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Author: Subject: Machine Mart v ebay
myke pocock

posted on 9/3/20 at 08:40 PM Reply With Quote
Machine Mart v ebay

Needed a brake piston rewind tool as I am rebuilding the callipesr front and back on my MX5. ebay set at 14:71 sounded good as I wont be using it much after. Just received the Machine Mart catalogue through the post. Identical set,....................54:00!!!!! A no brainer. And they sometimes wonder why the high street is closing down these days.

[Edited on 9/3/20 by myke pocock]

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steve m

posted on 9/3/20 at 09:10 PM Reply With Quote
Ebay has always been good to me, and as you say, Retailers just milk the vulnerable and weak

I made my own piston windback bar, its incredibly easy, !





Thats was probably spelt wrong, or had some grammer, that the "grammer police have to have a moan at




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Barksavon

posted on 9/3/20 at 10:11 PM Reply With Quote
I make wrought iron products, log baskets, plant holders, stuff like that. I got a few bits into a local country park gift shop, they put 100% mark up on everything they had from me. Another local shop, bit designer interiors type, had a log basket off me, they put 170% on it.
I've stopped trying to get stuff into shops cos they just want to charge too much. God knows how much such as garden centres are paying their suppliers, a pittance i would guess...probably why a lot of it is crap from China (same as the viruses they send us!!!!)

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MikeR

posted on 9/3/20 at 10:27 PM Reply With Quote
The other side of this is the shops have a lot of costs that eBay doesn't.

(I prefer Amazon for some reason)

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Barksavon

posted on 9/3/20 at 10:32 PM Reply With Quote
Agreed....but I don't think to the extent that they need to sell goods for more than 3 times what they pay for them.
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rf900rush

posted on 9/3/20 at 10:52 PM Reply With Quote
I think some shops are victims of rent and rates.

My daughters first school had a little fruit and veg shop open up, which was great for the kids coming home.
A Plum , apple or carrot VS sweats . Great Idea.
Lasted 6 months. Fairly clear, no chance of covering the costs.

But have to agree, I use high street ripoffs as little as possible.

And don't get me started on shopping centers. My town has a new traffic light setup for the shopping center!
Not bothered about the patients in ambulances trying to get to the near by hospital. Saw 2 completely stuck in jams while the shoppers
took home the over priced goodies.

Rant Over.

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russbost

posted on 10/3/20 at 11:03 AM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Barksavon
Agreed....but I don't think to the extent that they need to sell goods for more than 3 times what they pay for them.


I don't think you can have any concept of what it costs to run a physical business (unless you've run one) as opposed to an online one.

Just for starters you have several thousand pounds (possibly per month depending on size of premises) of rent/rates, there'll be signage, additional lighting, heating (frequently in open draughty spaces) & phone bills, decorating, carpets, display items/cabinets, display lighting, insurance will be sky high (running an online business from home you can probably get away with just public liability), electrical inspections/regs, there is always yet another bill - if you have staff, you need to provide staff facilities & cover NI (extortionate) & holiday pay, & staff break/damage/lose things; online you may well be able to subcontract etc etc etc - the 2 are chalk & cheese which is why the high st. is dying (out of town shopping centres add to those issues) & online businesses are flourishing

When I was running a garage business & this is 20 plus years ago, we needed to have around 3k of billable hours per week before we actually earned anything in terms of profit, that did cover the 2 partners basic salaries, but I am talking very basic!, IIRC we were charging around 30 per hour, so that was 100 hours before we earned anything worth talking about, & believe me there were some weeks particularly in recession time, when we were lucky to see half that, which meant you had to cover that with previous or forthcoming weeks & Dec/Jan were always quiet. About the only thing that actually made the business profitable was having an MoT facility!





Furore Formula Car - the only two seater modern Formula Car lookalike. I no longer run Furore Products or Furore Cars Ltd, but would still highly recommend them for Acewell dashes, projector headlights, dominator headlights, indicators, mirrors etc, best prices in the UK! Take a look at http://www.furoreproducts.co.uk/ or find more parts on Ebay, user names furoreltd & furoreproducts, discounts available for LCB users.
Don't forget Stainless Steel Braided brake hoses, made to your exact requirements in any of around 16 colours. http://shop.ebay.co.uk/furoreproducts/m.html?_dmd=1&_ipg=50&_sop=12&_rdc=1

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Barksavon

posted on 10/3/20 at 01:04 PM Reply With Quote
To be honest you're right I have no concept of what it costs to run a High St business. From my very limited experience i can imagine it's very hard. I pay 260 a month to rent a small workshop about 25 square metres, then there's insurance and electricity on top i also do an artisan market which costs 50 per stall and I need to have public liability insurance as well....as you rightly say it seems to be one cost after another and I dare say to run a shop is 10 times worse. I have looked at other premises to rent but the costs are out of my league, I couldn't possibly make ends meet....I'm barely doing that now.
Perhaps government or local councils should give better incentives to small businesses

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russbost

posted on 10/3/20 at 01:35 PM Reply With Quote
"Perhaps government or local councils should give better incentives to small businesses" - they certainly should, but with the exception possibly of a few "redevelopment areas" nothing could be further from the truth, the Government's idea of helping small business is to tell you that you don't get sick pay & you don't get to sign on until you've been out of business for 6 weeks!

I think the sort of markups mentioned above are quite normal, even in an online business if you're selling thro' Ebay or similar, now they have included (effectively) P & P within the selling price you need around a 50% markup to make it worthwhile selling anything under 50, unless you are going to sell an absolute shed load of something & then of course you get into cashflow, supply, storage, lead times etc etc

You also have to remember that on Ebay unless you have a unique product to sell another retailer is going to undercut you & then another undercuts them etc etc until you're all selling for nothing & some people obviously have absolutely no business sense whatsoever, my daughter briefly sold wild bird seed on Ebay, it didn't make much from sales, but sold consistently for a while, then some idiot started selling 1kg for 1.45 inc P & P!!! Even using the cheapest courier service & selling 1000's of items I don't believe there's anyone in the UK will deliver a 1kg package for less than about 2, so take the Ebay & Paypal costs out & they are probably selling for loss of at least 1 per item, maybe nearer 2 if they are posting with the Royal Mail - it's positively mindless!





Furore Formula Car - the only two seater modern Formula Car lookalike. I no longer run Furore Products or Furore Cars Ltd, but would still highly recommend them for Acewell dashes, projector headlights, dominator headlights, indicators, mirrors etc, best prices in the UK! Take a look at http://www.furoreproducts.co.uk/ or find more parts on Ebay, user names furoreltd & furoreproducts, discounts available for LCB users.
Don't forget Stainless Steel Braided brake hoses, made to your exact requirements in any of around 16 colours. http://shop.ebay.co.uk/furoreproducts/m.html?_dmd=1&_ipg=50&_sop=12&_rdc=1

NOTE:This user is registered as a LocostBuilders trader and may offer commercial services to other users
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coyoteboy

posted on 13/3/20 at 01:06 PM Reply With Quote
I know of no physical businesses working with margins of over 30%, and I know a few from the inside - ranging from bike shops to CNC shops. I've known a few who opened an online presence which helped cover the high-street presence, but ultimately the physical presence costs too much to uphold against the online.

You can buy "identical" products from China once they've been imported and tested/marketed by others, and flog them on ebay for a short period trying to undercut the physical business, until that business can't cope with the lack of footfall and closes down.

If you want physical places to see, test and ask for help, you need to support them, not go to the cheapest person. I often choose to pay more for an identical product from a local shop with a person who can discuss it with me, but I'm not tied to it - if I see a significant difference I'll buy online, or if it's a product I don't need to physically see or get advice on, I'll buy it online.

Ultimately, the most sustainable businesses I've seen are small 3-5 person places who have a small physical presence and an online one, who use the (not quite high street) presence for those who want it but primarily use it as storage for the online.

The real problem, and I find myself guilty at times, is just not appreciating the costs involved. I bought an engine crane from SGS. I saw the price, I saw the price elsewhere, I hunted about looking for cheaper and then I realised - sure it's just 50's worth of steel and hydraulics, but it took design time, it took people to make it, it required testing, and it was made by a company that needs to make profit to be sustainable. If you race to the bottom of the tank, you get crap and end up losing your choice when companies go bust.


Yet last night I bought something off Ebay that I could have bought in a shop, if I'd been willing to drive 10 miles and deal with human interaction.

[Edited on 13/3/20 by coyoteboy]





Report your local potholes, it actually works!

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jps

posted on 13/3/20 at 01:35 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by coyoteboy
If you want physical places to see, test and ask for help, you need to support them, not go to the cheapest person. I often choose to pay more for an identical product from a local shop with a person who can discuss it with me, but I'm not tied to it - if I see a significant difference I'll buy online, or if it's a product I don't need to physically see or get advice on, I'll buy it online.



Very much the approach I take. My wife is quite happy ordered 3x everything online then returning the vast majority. I hate it, so for some purchases I very much want to see the thing in person. I also want to support the people who are there, because if none of us do - one day they won't be.

Which is basically why I was happy to drive up to AB Performance and back twice (4 hours travel time) to get my Protech shocks via them - rather than just order via Protech themselves. The price would have basically been the same either way, but I wanted to see and hold the thing before I put 550 on my credit card...

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smart51

posted on 15/3/20 at 12:20 PM Reply With Quote
There was a guy on here a few years ago who was looking at buying a motor factors shop. Their accounts showed that they made 100% markup on what they sold. When looked into a bit deeper they found that rent, rates and utilities took up so much of that markup that there wasn't enough to pay the minimum wage for 1 person for the opening hours of the shop. They'd have to double their sales volume to make it work.

100% markup is not theft if you're running a shop. It's barely a living. Knowing that, I don't get upset at paying full price for the convenience of having something in stock that I can take home there and then. What I object to with Machine Mart is that you phone them and they have none in stock anywhere, they're all mail order delivered to the shop, at shop prices. I might as well get the thing mail order from somewhere cheap and have it delivered to home.

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Oddified

posted on 15/3/20 at 08:55 PM Reply With Quote
I use Machine Mart quite a bit, they usually have what i'm after in stock (Preston branch) and yes similar things can be found for a bit less as mentioned further up but sometimes it's nice to touchy/feely and chat to a human.

Ian

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starterman

posted on 16/3/20 at 07:41 AM Reply With Quote
Rememeber that when you are talking about markups etc you really are only talking about gross profit, it's net profit that's the crucial part.
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