One of the most challenging aspects of successfully running a thrift shop is to restock quality merchandise continually. While there is no shortage of goods to sell globally, the trick is to get stock at a sufficient discount to both make a profit and pass savings along to customers accustomed to used goods at reduced prices. Finding products to stock the shelves with isn’t always a stress-inducing task, though. Follow our five tips for getting quality inventory for your thrift store.
Buy Low on Resale Sites
The quickest way to determine the varieties of items you potentially would like to sell is to browse what other stores have on offer. Your business should include a tax ID that will allow you to buy wholesale directly from many manufacturers and retailers. This is one straightforward way to add a few new items—such as impulse buys—to your shop.
Besides this, several resale-by-owner sites have popped up since the early days of eBay. Amazon, Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and similar bulk clothing suppliers and general goods resale sites are excellent and reliable ways to find deals on unwanted but still desirable toys, clothes, and collectibles.
Put Out a Call for Donations
Of our five tips for getting quality inventory for your thrift store, asking for donations is among the more common. Add signage to your store indicating that you are seeking unwanted items or mention them to customers as they pass through the store. People go through the same cycle of buying, loving, and moving on from various items just about everywhere.
Almost everyone has at least a few things they’d love an easy way to part with throughout the year. As such, your store will become a service to the local community by helping keep items available to interested parties and out of a landfill.
Seek Out Garage and Estate Sales
Much like their online counterparts, the in-person variations of resale sites—such as garage sales—are often just as fruitful. So, you can secure more significant savings than usual on a selection of new to vintage items. Most of the time, people running garage and yard sales are happy to see the excess stuff leave their house and even offer more significant discounts on lot purchases.
Estate’s sales are more of a coin toss when it comes to savings, and flexibility on pricing generally depends on what company oversees the deal on behalf of the owners. Finally, estate and warehouse auctions are terrific for securing lots full of new, used, and even valuable antique collectibles. It does require a little more skill and patience than the average sale, though.