Angie has turned electronic waste into opportunity. What would likely end up in landfills, her business gives a second life.
Her growing business is helping not only her own family, but she's also employing over a dozen workers and advocating for small business owners like her.
7 Questions with Angie Cardona-Nelson of eWaste Direct
Shop from Angie at her eBay Store, Angie's GreenGo Surplus.
What's your process for sourcing merchandise?
As an electronic recycling company, we acquire our equipment through school districts, government agencies, and companies that are retiring their equipment. We do five to seven pickups a day, then we bring all of the material to our warehouse. We have to sort through all of that every single day and see what has value to it, which has a whole research process to it.
For us, it's not "the more volume the better." It'sabout the quality of the items. We have about 1,500 items on any given day. For us, that's a good number, because they're high-value items with good profit. We see some sellers that have 20,000 items, and that's fantastic for them. It works different for everyone. For some people, more volume might be better, but for us it's less volume but more profit because of the process that we have for our company.
What does a typical day look like for you?
There is nothing typical about being an eBay seller!
I wake up quite early and work all day. First thing I do in the morning is check all my eBay messages to see the fun-which is what sold overnight.
Then, I see if there are any returns I have to take care of. Then there are usually a lot of questions, so I try to get to those as fast as I can, early in the morning.
We always do shipping in the morning, first thing.
Toward noon and in the afternoon we're going through our inventory, separating, doing research, and taking pictures and listing.
Angie emphasizes the importance of research in determining the value of electronic components.
Where do you see your business in 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?
What motivates us is to create jobs and empower our employees to be successful. We want to keep expanding.
In the next five years, I see ourselves with more trucks and moreemployees.
We want to keep using and maximizing the tools that eBay keeps providing us, because eBay is always evolving with the trends of technology and retail. And that's huge for us to be able to succeed as a company.
What's one thing you would tell yourself when you first started your business?
Oh my gosh, research the shipping costs!
I used to sell some things, and I was so excited that they sold for $15, but I paid $12 bucks for shipping.
So definitely my advice for my younger me is, "Please check how much it's going to cost you to ship."
What's your top productivity hack?
eBay as a hobby is fantastic. You can do it whenever you have time and follow your schedule. But if you want to make a business out of it, you have to treat it as a business and you need a structure.
For me to stay productive, I have to have a to-do list and keep checking it. Once I check that to-do list, I feel productive. When I don't have a to-do list, I feel like what did I do all day? All I did was like random things all day and I can't see what I accomplished.
What eBay tool do you find most useful? Why?
The tool I find most useful is Terapeak, because based on the research that I find there, I will know if that item is worth selling. It will also show me what others are charging for shipping, and shipping can make you or break you. So I think Terapeak is definitely my best tool.
What does community mean to you and your business?
Community is a group of people who are willing to help each other and are always looking after each other.
And eBay has absolutely the best seller community. They are always willing to help. They're always willing to give tips and tricks. They will share anything, and they don't see it as a threat.
I've been selling on eBay for 13 years, but there's still a lot I don't know. There are always questions that come up. I go to the eBay Community and ask people, and they're always willing to help. Being part of the seller community has helped us be more successful and make less mistakes. Other people have made mistakes before us, so why should we do it again?
That's what makes eBay eBay. We all want to share our experience as sellers, and that's what makes it so special.
Check back for more seller stories and tips throughout the year on our Announcements board, the eBay for Business Podcast, and our eBay for Business Facebookand YouTube.
This interview has been edited for concision and clarity.
eBay Inc. published this content on 15 October 2021 and is solely responsible for the information contained therein. Distributed by Public, unedited and unaltered, on 15 October 2021 19:11:04 UTC.