Collier also says to not worry about how difficult it is to ship things. The post office has free boxes, for example, to make it easy. The key is to send things out quickly.
The next step is to start selling something familiar.
"Sell something you know about," Collier says. "You will know how to appeal to the customer, how to buy the item on sale and may even know the owner of a business who will give you a deal on the items."
She also recommends getting a state reseller's license. With that license, people can buy things at wholesale prices — like catnip toys.
Collier has two cats who, she says, went "wild," "nuts" and "crazy" over a particular catnip toy. She looked at the tag on the toy, Googled the manufacturer and, as a licensed reseller, purchased some of the toys at wholesale prices.
When she went to sell the toys on eBay, she could show pictures of her cats and tell compelling reasons why it was the best catnip toy in the history of the feline world.
"I posed with the cat," she says, "I sold those for years."
With the resale license, people can also go to gift trade shows and make direct deals.
Again, Collier cautions to start small. She says people will know they have reached a turning point in their businesses "when you and the mailman are on a first-name basis."
It is also important to remember that there are tax consequences and other business requirements to be aware of.
"Especially with how hungry states are right now for money, do not put yourself at risk," Collier says. "If you are buying dozens of items to sell, go legit."
Again, she says being successful online is something that takes time and effort.
"It is a fabulous way to make money," she says.
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