eBay is the largest and most lucrative online marketplace, with 182 million users worldwide.
eBay has more active users than all of the other major reselling platforms, combined! You can sell (almost) anything on eBay, from clothing to cars and even parcels of land. The permitted items list is so expansive, that it is easier to list what you can’t sell on eBay. eBay is a global platform, and you can easily sell items to buyers all over the world through the Global Shipping Program.
It is time to start selling on eBay to grow your reselling business. If you’re brand new to eBay, check out this blog: How to Get Started Selling on eBay.
Looking to level-up and make more sales on eBay? Here is how to make more money selling on eBay:
1. Consistency is Key
You have to feed the eBay beast. Like all platforms, eBay requires consistency and daily activity for best results. One of the most important things you can do is list new items daily.
I recommend using Vendoo’s bulk delist/relist feature to have brand new listings every day in just seconds!
Consistency is also important in your listing style, seller policies, pricing, and promotion.
I chatted with pro eBay sales coach Kathy Terrill who explained: listing volume is important, but listing optimization is the key.
Not sure what to sell on eBay? eBay top-selling categories include jewelry and watches, electronics (computers, tablets, phones, cameras, video game consoles, games, and accessories), clothing and apparel, and health and beauty products.
Pro eBay Tip: For faster listing, establish eBay Business Policies, where you can save your shipping, return, and payment preferences. These custom preferences are saved as “business policies” and become your default settings when drafting listings, so you do not have to make all of these selections each time.
You Might Also Be Interested In the Article: 10 Great Marketplaces Every Reseller Should Consider
2. Get an eBay Store
To accelerate your eBay, open an eBay store! There are many types of accounts and subscription tiers on eBay which offer various benefits to you as a reseller including avoiding insertion fees, promoting items, shipping supplies and discounts, and other business tools and benefits.
eBay store subscriptions range from “Starter” which is an entry-level option for “occasional sellers’ to “Enterprise” for professionals with large catalogs and a high volume. There are additional options for everywhere in between, which are illustrated in detail here.
While eBay offers a basic account, it is limited. Most eBay experts insist that you need an eBay store to be very successful on the platform.
If you’re wondering if you’re ready for an eBay store, you are. Stores start at approximtately $5 per month.
The benefits of having an eBay store include (but are certainly not limited to):
Lower (or no) insertion fees
Discounts on final value fees
Promotional offers and the ability to offer a sale
Free shipping supplies
Discounts of business services
Seller insights and business tools
Enhanced customer service
Kathy explains “With an eBay store, you get Promotions Manager…. ONLY eBay store owners can use this handy tool.” The Promotions Manager lets you create a variety of sales events including markdown and coupons.
3. Maximize Your Listings
eBay listings are a bit high maintenance, but take the time to maintain them! Be sure to include high-quality eye-catching images, and maximize your title for search engine optimization (SEO).
As for those pesky item specifics, most pro sellers recommend filling them out entirely. Execute all of the item specifics for best results and increased exposure. All of the specifics are searchable, and the more of them, the better!
Reseller Tip: Unlike some of the other reselling platforms, eBay sellers recommend putting an item’s size right in the title”
4. Enhance Your eBay Pricing Model
eBay has a massive number of sellers- you’ve got competition. Pricing competitively is important in such a saturated market.
Explore the average asking price for similar items (“comps”) to get an idea of what your item is selling for. For quick sales, undercut comps. To price significantly higher than comps, you’ll want to maximize your listings with promotional activities.
To gain an advantage and increase watchers, consider promoting your listings on eBay. In most cases, you only pay the promotion fee when your item sells as a direct result of the promotion.
While plenty of sellers charge shipping, offering free shipping is another great way to gain a competitive advantage. In Amazon Prime days, no one likes paying for shipping!
Another great option is including the ability for buyers to make an offer on your items. Buyers love to feel as though they’re getting a good deal.
You can also offer volume pricing which is the equivalent of “bundle discounts” when buyers purchase multiple items.
Of course, you can also send offers to watchers, even in bulk!
Pro eBay Tip: Change prices, send coupons, send offers, and manage your listings in bulk in your eBay Seller Hub.
We also LOVE a bidding war. How does eBay bidding work? eBay bidding allows buyers to place bids on items listed for auction. Bidders enter the maximum amount they are willing to pay, and eBay's automated system incrementally increases the current bid until the maximum is reached. The highest bidder at the end of the auction wins the item and is obligated to complete the purchase.
5. Use eBay Coupons
eBay offers sellers the ability to offer exclusive discounts to buyers using a coded coupon.
Kathy explains that “Coupons are hot-hot-hot on eBay!”
In fact, “In a recent Investors Day event, eBay CEO Jamie Iannone said that millions of eBay shoppers have used seller-generated coupons.”
Kathy explains that there are two kinds of coupons: public and private. “Public coupons are visible on those listings you select for inclusion in the offer. Private coupons are only seen by shoppers you choose. For example, private coupons can be sent to past shoppers through the Manage Orders page in Seller Hub or eBay’s My Messages. Coupons can also be shared via social media. Buyers simply apply the coupon code at Checkout.” -Kathy
Click here to check out a video Kathy made about coupons with eBay Senior Product Manager, Parin Jogani.
6. The Customer is Always Right
The eBay customer is always right, even when they really aren’t. You will need to provide 5 star customer service.
This is a given, right? You do not need to read a blog to be told to be a good seller. I am sure you are already delivering accurate descriptions, timely responses to questions and offers, offering lightning-fast shipping, always being polite and professional (and never petty, hehe). Good, keep it up.
eBay provides a massive global audience, the most exposure and visibility, and the largest array of business tools and resources. With great power comes responsibility. To be frank, eBay does not tolerate some of the “bad behaviors” which one might get away with elsewhere.
Positive feedback is crucial on eBay, and negative feedback can be detrimental to your account. It is important to keep your customers happy. The best ways to do this include:
Transparency and honesty in descriptions, particularly regarding the condition, prompt and professional communication, and shipping quickly are all pieces of positive feedback you want your buyers to give!
7. Offer Free Returns
Resellers hate the word “returns.” Hear me out- if your buyers want to return an item, they’re going to. They will open up an “INAD” (item not as described return claim) and eBay will likely side with the buyer. Yes- even if your item is exactly as described, the eBay buyer is always right. You are highly unlikely to “win” a case on eBay.
However, INADs can truly jeopardize your account, decrease your promotion, and even increase your fees. You do not want too many INADs.
When a buyer successfully opens an INAD claim, you will have to accept the return, pay the return shipping, and you have an infraction on your account. So, you might as well offer free returns, because either way a determined buyer will force one upon you. This is an inevitable part of selling on eBay. On the plus side, most buyers want what they’re buying, and returns aren’t as common as you might fear.
8. Follow the Rules
As I hinted above, eBay doesn’t play. Follow the rules or you get the boot (permanently, blocking your email, IP address, and connected accounts) As with all platforms, it is important to learn the rules before you start selling. Be sure to carefully review eBay’s terms of service and seller protection information.
Don’t be intimidated or discouraged. Ebay is strict, and that is a good thing- they are a serious platform for serious sellers where you can make serious money.
eBay has a lot of rules, but also a lot of tools:
A Huge Audience (182 Million Users)
A Broad Range of Categories
Lower Selling Fees
Decent Customer Service
Seller Resources and Analytics
A Mobile Application
Different Tiers of Membership (Subscriptions)
Various Shipping Options
The Ability to Promote Listings
Different Listing Types (Auctions or Fixed Price)
So much more!
Want to learn more from an eBay expert?
Follow Kathy Terrill, eBay sales and social media coach and the recipient of the eBay Business Advocate award. Kathy runs popular Facebook groups for thousands of sellers and has a private membership group, Love2BeSelling Insider. Kathy works as a coach with sellers of all levels to maximize their eBay sales. Follow Kathy here.
Do you sell on eBay? Drop your best eBay tip below!