Although the price of computing equipment has fallen steadily in recent years, there is still a large market of people who cannot afford the cost of purchasing a new system. Selling used computers online cuts out the huge expenditure of having a shop, so if you have good computing knowledge this could be an excellent part-time opportunity for you on the side.
You will mainly be selling refurbished computers and parts, but you may wish to generate extra income by allowing people to place classified ads on your site. It will be necessary for you to keep a good inventory in stock at all times, although the scale of the business can vary depending on how much time you wish to dedicate to it.
Skills needed: You will need to know about computer assembly in order to repair the systems you are selling.
Business environment and set-up cost: It is definitely possible that this business will have international potential. However, there are some barriers like shipping costs, tax and exchange rates that may make dealing with certain countries unprofitable. The cost of starting up this business will vary from £5,000 to £25,000 based on how much equipment you already own and the amount of inventory you wish to keep in stock.
Participate in the pay-per-click schemes of the popular search engines
Become mutually linked with computer related websites and link directories
Become involved in computing newsgroups and forums and include your website link in a catchy signature
Develop a mailing list for visitors to your website to sign up to and make sure you add regular content (such as computer tips) that will remind them to visit
Have a ‘Monthly Specials’ section on your website highlighting your good deals and allow visitors to register to get informed when you update it
Use OnlineOffice to set up web-site, blog and online shop to promote your business online
Complimentary business ideas: You could sell software packages in addition to the systems or form an alliance with software companies to provide referrals
Notes: It will be vital for you to check parts and systems thoroughly, because if there are faults then it will reflect very badly on your company. Another thing to remember is that your products will have to be very securely packaged for shipping purposes because if they are damaged in transit you will be held responsible.
Online examples & resources:
PartsPlease – A search engine to help you find the parts you need
Comprenew – An environmentally friendly approach to disposing of old computer equipment