There are only a handful of days left in the year. As you start thinking about resolutions you want to set for next year consider a side hustle as one of them.
I think a side hustle is the most important thing you can for yourself. It allows you to develop in-demand skills like sales and marketing, you get to build a secondary income stream, and it’s usually something that’s within your control.
You can allocate as much time to it as you want while doing it around your schedule. If you can spend 3 hours scrolling through Instagram each day there’s no reason to not start a side hustle right now.
Reselling on marketplaces like eBay, Poshmark, or Mercari is the easiest side hustle to start and has the most growth opportunities in the next few years. You take items you already have or source items from thrift stores to sell at a mark-up. I’ve sold everything from $600 worth of vintage GI Joe dolls to trash (I literally sold an empty MacBook box this past week for $20). If you have something, there is a market for it.
Here are three reasons why you should start a reselling side hustle as soon as you finish reading this:
As we head into 2021 the economy will still be in decline (sorry to be a Debbie Downer). If you survived the Great Recession of 2008 you know what this means: people will change how they shop. Some people will shop less, while others will opt for used items instead of new.
Reselling is arguably one of the most recession-proof side hustles out there. If anything, you can almost guarantee that demand for second hand, refurbished, or gently worn items will increase during an economic downturn.
The relationship between the climate crisis and consumerism also makes me think secondhand shopping is here to stay. Millennials and Gen Zers are acutely aware that climate issues will affect them during their lifetime. They are waking up to the reality that business as usual can’t continue.
I think this will result in the normalization of secondhand shopping. When I went to prom in 2009 no one showed up in a secondhand gown. In fact, there wasn’t even a place to even buy a secondhand gown! Now the consignment shops in my hometown all have backrooms filled to the brim with gently used prom gowns. The conversation has shifted: while you wouldn’t have been caught dead wearing a used gown in the 2000s now you won’t be caught dead wearing a gown that you paid for full-price. Gen Z knows what’s up.
I started selling on eBay when I was 12. Straight up, I stole my dad’s identity and opened up an account in his name (I gave him his identity back, don’t worry). Back then eBay was basically your only option for selling second hand items on the internet and even then it was clunky and hella confusing to navigate.
Now there are A TON of options. You can sell clothes on Poshmark and Depop, antiques on Etsy, books on Amazon, gadgets on Mercari, and household clutter on Facebook Marketplace. The proliferation of reselling platforms makes it not only easier for people to buy stuff, but for you to sell stuff too.
And I think it’s only going to get easier. Everyone wants a slice of the Amazon pie. In January 2020 you couldn’t sell an item on Facebook Marketplace like you can right now. Within a few months Facebook launched payment processing and in-platform shipping options. Facebook isn’t taking any commission though December 31, 2020 (aka you can sell for free) and even when they do start charging a commission again it’s only 5% — that’s a fraction of what all the other platforms charge.
There are so many new ways to list items and fulfill orders too. Mercari recently launched a last-mile delivery option with Postmates while eBay has a ton of integrations with third-party dropshipping applications like Oberlo and Printify. As these platforms try to keep up with Amazon you the seller will reap the benefits.
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Other than mowing lawns or shoveling snow reselling is the easiest side hustle to get started right now. Why do I say that? Because you already have the inventory and resources to get started.
Begin with your household clutter. Don’t tell me that you have nothing to get rid of. If there is one silver lining to this pandemic it’s that it’s probably made you start thinking about decluttering, downsizing, or moving. Reselling can help you kill two birds with one stone: it helps you get rid of stuff while making the money you’re probably going to need for a move or home reno.
When it comes to shipping out your sales, save your Amazon boxes. I ship 100% of my large household items in recycled boxes. Other than tape and maybe a postage scale to start, there really isn’t anything that you will need to start this side hustle. And if you do find yourself in need of shipping supplies, hit up your neighbors or post a request on Nextdoor. You’d be surprised at the number of people looking to give padded envelopes to someone who can reuse them.
Convinced yet? Let me hop onto my nerd soapbox for just a second. I was a history major in college and I mean this when I say it: reselling is history in the making. We as a species cannot continue to unconsciously consume the way we have been. The days of cheap H&M clothes and disposable Ikea furniture are numbered.
The push to consume less (or even to consume smarter) is going to drive a ton of innovation in the next decade. Anyone who is in reselling now is going to have a front-row seat to see the rapid changes happening in ecommerce, last-mile logistics, and recycling. If you’re an entrepreneur itching to find a side hustle that will create entirely new industries, reselling is it.
Ready to get started? I put together a free (yes friend, F-R-E-E) 7-day email course to show you a few of the basics. All you have to do is show up for yourself and read a few emails. If you can do that — and part ways with a couple of items taking up space in your home — you can be well on your way to starting a new side hustle in no time.