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Side job building and selling PCs on ebay..

post #1 of 26
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I've been pondering this for a while, I simply love building PCs and to do it for profit sounds like a good hobby. But I only know how to sell on eBay and since I am the ONLY seller that sells fully functioning (OS installed and updated) PCs at auction of $0.01 I have an edge on all eBay sellers, but even so, eBays fees for selling are still killer. With no fees i would profit a projected $90-$140 per sale, but since eBay has killer fees i will only profit about $5-$20 per sale But since I love building PCs and i love customizing them for people, and it is "technically" still a profit to be made, plus the added perk of "getting my name out there" do you think its worthwhile?
Edited by jcrew3002 - 5/23/11 at 5:16pm
post #2 of 26
For the amount of time it takes, and dealing with dumb customers?

Personally, I wouldn't.

You might as well start your own site specializing in custom builds if you're really into it.
post #3 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcrew3002 View Post
I simply love building PCs and to do it for profit sounds like a good hobby. but i only know how to sell on eBay and eBays fees for selling are killer. With no fees i would profit a projected $70-$100 per sale, but since eBay has killer fees i will only profit about $5-$20 per sale But since i love building PCs and it is technically still a profit to be made lol would you do it????
$5-$20 per sale? Hell no i wouldn't do it personally. You will have to factor the cost of gas (going from your house to the post office then back), cost of Tapes, box, bubble wraps, shipping fee, tracking # fee, insurance fee, etc.... There are a lot of costs involve which make $5-$20 not worth it imo. You might even end up losing money to pay for those extra fees.
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post #4 of 26
Unless you can source parts very cheap don't bother I treid a couple of builds and lost about £60 on each, thought after the very positive first feedback the second would sell no probs esp as even buying parts from big online stores I was able to really undercut Ebay system sellers prices. No way....I think a lot of the problem is people wanting mainstream pc's will go to a retailer and pay 4 times as much! And most wanting special pc's for gaming will have the know how and build thier own.

You also have to offer long warranties, and paying postage to have a faulty one sent back to you, locating the fault, rma-ing the part etc etc it's not worth the bother!
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post #5 of 26
You could try selling them locally and still make more than Ebay . I've sold 3 rigs on my local CL and made around 200-300 on each even after i used them for a bit lol.
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post #6 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcrew3002 View Post
I've been pondering this for a while, I simply love building PCs and to do it for profit sounds like a good hobby. But I only know how to sell on eBay and since I am the ONLY seller that sells fully functioning (OS installed and updated) PCs at auction of $0.01 I have an edge on all eBay sellers, but even so, eBays fees for selling are still killer. With no fees i would profit a projected $90-$140 per sale, but since eBay has killer fees i will only profit about $5-$20 per sale But since I love building PCs and i love customizing them for people, and it is "technically" still a profit to be made, plus the added perk of "getting my name out there" do you think its worthwhile?
$5-$20 will not cover any losses. Selling PCs at auction is a waste, and the real money is made based on buy it now. Getting a name through eBay is great, but you have to deal with hundreds of e-mails, various requests.

Your profit margins need to be much higher if your going to succeed.
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post #7 of 26
This doesn't work. Trust me, I did it for some time.
    
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post #8 of 26
I see your point about working at a loss for the sake of the advertising BUT ebay is not the way I would spend my advertising dollars. For my Management 124 class last semester we had to create a fictional business, my business was a non-profit that sold computers (fully loaded like you describe) and also provided tutoring in the main apps. I was able to correctly complete the business plan side of the exercise but I never really was able to explain to the other students the reasoning behind tying a for profit store to a non-profit host, nobody really bought into the idea (they all wanted to make a sports bar or restaurant). This type of association is allowed.

In short, I would spend my advertising dollars differently, perhaps as in a low cost store for students.Think about making a non-profit to sell the computers, you are allowed to pay youself a salary. It does take a good bit of effort to setup a non-profit and there are a lot of controls on your method of doing business (some people need this type of business discipline)but you can get in line for grants and government programs, I don't think it is a way to immense wealth though
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post #9 of 26
Are you really using legitimate OS, or selling pre-installed without a key?

The only way single-person operations will make enough is by non-legit or non-keyed OS, and I doubt you'll last very long either way.
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post #10 of 26
It's really not going to be worth your time. One thing many ebay seller's do is try and encourage direct deposit payments and also deals outside of ebay (which ebay do not condone) but if you were to sell basic computer's on ebay, you could perhaps offer servicing, like anti-virus, setting up basic networks (routers, etc) and installing OS's as a side business to selling the PC's, and offer this service to everyone you sell a PC to.

Another option is to offer upgrades to your customer's. You advertise the upgrades in the listing, and when people purchase the upgrades the deal is made outside of ebay, which will obviously increase your profit margins substantially.

My brother used to sell used PC's he bought at auction on ebay, and this was the only way he could possibly make any money. Eventually he gave it all up though, as the small profit margins were not worth the time invested or having to deal with dumb customers.
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