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Thursday, January 9, 2014

My Life As A Flipper (not the Dolphin variety)

Well, not exactly but...

Back in September, I was looking around the universe for places to sell my cards.  I am well aware of all the "regular" haunts for card sellers but I wanted to find something different.  Maybe be introduced to something on the ground floor that as it grew, so could I.  Well, I was unable to find such an animal (with the exception of Collector's Revolution which I haven't decided on a plan for yet).  But in the process, I was reintroduced to Check Out My Cards.

I know everyone knows of, is familiar with, or has used COMC.com.  That's nothing new.  They have been around for I think over 6 years now and are a mainstay at many of the larger shows across North America, promoting their sort-of, kind-of, unique-like consignment website.  I have always thought they were a great place to buy but never had the guts to pack up a 600-count box to send to them.  Instead, I've always searched for singles for my various PCs and sets that I collect (probably like many others out there).

When the light bulb went off in my head, I wasn't sure what I should do.  Usually when it comes to half-baked ideas I get regarding this hobby, I go gung-ho for about 10 minutes until I realize the work involved.  This time, though, it was different.  I decided that I would do what I could to work the system, meaning taking the Wall Street mentality of "Buy Low, Sell High".  Why not?  It works there, why can't it work here on this marketplace.  Ebay is never going to lend itself to that behavior and some of the other sites are just too crowded with competition.  The key was finding something people would want without A) mailing anything to the COMC inventory, B) amassing a large stable of junk wax, and C) spending a lot to make a little.

So I found a niche and for the most part stuck with it.  Pre-1990s hockey cards seemed to be my calling and I slowly began building my inventory.  100, 200, 300 cards...building from the bottom up one at a time using the money from selling to purchase more inventory.  Cashing out account balances on COMC seemed to me to be counter productive so the only choice was adding more inventory.  It has worked out to the tune of about 80 cards being sold since October.  Not much by comparison with the majority of sellers on there but I was pretty proud of that fact since all I was doing was flipping, not providing money, and not sending in inventory.

Now if only parring down my own collection was this easy.  It seems that pointing and clicking is the only way I get rid of anything.  I guess I do have a collecting goal for 2014...get organized.

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