Day in the Life of an Amazon Seller: Sourcing Trip

Sourcing is my favorite part of being an Amazon seller because it gives me an excuse to go shopping! I love shopping, but I can’t tell you the last time I went shopping for myself. It’s all business these days and I’m okay with that because every sourcing trip brings me one day closer to freedom.

This Day in the Life post will highlight my most recent sourcing trip. Follow along as I source in a town (and store) I’ve never been to before!


This trip took place on 3.18.22 in a different town! My husband was travelling for work, so I tagged along. I was on a strict timeline because of my husband’s schedule, so I only had about 2 hours to source.

First stop was my favorite place… Walmart!

As always, I checked out the clearance aisle first. And what a waste of time. Bummer! This clearance aisle was full of junk, which is saying something. Everything was picked through. Boxes were damaged. Items were expired or about to expire. It wasn’t good, so I left it all behind!

I also like to check out the supplements and health/fitness section. There’s a supplement that I’ve been replening over the past month or so that sells before it even hits the warehouse! The price has started to drop but the item still moves quick. Unfortunately, they were out of stock at this Walmart, so I moved on.

I did find a new flavor of Premier Protein that I have never seen before. I always scan items that are unique or say “new”, “new flavor”, etc., as there is a good chance it makes money on Amazon. If it’s new to me, it’s likely new to someone else and they may pay up for it!

This one only makes $1 profit, so I left it behind. But it may be one to keep an eye on since it’s a new flavor and there are only a few sellers on the listing.

Does anyone else’s Walmart have “Manager Specials”? These protein bars were on sale as part of the Managers Special and I had never seen this before!

Some of the Tone it Up protein cookies were profitable, but I ended up leaving them behind because the brand was on the listing. I tend to avoid listings when the brand is also selling it because there is a higher risk of an IP complaint. There were other sellers on this listing, so it probably would have been fine. I just didn’t want to deal with the extra headache of a possible IP complaint!

Side Note: The struggle has been real lately in toys. It seems like every profitable toy I find, Amazon is also on the listing! I think I’m just coming off of that “Q4 high” and my expectations for toys are unrealistic for this time of year.

Is anyone else struggling with toys or just me?

Here are some items I ended up picking up after spending about an hour in Walmart. Some of these are replens I’ve been sourcing for a while and others are thanks to the BOLO group!


Next Stop: Ollie’s!!!

I had no idea there was an Ollie’s where we were travelling! We were pulling into the parking lot of our hotel, and it was literally right across the street. I was so excited!

I’ve heard of Ollie’s through the BOLO group and watching other sellers’ sourcing videos, so I had to see what the hype was all about. To be honest, sourcing in a new store is so overwhelming for me, so I didn’t do that great. But I’m definitely eager to go back and try again.

I started at the front of the store and scanned some books. I’ve never really sourced books before, so I didn’t really know where to start. I focused primarily Disney, Lego, etc. But didn’t find anything except this Bitcoin book that I almost bought for my husband!

Next, I checked out the health and beauty section. And, unfortunately, I left this section empty handed as well!

For being a “bargain/discount” store, I wasn’t too impressed with the prices and felt like they were comparable to other retail stores, like Target or Walmart. Several items were either expired or not in a sellable condition, so I ended up leaving them behind.

Here are some items that I found in the health and beauty section:

Because I was limited on time, I didn’t get to scan a lot of the grocery section. In the areas that I did get to scan, I didn’t find anything. The struggle is real in finding items that aren’t expired or about to expire in Ollie’s! It’s like a full-on treasure hunt in there.

I hit up the toys at the very last minute and ended up finding one! I was convinced that I wasn’t going to leave this store empty handed.

I did find another profitable toy and, of course, they had about 20 of them on the shelf! But I’m gated in Beyblade so I can’t sell it. Here it is if you are ungated and have an Ollie’s in your area – it makes great profit!

I ended purchasing 7 items from Ollies – 1 toy and 6 laundry detergents. I will be selling the laundry detergent in a bundle of 2, which means I will have a total of 4 units to send FBA.

Here are the items that I ended up buying on my sourcing trip to Ollies:

Overall, I wasn’t too impressed with Ollie’s. But I’m definitely interested in going back when I have more time to source!


Overview

The harsh reality of being an Amazon seller means that prices will fluctuate… a lot. At the time of writing this post (about 1 week after the sourcing trip), some of the prices dropped resulting in a change in my expected profit. However, I’m confident in my purchases and plan to wait it out until the prices go back up. Oh, the joys of Amazon!

Time Spent Sourcing: 2 Hours

Number of Items Found: 20

Cost of Goods Purchased: $198.63

Expected Profit: 93.08

ROI: 47% (Yikes!)

Money vs Time: $46.54/hr

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