How to Find, Buy, and Resell Sneakers as a Money-Making Side Hustle

If you’re a sneakerhead or love just sneaker culture, then you’re in the best position to a make it a lucrative side-hustle in this multi-billion dollar industry. Limited-edition sneakers are like any other collectible—once you find and hold on one-of-kind kicks, you’ll be able to resell them for a to a world of sneaker status-seekers and aficionados for handsome profit.

Getting started in the aftermarket world will take a lot of work and strategy. Here’s a simple beginners guide to ensure your success.

Before You Begin Your Resell Business

Know the basics of the sneakerhead business: buy low, sell high.  Major sneakers companies put out only a number of limited-edition styles on their shelves every year.  As a resell business owner, your profit motive is to ensure that you buy inventory for as low a price as possible and scope out the ideal conditions to sell at a premium, which may  mean reselling right away or holding out for a prettier payout down the line. Attending a sneakerhead conference like SneakerCon can give you some more insight into this world as a newbie.

Consider your business model.  To the untrained eye, the sneaker market can seem pretty straightforward, you buy a sneaker and you sell a sneaker, but there’s so much more planning and strategy that has to happen before you build your inventory. Here are a few business models for you to choose from:

  • The “flip” model where you only buy tried and true classics like Air Jordan I, Air Jordan II, or Air Jordan III and flip them for at least 3x the purchase price.
  • The “size “model where you corner the market on a hard-to-get sneaker size. (size 13 anyone?)
  • The “new to the market” model like Air Jordan Royalty 4 where the focus on new releases exclusivelyThe “regional” market model where you focus your selling efforts by country, province, or city. For example, Hong Kong’s sneaker culture is exploding. Last year alone, the retail sales of sneakers in the city reached HK$436.6 billion.

How to Acquire Your First Kicks for Resell

Once you have an idea of what sneakers you want to sell, the next step is to acquire your items. These strategies have been used top Jordan resellers.

Camp out.  Once you hear about the release of the sneakers you’re trying to purchase, you can pitch camp in front of the store so you can be one of the first on line once the store opens. If this aspect of sneaker culture doesn’t suit your taste, you can always pay someone to stand in line for you.

Stalk online.  Seasoned sneakerheads set up Twitter notifications so don’t miss out on when online sneaker retailers announce restocks. Retailers also leverage Twitter to provide lines to product pages during launch time.

Buy a bot. If you’re serious about copping your sneakers of choice before the competition, you can invest a couple hundred dollars on a computer program that will scour websites and complete checkouts faster than any pair of human hands could.

How to Resell and Deliver Your Sneakers

Develop a multi-leveled acquisition strategy.Once you buy your sneakers, the next step to making profit on the resell is to get to the word out that you have the hottest items in stock.

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Leverage social media to sell without the middle man. Social media can be a powerful and profitable marketing tool for your resell promotion. Srijan Sharma, a full-time student and owner Trunxs Kicks primarily uses Instagram and Twitter to sell. After he posts a picture of his newest additions, he waits for his fans to make their bids. Payments are processed in real time via Venmo or PayPal. Once payment is received, direct sales businessmen like Sharma have to ship out the coveted finds.

Know the legitimate consignment shops. If you’re not interested in interacting with your customers directly, you leave it in the hands of someone else. Vetted sites like Grailed and Flight Club will help you sell your sneakers and take commissions of up to 20%.

And then there’s gold ‘ol Ebay, where you may have to do a little more legwork than consignment stores, but will have a lot of buyers to choose from, improving the chances of closing the deal with a sizeable profit margin.

Use an app. There are a number of reputable apps that can facilitate the resell of your sneakers with some great pictures and smart pricing. GOAT is considered to be one the safest way to buy and sell sneakers. They offer free verification services on all purchases to ensure your sneakers are authentic and as described. Slang is another app that has become a great resource for reselling used sneakers.

There is a ton of opportunity to make some serious change by reselling sneakers. Using these guidelines, you’ll be in the business sooner rather than later.

If you enjoyed learning about how to make some quick cash, then you’ll love learning how to make $1K every month with your blog while still working your 9-5.


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