't want to share their secrets they don't want to tell people they're selling on eBay because it's going to create too much competition and thrift store prices are gonna go up and I just don't think eBay is totally to blame for that I think more and more people are smarter with their money they're recycling they're repurposing they're buying used they're rejecting the traditional walk into a retail store and buy it at the full price kind of mentality there's so much about saving and couponing and you know like RetailMeNot and getting discounts that that's the mentality that some people have and I think it's great so you know let's let's see what happens but until then there are some strategies now I have worked with many clients over the years since 2009 when I started working with people to help them with their eBay who live in areas where thrift store prices are just too high I hear this all the time in California that you know they can't buy anything from their thrift stores and sell it to make a profit so what can I do so I compared this to uh saying I love like it's really about relationships Cheryl Richardson is a life coach I follow it says stop going to the hardware store for milk meaning stop investing in people that don't reciprocate but this is kind of applicable to high price thrift stores you know stop trying to to go there and doing the same thing over and over again if you're not getting results if thrift stores prices are too high don't go there anymore don't look at those anymore we've got to find other options so it's it's not gonna benefit you in any way to get frustrated and upset you've just got to find another way you know when they Zig you zag and that's all there is to it so here are some of the solutions we have found for this problem over the years number one educate yourself about what is around you beyond the big chains like Goodwill Salvation Army and savers those are not the only players in town I guarantee it there may be stores out there you don't know about so I encourage you to go to this site called V thrift shop or calm again that is V thrift shopper calm it is a National thrift store directory and you can put your zip code in and your state or a city and state and it will bring up all the thrift stores it knows of because people send in an information about new thrift stores as they pop up so they'll be in this directory but they've got over 12,000 charity driven thrift stores which is important because when it's a charity the merchandise the inventory is donated and that keeps their costs down so this directory is huge if you don't know about it you definitely want to go check it out I just put in a zip code near my sister who I was visiting recently to 81:5 in Charlotte and it pulls up Carolina's Value Village Junior League warehouse another Value Village Habitat for Humanity ReStore that's a great place to check out for home decor they have all kind of little knickknacks things you might find things in there that could work bargain hunters another goodwill a few more good wills a Salvation Army another Habitat ReStore and then something called the Assistance League so this is just an example of there may be all kinds of things hiding around you that you don't know little church thrift store smaller charity thrift stores and the only way you're gonna know if they'll work for you is to go check them out because I go to this one little church thrift store that it's not very big and I wouldn't drive out of my way to go to it it's just very near my house so my apartment so you know I drop by there all the time just to see what they have and everything's a dollar so you can't go wrong you know even if I go three times a week I still get plenty of things to sell and you know that doesn't compare to Goodwill I don't have to go on a special day to get a special sale everything's a dollar all the time they just really don't care what what things are worth they just you know everything's a dollar and that raises money for their mission it's a Methodist Church and you know the little ladies are in there working and going through the donations and putting things out and their store looks very nice and it's it's good volunteer work for people and it raises money for their their missions ministry so there's all kind of things like that around you that you may not be aware of Goodwill and Salvation Army and savers are not the only players in town so you can work around that okay number two maximize your discount sales and special offers by being prepared I mentioned in another video that I keep a sheet like this a chart with all of my thrift stores and the days their sales are so that I don't ever have to think about where I'm going so if I need more inventory and it's Thursday I've only got one choice that's that's where I've already figured out where I can go to get the lowest price if you are able to get the senior discount you want to put that on your chart what day is that and where if you're military and you can get a discount for that I know that goodwill does offer military discounts in Georgia at I think it's on Thursdays I'm not 100% sure so check that out on their website but you can make a chart like this for yourself and go ahead and figure out where the sales are like Sunday's is good will color change so they switch over to their new color and everything in that color tag is 50% off so that's the best day to find the most that is gonna be marked down and the same with another store we have here called Park Avenue Mondays our value village color change happens there's another thrift store called America's thrift they do their color change and that's the best day to find the markdowns is the day they change the color you'll have the most choice then I've got a consignment store that does clearance every other Tuesday I go there and and can pick out all kind of great bargains so you get the idea but you'll need to make this chart for yourself because only you know your discounts you know if you're senior citizen if you're military what stores have what on what days but you want to figure it out ahead of time so there's no guesswork you don't have to think you already know where to go on what day to get what for the lowest price and that's the key to making your money when you buy not just when you sell you've got to get it as cheaply as possible so be mindful be intentional with your shopping and you know think through how you can get the best deals okay number three I just mentioned this I've got an entire video on consignment stores now what I'm saying here is you want to scope out the consignment stores in your area and figure out when they do their markdowns for clearance their floor space is very limited they only want in season stuff so things that don't sell they've got to do something with it a lot of times they donate it and they have a charity they donate it to but if you go in you may be able to negotiate that I have a friend in our mastermind group sandy who did that last week and she got a great deal so she'd never done it before she went to one of her consignment stores and she told them that she's a reseller she's interested in buying in bulk when they clearance things out what could what kind of deal could they get and the owner gave her 30% off so she was getting things for around $3 which was cheaper than her goodwill because she's in the small and doesn't have a lot of choices and luckily or maybe it was fate the owner of that consignment store had a friend who had her own consignment store and Sandy's gonna go see that person to find out if she can do the same thing so she worked up a deal by being creative and yes consignment store prices can be high but the good thing about them is they've already looked over everything it's clean it doesn't have anything wrong with it it's good brands and they have limited floor space so they cannot keep everything in there for very long so I will put a link to my video about that at the top okay number four learn to use Facebook buy and sell groups you can set up alerts for specific items and snag deals quickly so this is an hour long of information I have a class on how to do this so I'll put the link to that below the video but it's a 60-minute course on exactly how to use Facebook groups to buy and sell for eBay and this is a fantastic resource sometimes there's tens of thousands of people in these groups and you can get all kinds of stuff and I do it myself okay number five cherry pick stuff off of ebay that is priced too cheap started on $0.99 auctions are presented badly millions of items go unsold on eBay every day for this reason because they're presented badly or they're on auction and nobody bids on them so you can use this to your advantage you can leverage that and I call this virtual picking instead of going to a store you're doing it online you can do this anytime anywhere on a computer or a phone you just have to understand a few strategies of how to do it this is another class I have and I do these classes because these are solutions to problems and my classes are just like my videos there very very focused they're laser focused on one topic very detailed and show you the exact steps to do things so this course is 75 minutes of exactly how to go on eBay and buy things to flip and I created this course for my disabled clients who have a hard time getting out or my their caregivers and they can't leave people they've got to figure out how to do things online because they're they're caring for a loved one all day and that they just can't get out or you know people in rural areas that just don't have much around them to purchase so they they do it online so this was created after years of hearing people with this this pain of I can't find stuff to sell because of you know X situations so you know this is the information of how to do that so you just have to think outside the box and work around the high-priced thrift stores they're not the only players in town I guarantee it even if you're in a small town there are solutions to this problem there's all kinds of cheap inventory out there you just have to know how to find it so I hope this has helped you we'd love to hear your comments on these strategies if you've tried these things and subscribe to my channel if you're not already if you are a subscriber thank you so much for coming back I appreciate you watching and have a great day on ebay bye


Reader Comments

  1. There are some goodwills that I almost want to laugh at, the prices are so high. And then there is a new one in the area and the employees are not allowed to shop at their own store. It really shows because there are a lot of gems in that store.

  2. I think they totally know how much stuff is worth and they are pricing things for the collector, not the reseller. In my area anyway. The prices at GW has gone crazy. I know a GW where they actually have an appraiser who goes through the stuff. We don't have SA anymore and no Savers at all. Pretty much just GW and Value Village and both are spendy. The best way to go for me is to get to the garage or estate sales. I am in Washington state.

  3. I am a beginner and beginning to source my store with women's clothing. I have enjoyed sourcing online. shopgoodwill.com had a great cyber Monday deal and I believe I got some decent items for $.99 to $1.99 with super low shipping. I also used ThredUp which have higher prices ($3-5 is my limit) but I am looking at my possible profit margin by doing comps on ebay and poshmark. I am having fun and hope I do rake in the profits. Thanks for all your other ideas as well. So much we can do to source our stores!

  4. Yes Goodwill Is way overpriced now, And I know Why, There is a reason There was a seller named Craigslist Hunter who buys and sells and does alot of videos while in Goodwill, One day he had a shopping Cart filled with Items and asked the manager How much for All of the sun tan lotion they had 200 bottles and told her he buys from Goodwill and resells on Ebay So she took the video he put on YouTube and sent it to Their Corporate offices and They sent the videos to All the Goodwill Managers across The usa On How to price their Items Thats why the prices went up 20 30% He actually has a video with that Manager on it ,TRUE STORY

  5. Great video, as always! Thank you for this information. I always learn something valuable from your experience. 🙂 looking forward to making my own graph chart for nearby thrift sale days. lol

  6. At our GW in Houston/Katy Texas collect all 75% tagged items on Sunday and they disappear. It’s frustrating.

  7. Im in NYC baby that means high prices! It's fairly simple, put a few one line ads on craigslist, I buy electronics or I buy designer handbag etc, or I buy dealer overstock or I buy estate contents. 2. BOX LOTS at auctions. we have one place here called bodner's auction. Imagine 5000 box lots, furniture, antiques etc. 3 auctioneers all going at the same time in different rooms from 10 AM till 2AM once a month. Box lots if you know what to buy can be very good, old crystal door knobs, S&P shakers, vintage electronics, and so on are in box lots. ads in specialty mags . I buy old electronics, or I buy plastic models or whatever the mag is. Next is Church sales, heck yea! Lots of good stuff that old lady with the cats doesn't want anymore!

  8. I'm in CA and haven't had a problem with sourcing. I rotate the different stores I visit. Also thrift stores aren't the only place to look for stuff 😉

  9. I found the most cheapest thrift store. $1 for shirts, $2 for pants, 75 cents for kid clothes, and 50 cents for baby clothes, $4 for shoes, and Under clothes are free.(I would never buy under clothes, but it's good for ppl in a really need ig. Because usually I see under clothes in thrift stores for sale)

  10. Thanks for your videos. I think I might be able to do it. Have the stuff working on money for shipping and those people at eBay who take the pictures. Live on Social Security financially strapped by the medical dentist owe over $ 2100. You were a ray of sunshine in my darkness
    Thanks, Jan in Ukiah CA

  11. I guess I'm lucky in St. Louis where our goodwill is still reasonable. I go on the half off tag color days. Here full price for dresses is $5, pants, blouses, shirts, skirts are $3.50 … half off of those prices is a pretty good deal, especially when I find new with tags items… Purses are $3.50 and I have found some wonderful items..

  12. Yes! I quit shopping at Goodwill because the prices are too elevated. Thankfully there are several thrift stores in the same area, so they get my business! Thank you for the information!

  13. I found a little independent thrift store next door to my Good will.  Found a LulaRoe shirt, new with tags for $2.50.  Went to Value Village (Savers) right after that and found pre-owned LulaRoe shirts for $10.99!!!

  14. Goodwills here in So. California are pathetically overpriced and have the worst quality merchandise. I don't even bother going there. They also have an online auction site where alot of items go.

  15. GOODWILL is no longer worth the effort for me I am just not interested in them now. I used to spend A LOT of money there but I have so many other good places around me I just go there. I feel Goodwill has bit the hand that fed them. I rarely see sellers there any more. The only day I used to go is the 15th of the month (scratch off day), where I would get a 20% coupon for three days later in the month, Wednesday for Senior day (15% off whoopee). They just eliminated scratch off day and replaced it as a tiered spending discount. They have eliminated any incentives I had to stop in and its right by my favorite grocery store. There are many other options where I live and even eBay. The nice thing is most of the discount days are the same day so I spend one full day a week out sourcing and seldom bother with the rest of the week. I always know what day to leave free for sourcing and it keeps me disciplined for listing and other selling tasks.

    I still love SAVERS. Their stuff seems to be better quality and paying full price is not normally a problem for me there. In short I think Goodwill has just alienated me with insulting prices and tired looking inventory. They can keep their stuff. In fact I am a huge merchandise donor for Goodwill too. Or shall I say WAS a donor to their stores. Interestingly Savers stores by me are always packed and there are long lines of shoppers. Not so much for Goodwill. Goodwill seems to be focusing on pushing shoppers away.

  16. Thanks for the reminder to look for shops other than GW & SA. Sadly my local goodwill will NOT share sale dates. They say you just have to come in. Online I’ve seen goodwills that hand out a calendar for the month.

  17. I'm educating myself about ebay, and everytime I think of a new problem or question, one of your videos pops up with the solution! You are a fantastic resource. Thanks, Suzanne.

  18. I purchase most of my inventory from a small local thrift store where most items are $3 every day but half price if it's the color of the week ! The few times I shop Goodwill is on their .99 cent Monday where one color is that price . We used to have a Goodwill Last Chance store , but they changed into a traditional store with the high prices . It's like a ghost town in that particular location anymore !

  19. Do your Goodwill stores always ask for a donation at the register for their career center (or for any of their other charities)? The ones here in Phoenix do and I'm so tired of it. They start out asking for a dollar. If you decline, they try to get you to round up the cost of your purchase. If your total is $4.98, they'll ask, "Would you like to donate the two pennies to the career center?" . And who's going to say "no" to a 2 cent donation? But, believe me, I want to say no! Once I asked a cashier if this fundraising was ever going to stop, and she assured me it wasn't. She defended herself with the usual, "I only work here." I said, "Then you won't take it personally if I say 'no' ?" She said she wouldn't. Still, it was an uncomfortable situation. Also, Goodwill claims they DO NOT pay their CEO's exorbitant salaries. Does anyone know if they do or not? Thanks!

  20. Goodwill of North Georgia has definitely raised their prices. This corporation has a great additional company which is a Career Center. This place helps people acquire job skills, jobs, and has free resources for creating and printing resumes.
    Goodwill of North Georgia is not a non profit but a not for profit.
    In other words, if you go there and your home has burned down, they will NOT help you unless you are a Mormon.
    They only help the Mormons because they are tied into a contract with them.
    There are many other thrift stores that provide local support to the community. However, some of those have picked over their merchandise
    Ever wonder why you have such a good selection at Goodwill? Employees are not allowed to shop in their own store.
    Along with federal grants, Goodwill uses proceeds from the stores for this great program.

  21. Its no wonder Goodwill is raising prices they see all the videos by resellers on youtube saying how much money they are making buying and reselling Goodwill items. Put the blame were it belongs on the dumb resellers posting all the videos every week showing how much profit they are making off the things they are buying from the big stores.

  22. Goodwill prices are getting ridiculous. I found a really good thrift store in Dallas that had a colored tag system. I got a lot of great stuff for 50% off and $1. I have my best success with cheap sourcing at garage sales. I'm in Texas and it gets dang hot in the summer. I have been to several garage sales after lunch and the people are ready to get rid of stuff and willing to make a deal.

  23. Goodwill isn't good anymore. My area have "boutiques" now. $9.99 and up! Some are not even high end brands for eBay.
    Estate sales good if ran by family instead of a professional. Had to search elsewhere. In fact, those elsewheres are a lot more interesting and full of great surprises! Not always. But when it's good it's a BINGO ! Also glad to give my business to those little church thrifts that really could use the money. Thanks again for sharing.

  24. I live in a very rural area of Central Illinois. Good Will and Salvation Army stores over an hour away but not a problem since there are three thrift stores within 12 miles. Two are consignment which, as you say, can only keep so much so they have regular markdowns to .99. The other is open only Friday and Saturdays but EVERYTHING is always 99 cents. I've gotten to the point that if I saw a Robert Graham shirt for $2 I'd think it was too much! I also have three sisters who give me things to sell-no strings attached. Yes, I'm a lucky flipper.

  25. I was at a huge GW today on the outskirts of LA. Store prices were very high. 6 rounders of jeans at $9.49 ea 😲 There were about 10 people in the store. Then I went next door to the outlet bins & there were about 80 people. The merchandise was garbage. I was told that donated items considered "unsellable" go to the bins. All unsold goods from the regular store go to auction in bulk, instead of being marked down, or going into the bins. No bargains at that GW, just high prices & garbage. The only way to get GW bargains there is to buy in bulk at their auction.

  26. I live in California, so I understand that. I'm lucky to live about 40 minutes away from one of the few Goodwill Outlets in this state (in Sacramento).

  27. I'd like to make the point that Goodwill stores in different areas are run by different companies.
    Goodwill of North Georgia is a big player.
    Some stores, like in N.C. have much lower priced items in the western part of the state.
    Also, if you look behind the register areas specially priced items are located. Often, the manager will negotiate those higher priced items.
    One area of Goodwill that can vary greatly in price is the electronics section. Smaller towns, like Madison, price their electronics for much less than Atlanta.
    Senior day, 55 and older, is Tuesday.
    Rugged Wearhouse sells new clothing at prices not much more than GW.
    Off topic but you probably aren't seeing televisions for sale at GW anymore.
    iPhones are thrown away and any computer or laptop is bundled and sold to Dell. It could be a perfectly working laptop but because of concerns over security of personal information, these items are never sold at Goodwill of Northeast Georgia.
    There are places that recycle and donate computers which would be a much better use of resources.

  28. GW and TS prices have sky rocketed in the last few years here in Houston. Very low profit margin sometimes "0". Thank you for your amazing tips.

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