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What is a Goodwill Pound Store? 5 Mind Blowing Characteristics

Everyone know what Goodwill is, but if you hear “Goodwill Pound Store” you’re probably a little confused about what the difference is.

So what is a Goodwill Pound Store? A Goodwill Pounding Store (also known as Goodwill Outlet) is a thrift store location that sells merchandise by the pound out of bins instead of priced per piece off shelves and racks. It’s where merchandise that is unsold at Goodwill retail stores go to be liquidated before heading to auction or a recycler.

If you’ve never been to a Goodwill Pound Store, you’ll want to know the characteristics that set it apart from regular Goodwill stores. Here are the most notable.

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#1 – Items Sold By the Pound

This is the biggest and most obvious characteristic that sets Goodwill Pound Stores apart from Goodwill retail stores. The only items in the store that have set prices are furniture, TVs and other larger items that can’t go in the bins. However, the prices are super cheap and a great deal!

Per pound pricing is usually set in one of three different ways. Once price per pound for everything, no matter the number of items or type of items. Different price per pound depending on the type of item, meaning clothing will be one price, housewares will be another price, books will be a different price, etc. Lastly, some stores have tiered pricing where the more you buy the more you save. For example, 1-25 pounds will cost one dollar amount but 26-50 pounds will be a little cheaper, and so on.

When you’ve done picking out everything you want to buy, you roll your cart on to a large scale to be weighed. The scale is calibrated to subtract the weight of the cart so you’re only paying for the weight of the items.

#2 – Dig for Treasures

Instead of items being neatly stack on shelves or hanging from racks, everything is thrown into large bins that you have to sort through to find the treasures. If you’ve never done this before, it’s a completely different experience from any other thrift store.

You have to dig all the way to the bottom to find the good stuff. A lot of people go so fast that they don’t take the time to dig all the way down so you can come by after them and still find great things. Just make sure that you wear gloves because at the bottom of the bins is also where a lot of broken items end up. It is easy to cut yourself so always wear gloves.

When you’re digging, just be mindful of your space and those around you. If you start throwing stuff on top of the area where other people are already digging, you’re going get some people mad at you.

#3 – Black Friday Every Day

Just think great deals, lots of people, and high tension. It can be a little stressful at times because everyone is racing to get the best deals. If you’re going to jump in there with the crowd, you have to be willing to defend your space and stand your ground. There will be rude people and you have to brush it off and keep moving to be successful. Don’t let other people intimidate you, but also know that nothing is worth getting in a fight over.

For people who do want to get involved in the chaos, there is nothing wrong with waiting for the crowd to disperse. Like I said before, most people are going so fast that they leave treasures on the bottom. Many people have said they’ll wait for the chaos to die down and still find a lot of amazing treasures that went unnoticed by the masses.

#4 – Take What You Want & Leave the Rest

This is probably one of the things I love the most about Goodwill Outlet stores! A great way to make money on eBay is to sell replacement parts. When you’re at a pay by the pound store, you don’t have to pick up every piece that goes with an item. Just take what you want.

For example, we’ve had a lot of success with selling food processor parts. Usually the chopping blade, slicer blades, bowl, lid, and pusher sell the best, but the base/motor doesn’t. The base is also the heaviest part of the item so we simply take all the parts and leave the base. Now we’re not paying extra for a heavy piece that we’re just going to throw away any way.

I’ve also heard of people who collect scrabble pieces do the same thing. They take all the pieces but leave the box and board.

#5 – It’s Not All Junk

One misconception that people have with Goodwill Outlet and pay by the pound stores is that all the items are junk. The reason they think this is because the items came from retail thrift stores where they sat on the shelves and racks for weeks without selling. This doesn’t make the items junk.

Some items don’t sell at retail because they were priced too high. A common problem at a lot of thrift stores is they simply don’t give their items thrift store prices. They know that these items can resell for a lot of money and they price them accordingly. Which means their general thrifters aren’t going to buy them and their reseller customer aren’t either because the prices are too high.

Another reason is simply that the right buyer didn’t come at the right time. Some things are unique and the people who would want that specific item didn’t show up at the right time to find it. It could also be that in the chaos that some stores look like, the item simply was hidden from view and couldn’t be seen.

Lastly, it’s also been reported that some Goodwill retail stores send some donations directly to the outlet without ever putting them on the sales floor. This might happen if they already have too much stuff and can’t handle the amount of donations they’re receiving. It’s not verified that this is true, but it definitely makes sense why this might would sometimes happen.

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