MF 203 : Getting started on Poshmark
Where have you been all my life? Oh right, in the app store.
In this episode, I talk about getting started on Poshmark, including how easy it is to set up a store, create listings, and spotlight a particular feature that gave it a huge advantage over other platforms we tried. More at bemovingforward.com.
Part I: New Beginnings
I’m officeless right now. For the past year and a half, I’ve been renting a shared office space. It was ideal: 15 minutes from where I live, ample parking, beautifully designed and the perfect environment for getting my work done. It’s funny but during my corporate days, I was used to splitting my time between working onsite with clients and working at home, rarely going into an actual office. Once I became an entrepreneur, I decided in 2017 to share an office with a b-school buddy of mine and it was one of the best decisions I made.
Now, in 2019, I’m in an office limbo so to speak as my friend and I are scouting new places to rent. In the meantime, I’ve gone back to working out of my home, where I have a dedicated office room, the library, and Panera, which has the best Hazelnut coffee in my opinion.
Where do you work? Are you home-based? Working out of an office or a shared work space or somewhere in between? Hit me up on social and let me know.
Part 2: Poshmark! Where have you been all this time?
Last week, I talked about the two-year journey (struggle) with helping my Dad take his retail business online, including pain points we experienced trying to get started on Amazon and Shopify. Towards the end of the segment, I revealed that I stumbled onto an app called Poshmark.
After reading a few articles, I downloaded the app. This was May 2018 and I was pulling my hair out, trying to work out a coding issue on Shopify. I was equal parts frustrated and desperate. I figured we had nothing to lose in trying out the app.
The first thing I discovered about Poshmark is that there are no upfront costs or fees. Unlike Amazon pro or Shopify, all of the costs are taken out of sales. For small ticket, low priced items, Poshmark takes a flat fee. For items above a certain amount, Poshmark charges 20%. If that seems high, keep in mind that eBay and Amazon also charge high commissions in addition to subscription fees for their pro plans. While Shopify’s post-sales fees are lower, we had to pay a monthly subscription fee, regardless of sales.
I downloaded the app and setup was a breeze. It was the first ecommerce platform that I had come across that was truly “out of the box.”
Set up (estimated time 10 minutes):
Download the app
Set up your store:
Give it a name and handle.
Fill in some basic info.
Upload a header and bio photo.
After setting up our account, I listed our first items (estimated time 2-5 minutes per item).
Snap photos of your item from your phone (you can also upload pre-existing ones): Poshmark allows 7 photos per item.
Fill in the blanks on your item:
Title: short description with basic info.
Description: longer, expanded with greater detail.
Use the menus to designate classification, type, size, condition, color, etc.
Set your price: Poshmark will show you a preview of how much you will make after fees.
Publish the item.
Within about 30 minutes, we had a live store plus 5-6 items for sale. Upon first impression, this seemed to be the ideal solution we were missing out on during the two years that we struggled with these other platforms (I later found out that Poshmark has been around for several years – slap forehead).
We started getting followers to our store within the first hour. Over the next several weeks, once a week, I worked with my Dad to list more items.
Then, crickets. Weeks, then months passed. It wasn’t until August, that we had our very first sale on the app. Next week, I’ll talk about what I did wrong with Poshmark in the beginning. Hint: it had nothing to do with mechanics or tech. Rather, it was a mindset problem.
Part 3: What I’m reading / read
Star Wars: Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn (***). Overall a fun book with some interesting ideas about where the Star Wars saga could have gone after Return of the Jedi. I liked some of the plot and character arcs but some of it felt like “fan fiction.” Notably, it was interesting to see Luke experience uncertainty and insecurity about carrying on the Jedi legacy as a teacher, similar to what is portrayed in the new Disney films.
Star Wars: Dark Force Rising by Timothy Zahn: the second book in the Zahn trilogy, taking place after Return of the Jedi and picking up right after the first book. I just started it this week.
Dracula by Bram Stoker: the classic novel that spawned dozens of film incarnations. I’m about 1/5 of the way thru and what surprises me most is how different the novel is from any of the films I’ve ever seen. The book is largely told thru letters from its characters and is a slow burn with a rich narrative language that establishes a creepy atmosphere and takes it time to unfold the plot.
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