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Building an online store, how do you want the items

Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
Basically, I found an excellent place to buy bulk Legos and I have decided to build an online store aswell as sell on eBay and eventually Amazon. 

I have cheap sorting people available and the ability financially to buy 1000 lbs at a time of unsorted Legos. 

Everything is unknown as far as sets/color/age

I plan to do the basic stuff:

1) sort for lego
2) clean and sanitize 
3) sort by block type/color

My question is whether a true builder would want to be able to buy individual blocks (literally pricing per block) or if 5-10-20 at a time is sufficient? 

And for organizing purposes on the site I would worry that if everything was available it would get very lost. 

Comments

  • SprinkleOtterSprinkleOtter Member Posts: 2,654
    You haven't actually even googled this type of thing, have you...
    bricknationpharmjodoldtodd33
  • oldtodd33oldtodd33 Denver 4800 miles to BillundMember Posts: 2,322
    edited January 30
    You've never heard of Bricklink or Brick Owl have you? There are thousands of people who do this every day all over the world.
    pharmjodSprinkleOtter
  • bricknationbricknation Member Posts: 648
    From the way you describe the idea it seems that you didn’t do any homework. If you think about selling individual parts without knowing your target market then you’re in for a surprise. There’s very little room for error in that business model. 
    pharmjodSprinkleOtter
  • pharmjodpharmjod 1,170 miles to Wall Drug, USAMember Posts: 2,783
    This is awesome. Especially the part about planning on selling on Amazon later... 
    SprinkleOtter
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,024
    For many common parts, 50 or 100 at a time would be fine if you want to shift them.

    Although take care when sorting used lego. If your staff are cheap, chances are they will not be that good. Don't sell junk. Don't sell fakes. Either of those and your reputation will be ruined before you have begun.
  • LegolisLegolis Leeds, UKMember Posts: 197
    I've just bought my first lot of used Lego and thought I got a pretty good deal. A few days into sorting it, washing and attempting to dry it in our lovely English January weather (probably not an issue in Texas) and I'm baffled at how anyone could make money off this. It's incredibly time consuming. I think my lowest point was picking out a used plaster. I've been using hotter water since then. *shudders*
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,024
    Legolis said:
    I've just bought my first lot of used Lego and thought I got a pretty good deal. A few days into sorting it, washing and attempting to dry it in our lovely English January weather (probably not an issue in Texas) and I'm baffled at how anyone could make money off this. It's incredibly time consuming. I think my lowest point was picking out a used plaster. I've been using hotter water since then. *shudders*
    Wait for the lot that was stored in a garage where a cat sleeps.
    RonyarmadforLEGOgmonkey76Baby_Yoda
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 10,993
    Legolis said:
    I've just bought my first lot of used Lego and thought I got a pretty good deal. A few days into sorting it, washing and attempting to dry it in our lovely English January weather (probably not an issue in Texas) and I'm baffled at how anyone could make money off this. It's incredibly time consuming. I think my lowest point was picking out a used plaster. I've been using hotter water since then. *shudders*
    It is going to be just as cold, if not colder than Antarctica here today. 
    SprinkleOttermadforLEGOgmonkey76Baby_Yoda
  • 560Heliport560Heliport Twin Cities, MN, USAMember Posts: 590
    Well, sure; it's summer in Antarctica!
    SprinkleOtter
  • Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
    You haven't actually even googled this type of thing, have you...
    oldtodd33 said:
    You've never heard of Bricklink or Brick Owl have you? There are thousands of people who do this every day all over the world.
    From the way you describe the idea it seems that you didn’t do any homework. If you think about selling individual parts without knowing your target market then you’re in for a surprise. There’s very little room for error in that business model. 
    pharmjod said:
    This is awesome. Especially the part about planning on selling on Amazon later... 
    LOL DAMN, okay i over simplefied my explanation of the process. 

    I have researched that's what brought me to this forum. 

    I originally was just going to sell by the pound unsorted and call it a day. 

    But I love building and think that I would like to sort just to see what's there although considering there are 30k+ 
    Individual block types and 100s of colors my bins might be a bit numerous. 

    I wanted input on wheather you builders really needed a part by part break down for these 1% of rare items. Not like I'm going to get 100 purple jangos. 

    I figure I would make more of the basics than rare over time. 

    I know the other 1000 sites exist but you only mentioned 2 so there is obviously something that makes them best

    So again what would you want see available other than obviously every rare collectible mini figure. 

    Or is what you have exactly what you want? 

    Also selling legos on amazon is possible after you lift restrictions and i ment the random full sets that come with bulk sale would be sold there. I don't think they will ever become eBay in the since of individual blocks being able to be sold. 

  • pacific4931pacific4931 Member Posts: 3
    I would cut Amazon out of your business plan if you're planning on selling sets that you acquire with the lots that you buy.  You won't be able to get past the Lego brand gate.
  • Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
    Eitherway eBay would be my bread and butter to start and them hopefully my site
  • vwong19vwong19 San DiegoMember Posts: 1,128
    I think builders and collectors want to know exactly (type, color, and condition) what they are buying. The two sites that have been mentioned, Bricklink and Brickowl, are hubs that link to 1000s of independent stores that strive to accomplish what you are setting out to do. Amazon and eBay do not have the framework to be specific enough for unique parts, but are good for complete sets.
  • migrationmigration StatesideMember Posts: 2
    edited January 30
    Ummm, please tell us your punking us...
    SprinkleOtter
  • Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
    I already sell on ebay/amazon/craigslist/letgo/fb marketplace/shopify/local flea markets. selling is not the issue. 

    i was just seeing if i could provide a niche instead of trying to be a go too.

    i was even thinking about keeping huge inventory and renting the primary pieces for building events and make my sales from minifigures/and 1%.

    im really just trying to bring something to the community that an old veteran might be excited about just for functionality. i already see a lot of lack of innovation in the sorting category.

    I am new to this (legos from a collector point of view) but not new to business. They ate me alive on the trucking forums too because of my pricing schedule and benefits on day one but now i have 10 trucks and my own dispatch service even though i am a nurse without a cdl.
  • Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
    im super excited to build a nonhuman sorter because i have a cnc/laser/and 3d printer. although i have minimal experience in programing so we will have to see how far i can get with analog automated sorting. 
  • PaperballparkPaperballpark UKMember Posts: 3,353
    Automated sorting is the holy grail of Lego collectors and sellers, and many have tried before. The fact that no-one has succeeded should give you pause for thought.
    SprinkleOtterMynatt
  • Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
    my goal would be primary blocks and color. just like in minecraft there are some items not worth sorting (because of rarity of use) and so you just look thru the MISC chest.
  • LegolisLegolis Leeds, UKMember Posts: 197
    CCC said:
    Wait for the lot that was stored in a garage where a cat sleeps.
    Thanks for that nightmare fuel.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,024
    my goal would be primary blocks and color. just like in minecraft there are some items not worth sorting (because of rarity of use) and so you just look thru the MISC chest.
    It is the rare use parts that you do want to sort - they are often the valuable ones. You can sort all your 2x2 and 2x4 bricks in red, blue, green and yellow or keep them mixed. Their value is pretty much the same whether sorted or mixed up.
    Pitfall69
  • Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
    CCC said:
    my goal would be primary blocks and color. just like in minecraft there are some items not worth sorting (because of rarity of use) and so you just look thru the MISC chest.
    It is the rare use parts that you do want to sort - they are often the valuable ones. You can sort all your 2x2 and 2x4 bricks in red, blue, green and yellow or keep them mixed. Their value is pretty much the same whether sorted or mixed up.
    im aware of this but in this case i was talking about automation. i want to automate the bulk and then have humans pull from the misc chest and place.

    the truly unique piece would be basically impossible to sort without a human presence

    I dont mind leaving meat on the bone for re sellers or collectors and the learning curve will get you every time. I planned to bypass that by hiring a guru or just selling at auction and letting experts duke it out
  • nexandernexander Glasgow Member Posts: 836
    The big issue with automated sorted has been mentioned above. If you do manage to auto sort it how do you know if there is any megablocks/ fake bricks in there and how do you check condition? 

    Most of us can spot a dodgy brick in a big pile by picking up subtleties in the colour/shape of the brick and even by touch.  Same for bite marks/wear etc.  Bar some very fancy programming and scanning this requires human involvement.  

    Be careful that any gaps you may see in the market aren't due to nobody else seeing them, but due to nobody wanting to put in the amount of effort compared to the return.
    Astrobricksdmcc0
  • Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
    watched them all and about 10 others

  • Branden137Branden137 Mcallen, TexasMember Posts: 10
    this middle one was the most impressive one

  • migrationmigration StatesideMember Posts: 2
    Oh, you were serious. In that case I might suggest learning to drive before trying to reinvent the wheel.Theres a reason most sellers stick with established marketplaces as opposed to creating their own selling platform. I'm still laughing at the thought of bulk on Amazon. Thanks, I needed that.
    SprinkleOtter
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