“Where can I find high margin inventory?” is a pressing question for all online sellers. I’ve covered retail outlets like Target and Big Lots in past posts, but there is also a huge online world of inventory. In this and future posts I’ll cover some great sources for mouse-driven finds.
I was tempted to write this post in a clever style like Woot posts, but I don’t have any screaming monkeys. If that statement bewilders you, welcome to the fun world of Woot where monkeys and cheeky descriptions are par for the course…oh, and great deals.
Woot is a secret Amazon company. I only know this because I actually read all the tiny, tiny print at the bottom of the Amazon.com home page. They also own Zappos, IMDb and a bunch of other companies. I suspect the reason they keep Woot separate is the cheeky factor. Amazon.com tries to be a serious sales site. Woot does not.
The company’s tagline is Woot®: One Day, One Deal™, which tells you what you need to know about the site. Every night at midnight, Woot sends out an email to all its subscribers. There is one deal a day – and it is a good one. I bought several Christmas gifts from Woot this year as well as inventory to re-sell. The deal is available until they sell out and you can’t buy more than three of the item. Of course, if you have an account and your sweetie has an account, you can get more than three.
Usually the first deal is snapped up in less than three minutes. How do I know that? Because they record it next to the item description and they even tell you who bought it. They call their customers “suckers.”
I always find the number of “multiple sales” interesting because that gives me an idea of how many other resellers are buying the deal. Most people don’t need more than one of any given item. Woot is famous (infamous?) for its creative product descriptions that tell a quirky story. They also squeeze in specs and pictures so you know exactly what you are buying. Might has well have fun while shopping!
In addition to the main Woot! which is often an electronic, entertainment item, appliance or tool; there are other similar Woot sites. Kids.Woot! sells toys and baby items. Sellout.Woot! sells deeply discounted electronics, etc. Home.Woot! sells furnishings and other household goods. Wine.Woot! sells wine by the case (except when it doesn’t – a recent sale of fancy grapeseed oil was under the headline “This Wine is Basically Undrinkable”). Shirt.Woot! sells t-shirts designed by the Woot community (and voted on by the community). I’ve never tried to resell a t-shirt, but my son and husband have several fun and ironic shirts from Shirt.Woot!
While the main Woot! is a deal on a hot item that is widely available and in stock, Sellout Woot! is for an item that is being cleared out. You may see the same deal on Woot! several times a year if it is a good seller. That’s how I got our Roku player. I missed the first offering (she who hesitates…), but was able to buy it about six weeks later for the same terrific price.
Another site is Local.Woot! This is about deals in your local area and operates a lot like Groupon. These deals generally last longer than a day; there are several deals from which you can choose, and the deals can be services, restaurants and experiences (i.e. a parachute class) as well as product discounts. This picture is for Dallas, but they have cities nationwide.
Lastly, Woot runs a community of deals called Deals.Woot! This is a huge site of deals from all over the internet. Some are sponsored (Woot often lists deals from Sellout.Woot here so it can be a bit confusing) and appear at the top. Woot keeps track of which deals are being bought and pulls the more popular deals up to the top of the list. By the way, if you click on the link that explains their ranking system, don’t be fooled. It’s a geek-insider joke about algorithms. (Don’t ask how I know that). Very clever for the propeller heads.
Each deal includes comments by the community, other online sites where you can buy the item (like Wal-Mart, Target, Amazon, etc.) and their prices, plus a list of similar deals being offered by the community. When I was writing this, for example, there were several Roku offers on Deals.Woot.
Another thing that is different about Deals.Woot is that you can add your own deal. Either a deal you are offering (if you an online retailer), or one you found and thought was cool to share with the community.
Besides these sites, there are also special events on Woot called “Woot-Offs” or “Woot! Woot!” (think Star Trek’s Enterprise under Red Alert) and this is when they have a deal free-for-all with lots of deals. It is hard to explain, but when you see one, look closer because usually the deal is super.
Regardless of which site you buy from, it generally takes about a week for your item to get to you. Products are new and well packed for quick turnaround to Amazon.
When I see a deal I want to investigate, I open FBA Power. At the top of the FBA Power tool is a button that says “WebScout.” This free tool allows you to scout online the way FBA Scout lets you scout from your phone.
To do online scouting, I have several browser screens open at once. One is for WebScout, one for Amazon.com and one for Woot! I take the name of the product of interest and pop it into my Amazon search bar at the top of my browser. The product comes up and I scroll down to the ASIN number under “product description.” “ASIN” is Amazon’s page ID number for every item in its catalog. It is unique. I copy the ASIN and paste it into WebScout which then pulls up all the information for me. Let’s see it in action:
Now this was just an exercise. There’s no way I’d pay $275 for a $125 dollar return – there are better deals to be found – but at least you can see how to pull up a product into WebScout.
If there’s one thing I would caution you about – it is getting lost and losing focus. There is so much to see, the descriptions are so funny, that you can spend hours on a Woot site. I generally will look at the main deals from the daily Woot, get sucked into the t-shirts for a minute, laugh at the screaming monkeys and then leave it if I don’t see anything I want to buy. I use the Deals.Woot if I’m looking for something in particular or if I’m having trouble pricing something.
I’ve found great deals through Woot! and I hope you do, too. Woot! Woot! Share your experiences and/or questions about Woot below.