I’m going to assume you’ve already made a purchase of shelf pull, or even customer returned, clothing and now you are wondering how to merchandise and resell this type of inventory. There are a couple of things you must do regardless if reselling online through eBay, or within a store.
The first step you must take is organizing your inventory into categories of items, dresses in one pile, blouses in another, and so on. Make a detailed list of each item noting brand names and sizes. When inspecting each item pay attention to condition looking for holes, rips, stains, and missing buttons. Clothing items that exhibit damage can be set aside for repair at a later time.
You’ll notice that all of the clothing is wrinkled; this is where the work begins because no one wants to buy clothing that appears disheveled. You can obtain a higher margin if you take the time to spruce up each item.
There are a few ways to prepare shelf pull clothing for resale:
Use a traditional iron – You don’t want to hear this, but ironing is probably the standard when it comes to reinvigorating shelf pull clothing. Be sure to check fabrics and set the iron temperature appropriately.
Purchase a commercial clothing steamer – This is a true time saver! Stand-up steamers allow you to hang an item and steam the wrinkles out of most fabrics. Commercial steamers can be purchased online ranging in price from $150-$500.00. If you plan on selling a lot of clothing, this item is a must have time saver.
Utilize a clothes dryer – lightly wrinkled items can be placed into a clothes dryer on a light, cool cycle for a few minutes to remove wrinkles. It might be a good idea to use a fabric softening dryer sheet in with the clothing to help remove any warehouse smells.
Once the shelf pull clothing has been organized into item categories and reconditioned, it’s time to either place items within your store on racks or shelves or begin the process of listing each item on eBay.
The last step worth mentioning is dealing with the retail tags, which usually are still intact when you buy shelf pull apparel. Remember, this clothing just came from a department store and will more than likely have retail tags that have been marked down due to the process of trying to clearance the item within the store. The markdown process is not concerning, however, store brand protection is something you must be concerned with. Here is a brief explanation:
Resellers who purchase pallets of shelf pull and customer returned clothing must be careful, in that, you do not want customer attempting to take items back to the original store for refund and/or store credit.
When you purchased liquidation clothing you probably had to sign, and agree to, strict resell guidelines. Penalties can be stiff for those who do not follow resell procedures! For purposes of this article just know that when you resell shelf pull clothing the retail tags should be removed after an item has been sold. This step can be done when shipping items to eBay bidders or at the checkout counter of your store.
Full details and explanations of salvage resell purchase agreements can be found with The Liquidators Guide, our info packed wholesale guide.
This is one of our many Liquidation Boot Camp posts where we talk about the basics of liquidation product sourcing. If you’re new to the idea of purchasing liquidations, please review more Liquidation Boot Camp Posts here.
Our 2016 Liquidators Guide chronicles 12 years of wholesale product sourcing experience and includes my personal black book of direct source contacts! As an industry expert, I'll share the success I've enjoyed along with the mistakes I've made buying and reselling liquidation merchandise.
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