zondag 15 december 2013

The Death of a Market part 2

Now, as I talked about postage fees and how it's costs are getting out of hand more and more worldwide, but especcially it seems within Europe, there is also that other killer ofut there, but one where the receiving partner has less problems with.

FEES.  Ebay for example has high placing and selling rates, unless you PLAN your purchases accordingly.  They often do promotions on their various sites where you don't have to pay insertion fees during that given period, so it might be intresting to look around and what to place where.
They also run various forms of "insert your first xx objects each month for 0 cost" but don't use those things for items your pretty sure of that they will sell, as you recuperate insertion from the final sale value fees.  Instead, use them on the "I'm not quite sure" heap of rubbish you want to get rid off.

Bar that though, there have been alternatives, and after years of comming and going, they are finally starting to seemingly gear up instead of dying a silent death after a year or so.  MiniatureBids, iOffer, PriceMinister... eBay look a likes are getting more and more common, and compared to let's say 5 years ago, have actual traffic.  Heck, I've been trading recently for some cards on the Argentinian site Mercadolibre.com.  The conversations in spanish where, to quote a certain Doctor, "wibbley whobbley timey wimey" but in the end resulted in a few of my Crusade cards going on a half a globe journey, to get some unopened envellopes of Argentinian only CCG cards in exchange (those cards shown earlier this week).

These sites are still young, and try to attract people by usually dropping insertion fees, OR to promote actual non-moneytary trading.  Think of it as the way Bartertown used to be before some saw big dollar signs, and use an interface and lay-out like eVilBay does.

Another way of approach is through forums.  Post a list of what you want and what you have and try to find matches.  I use this method for example to exchange the munchkin's excess LEGO collectible minifigs for ones he lacks, as well as to get him his Harry Potter cards.  You can use that Trade Card Online widget at the bottom of my blog to access both these sites.  And I managed to get me 2 large bags of brown LEGO bricks for some old Crisis fair entry models and an old PS2 game.

But now the moment you've been reading for, namely "the Big Experiment" from part 1...

AS I said, I tried to trade or sell off both 35 cards and 35 miniatures, all off different rarity and ranges.

The cards in the end had 4 takers, and 7 cards have been send.  Nominally, I value them at a total of 36.28 EUR (as some where those to argentina) sans costs like postage etc.

The miniatures had 17 models leaving for 2 takers and a value of 27.73 EUR... and one of them still hasn't paid up his part of the deal, the other where the bricks.

Considering the time, effort, place they take up, the fact you can put an envellope on the mailbox but have to make the trip to the postal office for a parcel to be send... for the "hard part", there is also the "soft part": you open the boosters, list the doubles, put them in a binder or shoebox.  Compared to having to assemble, clean up, paint etc usually the models...
Another factor is that, like with Magic, a single "bomb rare" can even pay back that whole booster box you have, and a normal rare in my Saint Seiya hobby usually repays 1 to  2 booster packs themselves.  You do end with a lot of excess commons and uncommons, but that is what garage sales or lot dumps are for...
Miniatures on the other hand, if you add the cost of their value + the material you use to paint them + actual hours work to them... you get insane price calculations that even professional studios have to charge for just your 'old lead'.  Or hire workslaves...

I can only conclude for myself that in the current economic climate, trying to get rid of all my excess miniatures is a wasted effort, and they are all getting a nice and cosy box far away in a garage.  So I can finally start relaxing and sit back.

Okay, so that might be a utopia...

Because the collector can never lean bak and relax.  There is always the thrill of the hunt, the joy of finding a missing piece or a good deal.  Scouring the internet, sniffing through forums, using all kinds of social media... those tools are at your disposal and needed  to get to everything out there, they are the tool you need to get your stuff out, and to get the fresh ones in.

And don't mind partners, unless they are in a hobby that involves 'finding stuff' themselves, you only will receive these faces of sweet understanding:

Ciao ciao for this time, see you at the next opionated opinion!

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