Sell One Thing Challenge

A simple first step in your Commerce Journey is selling your first thing online, even if it's furniture or old equipment from your garage.

That's the Sell One Thing challenge.

What To Do?

  • Sell one thing you own but don't use (like furniture in your garage!)
  • Sell it in the next two weeks
  • Use a marketplace like eBay or Facebook Marketplace to sell it (always using good safety, security measures)
  • Post what you're selling and when you sell it (and what you learn in the Commerce Journey Facebook Group here)

Why Do This Challenge?

  • Use it to get past your fears or worries about selling online
  • Document the whole process and use it to learn
  • Make money while getting rid of stuff you don't use
  • Use the money as capital for your ecommerce store idea!

Post what you're selling in the
Commerce Journey Facebook group here

Machine Transcript

Brian Krogsgard  00:04

Hello, and welcome to the Commerce Journey podcast. My name is Brian Krogsgard. I'm here with my partner as always, Cory Miller. Hey, Cory. Hey, it's good to see you. And hey, we're talking about selling your own stuff. Today we're doing a little challenge. And we want to help get you into the feeling of what it's like to do eCommerce and one of the best ways that you can do that is don't worry so much about all the planning and all the products you just need that feeling the what is that called the there's like the internal endorphins, endorphins to kick it can for what it's like to sell something. So the challenge is to sell your own stuff this podcast and all commerce training podcasts are brought to you by GoDaddy Pro, go to Commerce slash go to check out their amazing deal. After you get those endorphins kicked in selling on a marketplace or something like we're talking about, then you'll be able to get your own website set up, ready to go with all the eCommerce goodies at Commerce slash go is a fantastic deal. You literally cannot find another deal like it $1 for three months to bootstrap your store with all the extensions you need even the domain to get started with your store at commerce, calm slash go. Thanks so much to our friends at GoDaddy Pro for hooking us up with such a sweet, sweet deal. Cory, how you doing?

Cory Miller  01:25

Pretty good. I'm excited about today's topic, because we've been like on this ongoing Commerce Journey been trying to like really think through how to help people take forward progress on their goals and dreams. And I'm excited today I think we got some personal stories even here.

Brian Krogsgard  01:42

Yeah, absolutely. So there's this fear of starting, we talked about that. And we were like, how are we going to tackle that? How are we going to help people get over the hump the fear of what to do, and it can be intimidating. Even when you have an awesome deal like $1 for getting your site set up and all that, you know, you think about what am I going to sell? How am I going to sell it? What am I going to do? You need the feeling of what it's like to actually make a sale to list a product and go through the thought process of Hey, I need to write my product descriptions, I need to determine what I'm going to do what if I actually sell this? How do I you know, package this up in a box and ship it off? And all that glory? I've sold some stuff this year using eBay as my marketplace of choice. Have you had any experience recently doing that kind of thing?

Cory Miller  02:36

Yeah, always. I so we've been talking about this, like selling things in a new useful I think a lot of your camera equipment. Yeah. Um, I'm always like, I can't, I don't like to do it. We have we got new couches, a couple weeks ago, and we'll watch like, we got to put all this stuff on Craigslist, or Facebook shops or something and get this sold. And I'm just like, Oh, can we just like put in the garage and not have to deal with that?

Brian Krogsgard  03:04

Is it because they are afraid of the sales process? Or are you just more of a hoarder of your old stuff?

Cory Miller  03:11

I'm gonna, it's a sales process. I'm gonna sound like a terrible human, but I just don't like dealing with like, oh, we're gonna be here at five and having people around the house that I don't know. And it's the inconvenience of it. Yeah, but you know, we could make some money. She's like, Oh, I think we could sell it for $100. And I'm like, I'd rather I don't know, not have done hundred dollars.

Brian Krogsgard  03:38

Yeah, I don't, I don't disagree with you in terms of some stuff. We feel that way. Sometimes with garage sales, you know, like, go through all this work. garage sales are really about cleaning your house, you know, and you go through all this work to like, get through everything, sort through it all price it, put it out, put the signage up. And then what I mean, sometimes maybe you pull in a decent amount, but a lot of times it's like, man, we just made like $200 on the day, I think the tax write off would have been bigger, just giving all this away. So I agree with you sometimes especially those in person things. It can be tough, but the challenge is pretty open. We just want you to sell something. If it's a garage sale, if it's a listing it on Facebook marketplace, if it's listing it on Craigslist, if it's listing it on eBay, any of its good, we want you to give you the feeling of selling something. Cory you brought up the fact that I had sold some I sold some audio and video stuff. I had bought some things that I used for some in person conferences, like little mic packs, you know that you hook up to somebody, and I had more than I needed. So I was like, I can sell these and I found out they're still worth like, I don't know, 400 bucks apiece or something. And you know, the original price maybe was five or 600 and I'm like, I don't use these. And I can get 400 bucks apiece. I'm like heck yeah. So it got me this good feeling of what it feels like to go through the sales process and the things you think about, like my product photography, you know, you're selling a used product, you don't just throw up the picture of what it looked like in the box from the manufacturer, you need to put pictures up of what it looks like right now and go into that process of taking the photos and doing that kind of stuff. It's, it just, it makes you think about a lot about the process of being an eCommerce store owner.

Cory Miller  05:24

I think if this was your idea, and I loved it, because I think it's a fantastic exercise, plus, you're gonna do good in your house or, you know, try to get rid of some stuff you're not using and make some money. So I love the exercise. But, you know, specifically, just like you were saying, you had to get those pieces, right, that descriptive title, or something that would be, you know, attractive, somebody else wanted to buy it, you had to think through how to price it, the description, the photos, and then eventually, you know, you either need to ship it, or have it picked up. And I think all of that totality of that is the best because, you know, the first step, again, something new is often the scariest step. And really the reason why we're doing this is just get you past that first step get you in the it's kind of like working out the first time you go do a run, or go to the gym or something like that. It sucks. Yeah, like, it's the worst. It's still fear, all the fears, all the worries, all the anxieties,

Brian Krogsgard  06:29

you feel a little awkward

Cory Miller  06:32

Yeah, but after you do it, you're like, cool, I did it, I feel accomplished. And just getting the ball rolling. And I love this idea you had which this challenge. So today, next 30 days, sell something, if you can sell it online, that would be the best way to do that. But like sell only use Facebook shops. Use eBay like you used Brian, and go through the process and use it as a mechanism to learn, you know, what are you learning as your whatever, you know, even your deciding factor, what you're going to sell, how you gonna price it, like, make mental notes. And if you have a journal, make some journal notes about it. And it's gonna be a really good exercise of this. You might also we also said this track, Brian, like, you might decide, I don't want to go to the post office, I don't want to do this ongoing might be a way to help winnow down what you eventually do sell online,

Brian Krogsgard  07:26

oh, I think it's a really important thing to consider. Because you need to find out, do I have fun going through this process. Because, you know, when you're selling something online, day in, day out, and it's the same product over and over and over again, like, you need to enjoy the process of everything that you're doing, you need to, you know, you don't want to like begrudge the fact that you have to do order fulfillment, because that is a big part. That's the goal. You want to sell stuff. And then it requires you doing order fulfillment, it requires you you know, kind of managing and keeping your site up to date, all that stuff, and you're gonna find out like, is this something that's good for me to be doing and that's, you want to you want to feel good about what you're doing. And you know if this is your side hustle, or if you're looking for making it your full hustle, whatever. But you don't actually know if you like selling things. This is a great way to experiment.

Cory Miller  08:25

Yeah. So last time, Brian, my cousin, she lives in Kansas, and she's owns a hair salon said hey, it's time for me to transition. And I've got this cool this idea for a store. Now she's physical store and she gave me the cabinet. She's like, I'm not right now wanting to do online sells and I was trying to bite my lip and everything in here tell her story. But she just had a lot of questions. She had a lot of fears. The unknown is oftentimes all of that. And the beauty of this is you're going to get if you really be purposeful in doing the challenge. It is batting practice for when you take your next step. And so we talked about what she's going to do and I hope this is asper inspirational for people but she's switching up her hair salon little bit in the building that she's saying she owns it. And she's using the history of the building. Evidently, it was a hot out for like thieves holsters. She's calling a cool name that's historical, very applicable to people in the community that know what it is. I'm like, then she's telling me what she's going to sell. She wants to sell local things in there. And they're not going to be like endless supply of things. And I'm like, this is a great online store. I said, I said Lacey, I want you to do what you want to do. But at some point, there's a market for this type of stuff. She's got great sense of taste. She's got great sense of all that she's been selling products in her salon and she's gonna continue to do that. In fact, by the way, Brian. I was like, duh, she's so my scent. My cousin who does hair, the Vida Bars? Yes subset of those Finally, and she's probably going to be selling Vida Bars in the store.

Brian Krogsgard  10:07

That's hilarious, just like that.

Cory Miller  10:12

Yeah, she's been doing it. She didn't want to worry, you know about the online space. And I was like, oh, man, yeah, in person is way harder to me.

Brian Krogsgard  10:21

Oh, yeah. And certainly for somebody that already knows all the challenges of having a physical presence and selling goods to the limited audience that their feet end up in front of your door, they open the door, they go in the store, and they buy it. Like that is a much more difficult lead to get or customer to get then online, where at least the potential audience is infinite in comparison. And yeah, so anyway, that is, we need this. To find out if we're good at it, we need to find out if we enjoy it, we need to find out the quirks to help us tweak our processes. And it doesn't have to be the same product that we're going to dream up in the future. You mentioned earlier, like, doing it the first time versus once you get the hang of it like at the gym, I discovered that I don't I try it was trying to look up how many items I sold. And, you know, like how much money it was. I don't know exactly how many items it was. But I think it was maybe like six or eight things that I sold my comfort level with? How am I pricing this? How am I structuring the shipping? How long do I expect it to take to get there? How do I message the person that bought it and let them know like, hey, it's on the way? How do I structure a title to be a little more appealing? I was figuring all that out in just a handful of sales. So these are like really helpful things to do. So let's dig into what the actual challenge is. I like I said, I think I sold six, eight items, I think it was worth it. I don't remember exactly maybe like two to $3,000 worth of stuff that I sold. Yeah. And these were things that I really wasn't using a ton of and it allowed me to invest in some things that I really wanted. So I was like, I took things I weren't, I wasn't using, I made a little money, I learned a ton. And I put the money towards stuff that I needed in my work life, and it just was a great balance. So I think you'll probably find some rewards doing this, no matter what. You'll get rid of stuff, you know, bare minimum.

Cory Miller  12:18

Yeah, and here's the alignment. We talked, you still, let's say you you happen to sell $2,000? Well, we've talked about some of the store ideas that we could do, you and I could do. And you're like, that's some cash flow to buy an initial inventory for a store to test to a concept. So think of the alignment of this one, you're helping your family, all of us probably have some junk in the bag, and it's not really junk. But it's stuff that we just need to get out of our garage or storage closet and sell. We can take that money we can pay off a bill or a debt. Or if you think about this alignment with your Commerce Journey, you can put that money to cash flow because one of the fears you mentioned too, about starting a store was like that initial cash outlay to buy inventory. Yeah, well, can you find, I bet you most American households can find two grand worth of junk sitting in their garage. I can

Brian Krogsgard  13:13

I think depending on how hungry you are to like if something is a good deal, there's going to be a buyer for it, almost no matter what it is, like, always amazed when we do those yard sales, for instance, like, you know, it could be all kinds of crazy stuff and like a 20 year old weed eater that doesn't work at all anymore. And someone's some, you know, old guy comes by He's like, yeah, fix that up, I'll give you $25 for it. And it's like, okay, it's been in my basement, you know, I do not use this weed eater. $25 bam, you're on your way to your goal. And there's a ton of stuff around your house that you can think of our challenge to you is figure out what you're going to sell. Ideally, if you can sell it on a marketplace or online in some fashion, we'd love to hear that story. Because I do think you learn a couple things that way. Now I've also sold I've sold actually multiple cars like over Craigslist and things like that. I've always really yeah, I've done private listings for every car that I've ever sold and rather than like trading them in and stuff so I've sold cars and I've sold other stuff like on like our old living room furniture like you mentioned on Craigslist before. That is that with that you get the same process of you know you're writing up an appealing title description and taking pictures that make it look nice. Makes you know you're setting it up in a way so you don't look like a scammer or sketchy or anything like that because you want to give that authenticity in the listing. So you learn that same stuff no matter what. There's really no replacement though for selling online for what it's like to like. Go get packaging and get the you know the bubble wrap in the tape and like put it all together and go off to the post office or FedEx or UPS or whatever and send it out and get a slip with the tracking number that you send to the customer. That's the extra benefit that I think you get out of selling online. And let's actually clarify some of the things that you could consider when you're doing this. So the reason I sold on eBay is because I was selling things that were name brand. And they were just a used version of a product that I knew was still in demand. And you can go on a place like eBay, and you can look up the exact product that you have. So here's one that I can actually sell as part of this project. Okay, so I've got an action camera here that I invested in a while back, because the has this image stabilization. So if you move really quickly, it's nice and smooth still. And I was using it for like a little handheld camera with a project with a friend of mine, we were shooting a video for his website, and a couple hundred dollars to buy this, what I was disappointed with was I have wanted to use it in my office here as a secondary camera. So if I was doing a video where you switch between one camera and the other, you record on both of them at the same time, or whatever. And, you know, you can have multi camera views so that when you're editing it, you flip between them, whatever. Or like if I'm showing off a like if I'm talking about something else, like say you're doing a review of another piece of equipment you like could put something like this as a top down camera. Anyway, this didn't have all the features that I thought it had. So it was fine for my original purposes, but for the way I wanted to use it in my office, it's not really going to work and I'd be better off just with the GoPro rather than the DJI Osmo action that this is. So I have this Osmo action that I can sell online, I can still capture I don't know 60, 70% of what I bought it for. Meanwhile, I haven't used this thing, but maybe once in the past like six months. And I've even got this little case on it. So I'm going to be able to think through like how am I going to make it more appealing because they don't have to buy some of the accessories that they would have bought if they bought the Osmo action brand new. So I've got the GoPro I've got the Osmo action camera, I've got this metal cage, that's really nice, that's a nice accessory for it. I've got a little microphone adapter, and I've got an SD card that they don't have to, you know, haven't think so I can like beef up my listing a little bit, I can make it more appealing. And I can probably once you add in all those accessories, sell it for the price that someone would otherwise purchase the camera brand new. So they're getting all of this extra stuff, but they're still paying the price of a new camera. So I'm essentially losing from what I paid only the price of the accessories. And I think that that's something that I could do. But that's the way I'm thinking about it when I'm structuring. How am I going to set up the sale? So what we'll do Cory is in the next podcast, we'll say we'll find out whether I sold this or not.

Cory Miller  17:46

Yeah. So now I've got to have one.

Brian Krogsgard  17:49

Yeah, you need it. Yeah, you need to think of something too.

Cory Miller  17:53

So there's a wooden desk in the garage, again, bought it originally for I bought it off of one of the marketplaces, probably Craigslist as I recall. And it was supposed to be my desk for my home. And I've never used it, I really like it. But I honestly, I'm never going to use it. So it would probably really excite my wife for me to sell that thing for like hundred dollars. And it's in great condition just stuck on the sidewall of the garage. Yeah, and now I'm gonna have to like, actually talk to people and sell that thing. So I want to put that down as my one thing to sell,

Brian Krogsgard  18:30

you know, yours your situation, too, you might get different bites, depending on if you put it on Craigslist, and Facebook marketplace and stuff. And your strategy is to sell yours, you want to sell locally. So those are your more appropriate types of places to list it. That was the other thing, why eBay and not like Facebook or something. If I put this on Facebook marketplace, there's going to be people in Birmingham and you know, within a certain range that are going to be the potential buyers. That's a smaller number of people than people that are looking specifically for this product. And that could be anywhere in the country or worldwide if I offered to ship it that way. But I'll just do you know, available to anyone in the US. Well, there's people that look up these things, buy these things new every day. And I'm saying hey, here's a used one, and it's gonna pop up in their searches, or hey, here's a used one of this exact same thing with all these extra accessories. And that's for me why I choose eBay for something that can go anywhere versus a table you're not going to put a table in a box and ship it off on you know from an eCommerce sale. So yours is more of the process of actually selling something using it to raise inventory, that kind of thing and Craigslist and Facebook marketplace. You want to get local with that listing.

Cory Miller  19:45

Good. The whole thing. I think it's just the “Sell One Thing Challenge – Commerce Journey.”

Brian Krogsgard  19:52

That's right. And you know what, if it feels good, then I want you to sell something else. What I found the first time I did this and I think I was doing In, like February, March around when the quarantine stuff was going on, and a lot of the stuff that I had had come back in higher demand because people were working from home and needing to figure out how to do recordings and stuff at home. And what I found is that I got the groove of it. And I, as soon as I listed one, I was like, that wasn't so bad. Here's something else that I can also list. And I went through my list and I ended up selling way more things than I initially thought I did. And you know what, I didn't regret any of it. Like, there's a couple things where I was like, Hey, can you use these, but do I really need it, it's like, no, I could probably use that thing just as well. And I'm not really getting as much out of this purchase as I should have. So this is one of the last ones, I've been hoping that they will release a software update for this product, because then it would be able to be used in the way that I want to use it. But I'm just sitting here waiting on them to release software, they may never do it and the cameras getting older and older and older. So I'm pulling the trigger, Cory, I'm going through the challenge. Again, I'm going to sell something online. And we're going to come back and talk about our experiences. We want to hear about your experiences, we want you to take on this challenge, you're listening this podcast, you got something probably an arm's reach, if we're being honest, most of our offices and stuff. But maybe it's in your garage, like Cory said, or you know something that you keep in who knows the trunk of your car, try to find something that hits that sweet spot where it still carries some degree of value. So after you pay for shipping, or after you take the effort of you know, meeting someone in person to sell it, there's still a little bit of money there for you figuring out what you can sell. And then we want to see your product descriptions, your lectures, we want to get examples of this. Because if you send them to us, we'll critique them for you. And we'll say like, Hey, I think you could have made this look a little better. If you know, Cory, your table, for example. I'm gonna make this harder on you. Yeah, it's gonna be tempting, you go out there in the garage, and it's gonna be tempting not to put any nice light on it and just leave it right where it is. Take a picture of it and put it on the internet. That's what you were gonna do. But you know, what would make it look better, is if you pulled it out of that corner of the garage, and you put it out in the sunlight like on your driveway 

Cory Miller  22:21

all the spiders and crap I have to get to…

Brian Krogsgard  22:22

Yeah, past the spiders, you dusted off a little bit and you take a nice, well lit picture that makes that table look like someone's just ready to pull a chair up and sit at it. And you know what? I bet it doubles your chances of selling that thing for a decent price.

Cory Miller  22:37

Oh, yeah, I gotta do it. Right. Here's the thing we will I want you to do too, if you're listening today is go to our Facebook group Commerce Ford slash Facebook and get into the group there. And we'll have a pinned post in there. The so one thing challenge, okay. And in the comments, we want you to post a picture of what you're trying to sell. And then we'll have another one coming back in a couple of weeks. And we'll say what did you learn? That's right. So we want to be able to high five that you sold that you're selling something high five, that you sold something High Five that you got, you know, some things that you've learned. So go to Commerce forward slash Facebook, and we'll have a pin post there. There's still one thing challenge for you.

Brian Krogsgard  23:18

Cory, we don't even have to go any farther. I think people get it, they know the deal. So it's the sell something challenge. We're done. Go to Commerce slash Facebook, participate in the conversation about selling something. And also go to because after you sell something, you're gonna be ready to go the rest of the way and set up your whole store and commit the whole nine. You'll be wanting to do it all and you can do it with our friends at GoDaddy Pro. Thanks so much for being here with us today. We'll catch you next time. In two weeks. You will have sold something