Tuesday, November 17, 2009

How to Sell on eBay

How to Sell on eBay

Selling on eBay is like selling anywhere else. It is no different than selling your stuff at a yard sale, flea market or anywhere else for that matter. Only difference is you have an audience of millions of potential buyers and the cost. Outside of product you will need two things. An EBay account and a PayPal account to buy and pay for things. A Paypal account is tied to your banking account and credit card(s). You only need credit cards if you choose to buy stuff. You have to add your checking account so you can transfer any money you make into your bank. You will be charged fees for listing items and final value fees when selling them. You will also be charged fees from Paypal for the money you receive. They make money off everything, but the fees are pretty reasonable on most items. You will need to read their fee structure as it changes, but if you sell something for $20 you will probably end up with about $16 of it after all is said and done.

Getting Started
1.  EBay - You have to Sign up. Go to www.ebay.com click on new and register. It will guide you through the process of putting in all your information, creating a user name, etc.

2.  Paypal - You have to Sign up. Go to www.paypal.com and follow the basic process as above. It will tell you that after you put your banking info in that you will get a deposit in a day or two. This is usually like a nickel or a dime and once you verify the amount in your accounts you go back to Paypal and put these amounts in to verify your account to make it active.

3.  Note: Never give your personal information out to anyone through email and never click on any emails to update your info. There are a lot of people who send emails that look like they are from EBay and Paypal, but are identity thieves. Ebay and Paypal will not send you links. They will have you go log into your account to do things. Always check the address bar in your web browser. Make sure they are ebay.com or paypal.com when you are putting your information in.

4.  What do you want to sell? You have to use your head. No one is going to pay more than something is worth. On Ebay it is the opposite. Everyone is looking for a deal and with the volume of sellers they can usually find it. Put the minimum on it you will accept and if it sells for more then great! You can sell new or used items or even stuff you make yourself. Possibilities are endless.

5.  Feedback – Feedback is crucial. Feedback is reviews given back to you when you buy or sell something. You start at zero. I never buy anything that has a zero feedback. One you know they are new and two they could be trying to rip you off. They have no history of anything. I would buy a couple of items off of Ebay and ask that you get feedback from the seller. Most sellers do it automatically when you give them feedback. When buying anything never give feedback until you get the item you paid for and that it is exactly what you ordered. There are good processes in places if something goes wrong so there is never a reason to be scared of doing business on EBay. I have been doing it for over 10 years and only had one issue that was taken care of fairly quickly.

6.  How to list it your item – Once you have identified all the things you want to sell you need to go out and look then up on EBay to see how much they are selling for. This will give you an idea on how much to ask. You can also get a good idea on shipping prices the others are charging. You can sort items and shipping cost which is what I do. I then list my final cost for both cheaper and they normally sell. When you sell EBay guides you through the process and helps you categorize where your item needs to be listed. You don’t need to advertise items as “featured items” These are expensive ads and unless the item is $100 or more I would not suggest it. Featured ads do put your ads to the top so they are seen more, but they are expensive, usually about 15% or more of total cost of item and their minimum used to be $19 plus all other fees.

7.  You need a picture – Ebay lets you upload one picture of your item for free which is something you really need to do. For higher priced items I would post multiple pictures. You can use a digital camera to take the pictures and upload them or you can find them online if they are new items. I never buy something that doesn’t have a picture.

8.  Describe your item – Ebay gives you plenty of space to describe your item and you can creative or basic. All up to you. I usually add the shipping to my price so I can advertise free shipping on everything. Most people sort by cost and shipping so if my total cost is the lowest it will go first. Give your item a good title and if you going to add shipping in your price put “free ship” in the title. Grab their attention.

9.  Put in your price. Again put the item the lowest you will take. If the item does not sell they only thing you are out is the listing fees, but that will add to your cost if you relist the item. You can also put a price for “buy it now” where someone can buy it without bidding. These work pretty well and is what I do mostly since you can list items for 30 days. With auctions your time is more limited. When you are done with all the options you are ready to save the listing. It will give you a link to your item so you watch it. You can also do this under “my ebay” when you log in your account. Check your account often due to buyers may send you questions about it.

•    There are dozens of books on how to sell on eBay. This article is just a quick way to help you get started.
•    Sell or buy inexpensive items to build up your feedback first.
•    You will have to ship the product on your own, so you're going to have to add shipping into the price; there's a section where you set the shipping. You can set this to free if you choose or you can put in a price. When someone buys something you can go through paypal and print out and pay for a label using UPS or the postal service. This will automatically deduct shipping fees from your paypal account and send the buyer the tracking information. This the easiest way. I use the US Postal service for most items due to they will pick the items up from my house. Use you head here. Find the cheapest way to ship something. Depending on size it may be cheaper to go to the post office to ship smaller and lightweight items. Remember every penny saved is more profit.
•    I do not sell overseas due to the amount of fraud out there. I also do not take Western Union for payment which is another fradulant way of people trying to rip you off.
•    Never agree to sell something and let the buyer use his own shipping. There are people who will do this. They pay you with Western Union, have UPS or whoever pick item up and then you find out the Western Union was bogus. Use EBay and Paypal only for payment and your shipping. There are some people out there that will try to rip you off just like anything else. Following simple rules will allow you to have fun on Ebay.

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