If you sell on eBay or at a flea market you may be surprised to find out that you can buy pallets of name brand customer returns – this is merchandise returned to the original retail after a retail sale. You can buy wholesale pallets at a fraction of the original wholesale cost, but beware…raw retail returns require work, and this type of wholesale purchase is not for the faint of heart!

Anyone can buy pallets of customer returns in any retail merchandise category including clothing, jewelry, electronics, furniture, general merchandise, etc., but you should fully understand what to expect before you make a large purchase.

Consumers bring merchandise back to a store for a refund for two distinct reasons:

Damaged Merchandise – Item(s) in some way are damaged or missing pieces. The items could be defective in operation; clothing often will be stained or ripped, and may have broken zippers and/or missing buttons.

Impulse Purchasing – An item looked great in the store and maybe the consumer got caught up in the bright lights and excitement shopping brings, but once home a decision is made to return an item. Maybe this retail shopper realized they really should not have spent the money in the first place -Bingo…a perfectly good item is returned to the store!

In my many years of buying retail returns for my business I will tell you that there is a higher ratio of damaged merchandise versus undamaged. You should expect to receive merchandise that needs a little work before you can resell it. Some merchandise found in customer returned pallets will need to be thrown away. Ouch.

Can you be creative with the damaged merchandise found within every pallet and truckload? If not, purchasing retail returns will become a nightmare and you will end up losing precious capital.