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Top tips on how to generate an income by starting an online business buying in trade auctions and becoming a reseller.
4 Mins

Start your own business and become a reseller

Helen Marvel
Helen Marvel

Following a strange prolonged period of lockdown, working from home or being furloughed, many among us are re-evaluating how we make an income. Whether that’s an enforced rethink due to redundancy or maternity leave, considering a change of pace, or simply generating an extra income stream, creating an e-commerce business that can work around your other priorities, can be the perfect solution.

If you’re unsure of where to begin, bulk buying trade stocks from online auctions and selling them on is a straightforward way of making yourself some money.

William George holds auctions of retail returns each week, many on a no reserve basis, featuring well-known brands and these can be picked up for way less than their RRP, saving thousands of pounds on their original prices and delivering a very healthy return on investment for resellers.

There are a multitude of reasons why these items have been returned – some will be end of line, some have minor imperfections such as damaged packaging and some with more significant issues, including electrical products labelled as “not working”. You know what the pallets contain when the auctions are live, but you won’t know what the possible flaws are until you receive the items, but that in itself is an exciting reason to buy!

You will also find trade liquidations amongst our auctions which also present a great opportunity for resale.

You can source a huge range of items from these types of auctions and usually you are buying pallets full of different goods within a certain category. Buying in bulk provides excellent value for money, as once you’ve won a pallet, you can separate the items and sell them individually. If you have the relevant skills, you may choose to fix the items that have a problem, or you might simply sell on.

Here are our top tips on how to kick start your new business:

Decide what you want to sell and who to

The most common items we sell in our pallet auctions include popular consumer goods such as electrical products, furniture, toys etc. Picking an area to concentrate on means you can target the right audience and build up a customer base. Most of the items featured in these auctions have mass appeal so you should be able to sell them on easily. Read carefully through the listing of lots to ensure you are choosing the right items for you. Some items will sell quicker than others when you go to resell them, and you will get to fine tune the items you choose and your audience as you become more experienced. The faster you sell goods on, the quicker you can reinvest and make more money.

Determine your budget

As we advise to all our bidders, it’s always best to set a budget you’re happy with, before you start bidding. If you don’t, you can get swept away in the excitement of an auction and go beyond your comfort zone. When you’re buying to resell, the more you spend on the stock, the lower your return on investment. Having a figure to stick to allows you to estimate your profits and is an essential step in successfully running your new business.

Set up your website

Once you have your goods, you will need a route to market. If you’re going with an online option, you will need a website. If you’re able to fund it, you can pay for a professional to build a site for you, or for a tighter budget, you can use a pre-made e-commerce website. All you have to do is add the information and the prices you decide to charge.

Promote your business

You don’t need a huge pot of money to market your website. Vital to success is advertising through the key social media channels, including Facebook and Instagram. LinkedIn may also work well for you depending on what it is you have chosen to sell. Google Ads campaigns are very cost effective as you only get charged for results, so are worth considering.

Once you’ve taken these steps, you should be ready to go!

Check out our latest auctions to see what you could be focusing your new business on.