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I've made my living (a killing) off of eBay since I was, well 13 years old buying and selling.
I bought items low prices for fun that I would use and then resell months later.
I sold eBooks for random free documents compiles together in a package.
I drop shipped items from shopping comparison engines finding good deals
I imported cellular accessories from China in college to sell online.
I sold in the off lease recycling environment where the stuff was being scrapped!
I had a part time job in college selling at the ebay consignment store
I sold cell phones and was the e-commerce directory for a top 100 account (gross sales)
Been to all the eBay Live trade shows
Invited by eBay to lobby for Internet Neutrality at Capital Hill.
Bought items on eBay to sell on craigslist, bought items on craigslist to sell on eBay.
Sold thousands of items in a few hours on eBay's daily deal platform. (Invite Only)
I now BUY hundreds of thousands of dollars of items a month off eBay, one electronic at a time, for resell via sniping with own private developed software (thinking maybe take to open market for IM start)
Even had eBay CEO John Donahoe visit me for the day at my business where he had just had lunch with Steve Jobs a few days earlier.
.........Yea, I've done it pretty much all on eBay!
God gave me a gift for making money on eBay. Only It was never easy and many of the programs listed above never lasted longer than a few months or failed 2-3 times before It finally "clicked".
It wasn't until I hired a big shot consultant who had every Masters and job experience to try and put the "Organized" in the "Organized Chaos" I was consistently forcing upon my "Gift". .....He slapped me around in 2-3 weeks and it all came down to Common Sense.
The Gift meant nothing. If you didn't practice basic business 101 with every listing, every sale, every shipment, every communication and every return the cycle of failure was doomed to repeat it's self.
The worst idea will usually outshine the best Idea and if it doesn't it wont shine for long....without basic business common sense.
I learned (far too late and long) that eBay is a great place to start and learn core business concepts that carry over to just about any other business out there.
I'm wanting to start IM based on my experience around eBay and hope those same concepts will help to achieve short and long term goals that I've got in place.
So this post helped me decide where to start my IM blog site. .....I;m going to spend some time over the next few weeks to type as fast and as much as I can about each industry of eBay that I've had experience in. (of course this is just the scratch pad not final content)
The type of industry, what was "fun" about it and what any major challenges were. Basically, a chronological timeline of my lifelong buying and selling on eBay. Cool people I meet, Good Contacts that came back to help me years down the road etc....
My "Scratch Pad" for today was about my first eBay purchase .....I'll post it here now... Please note, my scratch pad comments are typing out loud. I'm defiantly the type that will need some assistance when it comes to article structure and proofreading
"It all started back in 1998, (I’m 28 years old now born in November of 1984). I can remember the first time i signed up on eBay. ---insert waybackmachine.com photo? . This was back when PayPal was so new and fresh that you didn’t need verified account to use them and they actually paid you $5 for entering in an email address and signing up with them! Checks and money orders were still the main medium sellers used. I can remember going to the mailbox everyday and getting checks and money orders though snail mail! Man those were the days!!! But before I even started selling on eBay I made a purchase. And of course, I can remember my first purchase like it was yesterday.
First Purchase - Digital Camera - Olympus D320. This was back when I was 14 years old! (1998) and was in middle school at the time. For any type of event (sports, dances, parental watched parties etc) , disposable cameras were normally used unless you had the money for a standard camera to process film that was rather expensive for a kid with a $2/week allowance. The technology at the time was just starting to come out that supported digital photography. These were the 3.5?mm floppy disks! Some basic forms of what are today “SD Cards” were coming out. Being in middle school taking pictures was a pretty cool thing to do. I remember looking all over eBay for a good deal on one of the new cameras that supported this new storage that could hold 50+ photos. I didn't have enough money but it was looking around on eBay at the time. I looked for weeks at different models watching a listing at a time end and seeing the bids go up at the last minutes. Remember, this was back in the real “western” days of eBay when everything was auction and Buy It Now was very rare. Even if I couldn't afford it, it was still fun to watch the listings end. One would end at $300 and another would end at $250. Why? Passing the time without having the money to make a purchase left me in no rush to buy and plenty of time to watch. My brothers and I would watch individual items that we were watching end and throw around ideas on how we could have gotten if for less if we did X, or Y etc. I remember my mom enjoyed the thinking that we're doing around this and was interested by the whole ebay thing as well. Having a late birthday in November and Christmas, I saved all of my money. Even then I still didn’t have enough. But my mom gave me her credit card and I gave her the cash and promised her I would pay her back with chore money. I had the green light to buy! Now after looking at probably hundreds of this olympus D320 camera sale, I knew where they were trending. My brother and I had come to the conclusion that listings with shorter listing days posted by users on the west coast late at night on weekdays went for the least amount of money. Also lastly, placing during the last few hours was most popular. It took a few items before we finally won, but I had scored a sweet deal on my camera for probably 50% off MSRP in like new condition and at least 25% less than similar items on eBay were going for. I was hooked! and from that point on, I’ve been on eBay making a living ever since buying and selling. Maybe 2-3 months after buying the camera, some new models were coming out. I listed the phone up on eBay and had actually made money after all the fees and shipping! I was truly hooked! Needless to say, after a few flips like this I didn't need my moms money to buy on eBay anymore and I certainly had the coolest camera in middle school! I didn't do it for money at the time, only to have a cool gadget. Any profit made was just used to buy the next highest model at a super good bargain. "
Don't 100% know where it would lead to after a well documented 14 year buying/selling industries/experiences ...but I figure it will probably come to me best during the process....
Any encouraging thoughts or criticize around the core concept? ...dont worry I have thick skin!