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Sell more by becoming a better buyer

Who want’s to buy this piece of crap at a a ridiculously high price? Yeah, that’s a stupid way to open a sales pitch. Isn’t it? Yet every day many thousands of Internet sellers effectively say just that same thing in their listing descriptions.

Oh of course they don’t use that exact phrasing, but they might as well. You see, most people offer dull, boring products at average prices. But an average price just doesn’t cut it when on the Web, people can find uber competitive prices with just a few clicks.

Do you sell common inventory? No problem, IF you sell it at an uncommon price, or with exceptional circumstances! If everyone else is selling widgets in the price range of $4.99-$5.99 and these widgets are plentiful, the only way to excel when selling them is in one of four ways:

  • by beating everyone’s price by a significant margin
  • by bundling the product with others to make a unique offer
  • by providing uncommon service
  • by associating yourself with a cause

Of those four options, the most likely room for improvement for the average, (you’re going to see that word used a lot here) seller is in the first two bulleted point’s above, so let’s deal with those first.

First and foremost, what every seller can and should do no matter what their sales are like, is become a better buyer. The cheaper you can get your products and supplies, the lower you can price your product. So many times I consult with new sellers and they ask: “How can I sell more?” Or they’ll say “I started out so good, now sales are dead. What is happening?”
Many times after taking a quick look at their situation, I tell them that they have to become more savvy when buying. Here’s what happens so often with new online sellers.

They have good luck the first few times around, usually selling things they found in their attic, basement etc.
After the initial sales, they invest in new stock and F-L-O-P! Why? Because they items they sold to begin with were things they owned already, they didn’t have to buy them for the business, so any money made was all profit. Then they go out in the real world to invest their newfound wealth, and pay too much for inventory in an effort to stock the shelves. Huge mistake, in fact of the people that quit selling online, this first critical error is the one that usually knocks beginners out of the game.

You MUST become a good buyer if you’re going to win at this. There are many ways to do this, and we’ll talk about those in the future, but for now, take this advice and drill it into your head. Get good at buying, because well bought, is half sold, as the saying goes. There is not one thing you can do that is more important to your bottom line.

Of the four bulleted points above, the next most feasible option for the average seller, is to bundle common products with other items to make a unique offer.
Do you have 500 Beanie Babies to sell? Well Beanie Babies have trended out of the market’s favor, but they can still be sold if you spice up the offer with a fun related item.

I’m sure you have a lot of your own ideas on how bundling might work for you and on ways you can become a better buyer of great items. So get to work on those and your sales will jump by leaps and bounds!

I’m skipping the last two points here, because without strict adherence to the first two, these really don’t matter. And if you’re smart enough to figure out how to implement the first two, then you won’t need me for ideas on the last two.

There is one thing we left out of the mix, but that’s because it doesn’t apply to the AVERAGE sale item. That’s of course to find super items. Some sellers just have a knack for finding rare inventory that is begged for in the marketplace. And guess what. Training yourself to become a better buyer will bring you a fair share of “diamonds in the rough” and when you find them, you won’t have to concern yourself with competitive pricing and sales techniques.

More often than not, those type of finds come to the movers and shakers, those who educate themselves and learn their trade. The people that seem to have a knack for finding these treasures put in the time to learn their trade.

It’s time to decide: Are you in business, or involved a hobby?

Get to work.


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