When I was young, I invested $2500 with a fast-talking salesman who convinced me I could have a great income in just weeks.
He told me he had racks of earrings in hair salons, gift shops, etc. He said he had 110 just in the Grand Rapids area, and they averaged 13 pairs sold per week. He just ran the route once a week to collect his money.
I did the math, as he knew I would. 110 racks times 13 pairs at $5 per pair was $7150 weekly in sales. I knew nothing about earrings, but I started to get interested. I bought 10 racks and 1100 pairs of earrings to fill them. I’d pay him $1.75/pair. Since they sell for $5.00, and the store owner keeps $1.50, I’d have a profit of $1.75 times 13 pair times 10 racks.
$227.50 per week, I figured, and then I could expand from there. How To Lose Money Selling Earrings
I was dissappointed to find that retailers weren’t lining up to have earrings in their stores, despite not having to pay anything up front. After approaching 130 places in my small town, I got five racks placed. They averaged 3 to 4 pairs sold per week.
I tried, and it may have worked for the right person. I had no experience though, and after running out of places to place the racks, I gave up. For some reason the salesman didn’t want to buy back the earrings as he promised he would. With persistence, I did get my money back eventually.
The Truth About Vending Routes
I’ve since talked to many people with vending routes. If you can make $25 gross profit per site per week with pop machines or anything else, AND you can have 100 sites within an hour of home, you really can work a few days a week to make $8,000 per month.
It is a lot of work to get started, however, whatever a salesman may tell you. If it were easy, the salesman might be running his own route, instead of selling you $6,000 worth of gumball dispensers.
Obviously vending routes work. The people I talked to were doing well. I’m sure it was possible to make good money with those earrings even. I was certainly doing many things wrong, but how do you do it? What should you sell? How do you establish a route?
You don’t do it the way I did. I didn’t even check other suppliers until later, when I found that I could get the same earrings for 50 cents instead of $1.75. With no experience, I wasn’t even willing to spend a few dollars to pay for the knowledge of others. A good book on vending routes might have been all I needed.
A mentor would help even more. If you won’t be competing in the area, someone might let you follow him around as he services his route. Vending routes are still a great opportunity – if you avoid my mistakes.
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