Finding large amounts of profitable inventory seems to be my biggest challenge. To help me find a solution, I am going to review what I have sold and not sold so far and see what conclusions I can make from that.
2 new electronics items
3 new kitchen items
1 new exercise DVD set
1 used book
Have Not Sold
4 used books
1 used exercise DVD
1 new game
3 used games
Most of you may conclude that I am terrible at selling books and games. But when I look at the list of the new items that I sold, I see that I purchased all of them from stores that I shop at often. The stores where I bought those items are Bed Bath & Beyond, JC Penney and Office Depot. I sold each item at an average of 3x the purchase price and my average profit per item is $13.56.
I am comfortable in those stores and I know exactly where the clearance aisles are. I have coupons that I use to make those clearance items less expensive. I pretty much struck gold at my local Bed Bath & Beyond store that is having a moving sale and has tons of items marked down 75%. When I go in there with my 20% off coupon or $5.00 off coupon, I do pretty well. I have over 30 items from Bed Bath & Beyond currently on it’s way to Amazon and I’ll be shopping there again tonight with another 20% off coupon. I’ll be using that coupon on another one of the exercise DVD sets that I sold for $41.00 more than what I paid for it.
Another point that I see is that all of the items that I bought from Bed Bath & Beyond, JC Penney and Office Depot are items that I would buy for myself. The specific books and games that I bought are items that I would not buy for myself. Granted, I can’t expect Amazon shoppers to have the same interests as me, but I guess I can spot a good deal better among items that I would use personally. But still, this doesn’t make sense because I am using the Profit Bandit App to help me find profitable items with low rankings. Maybe I’m missing something here.
My Conclusion: Stick with buying items that I would buy for myself from the stores that I am comfortable in.
It’s About Numbers
Though I’m happy with the $13.56 average per item profit that I am getting, I’ll never get to the profits that I want unless I get more inventory in. For example, if I want to see a $1000.00 profit, I would need to sell 100 items that make a $10.00 profit or 74 items that make a $13.56 profit. As you can see from my numbers above, my current inventory count doesn’t cut it.
My main challenge is lack of time – I work 6 days a week which means I’m unable to shop during the day time (except Sundays). Bed Bath & Beyond, JC Penney and Office Depot are not open early in the morning before work and I don’t have very much energy to shop for long periods after work.
Another problem is that even though I can find an item at a discounted price, I can’t buy many of them. For example, each month I get a “Spend $10.00 get $10.00 off” coupon from JC Penney . Sure it’s great if I can find a $24.95 item for $4.95, but I can only buy one at that price.
Thank goodness for Bed Bath & Beyond because at least for now, I can buy multiples of the same product fairly inexpensively. I bought multiples of one product for 20 cents each that’s selling on Amazon for $5.99 each. I bought six of another product at $1.20 each that has a ranking of 785 and is selling on Amazon for $9.99 each. However, my Bed Bath & Beyond store will be closed down very soon. So, I do need to find a new place to shop at.
I believe that online sourcing is my solution as it gives me the benefit of shopping for inventory before and after work from home. However, at this point, the thought of searching the internet for large quantities of random items that will give me a good return is rather overwhelming for me. I don’t know which online stores to begin with and what strategies to follow. I’m great at finding that great deal for a specific item that I want to buy for myself, but I don’t know where to begin to go “big time”.
To learn about online sourcing and more about Amazon FBA in general, I purchased the Amazon Boot Camp training videos (affiliate link) created by Jessica Larrew. I wasn’t planning on purchasing any training programs at this time as I am watching expenses, but I am a firm believer in education and learning from others. When I think about my websites, I feel that I wasted a lot of time last year figuring things out on my own. Purchasing Lynn Terry’s Niche Success Blueprint (affiliate link) earlier this year helped me get more traffic to my websites and more affiliate sales. So, I felt that it would be beneficial for me to invest in an Amazon FBA course. I have found a lot of free FBA info online that has helped me, but I want to get to the next level as quickly as I can. I am glad that the course covers online sourcing. If I want to go further with online sourcing, there is another course that I can purchase from Jessica Larrew called Online Sourcing Strategies (non-affiliate link). As a Amazon Boot Camp member, I can purchase it at a 50% discount. Thank you Jessica!
While I’m learning to source online, I’ll be shopping at Bed Bath & Beyond a few more times before they close down.
Happy Online Selling!
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