If you’ve thought about getting into reselling, you’ve probably considered the many perks of running your own business. Flexibility, growth opportunities, and the ability to be your own boss are just a few benefits being an online seller can offer. However, there’s often one major obstacle that holds potential resellers back – having the money to fund their business and not knowing how to start a reselling business on a budget.
Fortunately, working with a limited cash flow doesn’t mean your entrepreneurial dreams are out of reach. Check out these tips to learn how to start a reselling business without breaking the bank.
Develop a Plan of Action
Before you dive in, create a full business plan that outlines how you will achieve every step of the reselling process. Not only will this get you to think ahead, but it will also give you the chance to anticipate costs well before you need to pay them which will help you start reselling on a budget
To start, when you consider this new venture, ask yourself these questions:
1. What do I want to sell?
When deciding what kind of inventory you’d like to sell, consider sourcing items you’re familiar with. If you choose a category that you know well, you’ll already have an idea of how to market that item, what its potential value is, and how much a buyer should be willing to pay for it.
2. What condition should I source?
Selecting the right inventory condition is important when it comes to calculating your potential return on investment (ROI). Although it may be tempting to see if you can find some hidden gems in Uninspected Returns, we recommend starting out with New or Like New to assume the least amount of risk.
3. Where should I source? (BULQ.com of course!)
When deciding where to source your inventory, take into account the conditions, categories, prices, and transparency offered by the provider. It’s also important to be open to many methods of sourcing, such as thrifting, flea markets, and even reselling your own unwanted items.
4. Where should I sell?
eBay, Amazon, and Poshmark are just a few of the many marketplaces available to resellers. Each comes with different buyers, fees, and other requirements, so be sure to research and even test which one may be best for your inventory.
5. What can I afford?
Knowing what you can afford helps put you in control before you start spending, but managing your budget comes in a few phases. Aside from how much you’re willing to spend on your inventory, you should also familiarize yourself with certain marketplace fees that may be applied depending on the platform you are selling on. To keep costs to a minimum, we suggest starting out on a local platform, such as Facebook Marketplace, where sellers typically arrange buyer pickups rather than shipping items.
6. How much time can I commit?
Taking the time to manage your new business is essential to its success. As most BULQ pros will tell you, sourcing, listing, and fulfilling items can be time-consuming! You’ll also want to ensure good customer service so your buyers keep coming back for more. With these things to consider, setting aside the appropriate amount of time is key to setting realistic expectations.
7. Where am I going to store my inventory, and fulfill orders?
This is a HUGE factor that can sometimes get lost in the excitement of starting a business. Make sure you have a clean, dry space to not only store inventory, but also to take product photos and fulfill orders. This will help prevent your home from being cluttered and provide you with an accessible space to manage your business.
Research and Set a Budget
There are plenty of opportunities to source inventory, and start a reselling business on a budget, but it all begins with research. Many potential resellers are under the assumption that reselling requires a lot of money, but that is not necessarily the case. You can invest in a small lot and turn that low-cost investment into major profits.
If you’ve done the math and decided you’re not quite ready to put down money on inventory, that’s okay! As mentioned above, many resellers start by selling items right from their home. If you have items sitting and collecting dust, try listing those items on a free platform to build some capital. Once you’ve experienced your first sale, you’ll quickly find there’s a buyer for everything, which may just be the push you need.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Finally, being your own boss doesn’t mean going it alone! Another important asset at your disposal is the power of networking and connecting with fellow resellers. Your reselling peers can help motivate you, provide you with advice, and guide you when it comes to making your first purchase.
Social media is the hub for reseller networking. Facebook groups such as our BULQ Community Group can provide you with broader visibility into the industry, expose you to helpful tips and tricks, and help you continue to learn and grow.
If you’re starting a reselling business on a budget, these tips can help you make your first investment a profitable one and allow you to feel more prepared to launch your successful online business.