Getting started in the closeout business isn’t as easy as it may look. There are some things you will need to do before you can officially count yourself as one of the industries closeout buyers, and we are listing them below. This may not be everything, but it is the most important to get you started.
1. Merchandise. The very first thing you will need before you can start your closeout company is product. You can begin by contacting closeout buyers or other other closeout sources who sell closeouts. You can either go direct to closeout wholesalers or you can contact importers and distributors directly asking them if they want to sell closeouts. But in any case, you have to have closeouts for sale because you won’t be able to sell from an empty cart.
2. Warehouse. The next thing you will need is a warehouse. If you plan is to sell closeouts to retail stores, distributors, variety stores, etc, you will need a warehouse to ship from. You can start small and grow into something larger, but at the very least you will need clean space where you can store some truckloads, and it is best if your warehouse has easy access for large trucks. When you first start and begin doing business with liquidators for inventory you will find warehousing will be a key component of your operation. There are closeout wholesalersof all shapes and sizes operating from all different kinds of warehouses. There are no specific rules on what your warehouse does or does not have to be. Some suggestions would be to have clear, clean space with ample ceiling height and good dock access for trucks.
3. Customers. Once you have some closeout merchandise and a warehouse to store things, you are going to need some closeout buyers of your own. You can find customers almost anywhere, but at the beginning you may want to concentrate on cold calling and online searches. These are some of the cheapest ways to find closeout buyers for your new venture. You can sell to closeout wholesalers, discount retail stores, off price variety chains, distributors, basically anywhere you can make a profit. Once you buildup some cash reserves you can sell closeoutsby exhibiting at trade shows and doing some travel. You will find there are liquidators for inventory in all categories so you are free to buy and sell everything your heart desires.
4. Support. If things go as planned and you succeed, you are going to need some help. Once you start buying and selling closeouts you will need warehouse help and office help to do all the “behind the scenes” work. Closeout wholesalers who are new to the business forget that you can’t do it all yourself. You can buy and sell closeouts, but you can’t also be the warehouse person, the office person, the accountant, the janitor, the payables person, and the traffic manager. You may not need all this on day one, but one-man closeout wholesalers often turn into larger companies made up of many closeout buyers. This in turn will require more help to run the rest of the business.
5. Insurance. The final thing you will need to get started is insurance. This is important because you can have something happen even if you have only been in business one day. Any one of a number of bad things can happen so you want to be sure you are protected. Liquidators for inventory and other closeout companies must have their inventory and property insured against fire, flood theft and any other potential damage. You will learn you have to work too hard for everything to be lost because you forgot to insure it. Make your insurance a priority so all of your closeout merchandise is insured. You will be glad you did.