You might be interested to

know that you can successfully

sell wholesale dresses at the 

flea market.

I know that you might not

associate flea markets

with high end designer

dresses, but you might be


I have personally seen brand name

dresses sold at flea markets, and

I have also supplied vendors with

brand name dresses at

my Brooklyn closeout warehouse.

Provided that there are

shoppers in the flea market

that wear dresses, then you should be able to

sell them. 

Having said that, it's important

to determine what kind of dresses

those shoppers are looking for, and

what their budgets are.

Like in any retail business, it's

important to match the right

products to the customer base.

The shoppers at the flea market

might love designer dresses

by brands such as Tahari

and Calvin Klein, but 

it would only make sense

to try to sell them if in

fact they can afford to

pay the prices that you

will need to charge so that you

can make money.

Now don't assume right away

that people at a flea market

can't afford to spend 

$50 or $100 for a brand name dress.

If they are buying brand name clothing

elsewhere, then they are potential

customers for your designer dresses.

People prioritize differently,

so even someone on a limited

budget might decide to allocate

more money for a brand name dress

when they have the opportunity to

buy one.

Or you might catch the attention

of someone that is going to

a wedding and needs a 

dress that might not

otherwise buy for themselves.

I think it's really important

to remember that flea market customers

are expecting to get a bargain,

and therefore can purchase more

high end expensive products,

provided that they feel that they

are going to save a good deal

of money on their fashion purchases.

So how do you purchase wholesale

dresses at a low enough price so that you

can offer them at substantial savings compared

to their original retail value?

You can focus on purchasing department

store overstock clothing and closeout

fashion merchandise.

I know of sellers that visit

going out business auctions,

so this might be an option

that you should consider as well.

The challenge with auctions

is that they are infrequent,

and you want to be sure

that you can find the merchandise

that you are looking for.

On the other hand, if you

visit a dress wholesaler

you know that they will

have the retail product category

that you are looking for.

Visiting a closeout wholesaler should

enable you to purchase

dresses at below wholesale prices.

At that point you will be able to

retail them at the flea market

at really low prices as compared

to the original retail prices.

Another important factor that you

want to look into is the brand preference,

if any, of the shoppers.

For example, are people looking

for designer wear by Nine West

or Jones New York, or are they

more interested in fashion dresses.

You might discover that there is a 

demand for both categories of

dresses, but this is something that you

should personally look into before

renting space.

Style preferences are

also important since every

market has its

own fashion sense and 


If you notice that there is a lot of

competition by vendors that

are also selling dresses, don't get discouraged,

since this can actually be a good sign.

If you see that there are many

vendors selling dresses, and that

they all seem to be making sales,

then it looks like you have found

a swap meet with plenty of customer

demand for your wholesale dresses.

I would like to share with you

some tips that I believe

can help you in the actual sales


#1. Always display the original retail price

of the dresses next to your sales price.

This way customers can instantly see the

great savings that you are offering them.

For example, let's say you purchased a

wholesale collection

of R&M Richards dresses that have original

retail values of $150 each.

You will want to put up a sign that lists the

$150 price next to your asking price.

So if you are selling the R&M Richards

dresses for $50 each, then your sign

would display both prices.

#2. Give flea market customers a discount

for purchasing more dresses. Using the above

example, you might want to offer

3 or more dresses for $40 each.

This way people will be encouraged to purchase

more dresses than they originally planned on.

You can always remind your customers

that they can always use the additional

dresses at a later date.

Always be careful in ensuring that

your sales price gives you a

profit after taking account for the

rent and other expenses

that you might incur.

If your business takes off

you might even need to hire

someone to help you

sell your clothes.

#3. Be flexible with your prices. 

If you see that a shopper is seriously

interested in purchasing one of your

R&M Richards dresses, but they

are a few dollars short, give them

the dress at a discount.

This is not only good business, since you

will have made a sale that you otherwise 

would have missed out on, but it

also builds customer loyalty

by creating goodwill between you

and your customer.

It's important to note 

that many of the shoppers

at flea markets are

repeat visitors. 

In other words, the same

people could potentially be 

your customers every weekend.

At the same time, you need to be

clear in expressing the reason why

you are giving someone a discount.

You don't want them to expect the

same discount every time.

#4. Offer wholesale prices to other flea market

vendors and shoppers.

You should let other flea market vendors 

know that you are willing to sell your

merchandise to them at wholesale prices,

provided that they purchase your merchandise

in quantity.

I realize that the flea market vendors that you

supply merchandise to will then become your competition.

But assuming that there are enough customers for everyone,

and that you would be happy with a large quantity sale,

then it makes sense to also take this approach.

You will also want to let shoppers know 

that you can offer them

wholesale deals as well.

The reason is because some of the

people that come to flea markets

can have a relative or friend

that has a business. 

In New York there are many shoppers

that have relatives in countries such

as Nigeria, Trinidad, and Guyana.

Often they will buy merchandise

so that they can send it to their relatives.

Their relatives will then sell the merchandise

either from their homes or from their 


I find it interesting that even retailers

who come to my closeout warehouse in New York

will visit local flea markets, such as the Queens Aqueduct 

Flea Market, to look for products for their shops.

So you might be surprised

to discover that many of the people

visiting your booth are actually boutique


#5. Set up your flea market booth just like it's a real store.

That means that you should use mannequins

and garments racks to properly display

your wholesale dresses.

I realize that it's going to be a lot more

work this way, since you will have to set

up and take apart your booth every day.

But I believe it's worthwhile to present

a more professional appearance.

You will attract more shoppers,

and present your merchandise in

a way that demonstrates its value.

You will also want to make shopping 

by your space as convenient and

easy as possible.

Remember, it's not just the sale that you

make that day, but the future sales of 

dresses that you can make to that customer.

One last tip that I would like to share with you is

to keep the same spot week after week.

You want your customers to know where to

find you when they are ready to purchase again from you.