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How To Make Income At a Flea Market

Updated on April 14, 2017

Sell a Variety of Items To Attract a Crowd

Always have a wide variety of merchandise. If you have a lil something for everyone then you will garner more potential customers. Always have toys to attract the children, clothing, jewelry etc. for women and tools, fishing gear etc. for men. If you cover all your bases you are sure to attract a large crowd.

Presentation is The Key To Success

When you set up a booth at a flea market, presentation is very important. Here are a few simple tips.

1. Never have cluttered tables and racks. Keep like items together and give the customer a wide variety of merchandise to pick and choose from. Always keep stuff people need in reach and simple to get.

2. Have lower priced items up front to help draw customers in. Also, Clearance and sell items should be in view and cross merchandised with regular priced items.

3. Cross merchandise by putting items together that go together. For example put shoes with socks or put batteries near flashlights and so forth.

4. Use as few boxes or totes as possible. People do not want to dig in order to find what they want.

5. Price all of your products. All items should be priced correctly and easy for the consumer to see.

6. Keep your area neat and clean.

7. Straighten clothes and other items after a customer goes through it.

8. Use tables and racks. Do not put merchandise on the ground. It may get dirty and it is harder to see.

9. Have bags to put items in for the customer.

10. Keep clothing separate. Girls on one table and boys on another table, for example.

Have You Been?

Have you ever been to a Flea Market?

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Customer Service is Important!

Always smile and talk to all potential customers. When speaking make eye contact and stay friendly. Treating your clients with respect and friendliness will carry a sell as much as the price or the presentation. Nobody wants to purchase anything from a jerk. Besides the longer the conversation the longer the buyer will be in your area and they may buy something.

Be Prepared For an All Day Event

When setting up a flea market booth just remember you may be their all day. Below are a few tips to help you get through the day.

1. Bring plenty of water and food to help keep you hydrated, full and happy. Plan for success.

2. Bring an umbrella and if possible a large covered tarp in case it rains or any other unforeseen weather circumstance.

3. Bring a hat and sunscreen so you do not get burned by the sun.

4. Have two people running a market so that you do not have to shut down to use the restroom.

5. Have enough merchandise for all day. If you sell an item you should refill that spot with another item.

Flea Market Top Sellers

Music CD's
Household Chemicals
Fishing Equipment
Twelve of the best selling items at a Flea Market.

Shop Till You Drop

This freezer was purchased at a flea market in Bessemer, Alabama for about 70 percent below cost and it works great.
This freezer was purchased at a flea market in Bessemer, Alabama for about 70 percent below cost and it works great. | Source
Flea markets is a perfect place to trade or purchase items for a great price.
Flea markets is a perfect place to trade or purchase items for a great price. | Source
Some flea markets have indoor and outdoor vendors which is great in case of rain.
Some flea markets have indoor and outdoor vendors which is great in case of rain. | Source

What is a Flea Market and How Did It Come To Be?

Flea markets also known as swap meets, are areas in which vendors sell or trade items. The items can vary from very cheap to very expensive. The first known flea market was in Canton, Texas in 1803. It was called Monday Trade Days. There are several theories as to where the word "flea market" came from but, no one truly knows for sure. There's no documented facts anywhere.

My Experience as a Flea Market Vendor

I have never had the experience of being a vendor at a flea market until recently. You go and rent your space and set up your tables, clothes wracks, clothes totes or whatever you can think of to display your wares. The most popular items were electronics, followed by little nick nack items such as ceramics. Also popular are pictures, books, clothing, shoes and tools.

You can find just about anything that you are looking for at a flea market.

We started talking to the people that were on each side of us and found out some good pointers for when we return. Always be willing to listen and use any tipos to help you sell more merchandise.

Experiencing the Flea Market as a Customer

I believe if you look long and hard enough, that you can find some great deals at the flea market. Not everything is cheap but, there may be some diamonds amongst all those other items. Lots of vendors are willing ro offer you a lower price if you will haggle with them and others offer deals on multuple items.

Booths that are neatly displayed and laid out well tend to attract the most customers. Having a good variety of products always helps draw in customers to browse as well. If you have 20 rolls of paper towels or toilet paper someone might just breeze right over you. If you have 5 or 10 rolls of paper towels and different cleaning supplies, that will bring you more traffic to your booth. I know as a customer I am attracted to variety versus a lot of just one product.

Remember: Always negotiate the price because most vendors will drop prices a little bit at least.

© 2013 Buster Johnson


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