eBay drop off stores offered life line

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Trading PostA couple of weeks ago Trevor Ginn spoke about the iSold It franchise model as it went into administration. Now his company, Auctioning4U, has acquired the UK arm of the failed company. iSold It franshisees across the UK are being invited to transfer their businesses to the Auctioning4U brand with the promise “Our process is streamlined and guaranteed to generate better results and make more money for our clients. A de-centralised model with hundreds of different shops all processing their own items just cannot work economically”

With rumours of more drop of shops in the US struggling to make a profit after costs, questions have to be asked regarding the standalone model. It should be noted that Auctioning4U owe much of their success to their Managed Services for Businesses rather than to their consumer drop off shops. A centralised hub for processing items offered for sale could be just the life line that iSold It franshisees need, the alternative is almost certainly shutting up shop with major financial losses.

Opening a standalone eBay drop off shop (with or without a franchise agreement) has proven to be a difficult business model to get right. Either the goods available to sell are of too low value with commisions eaten up with costs, or too high in which case customers could sell elsewhere commission free. Currently only a centralised model (with a focus on disposal of end of line, obsolete, returns, refurbished and ex-lease stock for businesses) appears to have a chance of profitability.

The iSold It website now re-directs to the Auctioning4U website but can still be viewed in Google Cache.

eBay offer advice on becoming a Trading Assistant or running a Trading Post (eBay drop off store). Whilst they point out that they “highly recommend that you define your policies and negotiate all details in advance before you begin working with a client” the difficulties of pricing the service are magnified for Trading Posts. Indiviual Trading Assistant contracts can be priced per job, but with the overheads of a physical location, staff and possibly a franchise cost if sufficient business isn’t forthcoming, overhead costs outpace commisions.

Trading Assistants deals can be highly lucrative for eBay sellers, but to rely on them for your main source of income may not prove the easiest route to profitability.



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