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Advise And Tips On Selling Stamps And Other Collectibles At A Car Boot Sale

 
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Valued Member
United Kingdom
10 Posts
Posted 10/07/2022   3:08 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add shapaw to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
A bit of background at the local boot sale I often see some sellers selling stamps (usually FDCs) and coins almost always common stuff of no real value along with their other junk and occasional sellers who are either dealers or sellers with better stuff. They all seem to ask a big premium over what stuff could be bought on ebay auctions more like a retail dealer BIN price in some cases they are 100-500% more. Given that most stuff at the boot sale sells for peanuts like cloths and tech usually a fraction of ebay prices I thought I could see a selling opportunity for stamps, coins and other collectibles particularly the common stuff that sells for peanuts on ebay and isn't worth posting as I have vast quantities of this stuff from general auctions that was mixed with better stuff I collect, plus I need to clear room and raise funds for better stuff.

The main motivation is that sales and views on ebay seem to have fallen off a cliff lately with most stuff not even getting looked at despite competitive pricing at below most BIN sold prices, and auctioning stuff is too risky as stuff just gets sniped for nothing, if you are not a regular seller with followers, and you end up loosing money

To this end I invested 15 in a pasting table and plan to set up a stall at the car boot to sell off common stuff I don't want as it seems 90% of booters don't know the true value of stamps and coins and would happily buy stuff that is half the price of the other stall holders thinking it a good buy even if it's virtually worthless like those collections people buy from Westminster/Windsor mint that are only worth a few % of new price, as they like to own them.

Do any members do car boots and have any advise or tips on how to go about setting up a stall and selling collectible like stamps and coins at one? the only problem I see is it's not the best time of the year to start!
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United States
3163 Posts
Posted 10/07/2022   4:28 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hy-brasil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
eBay as an auction venue is by definition more in the realm of wholesale, not retail. And you have to consider actual sold prices and their condition to properly get a handle on individual collectibles' real value.

Plus eBay having "fallen off a cliff lately"? Views and actual sales on eBay have been way down for at least 15 years or more. That's been for a variety of factors including people in general having no spare cash. Have you been to a car boot sale very recently to gauge how many people and dealers show up and how many people are actually leaving with purchases?

Also, what sounds like a basic contempt for your customer base is not going to help you at all. Haggling is part and parcel of dealing there and if you aren't willing to play the game, you won't sell much if at all. Depending on the venue, you'll probably need to develop a following over time. If you have the same as what established sellers have, you won't be seeing their customers anytime soon. Also, having your pitch somewhere far away in the boondocks is death. And you will need someone to take along to spell you when nature calls, at least. Will you then not feed them and not throw them some cash for their trouble? So that adds to the cost of the stand.

There's plenty of advice out there for car boot sellers. You won't get any real free secrets here since your established competitors are probably here, too.
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United Kingdom
7150 Posts
Posted 10/07/2022   4:59 pm  Show Profile Check GeoffHa's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Perhaps you're expecting too much from ebay. If you're selling lots of penny stamps, you'll get very little for them, but, in my experience, you'll get rid of them and create some space. My only (vicarious) experience of car-boot sales was when a friend sold some of my stuff (not stamps, but not junk). We might just have got a burger each out if it, for her several hours' effort. With ebay, you don't have to leave the sofa to sell.
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United States
259 Posts
Posted 10/07/2022   7:31 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add oldboldandbrash to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Shows are my main method of disposing of crap. And I acknowledge it's crap and my customers know it's crap but they buy it because I sell absolutely dirt cheap. A lot of dealers have purported self respect and will sell junky Princess Diana Commemorative style binder collections for 20$. I do $5 because it's NOT GOING UP IN VALUE. It just takes up space in my room and only gets crappier with each show I bring it to. If you want to go to the lowest of the low style of sale (boot sale) price TO SELL. Make lots, sell to other dealers. If you see they have more customers than you do after a while, just sell to them. I recently sold off 6 banker boxes of dollar covers for $300 because I just don't have the space or desire to lug it. Always be selling. While you might notice people stopping by other tables for junky first day covers, have you noticed what else might have brought those people to that table? The FDCs might just be part of the general table going through experience. We all know this to be true: people will walk by a table if in their first glance they don't see anything they like. Entice the consumer with either low low prices or interesting things.
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United States
213 Posts
Posted 10/07/2022   8:41 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Gibby01 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I'm still trying to find my car's boots? none of the sizes seem to fit over the tires......
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United Kingdom
530 Posts
Posted 10/08/2022   03:50 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DavidR to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I agree with the comments on eBay, I find even very cheap items are very rarely enticing a bid these days. Without doubt the general economic situation is preventing many people from spending on non-essentials, and who can blame them?
As for car boot sales, my wife and I do one or two a year, and I always take some old albums or postcards to clear some space. As long as you pitch them at a realistic price (i.e. low!) they will sell. But pick your days carefully, weather-wise!
Regards
DavidR
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Posted 10/08/2022   04:22 am  Show Profile Check GeoffHa's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Gibby - if you move to England and leave your trunks behind, you'll find your boots fit.
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Posted 10/08/2022   05:26 am  Show Profile Check johnsim03's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add johnsim03 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Gibby - if you move to England and leave your trunks behind, you'll find your boots fit.




Absolutely brilliant!

John
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Posted 10/08/2022   08:21 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Alas, soon you will be selling out of your frunk.
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United Kingdom
7 Posts
Posted 11/14/2022   04:47 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Cheesehound to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Must admit, I spend a fair amount of time on eBay perusing stamps and associated paraphernalia, and certainly there is value to be had from that source, but I recently attended a fairly local stamp fair here in the UK, and I was utterly amazed at how low some dealers were pitching their wares.

I'm really new to all this, being your typical retiree in the process of resurrecting a schoolboy collection, so that may be relevant, but at one dealer's table I'd picked up several albums and a fat stockbook. These contained small GB collections. These were mainly QEII, but one contained more from 1840 - 1952, and they were mostly priced at 16.

I was trying to decide which to select, when the dealer informed an adjacent customer: "Don't forget - everything is half-price today!"

I verified that this applied to my armful, and then, of course, I bought the lot. And before anyone queries the quality of the album contents, two of the albums alone are regularly selling as empty binders at 20-30 on eBay.

Another dealer was offering 150 UK FDC's for 75 - an average of 50p per cover.

I left the show absolutely delighted with my bagful of purchases, but I later reflected that, at my level, it's as well that I'm collecting for the love of it, rather than in the hope of building a collection of much value.
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United Kingdom
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Posted 11/14/2022   07:15 am  Show Profile Check GeoffHa's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I wish I could get 20 for an empty binder on ebay! In my experience, the rough price for run of the mill FDCs is 10p each as part of a job lot. 75 was beyond optimistic.
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Posted 11/16/2022   9:06 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add floortrader to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Interesting -----SHAPAW .

First , I am not sure what a Local Boot Sale is . but it sounds like a Flea Market ,we have around Chicago .

You sound upset with your situation . I believe HY-BRASIL ,gave you the best answer .

My advice is going to be different than everybody else here . Because I don't hear the music they march too ,I don't see what other people see .

Here is my advice
Find out why people go to a boot sale and sell that . Don't sell stuff everybody else has . Invest money and build a inventory of what people want ........trust me here -----people will pay up for what they want . Kiss off those people who are looking for a bargin or want it cheap .....they want it they will pay . If your selling stamps package it so there is some mystery to what their buying ,people want a treasure hunt purchase .

Buy some better stuff to sell and salt those lots that are dogs . Remember packing it right is half the battle in selling .Mark your price on the items your selling , then if they try to offer less ,then tell them your getting so much for selling it for the owner,so a phone call is needed to change the price . Remember stop selling what everybody else is selling you don't make money marching with the crowd .

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Posted 11/16/2022   9:31 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Petert4522 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Are we having a language barrier here? I always thought a boot sale is selling something out of the trunk of ones car?


Peter
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Posted 11/16/2022   9:43 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Peter,
luggage compartment of a motor vehicle (usually at rear)

England = Boot
US = Trunk

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