ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Business and Employment»
  • E-Commerce & How to Make Money Online

Buying a Cup of Coffee at Starbucks and Making Money in the Process

Updated on September 21, 2013
Starbucks Sumatra Tiger Mug
Starbucks Sumatra Tiger Mug | Source

Hook...

I returned this morning to the scene of the crime.

Okay. Before the uniforms arrive, let me issue this disclaimer:

I'M KIDDING, PEOPLE!

But what else do you call walking out of an established and reputable business like Starbucks with something of value that you didn't have when you walked in?

Something of value? What in the world are you talking about?

Ah! I thought you'd never ask. Got a few minutes? Good. Get comfy while I place my order and schmooze with the cute barista for a bit. By the way, what are you drinking this morning?

This eBay Seller's THE REAL DEAL!

...Line...

To be an effective eBay seller, you have to be a very disciplined student of the game.

What does this entail?

Well, you have to be willing to do a lot of homework, Often, that homework will consist of several hours of research per week.

Research? Sounds boring.

Actually, I get psyched up when I do my research. So maybe your first impression of eBay homework might actually be a great barometer for determining whether or not you're cut out for this kind of lifestyle. Believe me, if you like the research, you'll absolutely know from the get-go! If you don't, there's the exit--enjoy your cup of joe, and don't let the door hit you in your keester on the way out.

Okay...I'm listening.

Good. As well you should...I could teach you how to make money here.

Okay, let's look at the research.

  • Borrowing books from the library
  • Buying books at brick and mortar bookstores or online
  • Uploading free books on your iPad, Kindle, or similar device
  • Reading articles in periodicals or online (SHOUT OUT TO EBAY NICHE HUBBERS!)
  • Participating in eBay discussion groups
  • Messaging specific eBay sellers with questions and comments
  • Watching videos on YouTube

And the very best research of all...

Yeah? What's that?

  • Going for it!

Nothing will help you to learn faster or more effectively than simply sticking your neck out and getting it chopped off! The more mistakes you make, the better off you'll be in the long run. Mistakes, my friend, are simply incremental steps towards eventual success. So, yeah, welcome to the real world...and PRONTO!

eBay research is way better than the studying we did in school or college. And even if it smacks of academics, the cool thing is that you don't have to go to school for X number of years to earn a diploma or degree that you then have half a fighting chance in today's earthquake economy to parlay into a living. Nope, you can start earning a decent living from EL DIA NUMERO UNO, my Vanilla Soy Americano-caffeinated friend!

A Pair of Starbucks Sumatra Tiger Mugs
A Pair of Starbucks Sumatra Tiger Mugs | Source

Taking eBay Inventory

What's Your Status Regarding eBay?

See results
Brilliant Maroon!
Brilliant Maroon! | Source

...and Sinker!

Want a refill?

No, I'm cool, man.

Good. So just kick back and chill for a few minutes while I tell you about what I did right here at this very Starbucks coffee shop in Hermiston, Oregon, five months ago...

My wife and I make a monthly buying trip to Hermiston, a small town about an hour's drive from Walla Walla, Washington. There's a couple of thrift stores we like in the area, and the fact that there's no sales tax in our sister state to the south just happens to be an added bonus.

Our daughter, who happened to be in Cambodia serving as a student missionary teacher at the time, had recently sent us photos of her petting three different tigers. Now THAT'S the kind of stuff that gets indelibly stuck in a father's mind.

Anyway, my wife dropped me off at this coffee shop. I found a nice table against the back wall and did my opening ritual. I plugged in my iPhone to charge it, and I plugged in my laptop and turned it on.

I then went over to the shelves where the mugs were displayed to check out the current offerings at the time. And then I saw them--these beautiful charcoal gray mugs with the beautiful maroon interior and the outline of a tiger aesthetically etched in pre-strike mode on the outside.

Call it serendipity, coincidence, mere chance, or whatever...I call it a tickle from God--that is, a hint of an opportunity--that I need to follow up on.

Following a gut instinct, I purchased a pair of the mugs for $8.95 each.

That night, I listed the pair for a ridiculously high price of $54.99. For a couple of weeks, I listed these mugs as an auction item. Nothing happened. I then decided to list them as a Buy It Now item for my eBay store.

The days and weeks passed, and the pair of tiger mugs were eventually forgotten in the daily mix of life scenarios.

FISH ON!

Now, I'm a firm believer in the optimistic entrepreneurial adage that, eventually, everything listed WILL sell.

In this case, it took approximately four months and a 10% sale. On May 12, 2013, the mugs sold for $49.49 plus $12.35 shipping to a woman clear across the country in Jacksonville, Florida.

After crunching the numbers, I came up with eBay and PayPal fees, shipping cost, and original purchase price totaling $38.80. My net profit, therefore, was $23.04.

Fish Fry--A Lesson in Arbitrage

Now, you could say that the above scenario seems like a lot of work to yield just $23.04, and if I were to look at it myopically, I'd have to agree with you.

But the successful eBay seller looks at things in a big picture sort of way. When you simultaneously utilize arbitrage in multiple ways--whether we're talking ten, a hundred, a thousand, or even more listings--the bottom line potential increases proportionately.

Whoa there, Tonto! What's that Frenchie word you just puked out there?

Oh...arbitrage!

(By the way, for the correct pronunciation of this word, please check out the very short video link to the upper right.)

Arbitrage is a very cool word, indeed, and one that most eBay sellers utilize on a daily basis. Simply put, the practice of arbitrage is the buying of an asset at a low price and then immediately selling it on a different market for a higher price.

In the instant scenario, I walked into Starbucks one day, purchased a pair of mugs for $17.90 and, later that night, listed it on eBay for $54.99.

An individual who utilizes arbitrage is known as an arbitrageur.

Why, what you just said sounds easy. What's the catch?

The answer to that question, my friend, finds us returning full circle to what I originally pointed out to you:

To be an effective eBay seller, you have to be a very disciplined student of the game.

There is no substitute for doing the necessary research.

If, for example, you find a video in Walmart that you can sell for three times the amount on eBay, at some point in time, you and other arbitrageurs who are doing the same thing will drive the supply of this DVD so far up that demand--along with the profitable sales prices--will take a nosedive.

The eBay seller who does the necessary homework will evacuate ahead of the plunge. The eBay seller who doesn't will suddenly have inventory he can't move.

Bottom line: DO YOUR RESEARCH!

Okay, Dude, I'm In!

You sold me, eBay seller! When can I start?

Immediately, my friend. There are some new Starbucks Cold Cups that just came out. They're on the shelves just across from the barista station. Take some notes and then research what they might be going for on eBay. Here...you can use my laptop while I read this book by Steve Weber.

What's YOUR Starbucks beverage of choice?
What's YOUR Starbucks beverage of choice?

Comments

Submit a Comment

  • cmoneyspinner1tf profile image

    Treathyl FOX 3 years ago from Austin, Texas

    This is a great HUB. I'll have to apply the "principle" differently as I refuse to buy coffee from Starbucks. :)

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 3 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    You hit the nail on the head, Casey! Robert Kiyosaki's philosophy and writings have been most influential in my life. Another source of inspiration is a home boy from your state, about 4-1/2 vehicular hours away from you in Houston--Pastor Joel Osteen. And here's yet another, closer to home for me--Seattle Seahawks quarterback, Russell Wilson.

    Of course, the Ultiimate GPS in my life is the good Lord. A recurring theme that is either directly stated or written between the lines of my eBay hubs is the fact that the work I do as an online seller is definitely a reflection of what God has done and continues doing in my life.

    Having done not just one but TWO tours of duty in Iraq with the toughest military service branch of our country's Armed Forces, I imagine you draw motivation and inspiration from a core reservoir within you to deal with life's challenges. I sense your good spirit, and I commend you for having a good balance of the brave warrior and the gentleman. (That said, I know very well the truth that behind every successful man, there's a good woman...)

    Take care, Casey, and thanks again for stopping by! Aloha

    ~Joe

  • abetterwaytolive profile image

    Casey Johnson 3 years ago from Sanger, Texas

    Very informative hub once again! I love them. I like the way you seemed to teach the "Rich Dad Poor Dad" way of looking at the big picture.

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Bill heartily promotes the idea of building a niche, and to that end, I have lots of eBay stories to sell. Seriously, Liz, I could write eBay Hubs every day. But I realize it's great to have a variety of topics to share with others. Thank you so very much for being such an avid reader and loyal follower. Here's to your continued success here on HubPages and beyond!

    ~Joe

  • epbooks profile image

    Elizabeth Parker 4 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

    Joe! You really know your stuff about eBay and making money! And you're probably the only person that I know that can write so well and in essence, turn advice on selling into something exciting, fun and thoroughly enjoyable to read! Voted this up. Thanks for sharing this!

    Liz

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Ha-ha! Good one, Jim!

    I think I may have been in one Salvation Army thrift store in my life, and if my memory serves me well, I was impressed with the spaciousness of the aisles and the liberal use of tables rather than shelves to display most of the items. This allowed buyers to see all the wares rather than miss things that were either too low or too high. Across America, thrift stores are popping up left and right...either that, or old shops are being converted...and even Mom and Pop thrifts are appearing on the scene. Our country is getting wise to the fact that for too long, we've had so much. Now, we're getting smarter about how to give our economy a pleasant boost by way of these reseller inventories. And what's really cool, Jim, is that people of ALL ages can get in on the fun and action at any given time.

  • xstatic profile image

    Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

    Well, Joe, there are two thrift stores and a Starbucks within a mile of my house, so I will take a run by those places and see what I can find today! You are, as always, inspiring and entertaining. I will see if there is anything "fishy" at the Salvation Army.

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Good morning, Shelley! My knowledge about eBaying on other continents is very minimal, perhaps limited to the feedback I receive from Hubbers in the UK, Australia, India, and parts of South America. Rather than hear from me, I highly recommend that you check out YouTube or Google specific questions and see what you come up with. It seems like I'm passing the buck, but I do believe what you need is reliable and tested answers and not my half-baked responses. Thank you for understanding. That said, I just recall now a husband and wife writing team from South Africa who have dabbled in eBay, if memory serves me correctly, so I do believe it is available in your part of the world. Either that, or they were tapped into the UK version of eBay. What I can and willingly would help you with is feedback once you get going. Thanks, Shelley, for joining me on this hub site and for your great support over recent months. Take care, and have a super weekend!

    Joe

  • CyberShelley profile image

    Shelley Watson 4 years ago

    Love this hub again while I am not doing anything on Ebay I appreciate what you have to teach! Being in South Africa, it wouldn't be feasible for me. Or would it - perhaps you could write another hub for people on other continents? Enjoying your accomplished Hub site. Up, interesting and useful.

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Thank you so much, Mary...writing on HubPages over time enables us to see how far we've evolved from the early hubs. As I read your beautiful words just now, the thought came to mind that the very people who loyally support and provide us with such meaningful feedback have definitely impacted our writing by way of literary osmosis. If I write well, it is part God-given talent, a whole lotta hard work, AND a gentle rubbing off from the likes of you, Bill, Liz, Karen, Rajan, Heather, Kathryn, Eddy, Pearl, Cris, and the list goes on and on. We each subconsciously give and take, and the writing takes on a life of its own.

    Either all that, my friend, or I'm simply suffering from the delirium of the 30/30 Challenge! If I had a choice just now, I'd take the former! LOL!

    Have a Paisley Print day, and don't forget the bell bottoms and no bra look!

    Your Kool Aid Acid Bro!

  • tillsontitan profile image

    Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

    "...a tickle from God", really? Where do you come up with these wonderful bursts of knowledge. I loved that quote and no, its not the only thing I got from this wonderful hub my favorite arbitrageur!

    Each time I read one of your eBay hubs my eBay juices start flowing but then time and family intrude...one of these days!

    Doing great on your 30/30 btw.

    Voted up, useful, funny, and interesting. I would prefer an amusing button because this is amusing/humorous, not necessarily funny. Loved it.

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Oh, Kathryn, you're not kidding! Might even have to pull out the old kerosene lamps. Ha-ha! I like that when you follow people, you truly take the time to faithfully read and comment on their writing. These are the big and little things you do that I really appreciate, my friend.There are people I actually wish I could sit across from a table at a coffee shop and talk HP or eBay or the writer's craft or whatever, just whiling the hours away...and you're definitely on that short list! Thanks for everything, Kathryn! Have a wonderful day, and may the Red Sox have their way with the Yankees! Aloha!

    Joe

  • Kathryn Stratford profile image

    Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

    This is great! I am interested in the subject, and I love coffee. But even if I didn't, I would have read it. Your writer's voice draws me in, and makes me feel like I am really sitting with you at Starbucks. I was going to say "yes" to the offer of a refill. Lol. You are so funny. I love the whole use of the word "arbitrage", and also that you had a pronunciation video. I was actually right on how to pronounce it, but some words I'm terrible at pronouncing!

    Also, I love that mug! I really like the Sumatra tiger.

    Have a wonderful day, Joe, and good luck shooting out more hubs. You have 11 days, left, once today is over. You're doing pretty good, although I think you will have to burn some midnight oil towards the end!

    ~ Kathryn

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Hi, Cyndi!

    Glad you stopped by, and thank you for sharing your wonderful comments. Aside from what I share in my hubs, if there's any specific questions or comments you might have about eBay, etc., please feel free, by all means, to contact me via the fan page message service found in the profile page. Take care, and I hope to "see" you again sometime soon!

    Aloha!

    Joe

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Angel, do you have a presence on Etsy? If so, send me a link via the fan mail section of my profile page so I can follow. I have one solitary item up under Hawaiian Odysseus, and I really need to give it some company with further listings. Ah, so much to do and so little time to do it all! Ha-ha! Take care, and thanks for stopping by and sharing in this hub experience. Aloha!

    Joe

  • angel115707 profile image

    Angel Ward 4 years ago from Galveston, TX

    You are inspiring, lol! Im getting the itch because the market is bigger on ebay, though I love the vintage classy Etsy more... Hmmmm

    voted up!

  • Cyndi10 profile image

    Cynthia B Turner 4 years ago from Georgia

    This is a good intro to selling on ebay. I've never bought or sold there. My son uses the site quite often. I've thought of it because I have quite a few things I really should sell because I no longer use them. Glad you're letting us in on the ins and outs of ebay.

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    I have no doubt in my mind, Heather, that you'll do just fine whenever you do engage in a 30-day Challenge. It's yours truly that I'm worried about. Alohahahaha! : )

    Joe

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Hi, Livingsta!

    Always happy to see you. Thanks for faithfully visiting and sharing your kind words. The word hustling was a good word decades ago when I was growing up. I learned it from my dad. The word was synonymous with having a good work ethic and always looking for opportunities with which to support one's family. I like to think that my eBay niche hubs are bringing back a good and reputable meaning to a word that's sadly been mischaracterized in recent years. Aloha, my UK friend!

    Joe

  • HeatherH104 profile image

    HeatherH104 4 years ago from USA

    Joe - I got your message and responded back. Thank you, so helpful!

    Good luck on your 30 day challenge. I almost started it myself but have a sudden case of writers block! :/ Hopefully it will pass.

    Heather

  • livingsta profile image

    livingsta 4 years ago from United Kingdom

    Another interesting hub from you Joe. I like reading your eBay selling experiences. Thank you for sharing it with us in the most interesting way. Have a good day!

    Voted up and sharing!

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Rajan, it always amazes me how you take time to visit me at my hubs and pen such gracious words when you are saturated with an amazingly busy schedule each day. Thank you very much, good friend, for exemplifying a commitment to your fellow faithful hubbers. I'm glad you enjoyed this piece. eBay is a niche I enjoy writing about so very much...the challenge is how to make it interesting to others. Figuring out how I'm going to deliver a message is a fun process! Aloha, and have a great rest of the week, my friend, Rajan!

    Joe

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Oh, Karen, please don't push yourself. I am very grateful for your presence at any of my hubs, even more so when you're still recuperating from surgery. All things good have a measure of pain involved--childbirth, watching our kids grow up, overcoming our fear and writing for HP, etc.--so just know that the pain signals that your body is fighting hard to heal itself. God bless and be with you every step of the way. Aloha, Karen! You're a very special human being, and all of us fans just want you to get well as soon as possible. Now please get some rest!

    Lovingly and respectfully,

    A brother

  • rajan jolly profile image

    Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

    Joe, you seem to have a keen eye for the right stuff whenever you happen to look anywhere around. This surely has come from all the research, study and experience of being an eBay seller.

    You greatly motivate with each of your hubs, they are so packed full of practical ideas and tips.

    Voting this up, interesting and awesome.

    Aloha, my friend!

  • Karen Hellier profile image

    Karen Hellier 4 years ago from Georgia

    Another nice one my friend. I like how you let us in on your experience as you are writing. Sorry my comments lately aren't longer. Not up to much but congrats on your 9 hubs so far!!!

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Hi, Liz!

    I always get jazzed when I hear from you because you have the eBay fever big time, just like me, except I've been doing it for so long and am somewhat tempted at times to get into a burned out syndrome, but here you come along like a Florida hurricane and spice everything up and rejuvenate the hustler juices in me! So kudos to you for having that dynamic hunger for all things eBay. You just never know, Liz--you may very well have been the italicized entity in this hub that provoked the narrator to share his knowledge. : ) If you haven't done so already, read billybuc's terrific hub this morning. In it is a video that I'd like you to watch. A young woman talks about the significance of having a tribe. Thought about you and a few others when I saw that. Have a wonderful day, my friend, and know that you're bonafide to the core! Aloha!

    Joe

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Heather, I'm so glad you asked. I have done the eBay Trading Assistant thing for an elderly lady friend here in the Walla Walla Valley. I sold furniture for her, and because I didn't want to hassle with the shipping, listed it under eBay Classifieds, which, as you may well know, is like Craigslist. I also have sold on eBay things that my brother-in-law acquired in an abandoned storage unit in Seattle. One of the best scores was selling an old Beatles lunch can and thermos. The starting bid was 99 cents, and it sold for over $500. You can read about it in one of my hubs. Beyond that, I have a lot of people asking but have not yet made a concerted effort--maybe after this 30/30 Challenge is over. LOL! That said, I am going to send you a personal email message in just a few minutes featuring a book written by a couple who have made a huge success consigning other people's items and listing them for 99 cents starting bid. They're making a mint! You'll hear from me in just a few minutes via your HP personal email. Aloha!

    Joe

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Pearl, what a lovely account of how you acquired your two names and the special bond you had with your grandparents. Our children were very fond of their maternal grandparents as they were growing up. They would occasionally see my mom whenever the family had a rare opportunity to travel to Hawai'i. But it wasn't until they were young adults before they were able to finally meet my father (who lives in Maryland). This current generation, for whatever reason, doesn't have the strong bonding with grandparents that past generations have enjoyed. So it was with sweet nostalgia that I read your account of how close you and your siblings were to your dad's parents. Your grandma would be so proud of you for sharing her and your love for our avian friends. Thanks so much for lovingly responding to my questions, Pearl! I now have a better understanding of my friend from the Southern Tier NY State! : )

    Joe

  • Radcliff profile image

    Liz Davis 4 years ago from Hudson, FL

    Retail arbitrage. Now you're whipping out the big guns.

    Those mugs are awesome! I can see why you were tickled when you saw them. Last year, we moved here from an apartment complex that was RIGHT NEXT DOOR to a Target. Not just a Target, but a Target with a Starbucks. Man, I was sitting on a goldmine and didn't even know it. I coulda been a professional arbitrageur. Cool word.

    I fear I need to give in and get a smartphone. I've resisted for too long.

    You're right about the research: it's crucial. I would be entirely clueless (as opposed to partially clueless like I am right now) if it weren't for hours and hours of video-watching and article-studying and completed-listing-searching.

    Thanks for sharing tips on how to be an eBay success with your unique Joe flair. I love how your articles always read more like stories than how-tos. That's so cool.

    We're having a better week this week, and I hope you are, too. I could never repay you for your priceless Joe Pep Talks and generosity. Thank you, my friend. Keep on hustlin'!

  • HeatherH104 profile image

    HeatherH104 4 years ago from USA

    I need a bigger house! Lol!!!

    Do you sell only your own inventory or do you offer a service to sell other people's stuff too? I thought I'd like to do that but don't know how to get started or find the people with stuff to sell. Right now I just sell craft and doll items I make but would love to expand.

  • grandmapearl profile image

    Connie Smith 4 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

    Joe, Connie is my given name, which I used to hate because it was 'different'. In school there were cool kids named 'Linda', 'Sally', 'Elizabeth', etc. As I began to develop my own unique view of the world I came to love my name. It was unique and thoughtfully picked by my Mom, who was also my best friend. She loved the name 'Constance' because of all that word implies. I prefer Connie because I'm an informal kinda gal.

    As to Pearl, that was my paternal grandmother's name. She and my Grandpa Minor D. lived just down the road from our house. When Mom and Dad were at work all day long and sometimes into the night during the year, my beloved grandparents took care of my brothers and me until Mom and Dad came home.

    Grandma Pearl taught me about feeding the birds with whatever she had on hand. She loved their color and songs. Being the youngest of 13 children, Grandma Pearl didn't even have a doll when she was little. So she decided that the birds were a worthwhile virtual substitute. Ever present and always glad to see her, wild birds made her happy. She repaid them by making sure they had food year round.

    She used to make homemade donuts for us, and would always save out 'one for the birds'.

    And so it was from her I learned to admire and appreciate all our feathered friends. As a tribute, I lovingly use her name when I write articles or blog posts. I adored my grandparents and miss them, but they left me with a wonderful legacy that is the appreciation of all wild life, and the health of this planet in general.

    Thank you for asking, my friend ;) Pearl

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Bill, I just learned something new. But then again, you're absolutely right! I do remember now how I'd often see signs at Andy's Market or Super 1 about the very special watermelons from Hermiston. Tell you what, though...the more walking I do, the more I learn about the agricultural history and milieu of southeastern WA and norheastern OR. So, what's your favorite caffeinated water hole in Olympia?

    Have a good one, Bill! Raining over here...not cats and dogs, but in an incessant drizzle. Great day for coffee and writing!

    Aloha, my friend!

    Joe

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    I wish you a blessed Starbucks mugs search, my dear Kikalina! Serendipitously, these mugs seem to just fall into my better half's lap as she journeys through yard sales and thrift stores. But when we can't find them for fifty cents to a dollar, the next best thing is to buy mugs new directly from the Starbucks coffee shop and perform the arbitrage strategy. But research is key, and by doing the homework (checking the market on eBay), one can avoid purchasing items that have created a glut of inventory on eBay and stick with the items that aren't "overdone." The best ones are mugs like the kind featured here where people snatch them up fast and thus deplete the stock. Sometimes, admittedly, it comes down to a guessing game...and that's when you trust your gut instinct. Like I mention in the article, making mistakes are incremental steps towards success. Aloha, and thanks for stopping by, kikalina. Always a pleasure!

    Joe

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Thank you so much for your kind words, Pearl! (Tell me the story about Pearl v. Connie...is one a first name and the other a middle name? Do you prefer one over the other? I'd love to hear some background information about it.)

    I think my goal to place quantity further up in the writer's hierarchy of goal-setting than quantity is what's impeding me in the 30 Days Challenge. I simply cannot write slush just to get a challenge of this magnitude accomplished. It's a huge quandary of fear of success meeting up with fear of failure. But then again, perhaps it's that very angst--not unlike an irritating grain of sand rasping away at the soft pearlescent tissue of an oyster-- that propels me along the road of aspiring to be a better writer. In any event, the fun part is connecting with lovable peers like you. Thanks so much for faithfully gracing my hubs with your NY sunshine! Aloha, my friend, and do have a fun and memorable day!

    Joe

  • billybuc profile image

    Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

    Maybe this ebay stuff is not for me. You just have too good an eye for this stuff, and besides, I refuse to shop at Starbucks. LOL

    Seriously, Hermiston is the watermelon capital of the Northwest. Only a Northwesterner would know that, right?

    Have a great day my friend.

    Aloha,

    bill

  • kikalina profile image

    kikalina 4 years ago from Europe

    Awesome hub as usual! I have been searching for a couple of starbucks mugs but no such luck.

  • grandmapearl profile image

    Connie Smith 4 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

    Joe... Joe... Joe! If this doesn't get the old 'sell on eBay' juices flowing, nothing will! I love your twists and turns, and how you keep dangling that carrot all the way through. Each article is better than the last, and that is an awesome feat, my friend!

    I am deadly serious when I say, you should be writing books--you entertain, you inform, you bring your expertise to us in such a funny and fun way; in short, you are irresistible!

    Voted Up++++ and pinned

  • hawaiianodysseus profile image
    Author

    Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

    Hi, WND! That's cute, what you said about the things in your house that you have designated as "don't touch, that's for ebay." Ha-ha! I know exactly what you mean.

    One day last week, my wife and I went to one of our storage lockers to retrieve something I'd sold. When we got there, we discovered our locker and several others had been broken into...lock hacked and stolen. Can't tell if any of our stuff had been stolen, but the thief had definitely looked around. Thankfully, our eBay stuff must've been too cumbersome for him to haul off. He was looking for fast, quick, easy things to steal that would enable him to convert to cash readily. Surveillance tapes were looked at, and the police know who he is but just can't locate him. Big drama in a small town.

    eBay has been a godsend to us, but people don't realize it takes a lot of work and sometimes involves, as in this case, special challenges.

    We continue to do our best, and we're always thankful to Someone bigger than us for providing.

    When you get going on eBay again, I will be one of your staunchest supporters. Aloha, my friend, and hello to the WND's!

    Joe

  • wetnosedogs profile image

    wetnosedogs 4 years ago from Alabama

    Hawaii,

    I had to vote I was sleeping. I believe I have sold over a 100 over the years I've ebayed. I just don't stick to it. Shame on me.

    It is fascinating to read though that people actually make ebay a living and one day it will smack me in the face and I will get going more vigorously.

    I have things about the house that is don't touch, that's for ebay. I need to listen to your videos you put up. I made a note to do that tonight after work, the one from your last and this one.

    This is an awesome hub to get one going, as all your ebay hubs are. It's a me thing.

    You did it again and you are almost there. Keep it up.