One of the most asked questions I get is some variation of “whats tools do you use to resell?” They don’t mean hammers and nails, although if you’re repairing wooden chairs to resell, those certainly would be pertinent. Because I sell primarily on Amazon and secondarily on eBay, I have a small repertoire of items, apps, and services that I use which allow me to work more efficiently and make more money while I’m doing it. This list will be constantly updated so make sure to check back to see how it evolves as I am not one who appreciates stagnation. This post is chock full of affiliate links to Amazon, so don’t be a dick and buy it without clicking.
My Cell Phone
This might seem simple and I don’t say it because I think that people don’t think to have a smartphone, just that they assume they need something way better to level up to a point where they can be a full-time reseller (note: you don’t want to be a full-time reseller, you want to make a full-time income working as little as possible). I have an iPhone 6sPlus, which is a really, really old phone in today’s consumer-tech environment, but it gets the job done so I haven’t made the switch yet. I use this to not only film a good portion of my YouTube videos but also to look up items as I am searching them out in thrift stores, garage sales, flea markets, etc… I just use the camera or keyboard on my phone to everything up. I know, so simple. You DO NOT need a Bluetooth scanner. I repeat: YOU DO NOT NEED A BLUETOOTH SCANNER. Will it help? Sure. Will it make going through bulk books much, much faster? Absolutely. But if you’re going through thrift stores looking up old Christmas decor prices on eBay, what the hell is a Bluetooth scanner going to do for you? If you want one, that’s fine, too. People make way too big a deal about this. My recommendation? Unless you have a specific need for something else, just buy the cheapest.
This is going to be broken up into two categories. The first category is ink printers, used for printing off individual labels, normal business stuff, and in a pinch for replacing thermal labels if your thermal printer craps out. I use an Epson ET-2550, which comes from the Epson Eco-Tank Printer line. Sometimes these cost a shit ton (I bought my Epson ET-2550 for $149 and its currently up to $700) but usually, the newest in-stock model is reasonably priced. I use these because you can just fill up the ink reservoir instead of buying new ink cartridges every other day. If you can find another printer that functions this way, I’m sure it works fine, too. For thermal printers, I have two separate ones. I use a DYMO LabelWriter 450 for printing off FBA labels from InventoryLab, or I use a Zebra LP2844. Personally, I don’t like Rollo printers and would not support them with my money. A lot of people do and I am sure they work fine, I just don’t like the way the business is run. I’ve printed off hundreds of thousands of labels on my Zebra LP2844 and it’s still running strong.
Basic Office Tools
You’re going to need some basic office tools too-
- a tape measure that easily bends
- a toothbrush to clean out gunk from cracks
- some sort of disinfectant
- something to remove adhesive
- Duck brand packing tape (one of the few things I recommend buying name brand because off-brand packing tape is absolute trash)
- a screwdriver set
- a stapler
And probably some other mundane stuff that I will add to this list later.
A postal scale
This is a relatively overlooked one- I’ve gone through 4 scales in the past 6 years and, by far the best has been this Accutek 440Lbs Postal Scale, just make sure you don’t step on the LCD reader, which I have done twice. It gets the job done for essentially any package you are going to be shipping. It won’t weigh pallets but, if you’re weighing pallets, you probably should just invest in a pallet scale.
I should make some of these myself. They’re just little plastic tools that you can use to peel up retail labels. Nothing special. Cheap as hell, too.
You can get these two main ways. The first way is to buy them online. There are tons of companies that sell cardboard boxes online. I will link to Amazon for the sake of affiliate sales, but in reality, you’re probably just going to buy them from Home Depot or Lowe’s or something like that, if you choose to buy them at all, which brings us to our second way of getting cardboard boxes: raiding recycling dumpsters behind big box stores. And don’t tell me there aren’t any big box stores around you, there are.
This is the software I use to upload my FBA plans. It also does some neat tracking stuff, like inventory value, profit based on tag, and what types of items are selling best for you. I don’t really use them much for that because most of my FBA sales are one-offs that I find at thrift stores, but if you are doing private label or wholesale, it may prove invaluable to have that kind of information.
Reprice it is your standard repricing software. I use it to make sure that I have the buy box as often as possible without getting into a price war to the bottom. I’ve used it for years. I should probably figure out someone who does this but has an affiliate plan that I can cash in on for everyone who signs up because, in my experience, repricers are all very similar in scope.
This is free and what I use for doing my bookkeeping. I use cash accounting so it’s as simple as money-in/money-out. If you are intimidated by doing your own accounting, I recommend getting an accountant. You can usually get year-end books done for $500-$1000.
I think that’s pretty much it for now. I will update this as more items come to mind, but I don’t think you need anything beyond this to get started.