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Dealer Prices

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Dealer Prices Empty Dealer Prices

Post by bowlingshoeguy Sat Nov 05, 2011 8:35 pm

I always love when you win cards off ebay from a dealer and they leave there sticker price on the card. They are never even close to what they sell on ebay. I recently picked up 3 raw T202 that each had a $200 sticker ($600 Total), I got them for a total of $90. I guess turning cards isn't big in the dealers world.

When will they learn? mallet

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Dealer Prices Empty Re: Dealer Prices

Post by m-mac Tue Nov 08, 2011 5:17 pm

Interesting. I noticed the same behavior you have for some of my eBay purchases.

I am not a dealer. I 've watched and occassionally talked to dealers in second hand goods for the past 15 years, and briefly trying to sell on the other side of the table the cards I no longer wanted and for a better price 25 years ago. In my conversations I try to figure out what the dealer is thinking in his inventory, his pricing, his strategy, etc.

First, second hand dealers are all different. Many of these folks couldn't make it in the 8 to 5 world - that's not a negative, just an observation that self-employment provides an outlet in which they don't have to deal with, among other things, the politics and interactions of a non-retail environment. Some of these dealers would do fine in any profession, they are just plain happier doing what they love, apparently sell stuff someone else did not want.

Sometimes these items don't move for a period of time. They're dead. Maybe storage isn't available. Most of the time, second hand dealers want repeat customers, so need to change the inventory to keep them coming in. I think the seller doesn't want to discount so to avoid discounting the other inventory. Maybe the dealer doesn't want to exchange inventory with another dealer. eBay is a fast easy way to dump it. Also, it's gone and the dealer can say to any one who asks, "Oh, it sold."

Some dealers are blindly proud and ironically competitive. For the common items, eBay is kind of a high wholesale price. Add in the fees and inconvenience: the dealer gets low wholesale and buys at high. eBay gets a fast price with no negotiation. The dealer doesn't have to feel poorly (if he feels that way) if a competitor would have done better with the item (what's wrong that the dealer couldn't move it - doesn't know what he has or doesn't know his customers?). The dealer doesn't have to feel like a customer took advantage.

For dealers in second hand goods (ie collectables), inventory is paramount. To sell you have to buy. I notice that some dealers have developed reputations for buying lots of material and selling at reasonable prices. The trick to that type of model is acquisition of inventory. Generally, I think these dealers must be perceived as fair and as ready buyers. Probably not easy to develop that reputation. Anyways, anyone who tries to retail for $200 and receives $30 only, is not this type of dealer.

Some dealers are determined to get what they perceive the full value is no matter what it really is. I think someone will buy for $200 so I will wait until that buyer finds me, and then I will sell him this card for $200. This is the inventory that just sits for years, decades probably, until the market catches up (average price) to the dealer's pricing. This model must work - I see it too often. I think when these dealers have cash flow problems or a change in life circumstance (or whatever) is when you see this inventory dumped and the lower & more realistic prices observed.

Some dealers will price everything not reflecting the market (high or low) but on the cost of acquisition. In one shop I go into, records are all $7 and books are all $3, because apparently they are bought at household auctions for pennies or quarters. They are bought without reflection to value and they are priced without reflection to value to the collector. They academic monographs are $3 just as are the well used readers' digests. One of my friends refuses to go in there because they, "buy from the same sources."

What do you think?

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