Today we have a guest post from Jonathan Gosz. He sells online, primarily using the fulfillment by amazon program, in addition to working his full time job. Take it away Jonathan:
Hey everybody, Jonathan Gosz back here again giving you a little update on my experiences as a part-time seller.
In my last post along with my financial numbers I shared a few tips regarding supplies for your business as well as the utilization of credit card rewards. In this one I will go over some of the services that I use to make my life easier when scouting, listing, and shipping, as well as my status on a few goals that I set back in January.
First let’s hit the numbers. I gave you updates last time all the way through March so I will pick up where I left off.
Here are my sales numbers for the past six months per amazon:
April – $6,862.26
May – $7,185.95
June – $7,657.04
July – $7,021.81
August – $7,244.16
September – $7,312.35
Here are my sales from Jan 1st 2014 until Sept 30th 2014 – with these number I will need another $38,500 to hit my year goal of $100,000 in sales for 2014. Click to enlarge.
Also, here is a screenshot showing my top 5 categories for the year (click to enlarge):
As you can see with my sales numbers I have a pretty consistent number that I get close to every month which is right around $7,000. With my sales in the first 3 quarters of the year my monthly sales average is $6,835 and some change. Sales are only part of the picture, so I will also share my profits.
Currently for the first 3 quarters my profits haves been $23,503 and the goal is to add another $11,500 to that by end of December. This would accomplish my profit goal of $35,000 for the year 2014.
These consistent numbers allow me to have great insight into where my business is at all times. One way that helps me keep my sales and profit consistent month over month is by keeping my model of purchasing relatively the same. I tend to stick to items that will provide at least a 50% ROI after all fees. By doing this I still have room for price drops as well as the ability to hold if an item needs to sit for a while.
Currently I have 1,588 item that are FBA and about another 50 or so that are Merchant fulfilled and about 200 items that need to be listed on eBay. I am in the process of gearing up for Christmas and hopefully a significant portion of this inventory will be sold.
Next I want to chat a little about how much time I spend selling online. During the winter months here in Minnesota there are not as many activities for me to do, so I tend to spend a little more time selling, closer to the range of 15-18 hours a week. During the summer I would say that number drops to about 10-13 hours per week. The reason for this is I play a variety of sports during the short Minnesota summer. I play in multiple co-ed rec softball and volleyball leagues as well as being an avid golfer so I decided my time was better spent doing those activities while the weather allows.
Lastly I wanted to give everyone some insight into some of the services that I use for my business.
First the scouting apps, I mainly use Scoutify by InventoryLab, I also have Profit Bandit, the Amazon Seller App, and Flow, but mainly use Scoutify. I chose Scoutify over other scanning options mainly due to the fact that InventoryLab is the system that I use to do my listing and record all my accounting including all profits and business expenses. Along with all the accounting and listing features as well as the scouting app in terms of cost InventoryLab just makes much more sense to me.
I also utilize UPS Smart pickup. Even though the UPS store is only a 5 minute drive from my house I find that since I only ship about 2 times a week and about 100-150 items each time my Ford Focus won’t cut it.
These are the main two services that I currently use but in the near future I will most likely be adding Shoeboxed and a repricer though I haven’t decided which one yet.
I want to give everyone a brief heads up on something to look for in the future. Ryan and I have been working on a project to help sellers find the best tools and resources for their business, look out for some updates on our new website that we will be launching in early November.
Thanks again everyone for reading the post, please leave any comment or questions below I will attempt to respond to them all. Thanks and keep up the hustle!