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Purging Inventory at Strategic Points

Updated on November 2, 2014

Investing in inventory and watching it not sell for months can be a little sickening. After all, you can't always predict what will sell and what won't. You put hard-earned money into something on good faith there will be a decent demand. Well, the first advice I give you upon purchase is to do a little market research. That's all well and good, but what does a seller do when their goods don't move?

All is not lost. Fortunately there is a way to get rid of stuff. You can move things on to people who have an actual shop, how thrive on yard sale profits, or people who can eat the cost of an inventory that won't move. Here are some steps to take if your inventory isn't moving:

1. Take it back to the store. If it isn't too late you may be able to return the items and get your money back or store credit. Either way, timing may be your friend. If it was supposed to be hot and it went cold, take it back. Sometimes you are better off cutting your losses. With the exception of items that do well over the holidays, items that don't move probably shouldn't be on the inventory.

2. Sell it in bulk. If you have a large quantity of items, consider selling it as "small business lots" and taking reasonable offers. Sometimes you will realize a profit and sometimes you just break even. Even if the latter is the case, you still move it and make room for other items. Make sure you allow for shipping and cost of goods sold. Try to turn a profit while realizing a smaller profit will move the lot faster. I did this with Swarovski iPhone cases and accepted an offer that made me $55 profit. Can you say lunch for the work week?

3. Move on to other sites like Craiglist or Facebook. Facebook has a number of pages in your local area that play Craigslist but they have rules...mainly annoying rules. Regardless, these venues are free and can often sell your stuff fast. Just be sure to observe the rules of the page. Not doing so can get you banned and unless your item is highly sought after, you may come out on the losing end.

4. Yard sale!! Selling with a yard sale isn't a bad idea, whether you're hocking new or used items. Just be sure to cut your price down...you probably won't be seeing the best profit. At least you get the stuff off your hands!

5. Flea Market. Hey, why not? You can probably move your stuff fast! Plan ahead, get there early and make sure you're ready for the first customers. This option is best left to those who beat the sunrise. Try other options if you're more of a night owl.

When all is said and done, you really need to weigh the costs and benefits of each option and determine what works best for what you're trying to move. Best of luck to you!

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