Creative Amazon Sourcing – Buy online and sell online

Finding consistent inventory can be a bit of a challenge, especially when just starting out.  I am still working on finding consistent sources for inventory that I can go to for high margin items.  One source that is often passed up, at least initially, by online sellers is purchasing items online to turn around and sell online.  I wanted to show you one example of this that I have from about a month ago.

The item that I found is a PS3 Rocksmith Guitar Bundle.  At the time of my order I was able to buy this item for $94.23.  Here is a screenshot of my order(click to enlarge):

guitar trade in - orderWhat I noticed when I was looking at this item is that there was a trade in offer immediately available for this item of $155 (see below screenshot, it turns out the same trade in price is still available today).  This means that I could submit a trade in for $155 and then buy this item for $94.23.  This seems like a pretty decent deal.  The trade in is paid in the form of an amazon gift card, so it’s not as good as getting cash, but it is essentially buying a $155 amazon gift card for $94.23.  I purchase a decent amount of items on amazon, so this was a good enough deal for me.

The Amazon Trade in Program

If you are not familiar with the amazon trade in program here is a link to some information on it: Amazon Trade in Program.  Basically, it is a program run by amazon that let’s you trade in items for amazon gift cards.  The way it works is really quite simple.  Here are the steps:

  1. Submit your trade in to amazon by clicking the trade in link (it’s circled in red in the below screenshot for reference)
  2.  Print off the prepaid shipping label (no cost to you) to ship the item in.
  3. Box up the item and tape on the prepaid label
  4. Drop it off at the shipping provider you selected
  5. Wait about 2 weeks for shipping and processing and your amazon giftcard is ready to use!
  6. I should also add that you can get access to the amazon gift card dollars immediately upon submitting the trade in.  To do this you have to select this option while going through the trade in process, and also provide credit card information.  The credit card info is needed in case you don’t actually trade the item in.  I prefer to just get the gift card after everything has been verified, but either way works.

The above shows the steps I took to turn $94.23 into $155 in amazon gift cards, but let’s say you don’t really want to end up with gift cards to amazon.  You still have a couple of options if you want to buy this item to resell.  First, you could complete the trade in to get the amazon gift card, and then use the gift card to buy an item on amazon to turn around and resell.  So you search for an item that costs $155 that you are confident you can resell for the same price, then you sell the item you purchased from amazon.  Your $155 will turn into approximately $129 after amazon fees, leaving you with a profit of $34.77 on your initial investment of $94.23, which isn’t too bad of  a deal.  The other option is to buy the item, hold on to it for a while, and see if the price goes up.  If I held this item until November 9th (date of below screenshot) I could have sold this item for $199.99, which would have made me a profit of about $73 after amazon fees and my initial investment of $94.23.

Here is a screenshot of the $199.99 price, as well as what the trade in button looks like.  When I initially purchased the item it was $94.23.guitar 11-9This is not a sourcing strategy that I use all of the time, but I have had decent results using it in the past.  This is just one quick example, but don’t rule out the possibility of being able to make profits without leaving the comforts of your own home.

Questions? Please let me know in the comments below!

6 thoughts on “Creative Amazon Sourcing – Buy online and sell online”

  1. Hello Ryan, I was wondering how you discovered this item, and how you would suggest going about finding online items to resell/trade in. Thank you for your posts!

    1. Hi Michaela,

      This one I came across while doing research on some different products. I always have my eyes open for opportunities like this, so it was something I found while researching something else. I know that’s not super actionable, but the takeaway would be to keep your eyes open for opportunities like this even if you are doing a task that doesn’t seem like it relates to sourcing inventory.

      Best Regards,

  2. On this deal, you would have gained a profit of $73.00. Can you explain what is the best profit margin to look for on a product. Is there a magic range that I should be looking for?? For instance is a $6.00 to $10.00 consistent profit range good or bad? Or should I go for the knockout punch and try to only source products that will gain me 50% or more??

    1. Hi Harlet,

      There is no best or magic profit margin to look for. When sourcing I generally look for products that have an absolute minimum of a 30% return on investment, but I prefer to buy in the 50-100% range.

      Best Regards,

  3. Interesting take on online buying. I’ve been looking into doing online arbitrage, as it has been a real challenge for me to get out to the local stores after the work day ends and thus I have not been as consistent in finding products. For me, the appeal to online sourcing is that I can do it when I have the most free time – late evenings after the family is sound asleep.

    1. Thanks for the comment! The beauty of online arbitrage is that it can be done from anywhere at pretty much anytime, it sounds like that may be a good fit for your lifestyle.


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