Today’s post will be a little bit different, as it is a guest post from my friend Jonathan Gosz. He is also selling online, and started within the past 6 months. I know that not everyone is able to quit their jobs and sell online full time, so hopefully his story will be helpful for those who are still working full time, and selling online part time. Here is his post:
Selling online part time – my story
Hello everyone, for starters just a little introduction about me, my name is Jonathan, I am 25 years old from the Twin Cities in MN. I studied business at Winona State University while playing both golf and volleyball competitively there.
I have dabbled around a bit in the workforce holding jobs in athletics, the food industry, and more recently for the last 2 years in corporate sales. Basically I am on a computer and phone all day attempting to contact companies to sell computer software…sounds fun right?
I have known Ryan for about 6 years from our early days in college together. Ryan was looking for a roommate for the duplex he had recently purchased, and I was still living at home with my parents to save money. Ryan asked me if I wanted to rent out a room at his house and by June we had the place ready and I moved in. I first went out sourcing with Ryan mid-June and he got me hooked from the first time I went with around July of 2013.
When I purchased my first item online for resale, I had no clue what I was doing. And by no clue I mean I didn’t have an eBay account, and didn’t even know what FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) was. This means that if I can learn ANYONE can.
There was quite a learning curve that I needed when I first started online selling, how do I buy shipping, how to package an item, what do I do after I ship the item to the buyer. I knew nothing; this is where Ryan came in very handy. In terms of just getting started selling online I have learned the majority of what I know from Ryan, he says I got “free” tuition, I call it paying rent, but in the end its just making money.
Being new to online selling, and having a very risk-adverse personality I did not know what to expect when I got started. So I started like most people do with thrift shopping small items and selling them on eBay. This helped me learn the system with very cheap investments in both money and time, mainly because I didn’t have a lot of either of them. Needless to say after my first eBay sale I was HOOKED. The excitement of a sale and finding that next great treasure was not only fun but profitable.
As a new seller I did not want to be limited to just eBay so, with Ryan’s guidance, I quickly transitioned to Amazon. My first Amazon sale was on August 24th 2013. It was an old book I had lying around that I made $1.95 profit from. From the start on Amazon I went right into selling via FBA, quickly realized that as a part timer and not wanting to do more than 10-15 hours a week that this would be the best way for me to make money and save time. The way I made this possible was by transitioning from thrift shopping to full on retail. Retail sourcing is very different from thrifting, retail is scan, scan, scan, whereas thrift you need more time and knowledge of product to know what you can buy for $1 and sell for $50. Occasionally lower margins and higher costs but again as a part timer I realized this was my route for success.
Now for the good stuff, did I actually make any money doing this part time?
Like most retailers, and fellow online sellers, my best month was December, below is my largest individual day in terms of sales dollar amount as well as my largest month. Largest day was not shockingly in December about 2 weeks before Christmas and largest month of course was December.
Largest individual day December 11th 2013 (click to enlarge):
Largest Month Dec 2013 (Click to enlarge):
A little info into these numbers, I made over $3,000 in profit alone in December from my amazon and ebay sales, working approx. 15 hours. This proves to me that even working part-time hours selling online I am able to increase my monthly income significantly and put myself in a much more comfortable position for the future.
Overall I am very happy with the results I have experienced so far selling online, especially since I am putting on average 10-15 hours a week into my efforts. Through 4 months with Amazon I have totaled around $15,000 in sales and from 6 months on eBay total around $8,000 in sales. Surely there will be bigger and better numbers to come!
If you would like to find out more about my story and current success in part-time selling feel free to reach out by leaving a comment below, or contact me by email or facebook, links below:
Thanks to Jonathan for sharing his story through this guest post! As he said, feel free to reach out to him via email or through the comments below. Have a story you would like to share? Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for reading!
11 thoughts on “Selling on Amazon and eBay part time – A guest post from Jonathan Gosz”
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Hi jonathan, in order to generate that kind of numbers, how many skus have you listed on amazon. And when you found a profitable fast moving product, how much of that profitable product do you buy to stock up in amazon.
Without giving too much away i believe this can help us to see your thought process a little better. Thanks in advance.
Currently I have a little over 500 skus with about 1800 items in inventory.
And as far as deep into a single item the deports I have really gone is about 20-30 or a few thousand dollars. Mainly from lack of finding the item in stock. But I am not afraid to go deep on an item if the risk/reward seems right.
Great inspirational post. Glad I learned of this site last week,and can see perspective from both a full-time and part-time seller.
Thks Ryan +Jonathan (John?)
You’re very welcome Jay!
Thank you for the post! I’m interested in selling part-time and seeing the potential for just hundreds of dollars, not even thousands, is hugely exciting!
Could you share an example of what type of item you sell? What are you selling that fetches $90 average on Amazon? I’m typically looking at clearance racks in drug stores, and I haven’t found anything that would be profitable in that price-range yet.
Thank you in advance!
Way to go Jonathan. You have come along way from that first <$2.00 profit book! Keep it up.
Good Stuff Jonathan! I’m just starting out and stories like yours are really inspirational. Thanks for sharing.
Can you give us some examples of stores you typically source from?
Nick V – Thank you for the question.
Currently with the limited time that I am able to work selling, I tend to stick to larger retail stores. These seem to be the best option for me to spend my time. Of course I still occasionally hit thrift stores as they are fun to go through due to never knowing what may be there.