eBay is actively promoting the practice of retail arbitrage. It recently sent emails to sellers encouraging them to visit Kmart stores slated for closure in order to pick up discounted products to resell on eBay.
"Kmart has recently announced that one of their locations near you is expected to close. The departure of their stores may create sourcing possibilities for you."
Picking up discounted items at retail stores to resell on Amazon and eBay, a product-sourcing practice called Retail Arbitrage, is frowned upon in some quarters. Retailers like Target and Kohl's have banned resellers, and there are reports that at least in some categories or brands, Amazon has cracked down by requiring sellers to prove they're authorized resellers (usually by submitting invoices showing where they acquired their inventory). Tech columnist Kim Komando even warned her readers
about the practice.
However, eBay is fully on board with it, sending out emails advising sellers to "Act Now: Inventory for Resale Near You - Find a variety of products at closeout prices." It even provided a map sellers could use to find Kmart stores in their area.
eBay wrote, "Huge product variety and competitive prices on closeouts from the biggest retails stores will be available soon. Recently, Kmart announced that some of their locations are expected to close. Use the map below to see if you're near one of the effected stores. This sourcing opportunity offers a wide mix of hot-selling inventory at competitive prices for resale on eBay."
eBay got specific, listing items currently in high demand along with an eBay recommended price. Some of the items it listed:
- Hamilton Beach Brands Inc. 33265 6 Quart Programmable Insulated Slow Cooker for $34.99
- Garden Oasis Harrison 7 Piece Dining Set for $179.99
- Sunny Health & Fitness 060 40 lb. Vinyl Dumbbell Set for $19.99
- Taylor Cutlery BTI Tools, LLC Old Timer Junior Folding Pocket Knife Saw for $14.99
- Blue Wave Sports Thunderbolt 44-in Inflatable Snow Rider for $14.99
It seems we could expect to see bluelight specials on eBay. What do you think of retail arbitrage, and is it a good strategy for eBay sellers?