Becoming a Toughbook reseller?

Discussion in 'Panasonic' started by User32, May 26, 2018.

  1. User32

    User32 Notebook Consultant

    Reputations:
    20
    Messages:
    275
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    41
    I have no idea what i'm doing so bear with me:

    Has anyone on NBR ever thought of becoming a Toughbook reseller? I was thinking about it the other day since I really, really like these kind of computers and there are next to no companies selling parts to end users/consumers, which for me is quite a bit of a hassle. (rebuilding my G1 was quite a experience I must say, buying parts from eBay and a reseller in Germany)
     
  2. toughasnails

    toughasnails Toughbook Moderator Moderator

    Reputations:
    2,034
    Messages:
    5,917
    Likes Received:
    991
    Trophy Points:
    281
    Well it's not easy for sure. To make any money at all you need to sell a fare amount a month. Why you ask.
    (1) eBay charges you $20.00 to $25.00 for your eBay store plus a % to list it then a % when you sell it.
    (2) shipping cost for a small seller is very high. I was selling port covers that cost $5.50 to buy and to ship them cost $4.25 USPS and $1.04 eBay fees . Total cost $10.79 and I was selling them for $11.99. I was loosing money after paying my monthly eBay fees. So I closed my store. You can sell without having a eBay store but the fees are very hight. The USPS shipping cost are a killer to. I was shipping port covers for $1.84 but 2 years ago they upped there rates to $4.25.
     
  3. User32

    User32 Notebook Consultant

    Reputations:
    20
    Messages:
    275
    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    41
    Not planing on using eBay any time soon, I try to stick to the local classified sites and maybe expand into making a business somewhere down the line.
     
  4. toughasnails

    toughasnails Toughbook Moderator Moderator

    Reputations:
    2,034
    Messages:
    5,917
    Likes Received:
    991
    Trophy Points:
    281
    I will send you a PM after I get out of work tonight. A few money making tips :)
     
  5. KLF

    KLF NBR Super Modernator Super Moderator

    Reputations:
    2,662
    Messages:
    2,710
    Likes Received:
    731
    Trophy Points:
    131
    Just make a nice listing on a website of everything that you have, with prices and part numbers. Preferrably with photos too.
    Then make sure your site is indexed by google and other search engines.
    Figure out how to sell stuff by mail (small envelopes etc that don't cost too much, tracking only on expensive parts)

    The whole world is your customer now.
     
    User32, Shawn and toughasnails like this.
  6. Toughbook

    Toughbook Drop and Give Me 20!

    Reputations:
    1,252
    Messages:
    7,319
    Likes Received:
    333
    Trophy Points:
    251
    What you really need is to become a Certified Microsoft Refurbisher. That gets an updated COA on the bottom of your laptop. Lots of rules and regs. At least one member I know here has done that and it sounded like a major headache as he was only part-timing it.

    If you plan on a career change and doing this full time... I might consider it. But you are competing against a HUGE market of guys that will do everything shoddier and cheaper and you will have to cut profits to match.

    I started doing custom Toughbooks back in late 2006. It used to be me and one other guy on eBay who did what we did. Then this forum grew to the place to go to get info as it attracted top talent. After we spent a few years posting what we do and how we do it... Suddenly there were Toughbook Professionals selling A LOT of Toughbooks. There are only a handful of people out there who know what they are doing with Toughbooks and they are all members of this forum. The rest own spray paint cans and "knobby protectors"... lol
     
    toughasnails and Shawn like this.
  7. EdFromBJCS

    EdFromBJCS Notebook Geek

    Reputations:
    48
    Messages:
    81
    Likes Received:
    32
    Trophy Points:
    26
    Well, I wouldn't say we all do everything shoddier and cheaper. I can think of at least one exception to that. ;)

    But otherwise, yes, you will have to compete on price, but a lot of your costs will be in marketing. From an SEO perspective, I can tell you that pretty much every valuable keyphrase is extremely competitive, and paid search is just bananas. Keyword difficulty is typically rated on a 0 - 1 scale, where for example 0.25 would be somewhat competitive and 0.75 would be very competitive. Most keywords associated with Toughbooks are at or approaching 1. The most competitive keywords for paid search typically cost between $5 and $10 per click. I know of at least one company in this niche that (based on analytics estimates) spends in the neighborhood of $10k/month in pay-per-click advertising alone. As far as product prices, for us, we are able to keep prices relatively low because we are at a point where we can buy inventory at a high volume, which brings the cost per unit down. It took us about 20 years to get to this point.

    If you go the eBay/Amazon Marketplace route, you'll have to keep your prices super low. If you start a website, you'll have a ton of other expenses.

    If you want to sell new Toughbooks, per Panasonic's policy, you will not be allowed to sell refurbished Toughbooks or do repairs (if anyone was wondering why we don't sell new, that's your answer). Several of the sellers in our space ignore that rule and sell both new and used, though Panasonic doesn't seem to enforce their policy. That said, you do have to agree to that policy to become a Panasonic partner, so if you want be above board, you can't sell both new and refurbished. (The exceptions to this are Mooring Tech, Rugged Depot and Telrepco who are allowed to sell factory refurbished Toughbooks.)

    I don't want to discourage you (well, I kind of do because I REALLY don't want more competition), but I thought maybe I could give you a little perspective on what you'd be getting into. There's a lot more to it than just what I've mentioned here, but that's a starting point.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2018
  8. Toughbook

    Toughbook Drop and Give Me 20!

    Reputations:
    1,252
    Messages:
    7,319
    Likes Received:
    333
    Trophy Points:
    251
    Ed... I wasn't referring to you with the "Shoddy" remarks. You guys are well known and established. I was speaking more in terms of the rattle can boys on eBay...

    And thanks for posting that info... Pretty in-depth stuff!
     
    EdFromBJCS and toughasnails like this.
  9. EdFromBJCS

    EdFromBJCS Notebook Geek

    Reputations:
    48
    Messages:
    81
    Likes Received:
    32
    Trophy Points:
    26
    No worries, Rick. I kind of assumed you didn't mean us, but I figured someone else reading might lump Bob Johnson's Computer Stuff into the rattle can category so I wanted to chime in. Sorry if I came across as defensive.

    There's a lot more to it than just what I included, so if anyone has any questions, I'll do my best to help so long as it doesn't involve trade secrets, marketing strategies or advice on how best to compete against my employer :)
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2018
    Toughbook likes this.
  10. safn1949

    safn1949 I'm sure I'm on the wrong planet

    Reputations:
    135
    Messages:
    1,066
    Likes Received:
    288
    Trophy Points:
    101
    Microsoft registered refurbisher, the only Windows you can get is Windows 10. October 2016 they stopped selling other versions of Windows and I had 90 days to use the refurbisher copies I had.

    The next day they locked me out of the refurbisher website and I was stuck with about 8 copies I couldn't activate that I had already paid for. Swell guys.

    To sell on eBay.....my thing was super low hour Toughbooks, I searched eBay constantly to find them, I bought parts from Heartland that I knew I would need by the dozen to defer the cost of shipping. Same with caddies and battery's.

    I started with spindle drives but moved to SSD's. I'm a really good salesman and my ads showed that. I bought junkers and stripped them for parts and boy did I have parts.

    I bought power adapters 30 at a time from a seller to save shipping, they were the IBM AC/DC adapters NIB. On high dollar units they got a factory adapter.

    I sold tons of zero hour units I found on eBay and got top dollar for them,several of the guys here shared years of experience and knowledge with me so I could succeed. $127,000 of sales in 2 years out of my camper. I haven't had a job in 4 years. :D
     
Loading...

Share This Page