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Thread: Be Careful of Goodwill's Online Auction Site

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  1. #1
    us
    Dec 2006
    Western NY
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    Be Careful of Goodwill's Online Auction Site

    I signed up for an account (free) on the shopgoodwill.com site, bid on an item and won it. Then they had a system crash and "lost" all the bidding information. I sent along the emails that I received from them about the item, showing that I was the winner, but got no responses. I just got off the phone with the local Goodwill that listed the item and they allowed someone else to pay for it and they shipped it out already to the other person. What a bunch of idiots! I'm not going to their site anymore and I would be very careful if you dare to try to deal with them.

    Scott

  2. #2
    us
    Dec 2007
    South Central PA
    2,929
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    I got a stories better then that.. I won a auction few years back for a penny book that had a alot of pennies in it there was a 1914D in it when I bid an won auction.. when I got my booklet from Goodwill auction.. There was no 1914D in the 1914D slot it was a 1950 something.. I called an no one knew what happened to the penny.. I told them If they didn't find my penny my credit card charge will be canceled.. they beat around the bush a few day an when it was all said in done thet gave me back my 55.00 an made me return the booklet to them..
    some people call me the creeper ,cuz they don't know my name or face - Alice Cooper

  3. #3
    us
    Jun 2012
    South Jersey
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    A few years back I bid on a few items and won-everything worked out ok for me though. Sucks to hear that there have been bad experiences. I stopped looking there because the shipping and handling charges really jack up the "good" price you thought you were getting the item for.

    If they are anything like the people who work/run the Goodwills around me they are sorely lacking in the customer service and basic how-to-run-a-store skills-sad.
    I would rather be the man who bought the Brooklyn Bridge than the man who sold it ~ Will Rogers

  4. #4
    us
    Jul 2012
    TN
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    I've only bought once from them as I find their shipping charges a bit high. I got an email the other day talking about the major screw ups but hadn't placed any bids in the past year.

  5. #5
    us
    May 2010
    Va
    E-Trac (retired) CTX3030, Double Eagle
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    I hate that they sell all the good stuff on line instead of in the stores. They don't even sell gold or silver items at my local store they just sell it for scrap.

  6. #6
    us
    IT COULD BE A VALUABLE PRIZE "YOU NEVER KNOW"

    Nov 2006
    N.E. Ohio on lake Erie
    ** I use only top name brand detectors *****
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    ANY TYPE OF TREASURE HUNTING THAT PUTS MONEY IN MY POCKET
    Quote Originally Posted by pwcguy View Post
    I hate that they sell all the good stuff on line instead of in the stores. They don't even sell gold or silver items at my local store they just sell it for scrap.
    Yes it is hard to find any thing good in there stores any more........
    ".. Let no one know what , when , or where .."

  7. #7
    us
    May 2008
    Oklahoma
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    What is the purpose of Goodwill any way? Didn't they start out helping those who needed some kind of assistance?
    Fire Buttons Pressed

  8. #8
    us
    Anita

    Apr 2012
    New Hampshire & Maine
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    Goodwill Industries provides sheltered workshops for people who can work, just not in the public/private sector. Often these are menial jobs - basic assembly for instance. Many of the workers are severely handicapped either physically or mentally. The money Goodwill raises in their stores and their auction sites provides funding for these programs and "salaries" for the workers. Goodwill is similar to the Salvation Army, but without the religious aspect. Hope this helps.

  9. #9
    us
    Mar 2009
    A Little South of Heaven
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    I've never had any luck with goodwill auction sites, the prices go way too crazy--worse than ebay.

    Our local Goodwills pull out all the good stuff (and some not so good) for live auctions every Saturday. It makes it hard to find anything really good anymore, but not impossible. I still find some good stuff now and then but rarely.

  10. #10
    Charter Member
    um
    Jul 2004
    Broward Co.
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    As for the Goodwill online auction site, I agree. The prices some people pay for the items on there are ridiculous. I think they are willing to pay more because in their minds, it's a charity organization and it's going to a "good cause". This may be true, but it's also a big business and the actual percentage of donated funds that go to the cause is minute and dwindling every year.

    I will say that in my large metropolitan area (retirement capital of the nation), there is still good stuff to be found at Goodwill and Salvation Army both, as well as others. I have been at this for years and still make good finds regularly. I also know a guy that does nothing but make the rounds all day, every day, to about 16 different stores in Miami. He finds many good things all the time, every week. I have two banana boxes full of goods that I purchased from this individual a week or so ago. I paid $300 for the lot, he paid about $100. I will make a minimum of $1200 profit on this stuff after all is said and done. This old man knows his stuff and has been doing it for decades. My brother in law also makes regular rounds to the thrift stores in another part of the city, he has found and still finds many items on a weekly basis. He has been doing this for probably 30 years too. You may remember my thread about the Tiffany Favrile Pottery vase that he found. He ended up on last years episode of the Antiques Roadshow. Tiffany pottery vase update-appraised at Antiques Roadshow!

    Louis Comfort Tiffany Pottery Favrile Vase, ca. 1905 | Roadshow Archive | PBS

    They don't know everything and a lot depends on who's running the show. The donated goods from each store are all sent to a central facility, sorted, priced and distributed out to the local stores in the area. The trick is being there when they roll the bins out from the back of the store to fill the shelves with.
    In the land of the blind, the one eyed man is King.

    You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink it.

  11. #11
    us
    Dec 2006
    Western NY
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    I know I started this thread, but I'd like to reply to this last post. My wife works at Goodwill and they don't send the stuff that comes in to a central facility. What comes in the door is sorted, priced, and put out in the same store that it was donated to. Some items are pulled for "Ecom", or to go online. All jewelry is pulled (this was a recent change) and sorted for gold, silver, etc. and sold that way. The "junk" jewelry is put online in bulk batches. The only stuff that goes to the central facility and then is redistributed is the stuff that is donated in the unattended boxes and the few attended locations that are not associated with a store.
    Some other rules: Employees are not allowed to buy items with the current week's color tag. For example, if they are currently using blue tags, the employees cannot purchase anything with a blue tag until the next week. That doesn't mean that they can't contact someone to come in and buy something for them, or hold an item in the back until the next week and immediately purchase it. Both of those do happen.
    Items slated to go to Ecom are tagged with the store that submitted them. If they don't sell online, they are returned to the store to be put on the shelf for local sale. They do pull items off the shelf if they don't sell in 3 - 4 weeks. Those items go to the dumpster. If you are brave, you could make out well dumpster diving at Goodwill, but the dumpsters are labelled as "Private Property", so be careful.

    My biggest complaint was with the auction site and what happened to the item that I supposedly won. I still have the emails stating that I was the highest bidder and won the item, but they were trying to do an upgrade and it failed. In the process, they "lost" all the bids placed during several days, including mine. Even though I have proof of my "winning" the item, the local Goodwill (Central Florida) chose to send it to the person that had the highest bid before the crash and loss of data. I called them and was told that was the last information that they received. They never got my bid from the system since it crashed. I partially blame them for not listening to me the next day when I called and wanted to pay (they said they couldn't verify my bid at that time, so they couldn't take my payment), but I mostly blame the IT people for doing such a poor job on the upgrade and ultimate failure. I work in IT and if that happened here, I'd be out of a job. There is no excuse for the poor job that they did.

    Scott

  12. #12
    Charter Member
    um
    Jul 2004
    Broward Co.
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    Quote Originally Posted by srcdco View Post
    I know I started this thread, but I'd like to reply to this last post. My wife works at Goodwill and they don't send the stuff that comes in to a central facility. What comes in the door is sorted, priced, and put out in the same store that it was donated to. Some items are pulled for "Ecom", or to go online. All jewelry is pulled (this was a recent change) and sorted for gold, silver, etc. and sold that way. The "junk" jewelry is put online in bulk batches. The only stuff that goes to the central facility and then is redistributed is the stuff that is donated in the unattended boxes and the few attended locations that are not associated with a store.
    Some other rules: Employees are not allowed to buy items with the current week's color tag. For example, if they are currently using blue tags, the employees cannot purchase anything with a blue tag until the next week. That doesn't mean that they can't contact someone to come in and buy something for them, or hold an item in the back until the next week and immediately purchase it. Both of those do happen.
    Items slated to go to Ecom are tagged with the store that submitted them. If they don't sell online, they are returned to the store to be put on the shelf for local sale. They do pull items off the shelf if they don't sell in 3 - 4 weeks. Those items go to the dumpster. If you are brave, you could make out well dumpster diving at Goodwill, but the dumpsters are labelled as "Private Property", so be careful.


    Scott
    Regarding Salvation Army, in my area everything that is collected "in store" is sent off to the central distribution facility in downtown Ft. Lauderdale on Broward Blvd. The same is true for Goodwill, their main facility is located in downtown Miami. Maybe it's done differently elsewhere but that's the way it's done down here. There are 41 retail locations in the tri county area for Goodwill. Salvation Army only has a handful. I picked up 3 pieces of silver jewelry just last week from a Goodwill, plainly marked, plus a nice Trifari Tiger brooch.
    In the land of the blind, the one eyed man is King.

    You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink it.

  13. #13
    us
    Supreme Chancellor

    Oct 2005
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    I don't even see jewelry at Goodwills anymore. It's been a few years since I've seen it around here. Many stores used to have several cases full of jewelry. Not anymore

  14. #14
    us
    Oct 2005
    Northern, Michigan
    willow stick
    6,797
    115 times
    eating
    While the internet has really made it easy to sell it sure ruined a lot of former purchasing opportunities for people looking to make a humble profit. It used to be fun (like a treasure hunt) to visit the various thrift shops. Now they're mostly good for clothes and low value hardware items.

    Over the years we've donated many good items to them. But now it sort of alarms me that I see Goodwill (and others) selling dollar store items for more than the dollar stores ask. It seems like these "non-profit" stores have become big business and often take sales away from struggling (tax paying) privately owned shops.

    In the old days Goodwill and the others had simple buildings in out-of-the-way places. Today many have big fancy stores in prime locations.

    Now when we change decor or whatever we simply give it to people we know are struggling in life.
    "Everything is an anomaly" Michigan Badger

  15. #15

    Apr 2006
    Ventura, CA
    LST
    801
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    Don't know first hand but I have heard that the person who runs the Sal. army only makes $12,000 a year. Compared to most other "charities" they put a much higher % of their donations to their cause.

 

 
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