What does it take to launch a successful business on eBay? Some say it is all about finding the right products to sell, while others feel that customer service should be an eBay seller’s top priority. If anyone knows the answer to this ever-so-popular question, it’s Corey Kossack. The 23-year-old Grand Canyon University student has sold more than $1 million in products on eBay and kossdvd.com and developed his own system to show others how to profit like he did, all while still in school.
Shopping on eBay in his college dorm room at the age of 20, Kossack noticed some impressive marketplace sales data and began to wonder what it would take to run an online business. Embracing his entrepreneurial curiosity, he started his own eBay business selling DVD movies and television series.
To start, Kossack discovered he could turn a profit by purchasing packs of DVDs from other eBay sellers and re-selling them individually. Slowly gaining experience and compiling research, he applied his newly found knowledge of the eBay market and approached the largest movie distributors in the United States. Out of a study room in his dorm complex, Kossack’s strong phone etiquette managed to convince the distributors he would be a valuable client to work with.
After further months of negotiations and research, what started as a small experiment in an eager young student’s life became a thriving online business in January 2005. Two years and more than $1 million in sales later, Koss DVD has become one of the top 200 most successful businesses on eBay, offering titles ranging from new releases to television series, all at prices below retail.
After developing a highly sophisticated business model and cost management system, Kossack was invited by eBay to speak about his success in front of 1,400 vendors at the company’s annual convention and training event, eBay Live! While other panelists focused on more commonplace tips for sellers such as creating eye-appealing listings and writing detailed descriptions, Kossack’s advice revealed how to keep costs of doing business at an absolute minimum, analyze risk of selling in the marketplace and implement strategies to maximize profit margins. His savvy business guidance was a hit with the audience, and led to the suggestion by eBay staff that he should train their account managers on business practices.
Armed with tremendous confidence from his performance at the convention, Kossack decided to share his insights with the world by writing a new guide to profiting on eBay called "eBay Millionaire or Bust."
"[The book] is radically different than the other books out on the market, and goes much deeper into the issues that really matter, such as minimizing risks while maximizing profits," Kossack said. "Many sellers learn how to sell a high volume of products, but don’t know how to optimize their business to earn the most profit on every sale they make."
Along with the release of the book, Kossack announced the unveiling of his patent-pending ProfitBuilderSoftware.com, a new online software tool to help eBay sellers maximize profits and calculate decision-making risks using strategies from his book. Kossack developed ProfitBuilder for himself long before it was commercially available and attributes his success on eBay to the software’s ability to analyze financial risks and profit margins.
Kossack credits his early accomplishments to maintaning a relentless desire to seek guidance from experienced entrepreneurs. That is why he made the decision to study at Grand Canyon University’s College of Entrepreneurship. In addition to his efforts on eBay and in the classroom, Kossack also serves as the president of Club Entrepreneur, a new organization that aims to cultivate entrepreneurial activity all over the world, starting in his home state of Arizona. Kossack says he plans to be an entrepreneur for life, but that his entrepreneurial education will never end.
Kossack’s Tips for Student Entrepreneurs
1. Find a mentor. You can’t do it alone, no one can. The advice, encouragement and connections you will get from a more experienced entrepreneur are priceless and will accelerate your growth as an entrepreneur into hyper speed!
2. Believe in yourself. There will always be those who say it can’t be done because they haven’t done it themselves. People may not understand you and your aspirations, but always remember that you are a rare breed and your contributions as an entrepreneur will change the world!
3. Attend a "biz-friendly" college. If you want to be a student entrepreneur, you need to be in an environment that encourages you to start your own business while in college. A traditional education may give you a solid business degree, but your professors will voice their disapproval the moment your test scores dip because you are spending too much time running your wildly successful business.
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