3 Ways to Make Money from Extra Inventory

Depending on what type of retail business you run, you probably find yourself having old or outdated inventory from time to time that is just gathering dust in your storeroom. Since you made the investment and paid good money for that extra inventory, it is only logical that you would want to at least get something for all your troubles. Like most business owners, you would immediately think of having a sale just to clear the old product out. But what if the items simply won’t sell on your showroom floor? With money tied up ion old inventory, you can sometimes find yourself with your hands tied and unable to bring in certain lines of products that you think would sell well.

Obviously, preventing a buildup of excess inventory is the best way to circumvent this problem, and newer technologies such as Square Register will help you track your sales and avoid ordering too much of a given product before there’s ever a problem. There are Square inventory resources for nearly every type of business platform to make sure you order the right amount of product almost always to have enough on hand but not too many. Unfortunately, this is of little help to businesses, who already have a problem with extra inventory, which is why I’ve made this list of 3 ways to make money from extra inventory without having to pull out your hair.

  1. Liquidate Online

Probably the easiest and most profitable way to get back your money from extra inventory is to sell it online. Your physical shop can only expose your products to a small number of people, so putting your extra inventory up for sale on the internet will create a much broader audience and increase your chances of making a sale. There are tons of great sites out there that let you sell your goods for a small fee or commission such as eBay or Craigslist, so there are many opportunities to get your items seen. However, certain items such as wedding sparklers can’t be sold on some sites due to the user agreements, so make sure your products are eligible before you start making sales. You probably won’t be making much profit on these transactions, but if you can get your money back and push the old inventory out the door you will be better off than you are now.


  1. Create Promotions

Promotions are another great way to get rid of extra inventory without too much hassle. The idea is to create sales that focus on other popular items and tack on the unwanted overstock items as the freebie. Though you aren’t going to directly make money on your extra inventory items, you should see a spike in the sales of the items that you are using to drive the promotions and it will balance out in the end. You can’t really expect to make a lot of money this way, but it is more lucrative than just throwing the old inventory in the trash.

  1. Charitable Donations

When all else fails and you are stuck with items that nobody will pay for, not all is lost. Just because your regular customers don’t want to buy your extra inventory doesn’t mean it’s entirely useless and completely unwanted. There are many charitable organizations that you can donate your old inventory to and then use that donation as a tax write-off. This approach is a win for both sides because the charity is getting much needed items for free and you are able to offset some of your inventory expenses with a tax credit. Plus, you get the satisfaction of knowing that you are helping to make the world a better place which is worth way more than a box of old t-shirts that have been sitting in your stockroom since last spring.

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