A consignment and sales website specializing in sports cards takes its game to the next level.
They have over 700,000 cards for sale and most belong to someone else.
CheckOutMyCards.com, born just a stone’s throw from Microsoft in the technology cradle of Washington state, has become one of the internet’s most active sports card sites.
The site serves as a consignment outlet for those who don’t want to spend time selling their own cards and a fresh buying outlet with a large, growing inventory.
Tim Getsch, a Minnesota native who moved to the Pacific Northwest after earning a Masters degree in computer science at age 21, is the founder and Chief Technical Officer of the company, which boasts six full-time and three part-time employees while operating out of a Redmond, Washington warehouse.
"I saw that there were no great places to buy cards," Getsch said of his days as a reborn collector several years ago. "I could do research online but I couldn’t always see the actual card. At card shows, I could see the actual card, but I didn’t remember what it was worth. I really felt like I needed both, so I created a site which gave you the closest thing I could to both of those. We have a live data feed from Beckett so you can get a rough idea of what fair market value is and then we scan the actual cards. I built technology so we can easily put 20,000 cards per week on the website."
When cards are sold, the funds are placed into a credit account which the seller can use to purchase other cards on the site or request payment. CheckOutMyCards keeps a 20% seller’s fee only on requested payments, then ships the cards to the buyers.
CheckOutMyCards drew some attention at the 2007 National Sports Collectors Convention and thanks to a small, but loyal early following, began to grow. Getsch’s experience in search engine optimization has helped boost the site’s visibility online. An avid basketball player and card collector, Getsch created the technological elements of the site before asking others to consign their own cards so he could try selling them.
"Every time our inventory grows, our hits grow," Getsch told Sports Collectors Daily during this year’s show in Cleveland. "Google does a great job of crawling our site and indexing it. When people search, they find our site. We used to be happy being on the first page of Google, but now our listings are right there with eBay. And collectors know if we have the card, we have scans. We scan every card that is put up for sale."
Currently 517 sellers are registered on the site. Over 325,000 cards have been sold through the site since the third quarter of 2007. While over half of the baseball cards listed date from the current decade, sellers are offering over 9,000 cards from the 1960s and earlier.
"In a lot of ways it’s grown as I thought it would, but didn’t really believe it would," Getsch laughed about his first two years as a full-time hobby professional. "Sometimes I don’t always understand where they’re coming from or why I get certain growth at some times or why it slows down at others, but for us slowing down is still phenomenal growth."