If you’ve followed my journey for quite some time now, you’d know that I’m an active seller on eBay. Selling stuff on eBay is one of my favorite side hustles. After doing it for several years, I’m pretty good at it. If you’re considering selling stuff online, eBay is the right website, and I will guide you. I love eBay because there is a market for almost anything. There are so many items that you can flip for profits.
People need help deciding to sell on eBay and where to get inventory for eBay. If that’s the case with you, I have some good news. There are several places where you can get items to sell on eBay. In today’s post, we will go over seven smart places to get inventory for eBay.
7 Places to Get Inventory for eBay
1. Your Closet
I always tell people that your home is the first place to look when trying to resell. Before you go out to purchase items, it’s best to check your closet. It is the first and easiest place to find eBay inventory. Your closet is full of clothes you don’t wear anymore or things you don’t need, and there is no need to hoard them when you can make money off them. I clean my closets and dressers several times during the year and usually find things to sell. If I find some stuff I don’t think will sell, I usually donate them to the local thrift store.
Aside from your closet, why not look at your garage, shed, attic, or basement if you’ve got one? I’m sure there is a lot of stuff lying around, just collecting dirt and waiting to be sold. You might as well try to sell them, and I guarantee you will make some money from those things.
Family is the second place you can get items for your inventory on eBay. You’re lucky if you’ve family members who like to keep or hoard stuff. They may have what you need; ask them if you could peek at some of this stuff. You’ll be shocked at what you can find. Check with them a couple of times a year. They could have hundreds of dollars worth of things just sitting around. If you make money off something they gave you, you can give them a share of the money or take them out to dinner.
If your family has nothing, they may know someone who does. One of my Aunt’s friend’s husband passed away, and the lady was looking to get rid of many items. My Aunt called and asked if I wanted to look through the items. I told her yes and rode to Alabama a few weeks later. I’m glad she contacted me because I was able to get over 100 items to flip.
3. Thrift Stores
Another place to get things to resell is thrift stores. They are one of my favorite places to get items to sell on eBay. Examples of some traditional thrift stores include Goodwill, Savers, the Salvation Army, and Value Village. There are always items in the stores that you can flip. Let’s talk about some of these thrift stores.
For those who don’t know Value Village, it’s one of the thrift stores I shop at.
There are two different versions of Value Village.
- The first set of Value Village stores is a part of the Savers store brand. There are over 300 of those stores in the United States and Canada.
- The other Value Village thrift stores are located in Georgia and Texas. Since I reside in Atlanta, I will discuss the Value Village stores in Georgia.
I’ve visited several thrift stores, but Value Village is my favorite thrift store brand. They have many items that I resell, such as shoes and coffee mugs.
My only gripe with Value Village is that some stores charge more for particular shoes and sports memorabilia. Check Value Village out if you live in or near Atlanta or Dallas.
Goodwill stores are another place where you can get inventory for eBay. Rev. Edgar Helms founded Goodwill. Helms collected clothing and used household goods in wealthy areas of his city. He then hired less fortunate people to repair and clean the items. The goods were then resold or given to people. They have over 160 locations worldwide. Their prices are about the same as Value Village. They have clothes, books, furniture, televisions, and video games.
Depending on where you live, there may be several Goodwill stores. Take the time to visit each one. You can see which ones get better items. In the Atlanta area, a couple of stores get the items I’m looking for frequently. I’m sure the same thing will probably happen in your city.
Goodwill also has a website where you can purchase items from. Shopgoodwill.com is the name of the site. There are thousands of items from Goodwill stores all over the country listed. I’ve purchased numerous items from the site. When you are looking for things, take time to research. You don’t want to buy something you can’t make money from. They also have a shipping estimate tool you should use if you see something you want to buy or bid on. Doing that will ensure you get a good deal after you pay to ship. As always, the object is to make money, not lose or break even.
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Salvation Army Thrift Stores
The Salvation Army is a church and charitable organization founded in 1865 in London. The Salvation Army runs several thrift stores in the world. They sell furniture, housewares, clothing, and shoes. The Salvation Army store in my city is smaller than some other thrift stores. I also rarely find any items to resell in there, but you should still take the time to visit one if you live near it. Every thrift store has different things. Yours could be a gold mine.
4. Discount Stores
Another place to find inventory for eBay is discount department stores. They have items that go for lower prices than regular stores. You can buy these items and sell them at higher prices. Sometimes discount stores sell discontinued items, which is when you can make real money. A few years ago, a discount store was selling a discontinued cake mix. I guess people enjoyed it because the mixture was selling for damn near $50 on the secondary market. Those types of flips are great.
Some examples of discount stores include Dollar Tree, Big Lots, Family Dollar, Ross, TJ Maxx, and Marshalls.
Ross specializes in women’s & men’s clothes, shoes, and things for the home. I’ve seen some excellent deals on shoes at Ross. Nikes that typically cost $90 can be on sale for $29.99. There are over 1,200 locations worldwide. Unfortunately, there aren’t any locations in New York, New England, Alaska, and parts of the Midwest. I follow a couple of people who make a killing on the items that they find at Ross. They find all types of shoes and jerseys. I haven’t been that lucky yet. Hopefully, the Ross stores in your area have some great items you can flip.
There are over 1,000 TJ Maxx stores in the United States. They specialize in clothing, footwear, and bedding items. They have some of the best prices out there when it comes to clothing. In my experience, TJ Maxx can be hit or miss. You should check it out for yourself to see what the one in your city has to offer.
Marshalls is the final discount retail store. There are over 970 Marshalls stores in the United States and Canada. Marshalls is TJ Maxx’s sister store. Usually, if you see one of those stores, the other one is nearby. They have similar items and prices. Marshalls differentiates itself by having bigger men’s and junior’s departments.
They are places that you need to check out a few times per year. You can find great deals if you know what you are looking for.
5. Flea Markets
Flea Markets are another excellent place to find items as well. I’ve been able to negotiate prices for many of the things I have purchased there. Many people selling at flea markets are trying to get rid of their stuff quickly and easily. That is usually a win for re-sellers. I’ve found items at flea markets in the city and small towns. You never know what hidden gems you may see if you don’t look. I plan to visit more Flea Markets this year for more eBay inventory.
Craigslist has a “free” section where people can list things they give away for free. Sometimes, there are some items that you can make money off of. It just depends on when you check their site. Those free items tend to disappear very fast. I know people who found free tools, yearbooks, and board games on Craigslist. There’s nothing better than getting an item for free and flipping it.
If you don’t see anything in the free sections, check some of the other ones. A lot of folks need money these days. Many are open to offers for their items.
7. Yard Sales
The final place to get inventory for eBay is at yard sales. In the past, my neighborhood has had a community yard sale. At least 15 houses participated in the event. You can find some sweet deals at yard sales. Sometimes, you can talk the seller down for a better price at yard sales. Most of the time, they seek to get rid of the items. I’ve had a few yard sales before, and it sucks to bring things back into the house. I use Craigslist to find out when and where yard sales will be. Nexdoor is another place where you can look for yard sales.
Here’s a good tip. Try going to a yard sale 10 minutes before it’s over. I’ve done this in the past and got ten free items. The seller put things on the curb and said I could grab anything for free. You can not beat getting free items. I’m sure other people also do that towards the end of their yard sales.
Those are seven places where you can get your eBay inventory from. If you are an eBay seller, you must check them out. There is a lot of money to be made. You have to look for what you think will sell. Also, don’t forget to check the eBay app and look at what items are selling.
Jason Butler is the owner of My Money Chronicles, a website where he discusses personal finance, side hustles, travel, and more. Jason is from Atlanta, Georgia. He graduated from Savannah State University with his BA in Marketing. Jason has been featured in Forbes, Discover, and Investopedia.