Who can remember keeping the ads in the Sunday paper and using these to value items coming in the door, especially as a price guide for inventory coming out for sale? Ahh, talk about the good ol’ days! Customers would come in and see a TV that looked to be a good deal, haggle a little, and buy it! How times have changed! Now, everything out for sale in your store can be price checked with eBay, Amazon, or any other retail store in a matter of minutes.
Social Media has become a huge marketing outlet for the new era of sales. Whether using Craigslist, Facebook & Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp, 5Miles, Armslist, Backpage, Instagram, Snapchat, or whatever other platform, there are some great ways to make your inventory available to buyers. Pawnbrokers have a major advantage over many of the other sellers on these platforms because we have a storefront, offer some warranty, and even better, offer layaway! Potential customers have the comfort of meeting in a safe environment, not some parking lot or alley, and the ability to pay with whatever forms of payment that you accept, not just cash.
POST THE PULLS
All of these apps have the ability to post right from your smart phone or tablet. Encourage your staff to post every item that comes out for sale. Don’t limit your inventory to the 50-100 customers that are in your store each day. Rather, get these items out to the thousands of other locals in and around you. Join local groups in your area on Facebook Market, i.e. Charlotte buy and sell, Charlotte bargains, Charlotte Yard Sale, etc. You have the ability to post one item to 10 different groups in less than 5 minutes start to finish.
RETAIL vs. WHOLESALE
The key to good sales and great cost of goods is finding the balance between pre-loved retail and wholesale.
It’s great to have a list of strong wholesalers for the different types of items in-store. Jewelry, firearms, electronics, tools, and even items that are defective (iPads and tablets are notorious with the ever-changing updates). But, when you sell items to wholesalers, such as jewelry, how does this effect your business? Do you think a wholesaler is going to tell their client where they purchased this amazing jewelry at?
Offer the same great prices to your regular customers. The ring that you would sell to a wholesaler for $500 stops the word of mouth there. Let’s say you offer the same ring on Facebook to family and friends for the same $500. Imagine how happy they will be and how many people they will tell where they got a great deal at.
Items out for sale should be on your sales floor for at least 90 days. Same applies to items on eBay.
WHAT WORKS BEST IN YOUR MARKET
It takes a little time to figure out what items sell best on certain platforms. High-end laptops typically sell better on Craigslist. Firearms do very well on Backpage. Smaller electronics and game consoles are a hit on OfferUp. Everything sells well to family and personal friends on Facebook.
** Many times I personally do not have the time to post items for sale. My wife tags me every day on items that are out and available. Just today alone I sold a diamond heart pendant that was aged inventory to a wholesaler in Miami, a Rolex to a Facebook family member in Corpus Christi, a Louis Vuitton purse to high school friend in Austin, and a small pair of earrings to my sister in Georgetown. Again, I’m not nearly as active on social media as many of my staff members, but this month alone my personal sales to date are just under $30,000.
Reward staff for posting – I like to buy the person that sells the most in a week a nice dinner for two or movie tickets. This simple $40-50 gesture is something that they work hard for and in return brings in tons of revenue.