4th Quarter is here, now what?

4th Quarter is here, now what?

We are coming up on the best time of year to be an online seller with the Christmas gift buying season quickly approaching.  There are currently 70 days until Christmas, and that means somewhere around 55-60 days to have items shipped into amazon warehouses to be available for last minute buyers to purchase Christmas gifts.  I haven’t seen amazon officially release the shipping deadlines for 2014, but they should be in line with the 2013 shipping deadlines, which required customers to order by December 22nd for 2 day shipping, and the 23rd for one day shipping to have items delivered on or before the 24th.

We all know that the next 70 days are some of the best to be online sellers, but how do we best take advantage?

In a perfect world, some of this would already have been done, but there is still time to take advantage of the season.  In preparation for the Christmas buying season, I have already placed several large wholesale orders for items that I expect to sell well throughout the season.  In addition to that, I have someone hired to help me ship my products, and also have an independent contractor on board who is going to be doing both sourcing and shipping on basically a full time basis.

Beyond the preparation that has already been done, my plan is to devote significantly more time to sourcing product than I have been the past few months.  This will be a combination of retail arbitrage, online arbitrage, wholesale, and liquidation sourcing.  I also have made sure to have plenty of all of the supplies I regularly use on hand so that I won’t create any unplanned delays as we get closer to peak time.  My plan is to source and continue shipping products into amazon well through Christmas, as people don’t stop buying products.  I have been analyzing some trends on certain lines of products, and doing some predicting of which items I believe will be good sellers.  At this point some of this is guesswork, and I will simply be tracking prices of items to see if they reach a level that would be profitable for me.  If they do, I will purchase them to sell, and if not, I will analyze why I was mistaken in my initial thought so that I can learn for future years.

So, the oversimplified version of my plan for the remainder of Q4 is to source a lot, and ship a lot.  I believe that doing this will lead to November and December being my top 2 months of the year in terms of both sales and profits.

I have a couple other updates to share quick, before I wrap this post up.  Later this week I will be speaking at the ecom Chicago conference.  If you will also be attending please find me and say hello.  I will be driving to Chicago from Minnesota, and plan on doing some retail arbitrage along the way at stores that I wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to source at.

Also, I will be on Barrington McIntosh’s Spreecast on Wednesday October 15th at 7:00PM ET / 6:00PM CT (which is tonight if you are reading this post the day it was published).  We will be discussing my transition to selling online full time as well as some of the things I have learned along the way.  If you are interested, HERE is the link.  If you are on live, you will have the opportunity to ask questions via chat, and if at the time you are reading this the Spreecast already happened, the aforementioned link will go to the replay.

Overall, my goal with this post is to share that I have a plan for Q4, but it isn’t all that elaborate besides spending significantly more time related to selling on amazon.   Am I alone in this regard? What’s your plan for Q4? Please share in the comments below!

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