T Nation

Ebay tips

Doing some spring clean-up and considering selling the stuff online instead of throwing it into the trash bin.

Never sold anything on EBay. Process seems transparent as a buyer. But setting up shop as a seller…?

Any good tips?

Thanks in advance!

Its pretty easy. Be very descriptive…I mean VERY descriptive or you will be bombarded with the stupidest emails you’ve ever seen. Make sure you have the shipping calculator on the sale page (it’s easy, you just put the weight and how you want to ship it when listing the item) or you will be answering 1000 emails on how much it is to ship.
Require payment within 3-5 days of end of auction…some people will try to stiff you for the cheapest shit.

This is a little tougher, but when someone bids, check out how many positive ratings they have…someone who only has one or two…or zero is far more likely to not pay because they have nothing to lose. If someone has 50+, they will most likely pay you because they don’t want to lose their account and start over.

Thats all I can think of right now.

along the lines of being very descriptive, I always try and say as much about the item as possible in my Ad header or whatever you wanna call it, it just draws more people to look at your item.good luck

dont forget a good picture.

and the best ebay sellers have the best ‘product titles’, its the words in the title is what the search looks for.

ie: ‘blue bike’
‘new men’s schwinn mountain bike’


Yeah, you really have to ‘pitch’ your item on ebay.

I have had some success saving money on items from sellers with no feedback and poor descriptions. However, I did inform the person that he needed to dress up his item description, including part numbers, good descriptions, and a picture.

There are some issues selling larger, oversized items on ebay. Check with UPS on oversized package considerations. I was almost nailed paying 100 dollars shipping on a 175 dollar item. I coulud have purchased the item locally for nearly the same price, but luckily DHL came through with some cheap shipping.

My tips for ebay would be.

  1. Descriptive title. Think keywords here. Most people search for items without searching the item description.

  2. Start the bid price low and don’t put a reserve on it. You will be more apt to get people excited and involved in the bidding process. All too often, I see people start bidding way to high and often receive no bids at all. Use a reserve if you don’t want to get rid of the item, but I generally find that this hinders the auction process some.

  3. Include a good picture or two of the item.

  4. Be honest. In the description, identify the possible objections someone may have after they receive the item. A picture may not show some of the imperfections of your item.

  5. Accept all forms of payment possible.

  6. Use 10 day auctions for the most coverage starting on a Thursday. This way the auction should end on Sunday, when most folks will be home to bid. Auctions that end at odd times often miss the last minute bids (such as 3am PST on Tuesday).

There’s tons more you’ll learn in the process. It’s fun, but time consuming. The other suggestions here were good too (requiring payment 5 days after auction ends).

Feedback is another trick on ebay. I usually do not leave feedback until I receive feedback as a seller. This gives you some leverage on potential negative feedbacks and encourages postive feedback.

Put a shipping calculator in the ad but then state that shipping is $100 at the very bottom.

I just thought of this idea. bwah hahaha I hate myself. Im an ass.

Does ebay take commision on the total amount (including shipping) or just the sale amount. I have always wondered why instead of a BIN of $100 that you didnt sale the item for 1 cent and charge $99.99 for shipping.

You selling anything good?

One other thing I learned. Watch out for flooding your particular item if there are already several items of the same on eBay.

I sold some collectable boxing books on eBay, and when the same book was listed, I did not submit my listing until a couple weeks after. Several look-alike items (same item) will drive prices down, especially if your target audience is relatively small. Simple supply and demand curve stuff here.

Also, don’t stoop to the spam tactics on ebay. Stuff like adding L@@K and key word spamming. Ebay reserves the right to revoke listings from key word spammers. Key word spamming is inserting key words into the description that are not related to your listing.