How to be a successful eBay seller and auctioneer

eBayYou’ve probably heard stories about people making money by selling or auctioning things on the website eBay. Whether they do it to just make some extra cash on the side or whether they have turned their eBay selling and auctioning in to a full one at-home business, this is definitely a new trend. If you’re thinking you’d like to get in on the action, you certainly can. In fact, sellers have cashed in on pretty much everything you can think of, new and used, including shoes, clothing and accessories; antiques and vintage items; collectibles; electronics; jewelry and luxury goods; furniture and housewares; art; automobiles; and much, much more.

If you do want to become a seller on eBay, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with some of the strategies that the top sellers of this site use to be successful.

What are you going to sell or auction?

First of all, you will need to figure out what you’re going to sell and how you’re going to get it. If you have no funds to invest, then you’ll need to get started right in your own home. Go down to the basement, up to the attic, look in closets, in the garage, and scour your entire home for anything you’re willing to part with. In today’s world, most of us have more materials possessions than we need or use, so you’ll probably find quite a few things you could do without, and that someone else may want to buy. As you’re looking through your home for things to sell, ask yourself some important questions.

Do I have items that are new with the tags still on? These items are great to sell or auction off on eBay. Do I have any valuable antique or vintage items? Do I have any collectibles, discontinued items, or sentimental items from the past that might be valuable to someone? Today, many childhood toys that are no longer available go for high bids on eBay auctions. Do I have any electronics, tools or other items that are in good working order that I don’t need anymore? There are many items around your house that could be worth something to someone on eBay, so make sure to consider everything carefully. You’ll probably need a few days to go through your home and make an inventory list of all the possible items to put up for sale or auction on eBay.

If you do have a bit to invest or once you do (after you start making money by selling the things in your home you could use some of that money to invest), think about scouring local garage or yard sales or flea markets for valuable items that might go for high amounts in eBay auctions. Its good to do this once you’ve already been using the site for some time, that way you are already familiar with what sells well. Also, keep your eyes peeled for only slightly used high-value items left on the streets next to dumpsters. That’s right; some people just can’t be bothered to have a garage sale or donate possessions that are still in good condition and simply discard them on the street as trash.

If you find a niche, go with it. Specializing in a certain category (maybe fashion, antiques, or collectibles) will help you get better and better at knowing what sells, and what doesn’t.

Using eBay

Before you get started with eBay, do your homework. Check out how successful sellers are pricing their items to determine your starting bids or buy-it-now prices. Also, look at photos, product descriptions, and feedback to get an idea about what differentiates successful sellers from unsuccessful sellers on eBay. Obviously, you’ll want to try to mimic the later. By browsing eBay, you may also get more ideas for items you could sell on the site.

This website is an online auction site where buyers can bid on the items you put up for auction. Auctions last three, five o seven days, and the winner will be the highest bidder. You will also establish a “buy-it-now” price for any buyer that wants to skip the auction and just buy the item. You’ll need to decide if you want to factor in shipping costs into the price of the item, or charge your customer for shipping, and in that case, how much. All of this information needs to be in the product description.

The product description should be accurate and honest, mention any defects, and be simple and to the point. Check for spelling errors, and don’t overuse symbols or bold in order to maintain professionalism and set yourself apart from the rest of the competition.

Make sure you take good and very high quality photos of the items you put up for auction that clearly and accurately portrays the items and makes it look appealing. The photo should only feature the item, so put it on top of a clean white sheet to make them really stand out and not distract the viewer’s attention from the item.

If the item is used or damaged in any way, make sure you take close-up photos of that area. You want to be as honest and accurate as possible in order to have happy customers, and therefore, good feedback and a high rating. By having good reviews from customers, more people will be willing to give you a shot and buy something from you. Being a trustworthy seller can be very good for business.

Finally, when someone does purchase an item or win an auction, you’ll be responsible for shipping the item to your buyer safely, and in a timely manner. That means that you need to make sure you stay on top of this, and provide good service to your customer. Pack items with newspaper or bubble wrap to protect them, write “fragile” on the box, and get the item into the post right away.

Selling online on a website like eBay can be very lucrative, and fun. If you already have items to sell, get started. If not, with a small investment you could probably find interesting items at garage sales or flea markets. The most important thing you need to do to become a successful seller on eBay is to do your research, follow in the footsteps of other successful sellers, have integrity, professionalism and provide a good service. Who knows, it could turn in to a profitable at-home business if you’re good at it.