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How to sell on eBay: A beginner’s guide for online retailers

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In 2011, Justin Dube, a motorbike fanatic, misplaced his job as a comfort retailer supervisor and was struggling to make ends meet, so he began a facet enterprise dismantling bikes and promoting the components on eBay. He made his first sale on the identical day he posted his first itemizing, and by 2012, he was delivery greater than $5,300 price of components to folks worldwide every month.


“That’s how our enterprise on eBay got here to be,” he told eBay in 2013. “Each month, we enhance our stock and make more cash than the final.”

Promoting on eBay, Dube was in a position to not solely do what he cherished, but additionally make a residing off it, and his success illustrates simply how user-friendly eBay’s system may be — even for first-time sellers. For those who’re not conversant in {the marketplace}, you simply want a little bit of foundational data to begin promoting objects to eBay’s 182 million energetic patrons.

All the things you want to find out about efficiently promoting on eBay

Promoting on eBay doesn’t want to be exhausting, however you do want to make sure you comply with a number of steps, together with:

  • How to arrange an account
  • How to create a list
  • How to handle and optimize your listings

Let’s dive in.

Half 1: Arrange an eBay account

You possibly can arrange your eBay account in only a few steps.

Step 1: Register for a private or enterprise account

Register on Ebay example

Go to and click on “register” within the high left of the menu to create an account.

The web page defaults to registration for a private account, which is right for those who plan to sell small quantities of things sometimes. Nonetheless, for those who plan to sell massive portions commonly, decide for a enterprise account, as illustrated under.

Exampled of Create an Account Page on Ebay

Step 2: Create a consumer ID

Subsequent, you’ll be requested to select a consumer ID. Your ID might be displayed to each consumer who views your listings or interacts with you, so select knowledgeable consumer ID title that displays your enterprise. For instance, two of eBay’s high sellers, thrift.books and musicMagpie, sell books and compact discs, respectively.


Step 3: Set an computerized fee technique

After making a consumer ID, you’ll be prompted to present an computerized fee technique: PayPal, a checking account, or a credit score or debit card.

Example of Ebay Automatic Payment Method

eBay will use this fee technique to cost you for any charges relating to your vendor exercise, reminiscent of purchaser reimbursements.

Half 2: Promoting on eBay: Create a list

Now that you just’ve created a vendor account on eBay, it’s time to listing your first merchandise.

Creating a listing example on Ebay

Log in to your account and click on “Sell” within the high right-hand nook to get began.

Step 1: Determine your product

There are two other ways you possibly can listing an merchandise for sale: eBay’s fast itemizing device or the superior itemizing kind. The short itemizing device could be a good selection for your first itemizing as a result of it’ll present steerage on how to worth and ship your merchandise based mostly on earlier gross sales of the identical or comparable objects. Nonetheless, in case you have a whole lot of stock or are going to be promoting on eBay typically, it’s your decision to use the superior itemizing kind due to its further options.

To establish your product with the short itemizing device, merely enter phrases that describe your merchandise or its UPC or ISBN code within the search bar. eBay will mechanically present itemizing strategies based mostly on comparable objects which have offered. For instance, for those who’re itemizing a pair of Nike males’s footwear for sale, the short itemizing device will begin populating info for you, as illustrated under.

Tell us what you're selling form on Ebay

For those who see a list that matches the product you’re promoting, click on “choose” as illustrated under.

Tell us what you're selling form on Ebay with shoes

This may populate your itemizing with info from the chosen itemizing, and also you’ll then have a chance to edit any fields to customise your specific product.

Create your listing on Ebay with shoes

To establish a product by way of the superior device, kind the key phrases for your product into the search bar and click on “Get began.” For those who’re uncertain which key phrases to enter, establish your product by clicking “Browse classes” and deciding on the class and subcategories that greatest match your merchandise. For instance, for those who’re promoting a e-book, you possibly can then choose the e-book’s style.

Tell us what you're selling form on Ebay with books

When you’ve made your picks, a kind might be generated with a wide range of fields to fill in about your merchandise.

  • The title is the primary line of textual content folks will see about your product. Embrace crucial, compelling details about the merchandise within the title — this may make the itemizing simple to discover and entice patrons to click on on it.
  • eBay additionally requires that you just fill in product identifiers, reminiscent of UPCs and ISBNs.
  • Fill in merchandise specifics or the model and bodily particulars of what you’re promoting, reminiscent of dimension, make, mannequin, and shade. This info will make it simple for patrons to discover your product by way of search.
  • Embrace up to 12 high-resolution pictures of the merchandise you’re promoting. The minimal and most picture dimensions are 500×500 pixels and 9000×9000 pixels, however 1600×1600 pixels is beneficial. {Photograph} your product in entrance of a white background in a well-lit space to make the itemizing look skilled and uncluttered. Together with high quality photos isn’t solely visually interesting to patrons, however there’s additionally a science to it, as detailed in this FollowUp article.
  • Write an merchandise description that’s clear and concise. The copy ought to reply any questions a purchaser might have in regards to the merchandise (dimension, dimensions, specs, and many others.). Maintain the formatting easy, and think about using bullet factors to make the outline fast, easy-to-read, and mobile-friendly.

Now that your product info is full, you possibly can transfer on to the subsequent step.

Associated: How to write product descriptions to enhance gross sales

Step 2: Select between Public sale-style and fixed-price promoting

Subsequent, you’ll have to choose which kind of promoting you want to to use on eBay: public sale or fastened worth.

Selling details form on Ebay

In auction-style listings, patrons bid on objects till the tip date you set. You may also embody an “settle for Greatest Presents” choice, which permits patrons to make a proposal on an merchandise which you can then select whether or not to settle for. Whilst you can set a set worth on auction-style listings, keep in mind that it should be 30 % larger than the beginning worth.

It’s greatest to use auction-style listings in circumstances whenever you’re uncertain of the merchandise’s worth, whenever you need to sell an merchandise rapidly, or when your merchandise is uncommon or distinctive.

In fixed-price listings, also referred to as Purchase It Now listings, you set the value for the merchandise. This promoting technique is greatest to use when you realize the value you need to get for an merchandise, when you will have a whole lot of stock, or whenever you need your itemizing to seem in search outcomes for greater than 10 days.

Now that you just’ve chosen your promoting format, you possibly can resolve how lengthy your itemizing will final.

Step 3: Set your itemizing period

Subsequent, you’ll be requested to set a begin date and period time for your itemizing.

Selling details on Ebay Duration

Take into account the next components when deciding what the beginning date and period of your itemizing needs to be:

  • Your kind of promoting:
    • Public sale-style listings can final for one, three, 5, seven, or ten days.
    • Mounted-price listings are thought-about “Good ‘Til Canceled,” which means they’ll be re-listed each month till the merchandise is offered otherwise you cancel the itemizing.
  • When patrons might be online: Take into consideration when customers are almost definitely to place bids on your merchandise, and needless to say the extra people who find themselves online when your public sale is closing, the extra bids you’re seemingly to obtain. For instance, for those who listing an merchandise for sale at 3 a.m. on Saturday and choose a three-day itemizing period, it’ll finish at 3 a.m. on Tuesday when your itemizing received’t be in entrance of as many potential patrons, so on this situation, it might be greatest to schedule your listing for a later time.

Now you possibly can transfer on to truly placing a worth on your product.

Step 4: Worth your merchandise

The fields for pricing your merchandise seem just under the itemizing period.

Price your item example on Ebay

The significance of pricing can’t be overstated on eBay. Setting a aggressive fee not solely impacts patrons’ willingness to pay, however it additionally impacts how seen the merchandise is in eBay’s search results.

Pricing isn’t a guessing recreation, so do a little bit of market analysis to discover a aggressive fee for your product by looking eBay’s accomplished listings to see what number of comparable objects have offered and at what charges. To see this search filter, scroll down the left-hand panel on a search outcomes web page till you attain the Preferences part. Below “Present solely,” test off the field for “Accomplished Objects.”

Completed items example on Ebay

Listings with a inexperienced worth are people who offered, whereas listings with a pink worth are objects that ended with no sale.

Check out the costs for each offered and unsold objects, and think about how the objects’ pricing may need performed a task. Had been the unsuccessful listings priced exceptionally larger, or may one other issue, reminiscent of excessive delivery prices or poor vendor suggestions, have prevented an merchandise from promoting? You may also use this info to decide how a lot an merchandise sells for on common and to see if different sellers had extra success promoting the merchandise with a fixed-price or public sale format.

Needless to say for those who’re promoting a high-priced merchandise, an vintage, or a collectible, it may be useful to embody knowledgeable valuation or authentication paperwork to justify the merchandise’s excessive worth and attraction to bidders. You possibly can embody a picture of any such paperwork within the itemizing pictures.

Now that you just’ve decided the right worth to get patrons’ consideration, you possibly can choose delivery choices for your merchandise.

Associated: How to worth merchandise — 7 aggressive pricing methods to make a revenue

Step 5: Arrange delivery choices

When you’ve set your worth, you’ll want to arrange delivery choices for your product. Goal to make your delivery coverage as engaging as doable, whether or not that’s providing two-day delivery or free returns.

On the earth of Amazon Prime, handy delivery is an expectation of online patrons that you have to ship on to keep worthwhile.

Past assembly patrons’ expectations, providing a robust delivery coverage will increase the visibility of your merchandise on eBay. With {the marketplace}’s search engine, patrons are in a position to kind merchandise with brief delivery instances that meet eBay’s Assured Supply (EGD) tips. To qualify for EGD, a list will need to have a same-day or one-day dealing with time.

To set your delivery coverage, fill out the next info within the itemizing device:

  • Sort of fee: Choose a flat fee for all patrons, a calculated fee based mostly on the client’s location, freight delivery for massive objects that weigh greater than 150 kilos, or “No delivery: Native pickup solely.”
  • Service companies: You possibly can select from a wide range of carriers and their companies, together with USPS, FedEx, and UPS.

Calculated shipping example on Ebay


In case you are providing worldwide delivery, you’ll even have to select a sort of fee, however you’ll have solely two choices: flat fee or a calculated fee based mostly on the client’s location.

Flat cost shipping example on Ebay

For those who want help with sending orders on time, think about signing up for eBay’s International Delivery Program (GSP). With this program, sellers ship offered objects to eBay’s world delivery middle in Kentucky. From there, eBay handles any customs paperwork and ships the merchandise to patrons throughout the globe.

As a result of eBay is caring for the delivery, eBay might be accountable for any supply mishaps which will happen.

There’s no charge to be part of GSP. Nonetheless, customary eBay promoting and PayPal charges apply, together with PayPal’s transaction charges for cross-border funds. The ultimate charge is calculated based mostly on the full quantity of the merchandise sale, together with any home delivery charges.

Half 3: Handle your eBay itemizing

As quickly as your itemizing is stay, you’ll obtain an e mail informing you that it’s posted, however your function as the vendor is much from over. You’ll nonetheless want to have interaction with patrons who’ve questions, probably promote your itemizing, and full the transaction in case your merchandise sells

Whereas eBay will e mail you if a purchaser asks a query, you may as well maintain an eye fixed on your itemizing by logging in to eBay and clicking on “My eBay” within the high right-hand nook of the menu. From right here, you possibly can view your energetic listings, see how many individuals are watching your itemizing or have positioned bids, and reply any purchaser questions.

Construct a constructive vendor popularity

It’s essential to preserve a constructive vendor popularity. This will increase your credibility as a vendor, encourages patrons to store with you, and even boosts your search rating.

How to develop a constructive vendor popularity:

  • Provide aggressive pricing and delivery
  • Reply purchaser questions promptly
  • Present glorious customer support
  • Maintain observe of stock to keep away from canceling gross sales
  • Observe shipped objects and supply clients with supply dates
  • Promptly report any points you will have with a purchaser
  • Go away constructive suggestions for patrons and ask them to depart you suggestions as nicely

As you possibly can see, constructing a constructive vendor popularity entails taking motion at each step alongside the way in which, from creating your itemizing to delivery a bought merchandise.

Full a transaction

When an merchandise sells, eBay notifies the vendor instantly. When you get that message, full the transaction rapidly and precisely to preserve a constructive vendor popularity.

Listed below are a few ideas for finishing transactions in a approach that’s each safe and thoughtful of the client:

  • Ship the product as quickly because the fee is verified. eBay will inform you as quickly as fee is obtained. Generally funds can take longer to arrive based mostly on the kind of fee a purchaser makes use of, however you possibly can all the time test fee standing by way of “My eBay account.” For those who see {that a} fee is pending or on maintain, PayPal or eBay might have positioned a temporary hold on it. That is frequent for those who’re a brand new vendor who hasn’t established a promoting document but. You’ll develop into a longtime vendor after it’s been greater than 90 days since your first profitable eBay sale or for those who’ve had greater than 25 transactions and made $250 in gross sales.
  • Take motion for those who don’t obtain fee inside a few days. Begin by contacting the client to verify once they plan to ship the fee. If the client doesn’t reply to your message or bill, report the unpaid item to eBay. It’s essential to report your case inside 32 days of your itemizing ending. As soon as a case has been opened, the client has 4 days to reply or pay for the merchandise. After 4 days have handed, go to eBay’s Resolution Centerto shut the case by deciding on “obtain charge credit score” after which “shut case” on the next web page. The unpaid merchandise will then be recorded on the client’s account, the charge might be credited again to you, and you may re-list your merchandise.

For those who discover that your itemizing isn’t producing a lot curiosity although, you will get it in entrance of extra potential patrons by doing a easy promotion.

Promote your listings

Promoting on eBay could be a problem merely due to the billions of listings that exist on {the marketplace}.

By selling your itemizing by way of eBay promoting, your product has a greater likelihood of standing out and attracting patrons. In truth, in accordance to eBay, the publicity of promoted listings is 36% greater than non-promoted ones.

Promoted listings seem on the high of search outcomes when a purchaser searches for your specific merchandise. The itemizing might be recognized as “Sponsored,” as within the screenshot under.

Cat tree condo listing on Ebay

To create a promoted itemizing, you should be an eBay store subscriber. To arrange your promotion, go to and select the way you need to arrange your marketing campaign: by deciding on particular person listings or deciding on them in bulk.

Create your own campaign example

When you’ve chosen the itemizing you need to promote, an advert might be mechanically generated. Now you merely have to resolve how a lot you’re keen to pay for promotion. That is known as the advert fee.

The advert fee is a share of the merchandise worth, and sellers can set their fee to as little as 1%. This share is what you’ll pay to eBay if a purchaser clicks on your promoted itemizing and purchases your merchandise.

The advert fee you select primarily helps eBay resolve if it needs to promote your itemizing when a purchaser searches for your merchandise or one thing comparable. The upper your advert fee, the extra seemingly it’s that eBay will promote your itemizing. You possibly can view eBay’s ad rate trends by nation and class.

Now that you just’ve created a promoted itemizing, you’re nicely on your approach to turning into an knowledgeable vendor.

Experiment to always enhance as an eBay vendor

Promoting on eBay is continually evolving, and this guide offers solely foundational data. When you’re snug with the fundamentals of promoting on eBay, it’s time to experiment to find out how to make your listings extra aggressive and uncover new methods to attain clients and assist your enterprise thrive.

Begin by analyzing your account information with this guide to monitoring and making use of metrics for higher development; it should show you how to establish areas the place you possibly can experiment with new concepts.

For instance, for those who all the time create fixed-price listings, strive public sale listings to see in case your income enhance. Or, in case your itemizing isn’t producing a lot curiosity, tweak your merchandise description or take a look at out a promoted itemizing to see if it will increase gross sales.

You may also experiment with delivery choices like Justin Dube did. As he accomplished increasingly eBay gross sales, he discovered that utilizing eBay Labels and providing free delivery on all orders remodeled his enterprise and, in the end, made it sustainable.

Don’t be afraid to strive your personal assessments to decide what makes your personal listings simplest when promoting on eBay.

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