What is a Bargain Bin Store?!?

Discover the unparalleled allure of Bargain Bin Stores, where savvy consumers embark on a shopping journey like no other.


7/29/20233 min read

One After Another, Bin Stores are Popping Up All Over America.

There’s Bin City New York, located on Long Island. Cheap Charlie’s Bargain Bins in Appleton, Wisconsin. Bargains in a Box, a Chicago-based chain. Not to mention Anderson Bargain Bins in Anderson, Indiana.
rocky mountains
rocky mountains
woman sitting on bench near lake during daytime
woman sitting on bench near lake during daytime
egg omelet on white ceramic plate
egg omelet on white ceramic plate

Long Island, New York

Appleton, Wisconsin

Anderson, Indiana

What’s Bin Store, You Ask?

What’s a bin store, you ask?

It’s a store where shoppers rummage through big bins of overstock or returned goods that are being sold at bargain-basement prices. Think of it like a treasure hunt. We’ve got some tips for how to shop at these places people wait in line and then rush through Anderson Bargain Bins to find items they want in Anderson, Indiana on Friday, July 7, 2023. Anderson Bargain Bins sells Amazon returns. On Friday, every item costs $10. The price decreases each day, and then Anderson Bargain Bins closes on Wednesday & Thursday to restock the store.

How Do Bin Stores Work?

Most of these stores operate the same way. They get truckloads of returned or overstock merchandise from major retailers. They pick one day a week to set out their new products — everything at the same price. Each day after that, the price drops. They try to sell everything in the bins during the week, and then they start all over again.

Here’s an example of how that works:

At Anderson Bargain Bins, a growing bin store in Anderson Indiana that sells major retailer returns, every item in the store costs $10 on Friday. Then it costs $8 on Saturday, $6 on Sunday, $4 on Monday, and costs $2 on Tuesday. On Wenesdays & Thursdays they close all the store and restock with a fresh shipment of returned goods.

Friday is the highest-priced day, but it’s also when bargain hunters can find the best deals — usually electronics that are selling for a fraction of their normal price.

“Friday mornings, we have 30 to 50 people outside waiting for the door to open, because that’s when they find the premium items,” said Brad Mullins, owner of the popular Anderson, Indiana store Anderson Bargain Bins. “Everything from small kitchen appliances to cordless vacuums, camera lenses and coffee makers.”

Bin stores are one new place to find great deals. Here are six online shopping sites that are off the beaten path but worth checking out.

‘You Name It, We’ve Had It’

It’s the same story at other bin stores.

“You name it, we’ve had it. We had a PlayStation 5 today — a $600 item someone purchased for 6 bucks,” said Michael Prendamano, founder and CEO of The Bin Store, which has two locations in South Carolina. “We’ve had Xboxes, phones, laptop computers. Depending on the time of year, we can have a line of 200 people waiting for us to open on any given Friday or Saturday.”

They charge $6 per item on Friday and Saturday, $5 on Sunday, $4 on Monday, $3 on Tuesday, $2 on Wednesday and $1 on Thursday. Then they reload and do it all over again. Every week they buy a tractor-trailer full of overstock or returned goods.

What can you find in a bin store? Electronics; bedding like comforters and sheets; drapery; clothing and shoes; toys and tools; health and beauty products; and all kinds of general merchandise. Basically, just about anything you can buy on Amazon or at Walmart has the potential to end up at a liquidation sale, which is what a bin store really is.

A lot of bin stores also have “opening stations” where staffers will open boxes so customers can get a look at what’s inside.

So many new bin stores are opening that it’s become trickier to acquire liquidated goods, Prendamano said — although he’s noticed that some of these stores are closing because they don’t have a sound business strategy.

“You have to be very customer-centric,” he said. “Some people will just get the product and throw it in a warehouse with no lighting, no AC or heat, no music playing, and say, ‘Hey, it’s super discounted, so here you go.’ ”

He’s been in business since 2021. In his stores, he’s noticed that more customers are doing their regular shopping there before they go to a traditional retail store.

“In an economy like this, with inflation the way it is, where simple items cost so much more than they did a year or two ago, people still have a place where they can come and they can count on savings here.”