If the thought of customer returns and salvage merchandise leaves you feeling less then easy, you should opt to purchase undamaged wholesale overstock merchandise. Specifically catalog overstocks. Large catalog retailers such as Coldwater Creek, lane Bryant, Newport News, Blair, Victoria Secrets, Sharper Image, ABC, and others routinely liquidate past season and excess merchandise. I’m talking about new, poly bagged or boxed items that did not sell. No damages.
Catalog retailers must liquidate customer returns as well as overstock merchandise to recover as much lost revenue as possible. Usually there is one or two individuals, within the company, in charge of handling liquidation, and your job as a wholesale buyer, is to find their contact information.
It takes a tremendous amount of poking and prodding to get their information, but once you do, you will be amazed at the incredible deals you can buy in bulk. For example, I made a wholesale purchase from the Newport News catalog company a few years ago. This is an all women’s clothing, shoe, and accessory retailer, who sold what they called “grab boxes,” that contained an undisclosed quantity of tops, bottoms, bathing suits, accessory’s, and such for $1 per item. All new and undamaged. All of the items retailed within their catalog, originally, for at least $14.99 per item. I had no problem reselling all of the items on eBay offering a deep discount to anyone who bid on our auctions.
Clothing is not the only type of catalog overstocks available, in fact, I made another purchase about a year ago from a company that produced catalogs for school fundraisers. This company’s sole purpose was to find schools who wanted to raise money, and then provided them with a catalog filled with general merchandise and miscellaneous nick-knack items at Christmas time. Catalog were taken home by each student, and orders were placed by parents, friends, and anyone else who wanted to participate.
I negotiated with the catalog company to purchase all remaining stock after Christmas for thirty-five cents per unit. Now granted, this stock was not high dollar items, but none the less still represented a great liquidation value.
All you have to do is have the patience to call the corporate office of any catalog retailer and try to be put in contact with the employee who handles liquidating excess stock. It’s not easy, and can take several calls. Full instructions for contacting catalog companies, including a phone script can be found within The Liquidators 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 2020 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.
If you are thinking about buying pallets of liquidation merchandise from a liquidator, broker, or direct from department stores, you need to check out The Liquidators Guide