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  1. #1
    BaSh_2_tHa_mAxX's Avatar
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    Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    Hey, i am looking to start an online australian hobbystore because im sick of ridiculous prices and poor customer service / knowledge. Problem is none of the distributors will supply to me because i am new (haven't even started) and my store is online. I was just wondering how a little site like b-p-p or something got brand name products and started out. I was looking to stock traxxas, hpi, losi etc at the right price.
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  2. #2
    Dale Gribble's Avatar
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    A lot of those website businesses do have store fronts, or at least a suite somewhere. I think you have to prove the legitimacy of your business. What are the companies saying when you call them? They will tell you what you need to prove to them you have a legit business. Then go do that.
    *** Support your local tracks ***

  3. #3
    BaSh_2_tHa_mAxX's Avatar
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    I can't have a legit buisness if i have no products. While starting out i was going to do it on ebay, i emailed the distributor traxxas told me to contact and all i got was attitude. "We will consider supplying you the traxxas line when you get a storefront"
    T-maxx
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  4. #4

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    get a buisness lisence(spelling) and a tax id #, and then post a sign in front of your house. there's your store front
    just say no to \"shelf queens\"
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  5. #5
    Dale Gribble's Avatar
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    Then go rent a suite somewhere, get some working capital together then go back to them with a business plan. They aren't asking for that much. They can't distribute to someone who just says they want to sell parts. They probably get 1,000 phone calls like yours a day.

    Do you even know if you can make money and be successful? Do you know parts costs from manufacturers? What is the markup and what kind of margins do you expect to get? You are going to have to pay for shipping and make it back on parts costs, hence the higher prices in Australia. I have been told from multiple sources that hobby stores make all of their margin on kits, and that the manufacturers make all of their margin on replacement parts. You are going to need to do some research to see if you have a viable business opportunity, then get a plan together.
    *** Support your local tracks ***

  6. #6
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    a lot of hobbystores near me have been shutting down recently. im not bashing your idea or anything..i just hope your in for a lot of work...
    damn, looks like ambition overcame adhesion again!

  7. #7

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    Do you really think all the internet pricing is ridiculously high? Your plan is to sell much cheaper than companies like tower hobbies or even small companies like bpp?

  8. #8
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    All of the distributors require you to have an established business before you will get wholesale prices. Your first order will also have a minimum $$ amount. For Horizon I believe its $30K. Great Planes Dist (hobbico) won't sell at all to someone operating out of their garage - as you are finding out. It doesn't look like b-p-p sells any traxxas stuff either. Now you know why. Ace is about the same as Horizon. Why do they do this? Because about 50% of all new businesses fail in the first year, and having to take back all the stock from a failed store is expensive.

    You'll need a minimum investment amount of at least $100K of investment capital to open up a real hobby shop in the states. And that's going to be a pretty small shop. I can't imagine it being much different down under.
    Some people see the glass half full. Others see it half empty. I see a glass that\'s twice as big as it needs to be.
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  9. #9
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?


    ORIGINAL: RCtruckRacer

    All of the distributors require you to have an established business before you will get wholesale prices. Your first order will also have a minimum $$ amount. For Horizon I believe its $30K. Great Planes Dist (hobbico) won't sell at all to someone operating out of their garage - as you are finding out. It doesn't look like b-p-p sells any traxxas stuff either. Now you know why. Ace is about the same as Horizon. Why do they do this? Because about 50% of all new businesses fail in the first year, and having to take back all the stock from a failed store is expensive.

    You'll need a minimum investment amount of at least $100K of investment capital to open up a real hobby shop in the states. And that's going to be a pretty small shop. I can't imagine it being much different down under.
    +1!! you will need lots of money! for 100K that makes for a small very small business. Im sure you only plan on stocking replacement parts though rite?
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  10. #10
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    you need an LLC and/or S-corp and an S-4 (tax ID) to be considered a business for anything. This will all cost under $200 and be the cheapest way to get started. You can do this online through websites like IncFile.com and such. You can be just an online business but, most states need your business to be on commerial property or something to work out of your house. I personally think not its very hard to compete with all the online companies, especially the ones that have been around for so long and order suck HUGE quantities so they can keep their prices lower. The LHS I am starting to see around me are the ones that have "walk-in" customers with prices that compete with online stores. So many hobby stores fold due to their prices being WAY higher than online store (even with overnight shipping costs).

    Best of luck to you
    5 Helis, 6 planes, 7 cars.... and always looking for more! Its a disease (so, I tell my wife).

  11. #11

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    Maybe its cuz your 17 (Check his Ratings).Dude you can't start a hobby store when your only 17/18,whichever.DUDE
    - MMA.

  12. #12
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    ORIGINAL: MadManAndrew

    Maybe its cuz your 17 (Check his Ratings).Dude you can't start a hobby store when your only 17/18,whichever.DUDE
    though we all here know this probably wont happen dont bash him for his dreams lol, im 18 and thought about doing that, talked about it then it just never happened. This is just one of those "Teen dreams" that will eventually die off.
    Dude we have the following BIG hobby shops online 90% of the people will order from them wayy before ordering from you
    www.towerhobbies.com
    www.amainhobbies.com (SP?)
    www.hobbypeople.com
    teckno rc
    the list goes on forever
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  13. #13

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?


    ORIGINAL: MadManAndrew

    Maybe its cuz your 17 (Check his Ratings).Dude you can't start a hobby store when your only 17/18,whichever.DUDE

    that's just sad and depressing, you must not have any faith in yourself to think that young people cannot start a business

    of course you can start a hobby shop at 17/18, why not?????
    it may not happen the way he is currently trying, jumping in big like that is expensive
    but there are ways to start a shop w/o spending 100 grand
    maybe by buying a popular truck or two and parting them out...

    you may not believe that you could do it but don't trash his dreams
    two kinds of people i never believe - fanboys and haters
    they never tell the whole truth

  14. #14

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    I think everyone has this dream at one time or another. I think once you get the distributor cost on this stuff you will wonder how they sell it so cheap instead of wondering why its so expensive. Its hard for the little guy to get going. Tower might buy 100k worth of just one item to get a steep discount. We just cant do stuff like that and keep a descent inventory, so in turn we really cant compete. It does take a lot of $$$$$$$ to get something like this started. For example you might find for an item that sells for 280 bucks you buy it for 250. only if you buy 100k of them do you get it for 220, maybe. There just isnt as much markup as everyone thinks on this stuff unless you are ordering in huge quantities.

  15. #15

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    Well I see most of the points I was going to make about your question have already been answered, so I'll just add one more and hope you understand and don't get offended.

    If you need to ask a question about how to open an online store on a message board you need to do research and find that answer for yourself because the answers you will get from places like Great Planes and Horizon Hobby are the facts. The answers you will get here are opinions and a few facts.

    Read the link below it will confirm what RCtruckRacer has already posted. This is a link to Great Planes policy page for becoming a dealer.

    http://www.gpmd.com/howto.html

  16. #16

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?


    ORIGINAL: iamnot


    ORIGINAL: MadManAndrew

    Maybe its cuz your 17 (Check his Ratings).Dude you can't start a hobby store when your only 17/18,whichever.DUDE

    that's just sad and depressing, you must not have any faith in yourself to think that young people cannot start a business

    of course you can start a hobby shop at 17/18, why not?????
    it may not happen the way he is currently trying, jumping in big like that is expensive
    but there are ways to start a shop w/o spending 100 grand
    maybe by buying a popular truck or two and parting them out...

    you may not believe that you could do it but don't trash his dreams

    for every one guy that tries and is sucessful there are hundreds that fail, even with adults trying to start business

    a kid without capital has zero chance

  17. #17
    TheTruckingGuru's Avatar
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    opps repeated myself.

  18. #18
    TheTruckingGuru's Avatar
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    Iamnot has a good point. There is always a business you can do you just have to think small enough and start with small risk before moving up. I am in the Trucking Business myself in case my name did not give that away. Many people in this industry are company drivers who drive company trucks. A brand new Peterbuilt, Kenworth, or Frieghtliner cost about $125,000 new and you cannot get financing if your a first time buyer. So most of us had to start out by leasing a truck for $800 per week, coupled with $2000 per week fuel and being responsible for maintenance/repairs. At this point they are considered separate business entities, or Contractors.
    So Bash with that in mind maybe you can be an independent contractor. You can go to a local hobby store and tell them you want to repair RC's as an independent. Or if they say no then maybe as an employee who also works sales. As you get good with RC's you can begin putting up flyer's and talking to customers (with managers permision) about doing custom RC work. Then with the money you make you can buy and customize RC's yourself and sell them on Ebay. First specializing in one RC which you may be able to get for wholesale if you buy/sell enough. Then with your reputation and business you can become a full fledge hobby shop with store front and everything.
    Hope that helps you Bash.

  19. #19

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    I am not trying to bash or trash him,heres what I ahve to say...
    Most small hobby shops start by having thier own product(s) like bodies.Thats how my lhs started but now they've stopped making thier own products and specialize in Traxxas.Once when I was there,they told me they had over 200k on one of thier parts walls.That wall was only like as long as two compact cars.Then you've also got stuff like the R/C's and fuel which also cost alot.Im opening an RCU store and once I have enough cash flow I will get my own website.From there I will get a store front and start selling HPI and Traxxas.Its not a perfect plan but...Oh,and my product,check out my sig.
    - MMA.

  20. #20

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?


    ORIGINAL: MadManAndrew

    I am not trying to bash or trash him,heres what I ahve to say...
    Most small hobby shops start by having thier own product(s) like bodies.Thats how my lhs started but now they've stopped making thier own products and specialize in Traxxas.Once when I was there,they told me they had over 200k on one of thier parts walls.That wall was only like as long as two compact cars.Then you've also got stuff like the R/C's and fuel which also cost alot.Im opening an RCU store and once I have enough cash flow I will get my own website.From there I will get a store front and start selling HPI and Traxxas.Its not a perfect plan but...Oh,and my product,check out my sig.
    so, if you think you can do it, why can't he?
    you said he can't start a hobby shop because he's 17
    and you said it in a very condescending manner too
    but, really, age makes very little difference
    it's character, ambition, desire and persistence that count
    don't tell a person they can't do something positive
    instead, help them find a way that works
    two kinds of people i never believe - fanboys and haters
    they never tell the whole truth

  21. #21

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    OK,to you Bash2theMaxx.Id suggest starting with an RCU store.You can mov up from there...
    To YOU IamNot,I don't expect my plan to succeed,I don't expect to open an online store after a month of RCU to get a website.I want my name to be known before I try to open up an actual online store.Its much harder for hobby shops to succeeed than other stores.Its not like towerhobbies started off as this huge retailer and its not like Traxxas was automaticly known by all R/Cists when they first started.Everything takes awhile.

    Plus its not like people are just gonna strt buying when he opens a website,you have to advertise.
    - MMA.

  22. #22
    The Hedgehog's Avatar
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    I think you guys all scared him away
    What would Chuck Finley do?

  23. #23
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    ORIGINAL: gamesbeer1

    get a buisness lisence(spelling) and a tax id #, and then post a sign in front of your house. there's your store front
    that was pretty funny good chuckle, thanks.
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  24. #24
    TheTruckingGuru's Avatar
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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    He will be back. I say we keep this thread going with some good ideas and maybe a business plan for anyone else looking to do the same. We all enjoy this hobby and I don't know about the rest of you but I think the local hobby shops can use some competition. And we grow our hobby at the same time.

  25. #25

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    RE: Starting An Online Hobby Store - How Do you Get Products?

    I'm just going to mention this. I am 15. I turn 16 in 2 weeks. I sell on eBay. I have an ebay room with well over 12k dollars of stuff. I bring in a salary of about 25k a year. I don't pay taxes, rent or big bills. (I do pay insurance for car though) Don't believe me? Here's my room http://youtube.com/watch?v=NtZjV2kCyyw. Just because your young doesn't mean anything. I have a business plan for me ready the second I turn 18 I am opening a store. Yes the business plan changes. I have changed it about 4 times in the past 2 months. What I'm trying to say is JUST BECAUSE YOU ARE YOUNG DOESN'T MEAN YOU CAN'T START A BUSINESS OR BE SUCCESSFUL. You can do anything as long as you set your mind to it.
    T-maxx///Revo///Vendetta ST///OFNA Ultra LX Comp///HPI BAJA 5B (Clone but still goes)


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