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Omni Military Loans Blog:

eBay Selling Tips

By - Posted on August 16, 2017

Your home could be filled with hidden money! Inherited some collectibles that are collecting dust?  Have an old instrument laying around that you quit playing years ago?  Stockpiling baby clothes that your children outgrew?  Consider selling them on eBay and you may be able to turn these items into cash.  

eBay is the renowned online marketplace where you can buy and sell just about anything.  It’s a great forum for getting rid of stuff you don’t want or need. You can set a “Buy It Now” price to sell your item at a fixed price, or list an item using the auction-style format. You can also list an item using the auction-style format along with a Buy It Now option.  Setting up an account is easy. To get started, visit the eBay selling basics section of its website and be sure you understand eBay’s rules and policies.  Sellers are held responsible for following eBay’s rules and people who violate them are subject to penalties that may include account suspension.  

Once you have set up an account, here are some tips you can use to maximize your eBay selling success:  

Decide if eBay is really the best place to sell your item – While eBay offers many fantastic opportunities to cash in on unwanted items, it is not the best place to sell the following: 

  • Items that are difficult to ship – Large or heavy items that are difficult and expensive to ship are better suited for selling through your local Craigslist or buy & sell Facebook page, or at a garage sale.  
  • Books – Yes you can technically sell books on eBay but you will probably be more successful selling them on Amazon.com or Half.com.  The same goes for handmade crafts which are better suited for sites like etsy.com.  
  • Expensive jewelry – Selling expensive gold, silver, and gems on eBay can be risky. Without a receipt or appraisal, a buyer can dispute the quality of the item. Jewelry can also get lost in the mail.  
  • Unauthenticated autographed items, memorabilia and collectibles – You need to be able to prove that your item and/or an autograph is not fake or counterfeit. eBay has a list of authentication companies that can evaluate your item.  

Start small – If you are an eBay newbie, start small by selling items that are not that expensive; for example, anything worth $25 or less. You’ll be able to try out your selling skills and get a hang of how eBay works without running the risk of losing a lot of money.  

Price it right – It pays – literally – to do your research.  See what similar items are being listed at, and even more importantly, what they have sold for. It is generally recommended to set popular items at a lower price. The marketplace will drive the auction price up if the demand for an item is high.  

Include quality photos – You know what they say…” a picture is worth a thousand words.”  Increase your chances of selling your item by including high-quality pictures of it in your listing.  The eBay Seller Center offers some great tips for taking photos that sell.   

Also note that it is in violation of eBay policy to use another seller’s or website’s photos. If you do use a photo that you did not take, you must have permission from the rights owner or creator.  

Write an amazing title and description – First impressions count. In your listing’s title you have up to 80 characters to attract the attention of shoppers.  Your title should include the words a shopper would be looking for, such as what the item is, the brand name, designer, size, color, model number, condition (new, used, new with tags, etc.) and other descriptive key search words.   

As for your listing’s description, it needs to be honest, original, clear and informative. Include any details a shopper would need to make a buying decision such as: 

  • The item’s condition 
  • Any markings or flaws 
  • Packaging 
  • Material 
  • Exactly what they will receive (i.e., what’s in the box, any accessories, etc.)  
  • Item’s features 
  • Any warranties 
  • Size, shape, color & other specifics 
  • Return policies 

Don’t be afraid to be creative – as long as everything you are saying is truthful and professional. For additional advice, read eBay’s tips on what should and should not be included in a title and description.  

Choose the best category –  Your listing’s title will help potential buyers find your item through search keywords, but some shoppers simply browse a category looking at what’s for sale.  To ensure that you will be found by these prospects, it is important to choose the best category for your item. Again, research is key. See where items similar to yours are listed. Here is some additional advice from Dummies.com 

Selling on eBay is a fun way to get rid of clutter and bring in some cash.  Good luck! 

Posted in Financial Tips & Advice