Dollars & Sense of Online Consignment Sales

I’m not here to bore you with another cliched course about how to sell on eBay. Hundreds of how-to-sell-on-eBay books have already been written.

I am here to convince you why rare antique and vintage collectible consignment selling is the Holy Grail of eBay marketing. For starters, here are 3 reasons:

#1] O.P.M. (Other People’s Merchandise) none of your money is ever tied up in inventory because you are an online consignment seller of other people’s merchandise.

#2] Anything classified as an antique or collectible is no longer manufactured so the supply is fixed. If the demand is high and the item has been subjected to normal wear, you can earn a very tidy profit auctioning it on eBay.

#3] There is a virtual, untapped inventory source for rare antiques and vintage collectibles I discovered while sitting in church one Sunday in February 2003. This book is about how-to tap into this inventory mother-load. I left nothing out. Everything I did that worked for me between 2000 – 2007 is explained in great detail in these 6 chapters.

There is a fourth reason but it depends on your level of commitment. How willing are you to immerse yourself into the process? Make no mistake, perseverance and an abundance of patience are necessary. FACT: You won’t get rich overnight!

History fascinates me. I’ve always been a fan of old stuff. I enjoy digging up historical facts to discover the backstory behind an antique or collectible.

My first ever eBay consignment auction was the sale of a pre-WW2 radio receiver, incorrectly identified because it was so ugly. The case was cracked and poorly repaired. It was the original ugly duckling.

The owner tried several times to give it away for $15 bucks at garage sales and ham radio trading events, without any success.

He gave it to me to sell because he hoped I’d fail so he could boast to his non-eBay collector friends — all old timers — “that piece of junk wouldn’t fetch $50 bucks on eBay which he described as just another new-fangled Internet fad”.

As it turned out, I sold it for $447 to an architect in Milan, Italy. My dogged online research diligence paid off — big time!

The real story about this ‘piece of junk’ is:

It was one of 300,000 radio receivers manufactured in 1938 by Grundig, a German radio manufacturer, on the orders of Adolf Hitler’s Propaganda Minister who wanted loyal Nazis to be able to listen to their Fuhrer’s weekly speeches!

It was ugly because a previous owner fixed a crack in the dark brown Bakelite case using blonde color glue. It looked as though it had been struck by lightning because of the jagged crack and the contrasting blonde color glue.

Before plugging it into a wall socket I removed the back panel to replace the frayed electric cord. To my surprise after I replaced the cord, I plugged it in; turned it on, three large vacuum tubes lit up.

A large Nazi Swastika glowed brightly on the glass envelope of each receiving tube. The bonus: after 62 years, it still worked beautifully.

This first consignment sale led to one client who became my eBay Partner for two and one-half years, during which time I auctioned his 1,200 fully restored and authenticated pendulum clocks, working tube radios and working telegraph keys. Oh, and pocketed my first six figure income as an online eBay consignment seller. 

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