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  #31  
Old 08/09/12, 06:12 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

My books are shelved separately by genre, and further sub-classified in the author's alphabetical order, and the titles are alphabetized if I have more than one by a given author (John Grisham, Danielle Steel, Faye Kellerman, etc.). I also have the DVDs, VHS tapes, and CDs alphabetized by title or artist as well. Numbered romance series are filed accordingly too.

Now, if only I can get more people to buy my books!

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  #32  
Old 09/12/12, 04:30 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585
An update

So far, I've barely brought in enough money to pay for my gas, but with the mall owners' permission, I put ads on Craigslist and that's helped somewhat. One of the first garage sales I hit up had a motherlode of homeschooling supplies, and people have been coming in looking for those. And today, I was at the closer booth doing some rearranging and restocking, and a woman bought 5 of my DVDs while I was standing there.

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  #33  
Old 09/12/12, 09:49 PM
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 8,560

I'm glad you still giving it a go.

August is always our toughest month, being back to school month. People are shopping and spending at the malls...not walking around antique shops and flea markets.

Good for you on the DVD's! We always try to speak and chat with people shopping in our booth, and generally speaking, it helps sell stuff.

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  #34  
Old 09/12/12, 10:13 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

The woman who bought the DVDs noticed that I charged $4, whereas the other vendors charged $2, but she had noticed that the other vendors' DVDs were often scratched or had other damage. I inspect EVERYTHING before I put it on the shelf.

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  #35  
Old 09/13/12, 06:32 AM
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 8,560

That is a good way to do business.

I try to test everything that can be tested, especially electrical stuff. Then I add a second tag that says "Tested and works perfect" or something like that.

I believe this helps sales...and for me, generally takes just a few seconds.

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  #36  
Old 09/22/12, 06:02 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

I rented a table at a craft fair that will be held tomorrow. Hope this brings in some money!

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  #37  
Old 10/02/12, 05:50 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

I ended up not going to the craft fair. I woke up panic-stricken in the middle of the night beforehand, and the feeling was strong enough that I thought it would be best if I didn't go. No money lost, either because I would have paid when I got there. This fair's Facebook page later said that turnout was very poor, and implied that there were more vendors (about 40!) than customers. Because it was 30 miles away, I'm glad I didn't go.

I plan to not renew the first booth I rented when the lease comes due at the end of January, but the second booth is doing relatively well. I also started a half.com account last week; haven't sold anything yet but I know this takes time. I met someone last week who's done this for 12 years, and he told me I was doing everything right.

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  #38  
Old 10/03/12, 09:05 PM
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Conway SC
Posts: 1,221

I started to not post on this subject but decided to share with you. In my area seems the ones that make the money is not the one that rented the booth but the owner that rents the booth out. I wanted to make some money so I started selling at a outdoor Flea market(FM) on the weekend when the weather was good---(yea had to set-up every weekend I sold). I learned the FM selling quick. I sold for a year and half and setting up about 2 to 3 times a month average and sold Mega Thousands of dollars of items. I then rented a 6000sqft building in what I thought would be a good location--rent was $1000/$1200 per month but no more setting up and if it rained it helped my business. We sold every weekend(fri, sat and sunday) as a HUGE INDOOR YARDSALE. No sign on the building until sale days. We sold $1000 and $1000 per Month. We had to buy trailer loads per week to resale when we had the store and we about sold out every weekend we sold at the FM and had to buy another trailer load for the next week.

I will say this---if you got the Right things on your tables/shelves and got it priced right---you should about sale out every week. When we were running the Store/indoor yardsale---there was 2 Huge indoor Flea Market with in 3 miles of our store in both directions and they were almost dead on the weekends hardly no customers and at the same time there were times we had to get someone to direct traffic at out store, with 3 head working at the counter sometimes we had customers waiting to check out in lines.

I just feel bad for some of you that go through time setting up your booth, spending your money on rent just to break even, go in the hole or make a few bucks. I know a Guy that just set-up a big consignment shop---had all the booths rented in the first month---only problem is He is the only one making any money. I have been in it twice and passed it many of times since it opened a few months ago and there is rarely any customers shopping there. It will fold too as soon as the People renting the spots/booths get tired of paying more rent than they are selling.

If you are going to spend your money on items to resale and pay rent, and spend your time, be """"different""""than most setup around you like we were. Take Items That The buyers Are Looking For then you will almost sell out every week. Why keep things on your shelves for weeks and weeks, and weeks, and weeks, and months and months etc, etc that are not selling??? Get rid of those things so you can free up space for items that will sell. What Items Do I Need to get---I am sure is a question in your mind---that would be your job to find out what will sell in your area. Example---In my area--I can load a big trailer load of antique horse drawn plows, old saws. old tools, antique tables and chairs, old dolls, cast iron items, single trees, nice old stuff, etc, etc and take that trailer load to the Flea Market this weekend and I will Bet you I will have to bring 90+% of it back home. I will also bet you that if I take that same trailer with some good used kitchen items like a microwave, coffee maker, towels, good clean sheets and spreads, a good selection of GOOD clean clothes etc, etc, etc that I will about sell out.

I want everyone of you that is reading what I have typed to understand I am in No way Bragging, I would from the bottom of my Heart Love to see/hear everyone of you that are selling----making good money for your time and My True Proven feeling on this is I know you can if you take/get the right items to sell. I wish all of you selling the very Best.

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  #39  
Old 10/18/12, 10:27 AM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

I met with an accountant yesterday, because we're going into a new quarter and he also does free consultations, and he also told me that I'm doing everything right and also do not have any unrealistic expectations. He told me to come back in early February and he would file my tax return.



I rented a table at my church bazaar this weekend. We'll see what happens!

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  #40  
Old 10/21/12, 10:00 AM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

We had the bazaar yesterday. Attendance was disappointing, and I made a total profit (after booth rental) of $2.75 but hey, at least I took home one box less than I brought with me. I found that the best sellers were children's books, so if I do this again next year, I will bring more with me.

I even sold two VHS tapes, which surprised even me. But the woman had a VCR and her preschool-aged grandson with her, and I had two tapes she knew he would enjoy. I also sold a complete box set of the "Little House" series to a woman who said she was purchasing it for her grandson, but told me that she hadn't read them herself and wanted to.

In any case, I still had a good time.

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  #41  
Old 10/21/12, 06:28 PM
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: NW FL
Posts: 494

It sounds like you are doing well and hanging in there. Some days you just have to count having a good time as your main benefit. We sell at an outdoor flea market every Saturday (and most Sundays in the summer), and can support our family with that. We sell video games, but the principles are the same...have what people want and make other things attractive enough to make people want them! We have found that a good display and friendliness can sell almost anything. In our state you have to have a tax id number and pay quarterly taxes on your sales to the state, but that's not that big of a deal. And though you may not be making much money right now, remember that you are establishing yourself and that the biggest shopping season of the year is just beginning, so you will do even better! Good luck! It's great to be your own boss!

I found it funny what you said about skipping that sale because you felt wrong about it...we were going to skip our regular booth and go set up at a school fundraiser sale, several of our neighboring vendors did, but we felt wrong about it, so we just let them keep our booth fee as a donation. The other vendors didn't even make back the $20 they paid for the booth because there were 3 shoppers all day! We made over $300 at our regular booth that day, so we know to always go with our gut now!

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  #42  
Old 10/21/12, 11:21 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

A couple weeks ago, I bought a box of handmade Christmas ornaments, most of them made with plastic canvas but some were counted cross stitch, and almost all of them in mint condition, for $2. I tagged each of them, and sold just one at the bazaar, but I'm going to take them to my book booth that's losing money and display them there. I actually think they'll sell fairly well because that's advertised as a craft mall. In any case, I don't have anything to lose.

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  #43  
Old 10/22/12, 03:19 AM
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Central Iowa
Posts: 1,358

never mind

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  #44  
Old 11/10/12, 07:08 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

Had another show today, and did fairly well. Not enough that I could make a living at it, nothing like that, but I sold some books and had a great time. I plan to keep this up.

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  #45  
Old 11/17/12, 06:20 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

I had another show today, and this one did VERY well. My first customer was before we opened; he was the teenage son of one of the other vendors, and he apologized profusely for buying all my classical CDs. I replied, "That's what I brought them here for in the first place!" We later got to enjoy them, because he played some of them on his mom's laptop.

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  #46  
Old 11/17/12, 07:44 PM
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 8,560

Congrats!!!!

Keep up the good work!!!!

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  #47  
Old 12/03/12, 09:55 PM
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 1,467

I had a booth at an antique/flea market mall for eleven months, up until the end of October.

I started out trying to sell boutique children's clothing- that bombed.

Then I added honey, thinking it would be a great seller to the tourists- nope.

Then I added books, tools, cd's/dvd's/video tapes, and odds and ends. Those items sold steadily, but not enough to pay the rent. In fact, the market was 55 miles from home, and many months I did not even make my gas expense I had to work three four-hour shifts a month in addition to paying the rent.

Then, finally, about the 8th or 9th month I was there I started buying garage sale "treasures" to resell in my booth. I finally made some $$$. Right about the time I figured out what would sell for a profit, the market owner announced that she would be closing the business.

I enjoyed having the booth, but don't know if I would do it again. It took a lot more time than it was worth. Now I am back to selling clothes and books on ebay, which still takes a lot of time, but I can work at it from home in my "spare" time.

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  #48  
Old 12/03/12, 11:42 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

It's an ongoing learning experience for me too. I got a check today from the booth that's not making money - $5.40 for 2 weeks. That's the one I will shut down in January.

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  #49  
Old 01/01/13, 11:05 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

I let the owners know that I wanted to shut the booth down at the end of the month, when the lease expires, and one of them called me today to ask if I would consider a smaller booth. I actually might, if it wasn't in a city 50 miles away.

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  #50  
Old 01/02/13, 06:06 PM
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: TN
Posts: 79
several booths...

I have in the past had booths in several different antique malls. Never sold antiques, tho. I sold hand crafted, artisan type items - baskets & gourds (I'm a basket maker and gourd crafter), and had other artisans who made pottery, word carving, wood turning, quilted, and handwovens, who placed their items with me on consignment. Also had specialty coffees, jams/jellies, and soaps that I bought from wholesalers.

I did best in antiques malls that didn't allow people to cram their areas full with stuff piled on the floor, and also didn't put up those cheesy, particle board dividers, but where the vendors would use furniture to define their spaces.

Right now, I don't rent space, but have my stuff on consignment at a primitive shop, an art gallery, and a nice antique shop where she has a classroom in the back where I can do classes.

One thing I believe helps sales is that people have enough to look at and pick from, it is organized in some way, displayed to appeal to the senses and encourage them to pick up the items, and also roomy enough so that their eyes have a chance to "rest" in between items. Every inch doesn't have to be covered with stuff!

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  #51  
Old 01/02/13, 06:19 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

Just today, I stocked my booth that's doing well with some books that I know will be useful for homeschoolers, and also books that will be on high school and college reading lists, and have also put ads up on Craigslist. They've had responses from this.

More than one person has expressed surprise at finding something like this at an antique shop. FWIW, I also have some old classic books, 78 albums, vintage magazines, etc. in that booth too.

I did take all the CDs out, because those just aren't selling, and will take some of them to an all-purpose consignment shop in my neighborhood. I got most of those CDs for 10 cents each, so no big loss if they don't sell there.

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  #52  
Old 01/29/13, 09:44 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

The lease for the first booth, the one that wasn't making any money, will expire on Thursday, and I went there today and emptied it out. I did it today because we're supposed to get heavy snow tomorrow.

I'll try to sell those books at the fairs I go to this spring. We'll see what happens!

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  #53  
Old 02/03/13, 01:13 AM
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Location: Northern California
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deleted, duplicate

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  #54  
Old 02/03/13, 01:27 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Northern California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thesedays View Post
Let me know if the topic isn't appropriate for this forum.

Does anyone do this? I'm asking here because I don't know anyone personally who does this (that I know of). I was thinking about opening a bookstore that sells used books and other media, but I'm also very aware that those entities are kinda sorta on their way out and that the investment of time and money would be huge, and came up with this alternative.

What kinds of things do I have to do? Do I need to incorporate, have a tax ID number, get insurance? Finding stock would be NO problem, trust me on that!

I realize it's probably not something I could make a sole living at unless I had a lot of booths, but it could potentially be a "hobby" business.
I know many who do this. Our local Lyons? or whatever club has their clubhouse used as a Flea Market once a month. It's called the Grange Hall, it's just 1/2 mile from us.

They've went back to holding it just once a month. Sellers complained because twice a month was too often. And it seemed they had no time to get new inventory, we'd see the same stuff. Now it's fresh.

They only charge $10 a table, or $10 a spot outside. What I like is they do not ask for a tax id# I think it's a great idea if the price is right and traffic is steady. Our flea market attracts low income folks for whatever reason, so most of the Sellers do not have expensive items. Much of it is antique, movies knick knacky items. It might be easier for you to offer a club to organize a sale once a month and you get a commission. The lady here who does it gets $5 a table and each weekend there is an average of 10-15 tables. She also has her own booth. I know she started out asking them to let her use it for free (at first) then it turned into a fundraiser for them. Just a thought
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  #55  
Old 02/06/13, 08:48 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

I live in the upper Midwest, so there won't be many flea markets or craft fairs until spring rolls around. I also plan to participate in some group garage sales - the kind where they rent tables to multiple people, and you get to keep all your money.

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  #56  
Old 02/07/13, 01:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thesedays View Post
I live in the upper Midwest, so there won't be many flea markets or craft fairs until spring rolls around. I also plan to participate in some group garage sales - the kind where they rent tables to multiple people, and you get to keep all your money.
Oh ok. This one is year round, weather makes no difference except there are no outside booths. It appears there are 15-30 booths normally, I miscalculated. Hope it all works out, whatever you do
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  #57  
Old 02/07/13, 09:44 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

Saw an ad today for a flea market on Saturday, and I called the place where it's being held, and they had one space left over! It's a fundraiser for the non-profit organization that owns the building; all the other vendors are people who are involved with this group, but they said I was welcome to participate. So, I'll just take all the books and videos that I emptied out of my non-money making booth to this event, and if I'm lucky, I will not bring most of them back with me, and bring back plenty of cash to boot. We should have good weather on Saturday, and the lady I spoke to said they had an excellent turnout last year. I got the impression that most of them just use it as their annual garage sale.

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  #58  
Old 02/12/13, 05:56 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

I got the same bad feeling about the flea market this weekend that I got about the show last fall, so I ended up not going. However, the antique store where I have my booth had someone pull their things out, so I'm going to have a second booth there, and for only $20 a month more! I'll go there tomorrow and stock it.

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  #59  
Old 03/14/13, 05:03 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,585

Update: I just rented a booth at a huge, well-patronized mall in a nearby town that I found out about via a flyer at my regular store. I have since discovered that some of the vendors have multiple booths, and my regular store even has a booth of their own! You know you're in a good place when the competition does business with them.

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  #60  
Old 04/23/13, 06:54 AM
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Location: Will move to PA after we marry!
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This is a great thread! I am learning a lot and getting ideas-thanks so much everyone who contributes!!

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