Reselling the right items on eBay is the key to making a profitable use of your time vs. just keeping yourself busy and barely making any money. The bottom line, you don’t want to be stuck reselling terrible items that will sit around and be hard to move for a decent profit.
Also, you don’t want to overpay for popular items that you can resell, but there’s no room for any profit to be made!
The last warning I want to give you before you start thinking about the best items to resell on eBay is this:
Make sure you are careful and track your time properly, if you don’t, you could find yourself eventually burning out and not making enough money to make reselling worth your time. So, track your time so you can find a balance point of time and profit. This includes your time for finding inventory, listing items for sale, and shipping, etc.
Now, let’s get into the best items to resell on eBay in 2023!
1) Movies on DVD, VHS, or BluRay
If you live in an area where you see a lot of DVD’s, VHS Tapes, or BluRays in your local area, you’ll want to pick them up if you can get them for cheap. Typically thrift stores, flea markets, local music stores, garage sales, and people you know will be willing to offload physical media to you for a reasonable price.
If you are buying single copies of DVD, VHS Tape, or BluRay on clearance and can look up the price of the media ahead of purchase, a good price to buy a single copy would be a dollar if you can get at least 10 dollars or more for it. Two dollars for a single copy is a good price if you can get at least 15 or more dollars for it, and 3 dollars per copy if you can get 20 or more dollars for selling it.
To look up the prices, just search on eBay by scanning the bar codes, then filter the sold listings.
Remember this too!
As you look up used physical media items keep in mind the condition of each item by looking at the disc and case of each item. A scratched disc could drop the value of a used piece of media by 50% or more. For VHS tapes, make sure the tape is not rotted or has moisture inside!
If you are blindly buying an entire collection (or a big box of media) and can’t look up the prices ahead of time, be very careful with how much you pay. This is where being an expert comes in handy!
Sometimes you’re best off doing a lowball offer of 10 cents a piece, if the seller does not take it, then just walk away!
2) Music on CD, Cassette, or Records (Vinyl)
After including movies and tv shows on DVD, Blu-Ray, and VHS in the previous section, I have to include Music on physical media such as CDs, Cassettes, and Records. These are great sellers as well!
If you live in an area where you have a lot of music collectors, it’s very typical that you’ll find CDs, Cassettes, and Records the same way you will for movies on DVD and Blu-Ray.
You find lots of music at thrift stores, garage sales, estate sales, the flea market, and music stores.
With finding good music, you might find it hard to source desirable titles from the thrift store. For whatever reason, all thrift stores seem to have sucky music for the most part. Another important point for thrift stores is that 90% of the time when you do find a great artist or album, the CD will be missing or is scratched. In addition, Records will be badly scratched, or cassettes will be old and brittle. In other words, if you have a bad experience at the thrift store, don’t feel too bad about it.
I have, however, found great music items at the thrift store, so it all comes down to timing.
When you resell your music CDs, Records, and Cassettes follow the same pricing rules we discussed for movie DVDs and Blu-Rays in the previous section.
Check your prices on eBay ahead of time and spend no more than one dollar on an Album that sells for 10 dollars or more. Don’t spend more than 2-3 dollars for an album that sells for more than 15-20 dollars.
Remember to filter your eBay search to “Sold” listings too!
Another great resource for tracking prices of music CDs, Tapes, and Records is to look at the site Discogs.com, it’s a music collectors reseller site and has just about every album for sale you can think of.
If you end up buying an entire collection and don’t know the prices in your head, don’t be afraid to lowball the collection for 10 – 25 cents on the dollar. If the seller says no, then walk away and don’t feel bad, it’s better to do that than waste money and time on items that won’t sell for the price you want.
Also, just like reselling movies on physical media, the condition is everything. In fact, condition for music collectors is even more important, so expect any CD or Records that are scratched to be worth less by 50% or more vs. one in good to excellent condition.
3) Vintage Clothing, Shoes, and Hats
Vintage clothing, shoes, and hats can be very profitable to resell on eBay. Because of this, there is a lot of competition in this space and sourcing can be very challenging.
The best place to start finding vintage clothing, shoes, and hats is by going to the thrift stores.
Every thrift store I’ve ever been to has at least 50% of its entire inventory in used clothes.
If you are new to vintage clothes you will have a lot to learn, so it’s best to just start going to thrift stores and start looking things up on eBay to see what people are buying and for how much.
With vintage clothing values, brand and condition are a big factor in how much something is worth. So when placing a value on something, make sure you are checking out the photos very carefully on eBay.
You can even get prices from the used clothing website PoshMark.
After you determine the value of an item, you need to make sure the price you are buying it at is not too high. Thrift stores have been notorious for overcharging for used clothes that are in the worse condition.
This includes all the popular items like dress pants, jeans, t-shirts, jackets, dress shirts, dresses, shoes, hats, and any other mainstream fashion brand.
Therefore, using a T-Shirt as an example. I would not pay more than 25% of its total sold price on eBay. So if you buy it for 10 dollars or less, it should sell for $35 dollars or more (including shipping.)
Another important factor to keep in mind is that clothing resellers have a high return rate vs. other types of resellers. So you might expect at least 20% of your items to be returned, causing you to spend extra time relisting them, etc.
If you want to start following an expert to learn more about reselling clothing items on eBay, check out the YouTube Channel Ralli Roots.
4) Vintage and New Electronics, Audio Gear, Power Tools
Electronics, Vintage Audio Gear, and Power Tools are tricky items to get into and make money with.
Most of your easy money will probably come from simple portable electronic items and power tools which you can easily clean-up, test, and sell for a profit providing everything on them works.
A quick list of the best types of simple portable electronics to resell include:
Digital Cameras, Discmans, Walkmans, Portable Radios, iPods, Mp3 Players, Antique Pocket Radios, Remote Controls, Radio Transmitters, Testing Meters, Fans, and many, many others! Just use your imagination and curiosity to find new things when you go out sourcing!
A quick list of the best types of Power tools to resell include:
Cordless Drills, Saws, Flash Lights, Blowers, and any other Cordless Yard Tools. Just make sure you test them out by having the right chargers and batteries that go with them. Sometimes you’ll find just the chargers which can bring good money by themselves too. If you can find a complete set of cordless power tools that includes a carrying case, that’s very profitable to resell.
Higher-end corded power tools for use in a workshop also bring great money, so keep an eye open for those items too, but shipping will be expensive.
Vintage Audio Gear
For vintage audiophile gear like turntables, receivers, amplifiers, cassette decks, 8-track players, reel-to-reel players, and speakers there is a pretty decent profit margin to be made if you have the right brands. Like Denon, Sony, Marantz, and any obscure brand like NAD.
In most cases, you’ll buy the vintage audio gear in working condition for a discount off the sold eBay price, then you can flip it for a quick profit. You’ll want a 50% profit margin for this to make sense.
In other cases, you can buy vintage audio gear or higher-end electronic items which are not working and get a deal on them where it will make sense to get them serviced or repaired. But again, you’ll need experience with a particular type of electronic item to make this worthwhile and no overpay for anything.
You have to figure in your buy cost, repairs costs, and then what your sold price will be. If you cannot make at least 50% profit after investing in your buy and repair costs, it’s probably not worth it.
With selling all electronics, the best way to get started is to figure out which types of items either provide entertainment, a utility for someone, or have a collectors market (like vintage audio gear.) Then specialize in one area of those electronics at a time, as you learn each one, you’ll have an incredible advantage for making money vs. your competition that is scared of making money with this category of products.
Finding and Buying Electronics To Resell
The best way to find used electronics is through Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Flea Markets, Thrift Stores, Electronic eWaste companies, Estate Sales, and Storage Auctions.
When buying used electronics, always remember to test things out and look up the prices before you purchase. If the item works and there is decent profit to be made, usually you can expect to buy them wholesale for 20-50% of the eBay sold price.
If you cannot test the item, you can still buy it but make sure you are less than 20% of its sold value.
One of my favorite YouTubers who handles many many different types of electronics and power tools is Craigslist Hunter. You can watch his channel and see all kinds of different things he buys for flipping. It’s a great way to learn and get started in this market.
Every once in a while you’ll find new electronics in the box that will certainly bring a higher resale value when you go to flip it, but you still want to test out the item if it’s more than 5 years old. Over time, electronic components break down, so even if something was never used, there’s a chance it won’t be in working order. So always test your items before listing them for sale!
Reselling used electronics is very profitable and has great profit margins, but It’s also a gamble to say the least.
5) Vintage (and New) Toys, Board Games, and Puzzles
Vintage toys for both men and women are something that can be very profitable but will require a very thorough understanding of the market.
The trends for various toys, board games, and puzzles can make the prices higher or lower depending on the supply and demand of that particular toy, game, or puzzle. The time of year also has a great impact on the price.
For example, the summertime is probably a good time to buy because it’s a slow time of the year for selling vs. the Christmas season which is the best time to sell toys, games, and puzzles.
Often, you’ll find older used toys and board games at the flea market, thrift store, garage sales, and a moving sales.
Like anything else, consider the condition of the toy, how clean it is, and look it up if possible.
A lot of times it will be hard to look up things without a bar code so you’ll really need to educate yourself in the toy market if you want an easy time buying toys to flip for a profit. This is because you’ll need to know enough information about the item to search for it on eBay manually.
Note: If you are looking at plush items like stuffed animals, make sure they are clean and not gross and dirty. If they are not in good condition, consider leaving them behind unless they are very rare and desirable.
For board games and puzzles, you’ll most likely have a box with a barcode, so you can scan it for looking up sold prices. Just be careful of used puzzles and games because they may be missing pieces, this is usually the case 90% of the time. For that reason, I typically recommend you only buy new sealed puzzles and games. It can take forever to inventory all the pieces in a board game or jigsaw puzzle.
Always try and pay no more than 25% of the sold price for any Toy, Board Game, or Puzzle.
If you are interested in learning more about sourcing toys, games, and puzzles at the thrift store, check out the YouTuber Thrift School.
6) Old and New Computers and Smartphones
If you know something about computers, then you’ll have a pretty exciting opportunity to make money by buying older and newer computer equipment.
Some computer hardware is vintage now and if you come across anything from the 1980s or 1990s you’ll have a good chance of being able to resell it for a profit. Both IBM, IBM Clones, and Apple will bring in a decent amount of money.
The vintage computer item you pick up does not even have to work, you can sell it as parts and still make a decent profit.
If perhaps you pick up an entire computer system like a laptop or desktop and it does turn on, you’ll make much more money than just selling it as parts.
If you happen to come across a box of computer parts, sometimes things like old CPUs, Graphics Cards, and RAM sticks can be quite valuable too.
WARNING! When it comes to buying vintage computers and parts, you should always lowball an offer to buy these items. A lot of what you buy may end up at your nearest eWaste facility.
When it comes to newer computers, built within the last 5 years, Apple computers will have a higher resale value on the used market than an IBM Compatible. When you come across a model of computer, just look up the model number on eBay, get the sold price, then offer 10% – 25% of its value if it turns on and works. If you are unsure that it works, pay 10% of its sold value.
Smartphones are a very popular computer item today vs. 20 years ago. So if you find an old iPhone or Droid phone, you might have something of value as well. Just follow the same steps we discussed previously with looking up the sold prices on eBay and testing the item to make sure it powers on.
Reselling computer-related items requires some special knowledge, so I advise only to get into this if you are tech-savvy and have an interest in learning about new and old computers.
7) Retro and Newer Video Games
Lately, retro video games have been all the rage. When you read in the news that a first edition Super Mario Bros which was sealed in the box sells for over a million dollars, it gets everyone’s attention.
People immediately assume that every single video game that exists is now all of a sudden worth a lot of money.
This creates a stir in people’s minds and now everyone is out to find the next golden gem.
People are also hoarding tons and tons of new and old video game merchandise hoping for the big cash out later on.
All of this excitement makes it hard to make money reselling video games, because everyone is doing it. As of 2023, the market does seem to be cooling off a bit. So here’s what I recommend if you are looking to resell video games.
Don’t Over Pay, Be Willing To Walk Away
No matter what type of video game collection you find, there’s a very good chance it will have a high asking price. This will cause you to overpay and possibly lose money and time. So be very careful checking prices and not paying more than 35% of the eBay sold price for any small video game collection or console.
If it’s a larger collection and you can’t look everything up, then make a lowball offer and be willing to walk away. Better to do that than get stuck with losing money on a collection you overpaid for.
Nintendo Video Games and Systems
Nintendo video games and systems will always have more demand and resell value than Sega, Playstation, or Xbox. So keep that in mind when making an offer.
In some cases, you might want to offer 50% of the eBay sold value for an item by Nintendo because it will sell fast.
But, do your research because not every Nintendo game is worth good money or desirable. If you have a game like Mario or Zelda, it will always be in demand.
It’s Easy To Keep Things For Yourself
It might be emotionally tempting to keep some of the video game stuff for yourself. While this is certainly OK to do, you might have to realize that buying and reselling video games may just end up being a hobby for you and not an actual way to make extra money to pay your bills or save for the future.
Sourcing Video Games
For sourcing video games, you’ll find them at the same places as vintage electronics for the most part. At flea markets, thrift stores, moving sales, garage sales, and online listings like FaceBook Marketplace and Craigslist.
So with these points made, I hope you carefully consider your decision to become an expert with reselling old and new video games. Remember to check prices often and keep up to date on all the latest video game trends by watching YouTubers and reading video game news websites.
You can also reference a website called Priced Charting which will provide you with price estimates of various video games and consoles.
8) Lego Parts and Sets
Similar to video games, LEGO is extremely popular and will not make a very profitable niche to resell in if you are not an expert. The reason is that deals are hard to find and you’ll most likely overpay unless you know exactly what you are buying.
A lot of times, when you find open box lego sets, they’ll be missing pieces and be incomplete. So use caution, even if the owner says it’s complete. For this reason, I find it easier to just buy new sealed lego sets at a 50% or more discount and hold them for a bit.
With that said, finding lego at a 50% discount will be very challenging.
Another easier option is to find an end of the year 30% discount sale and buy a lego set you think might be discontinued. Once it’s discontinued the value will easily increase another 20% or more.
However, use caution because some lego sets don’t always go up in value, so make sure you do your research for the actual demand of the lego sets you are buying to flip.
Reselling Lego By The Pound
Another popular way to make money is by reselling lego parts by the pound.
Let’s say you are at a garage sale and you buy a toy chest full of lego parts. Maybe there are 100 pounds of lego in that chest. If you paid 3-5 dollars per pound, you could resell it into smaller 1 pound bags at 15-20 dollars per pound.
On top of that, you could cherry pick out all the mini figures and resell those individually for another substantial profit. This is the easiest way to make money by reselling Lego parts.
If you want to go all in to just reselling lego, go on YouTube and learn as much as you can about lego sets, parts, and trends.
Reselling Just Lego Parts
You can research parts on a site called BrickLink. If you decide to start reselling actual lego parts individually, there is a lot of money to be made and sourcing will become much easier.
The reason for this is that you’ll be able to buy just about any new lego set for its normal MSRP price, part it out, and make three times your money on it.
But, there is a trade off, it will be very time consuming, so having expert knowledge is required to make it worth your time.
Regardless of whether you decide to resell lego sets or parts by the pound, you can make money online with Lego on eBay or other lego online marketplaces.
9) Old New Stock Items
When you go out to find items to resell online for your eBay store, it’s very common to find new old stock items. New old stock items are older products that are unused, they are new in the box (sealed.)
The list of items you will find is endless, but some common new in box items are: Small Electronics, Kitchen Appliances, Clothing or Hats with the tag on them, Board Games, Puzzles, Dishware, and Books.
You might even find music, video games and movies shrinkwrapped!
The easiest thing to do when dealing with new old stock items is to scan the barcode of the item with Amazon or the eBay app. Then check for sold prices.
If the cost to buy that item is under 25% of the sold price and you can move it relatively quickly, it’s normally worth picking it up.
Just avoid any type of tobacco or liquor products as these can be much harder to sell online. In fact, on eBay you can’t even sell those types of products.
The most common places I find new old stock items at a discount are estate sales, thrift stores, the flea market, garage sales, and moving sales.
Sometimes you can find them online but most people scan the barcode and list the item with a high price which is just too much to pay if you are trying to profit by reselling it.
So I advise not wasting too much time looking at online listings unless you can buy a huge lot of new old stock items at a resellers discount.
10) Books and Magazines
Books and Magazines are very profitable items to resell. They are very easy to source and you can normally buy one book for a dollar or two which might be worth at least 15 or 20 dollars.
This is the pricing model you want to follow. If you read the previous section about reselling DVDs or CDs, you’ll see a similar model.
Please remember to check the books and magazines’ condition too, for used book buyers, the condition really matters and will affect your resell price.
Shipping books and magazines is fairly cheap, normally costing under 5 dollars per item.
When you find a large group of books or magazines you can buy, you’ll also have the advantage of grouping together a set of books from the same storyline or author. By doing this, you can get a higher price and save a lot of time not having to sell one book at a time.
The same is true for magazines! But you’ll have to group it by the year and type of magazine.
You’ll find books and magazines everywhere. So get out there to the thrift store, garage sales, moving sales, flea market, swap meets, and online listings to see what is available.
If you want to specialize in Books sales, I recommend you follow the YouTuber called “Back From Burnout”. I’ve been watching this channel on and off over the last 6 months to learn more about reselling books. The information presented is both entertaining and educational! The lady who runs the channel is named Mel, she’s very authentic and shares her knowledge of the book reselling business on eBay.
If you are looking to specialize in just magazines, you might be interested in learning more about how you can make money reselling vintage print ads, check out a recent article I just wrote about doing that at: Resell Vintage Print Ads and Make Money Online
11) Antiques and Collectibles
I saved Antiques and Collectibles last because this is a very big and general category of items to resell and make money with, by selling online via eBay.
First, let’s learn the difference between an antique and a collectible.
According to Wikipedia, an antique is perceived as having value, mostly for its historical significance, and has an age of at least 100 years or more.
For collectibles, according to Wikipedia, it’s an item that has value (or no value) and is popular for people to collect. People have a strong interest in collecting that item.
Whether you are dealing with Antiques or Collectibles, these markets are sophisticated and take a great deal of time and research for learning the ins and outs.
Especially when you need to value a particular item on price, desirability, and rarity.
With that said, if you are willing to learn about a particular item, whether it be an antique or collectible, you can make money online by reselling these items.
The most popular types of antiques or collectibles are:
Comic Books, Coins, Books, Video Games, Photographs, Artwork, Sports Cards, Vintage Signs, Antique Furniture, Historical Documents, Vintage Toys, Pokemon Cards, Magic The Gathering, Cameras, and Music or Movie media like Records, DVDs, VHS, CD’s, and Cassettes.
The list goes on and on, pretty much anything you can imagine!
And remember! If any of these items are more than 100 years old, it’s considered an antique.
If you want to learn about the economics of the antiques and collectibles markets, I highly recommend you check out a YouTube channel called “Reserved Investments”.
As far as where to find collectibles and antiques, the answer is everywhere!
Find them online and in-person at various thrift stores, garage sales, flea markets, moving sales, estate sales, and antique or collectible shops.
One Last Thing To Consider
The best items to resell and make a living with are the ones you can find regularly and move at a decent profit margin. A lot of factors will come into play in how you do this.
Especially when it comes to where you are located and what resources you have for sourcing.
Because the types of items worth reselling are always changing, it’s best to regularly follow full-time eBay Reseller YouTubers who share what they buy and what they sell.
It’s a very entertaining way to learn, but also keep up to date with the eBay reselling market trends too.
Check out my other article called: YouTube Resellers Show You How To Make Money Reselling On eBay. In this article, I share with you my favorite eBay YouTubers to follow.
When I originally started writing this article, I did not realize just how long it would actually end up being. It’s actually more of a guide now than an article. But, as you can tell, there are a lot of things to consider when you select various items to resell on eBay.
You want to take away two things from this guide!
- Have fun with the items you resell, it helps to have an interest in them since you’ll be working with them day in and day out.
- Track your time, how much you make per hour is very important and you want to make sure your time is valued. So don’t waste any time on items that don’t yield a good profit margin. Even if your interest in them is high, unless it’s just a hobby for you, then your time won’t matter anyways.
I hope you got something out of this guide, please share it or pass it along to someone you know if you think it will help them out.