Each day and each time you go out sourcing is an opportunity to learn something new, so we're all in a learning curve constantly. And we ALL have bad buys, things that sit and sit and sit. I just donated my bad buys back to my favorite local thrift store. Side note, the thrift chain is so small, I saw my items on the rack when I went back a few days later to source on a sale day! I'll be checking back to see if they're still there in a month on the next sale day. (UPDATE: all gone!)
Top 100 Brands To Look For List, above - this list is by no means exhaustive or only confined to these 100. This should be used as merely a suggestion as there's plenty out there to source, list, and sell. The more you spend time in the selling groups online, the more you'll get a sense of what sells and what doesn't and for how much. People love to share their good flips; there's even weekly threads dedicated to it!
Outside of the Top 100 Brands to source, buyers are always looking for affordable and cute clothes for a good price. These can be considered bread and butter brands. Just solid, not high end, not expensive brands but still have value in the reselling community. Each seller has their own bread and butter brands, as with all other mysteries in life, what sells for one, may not sell for another. For instance, Torrid and certain men's clothing brands sell pretty well for me. So I would consider my bread and butter brands to be: J Crew, Torrid, Gap, Banana Republic, Brooks Brothers (mens), Talbots, Denim & Flower, Ralph Lauren, and Vans. This doesn't necessarily mean that as soon as I list them, they sell right away, but these seem to have a fairly quick turnaround for me.
A couple really good tips when you're out sourcing are - buy what's cute & trendy no matter the brand. Buy what you personally would wear - chances are, someone else thinks the same! And maybe you get something cute to keep if it doesn't sell fast enough. Keep an eye for quirky or funny. At the holiday season, look for holiday specific things like ugly Christmas sweaters and anything that people would want in the Fall & Winter - cozy sweaters, boots, warm, stylish jackets, etc.
I'm aiming to resell a lot more vintage, so that's my biggest learning curve. First just to know what to look for to identify and item as vintage, then make sure that it's cute enough to wear nowadays.
As far as what I'll always buy when I see it, even if it doesn't sell fast enough, this is my personal BOLO (Be On The Lookout) list:
What I stay away from, mostly:
And then there's everything in between. I always grab way more than I intend on buying. I usually find a quiet corner of the store and go through each and every piece, evaluate it, look it over for blemishes, and sometimes take a look at sold comps to see if it's worth buying. I used to look up comps on almost everything, but now I'm a little more confident and knowledgeable, so I rely on my phone a little less each time. It's always a good idea to do a little research on things you find that you aren't familiar with. You could find that it's a total waste of money OR that it's super high value and you'd be a fool to not buy it! Always look everything over as best you can, though, for blemishes, stains, defects but don't kick yourself if you get home and miss something. I still do it. I just try to do it less and less and less.
Missed Part 1? Find it here.