Wednesday, April 7, 2021

My First COMC sale!

I feel like I've talked about my card buying process before. In a nutshell, I buy packs of cards. I keep the Red Sox cards. I sell the other cards on eBay. I use the money from the sales to buy more cards. My bread and butter sales have been 20 count player lots. Small potatoes stuff. Now, a couple things probably jump out at you. First, that's a terrible "business model". I mean, just awful. To make that work, I'd need to be getting "hits" all the time. And even if I did, they'd have to be non-Red Sox hits...which would be a weird goal for me to have. So, it's not perfect. And there are a few additions like packs from the easter bunny or Santa that keep the thing going. And, it also means I'm talking more like a blaster a month than a case a month. But, that's not the point of this post. (Maybe it should be the point of a future post?) The point of this post is that I was starting to see some obvious shortfalls with the eBay method. First, the 20 card lots were tending to ignore the "mid-range" cards. Sure, the nickel and dime cards fit into lots nicely. But, sticking in a three dollar card was a bit of a waste. On the other hand, with fees and shipping costs, selling a $3 card wasn't exactly an efficient move either. I was wondering about another way.

Then I saw a video really going into the weeds on COMC. It really seemed to be what I was looking for. The fee structure seemed to be perfect for those mid range cards that had been stacking up in my "sale" box. I decided I didn't have anything to lose, and sent off a small 45 card shipment to starts things off.

Again, I know what you're thinking. "Now? When COMC is such a mess with shipping and processing times?" And, again, you're right. My timing isn't the best. (I sent my first cards off to be graded in forever a month or so ago too. Timing is not my forte) But, this was just a trial balloon, and I wasn't in much of a rush with these cards that were just taking up space. 

I waited the three-week processing time, and the cards were finally listed on the site. And then, I waited to see if something sold. 

I had to wait about an hour. By the next morning I had another, and someone had made me an offer on a third. (I didn't even know you could make offers). I went on to sell a card or two a day for the next week or so before slowing down.

At this point, I've sold 20 of those original 45 cards, at an average of $4 a card.

My initial thoughts?

I like it. 

Now, obviously, I don't know how this will work long term. As I send more cards in (I already have another hundred cards or so processing before listing) will the profit margin prove too slim to sustain? But it definitely seems to do what I wanted. Those cards worth a few dollars that were too much of a hassle or too many fees to list on eBay have a perfect home. I love that COMC does all the work. I just ship a stack of cards. They take care of the pictures and listing. I just pick the price. That's a pretty big time saver, and worth quite a bit in my book.

The oddities...I need to figure out the financial sweet spot. As I said, my first shipment was 45 cards. That meant it cost about 19 cents each to ship. COMC charged me another 50 cents to list them. So I was already in for 69 cents on each card. Sending more cards could lower the per card shipping. But, the processing fee is still there. So, there's a balance somewhere between what I did, and sending in 500 cards in a flat rate box for next to nothing in shipping but fronting $250 in processing fees. That's a sweet spot I'll need to figure out. Plus, there are ways to get the processing fees a little cheaper. So, again, I'll need to mix and match a bit to find that perfect submission. But I'm excited to see how it all goes. 

As I do, feel free to Check out My Cards!

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