Is Ebay Still a Good Home Based Business?

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This is a question that is asked of me a lot. And even though Ebay has changed their format to accommodate the "big boys" and seem to have forgotten the "small sellers" and Stay at Home Moms" that actually built Ebay, I believe that it is still a viable source of income for a lot of small businesses.

But instead of the "good ol' days" when you could empty out your closet and make a lot of money, you have to be careful as to where and what you purchase for resell. The buyers today are a lot more picky then they have been in the past either due to the economy or the "mystery and glamore" of Ebay has started to wear off.

Being an Ebay Powerseller and having bought and sold on Ebay since 1996 I've seen a lot of ups and downs. But there are a group of people that continue to buy even when the economy is down and no else is buying. Those people are the "collectors". They are always looking to add one more piece to their collection and even though times are tough right now they are still willing to spend their cash.

We as sellers just have to know where the best places are to find the items that these people want.
#based #business #ebay #good #home #home business #home business opportunity #small business
  • Profile picture of the author LinearChaos
    I think there is still success to be had in the online auction arena. However, I've been quite disappointed with eBay recently. They are so stuck on PayPal and their customer service towards and protection of their sellers is awful. There are no consequences for dead beat bidders and eBay doesn't bother to do any due diligence to make sure the people creating bidder accounts are real people.

    I've started using ebid.net and onlineauction.com and I like these auction sites much much better!
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    • Profile picture of the author steveniam
      I strongly agreed with you. I was ebaying full-time and was a gold powerseller with multiple accounts since 2003 but has to stop since early this year.

      There are so many new regulations and policies which are buyers-friendly and some of buyers are taking advantage of it.

      Finally I decided early this year, it is not worth the while to continue eBaying as I was continously being blackmailed by some buyers for better discounts or else they will give negative feedbacks. Just 5 percent feedback for a stipulated period and you will have breached the seller non-performance policy and you will be subjected to discipline by eBay.

      Originally Posted by LinearChaos View Post

      I think there is still success to be had in the online auction arena. However, I've been quite disappointed with eBay recently. They are so stuck on PayPal and their customer service towards and protection of their sellers is awful. There are no consequences for dead beat bidders and eBay doesn't bother to do any due diligence to make sure the people creating bidder accounts are real people.

      I've started using ebid.net and onlineauction.com and I like these auction sites much much better!
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      • Profile picture of the author pappyy3
        I think Ebay is definitely still a good home based business concept ...even today.

        The trick is ...just like any other business model.. to research and find products that are in demand, with not too much competition.

        High comp in Ebay tends to drive prices down (Good for customers, but not so good for sellers).

        Find a niche, develop a unique selling proposition and get find a supplier that can offer goods at competitive wholesale prices and you're sweet.

        A friend of mine has had a great idea for a little while, researched the suppliers and found a great supplier at extremely good prices.

        I recommended they "test" the market using ebay.

        They've been "testing" for a few of months now (started mid June 2009) and have been consistently making (after expenses) a profit of $1,500.00 per week.

        Not bad for acting on your hunch huh?
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        • Profile picture of the author gbm000
          I believe that eBay has a big problem in that Internet Marketers think of it as being old fashioned, not cool, irrelevant etc.

          Nothing could be further from the truth.

          eBay is alive and well, and can be used by intelligent IMers in several ways to build traffic, leads and income.

          .
          .
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          • Profile picture of the author esham
            My application to become ebay affiliate partner network was rejected. Any suggestion on what are the sensitive issues or important thing that i should takecare before apply again and hopefully get approved.
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            • Profile picture of the author gbm000
              Originally Posted by esham View Post

              My application to become ebay affiliate partner network was rejected. Any suggestion on what are the sensitive issues or important thing that i should takecare before apply again and hopefully get approved.
              There is a great article on how to get into eBay Partner Network on the website of thenichestorebuilder.

              If you go there and search for epn, you'll see the article entitled: "7 Tips for Getting Accepted into ePN - eBay Affiliate Network".

              Good luck with your application.
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            • Profile picture of the author CarolRoss
              Originally Posted by esham View Post

              My application to become ebay affiliate partner network was rejected. Any suggestion on what are the sensitive issues or important thing that i should takecare before apply again and hopefully get approved.
              My APN app was rejected, too. I read about it at Jim Cockrum's private site and this is apparently happening to lots of people these days, they are getting very picky. I gather the most important piece is the website URL you submit on the application...needs to be well-developed, getting traffic, related to niche, lots of good content, etc. Not knowing that, I put the URL of a fairly new blog on the application. You might try again with a different URL or after yours is more developed.
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            • Profile picture of the author MissDarling
              I find ebay is a the best place to source low coast products to use with my home-based service provider business.

              As a seller on ebay though, I could never get over the hump of all the transaction fees, listing fees, and whatnot.

              But, if you have a great product source that really allows for a good profit margin than it could work.

              Ebay is where I go to get things for really cheap and then make my money locally. Sort of backwards I think from what it was intended to do.

              Oh well.
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              • Profile picture of the author Dean-MAS
                Originally Posted by MissDarling View Post

                I find ebay is a the best place to source low coast products to use with my home-based service provider business.

                As a seller on ebay though, I could never get over the hump of all the transaction fees, listing fees, and whatnot.

                But, if you have a great product source that really allows for a good profit margin than it could work.

                Ebay is where I go to get things for really cheap and then make my money locally. Sort of backwards I think from what it was intended to do.

                Oh well.
                I have never promoted or used products from ebay; however, my mother, who used to run her business there, would agree with you that the fees can sink your ship. This I believe is especially true if your profit margin runs close to the break even line. If you have a high overhead, it sounds like Ebay will gobble your bottom line.
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          • Profile picture of the author steveniam
            It may not be true. I was a true blue full-time eBayer for 6 years before I leave to go into internet marketing. Same with a group of friends who were full-time eBayers until they will forced into 'retirement' due to the many new regulations and policies implemented by eBay during the the last 2 years.

            Originally Posted by gbm000 View Post

            I believe that eBay has a big problem in that Internet Marketers think of it as being old fashioned, not cool, irrelevant etc.

            Nothing could be further from the truth.

            eBay is alive and well, and can be used by intelligent IMers in several ways to build traffic, leads and income.

            .
            .
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      • Profile picture of the author proshop
        I was a powerseller and did a lot on ebay for a couple of years. I think the rules began to outweigh the fun and rewards. I think World Wide Brands and others are still great for finding products to sell, but ebay is almost too high maintenance anymore.
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    • Profile picture of the author dbarnum
      Originally Posted by LinearChaos View Post

      I think there is still success to be had in the online auction arena. However, I've been quite disappointed with eBay recently. They are so stuck on PayPal and their customer service towards and protection of their sellers is awful. There are no consequences for dead beat bidders and eBay doesn't bother to do any due diligence to make sure the people creating bidder accounts are real people.
      Agree.

      Ebay is a good place to get leads from ads if you monitor them and adjust them as needed, as their search tool capabilities have changed since they opened their doors (you used to be able to get a lot more reach with keywords than you do today).
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  • Profile picture of the author chewie49
    My experience for eBay recently is that, if you don't sell products almost with Wholesale price, you won't sell too much.

    I have sold many different products, and recently, I haven't sold so much because many of the products I sell, are below wholesale price on eBay.
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  • Profile picture of the author nelson32
    well in my opinion...ebay revolves on low margin but high conversions ...so it doesnt matter where and what to sell...my friend tried selling in most of highly competitive niches and he is able to make a decent in a day...however being a powerseller definately add advantage...
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  • Profile picture of the author lavenderbags
    Like many I started my home based business on ebay 6 years ago and did very, very well I decided to give up 2 years ago as I found it just getting to hard to please customers, I was a powerseller and worked extremely hard to get there.
    Unfortunately it wasn't meant to last and I left with an awful lot of other power sellers at the time.
    Funnily enough I was speaking with someone today about may be starting up again but having looked through the ebay site this afternoon I was shocked at the changes and hike in selling fees so I have decided against trying it again.
    Good luck to anyone giving it a go J
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  • Profile picture of the author GodsGeneral
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Martin
      Originally Posted by GodsGeneral View Post

      You can kill via Ebay classifieds. Through up an ebook for a few dollars for a month and I guarantee you, you make 30-40 sales. Thats $300-600 with one auction. You can do this multiple times, with multiple niches.
      I didn't think you were allowed to sell digital products anymore on ebay?
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      • Profile picture of the author parzlou
        I think the days of home based biz are gone..
        I have sold everything on ebay from ebooks to fishing lures
        you still can make a few bucks if you wanna drop ship with the big boys still pretty tuff tho
        But I do still pop in there every now and then when I need a few quick bucks
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve Mount
      Originally Posted by GodsGeneral View Post

      You can kill via Ebay classifieds. Through up an ebook for a few dollars for a month and I guarantee you, you make 30-40 sales. Thats $300-600 with one auction. You can do this multiple times, with multiple niches.
      I'd love to see the proof of this. I've done this about 10 times and barely made a few sales each time. The classified ads section is so overrun by crap that it's hard to even stand out in there.
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  • Profile picture of the author uday1583
    I think ebay was very successful in the past but in the recent times it has lost some value.. its not able to bring in that kind of a traffic anymore and the business is to a certain extent reduced. SO kind of lost interest. I was a regular user of ebay. Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author CarolRoss
    Even with all of the recent negative issues at eBay, and there ARE many...it can't be ignored that eBay remains one of the most powerful marketing machines on the internet! Using methods to harness that power toward other avenues are still worth consideration, even if the selling item by item traditional way of using eBay has lost some sparkle.
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    • Profile picture of the author SmartMarketer
      It still is profitable, but too late to jump on it as a newbie I guess. Ebay, as well as many other BIG players are not liked by many sellers / marketers because the only thing they care about is themselves and their money. People who actually MAKE them money is nothing for them.

      Well, that`s how business is done.
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  • Profile picture of the author Josef_Benjamin
    lol, like ahuge pity party.

    I make really good money on ebay (and on my way to making GREAT money in little time).

    If your selling DVD's, pencils, bookbags and freakin' novelty staplers you probably won't make much in ebay. Even BEFORE ebay charged a bit more, it's a SHAME the slightest bit in increase for auction fees caused many people to give up.

    When your business is on the brink of bankruptcy from a small hike in ebay/paypal fees, you need to go over your business plan and ask yourself...what am I doing wrong?

    Your selling items that get low profit margins, and to many powersellers were counting on making money from SHIPPING CHARGES then they were from the sale of the item (which they lost money or broke even on).

    I know, because I still remember the days when people would charge almost the same for shipping as their $20 vintage kodak camara. Ebay did the right thing (stopping over charging for shipping) and anybody who can't see ebay as a blessing to the world seriously needs a wake up call.

    "Ebay took this from me, feebay did this, feebay did that"

    Let it go. Any good entrepreneur knows your not supposed to have all your eggs in one basket anyways.

    Maybe I sound harsh, but it's strange to see postings like this when I'm making several hundred a WEEK (soon thousands easily). If you wanna make big money, sell big products. Get away from selling pencil sharpners, find your niche, and kick butt.

    JoeDaEbayKing
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  • Profile picture of the author MoneyNeverSleeps
    Yes it is still a good home based business. Product sourcing is the key. You need a good product from a reliable supplier that has some demand. It is almost impossible to compete with the big boys in categories such as electronics but the niche markets are a good option. You can get a lot of free information about ebay and product sourcing from a company called Worldwide Brands. Good Luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author Josef_Benjamin
    again...makingmoney with ebay is a CHOICE.

    people choose to quit, hang up the towel and leave when things change a little bit.

    I don't feel any ebay fee's or major ebay policies most people talk about, because
    as an entrepreneur, I learn how to adapt and flow with the tide.

    By the way, you can play in ANY market you want to play in...including electronics and rake in serious money...or you can wish, hope, and dream a magical PS3 sourcing company will come along and give you the golden key.

    With persistence, patience, and most importantly research, you will find your money making niche(s).
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  • Profile picture of the author netalab
    I think it also depends on the Product/Service that you are selling on ebay...
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  • Profile picture of the author int-mark
    As an ebay powerseller myself previously I couldn't agree more. the people who make the real money are the collectors and investors. It is very hard these days for people starting off to make good money when they are competing against these big boys who get cheaper fees, have loads more feedback, and as you say the economy is bad and people are much more careful from who they buy from these days and what they buy. It can be done but it is hard to do!
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  • Profile picture of the author maesil
    So does that mean it's virtually impossible for any internet newbie to make a very fair $50 per day income using ebay? I myself am very interested in ebay's product listing services.
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  • Profile picture of the author SlfMastery
    Like a previous post mentioned, internet marketers must think "out of the box" so to speak, especially when eBay is leaning in favor for the buyers.

    The traffic is still there and it is the "BUYING" type of traffic! That is gold to internet marketers. Find ways to tap into that.

    Here's one: Use of eBay's classified ads is one way to tap into their traffic. I saw one ad w/ over 4,000 hits. One strategy I read about was to capture their email w/ a free bonus give away so you can (email) market to them (a targeted group) in the future. Compare the cost to Google AdWords: at a rate of just .01 per click at Google, that would be over $40 (and the Ad had not reached its 30 day expiration yet). Ebay's cost...$10 for unlimited clicks.

    So, eBay is still a good home based business, just not in the sense of "traditional" selling via auction/Buy it Now format.

    For those that love to sell via auctions, sell something that nice old ladies and men like, i.e. collectable dolls, antique items, etc. At least your chances of getting a fraudulent buyer is greatly reduced.
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    • Profile picture of the author steveniam
      Agreed. If you want to make money on eBay, you will need to sell items like collectibles or antique items.

      Other items like watches, apparel etc will get you a lot of problems. Even your items are genuine, you will still be suspected to be selling counterfeit. Buyers will take advantage to blackmail you for a good offer or else they will leave you a negative feedback which can get you into breaching the seller non-performance policies easily. That how my accounts get suspended even I was eBay powerseller (Gold) for quite a few years.

      I give up on eBay since late last year after making a reasonable good income for the last few years trading full time.

      Originally Posted by SlfMastery View Post


      So, eBay is still a good home based business, just not in the sense of "traditional" selling via auction/Buy it Now format.

      For those that love to sell via auctions, sell something that nice old ladies and men like, i.e. collectable dolls, antique items, etc. At least your chances of getting a fraudulent buyer is greatly reduced.
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  • Profile picture of the author janvera
    Ebay can absolutely still make money, the thing is though, them and Paypal pretty much take all your money. Sometimes they make more off of a sale than the seller!
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  • Profile picture of the author cheesy
    Ebay can be used as a great business opertunity, i know a local computer store that started out on ebay, and they had a lot of success.
    Personally i dont use eBay much, the only reason i really use it if im honest is to sell my video games, its much better than selling them back to the store I bought a game for £27, sold it on ebay after playing it for about a month for £25, the store offered me £12 for it. So eBay is great for video game selling Incase you wanted to find a good niche xD
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  • Profile picture of the author mul781
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    • Profile picture of the author steveniam
      It's not about competition - it's about unfriendly and unhelpful policies that eBay introduced that are too buyers' friendly that put off a lot of sellers.

      When I find myself uncompetitive at US eBay I moved to France eBay. UK ebay, France ebay, Germany ebay. I have moved from selling DVD boxset, handphone, watches and finally apparels before I encounter lot of problem with eBay due to policies changes which favor buyers.

      So if eBay remain neutral and not favoring buyers I will be selling on eBay in no time. I can strive under competitive environment if given an opportunity.

      Originally Posted by mul781 View Post

      It seems to me there is so much competition on EBay that profit margins are slim for most products. I use to use Ebay but don't anymore.

      What do Todd Gross, Derrick VanDyke, Ken Reno and other brilliant marketers know that you don"t? Find out here: http://www.wwkiosk.com/members/mul781/team_gvo_invite.php
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  • Profile picture of the author jacqo
    yes,its it is.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jim Hudson
      I was an old member of eBay from 1997, I quit using it from a seller standpoint due to policy changes and fees. It used to be a fun place to sell my hand made items and antique glass, not anymore. Mostly junk with very few quality items in my categories anymore, so I stopped. The cutthroat tactics turn me off as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author newstar
    Corey Rudl's company used to sell a course on how to make money on ebay. I think they've discontinued it (?) If they did, that should say something about ebay as a business opportunity nowadays.

    (I may be wrong about it though)
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    • Profile picture of the author Francis Ochoco
      Originally Posted by newstar View Post

      Corey Rudl's company used to sell a course on how to make money on ebay. I think they've discontinued it (?) If they did, that should say something about ebay as a business opportunity nowadays.

      (I may be wrong about it though)
      They are still selling the course. It sells for around $100 to $200.
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  • Profile picture of the author E-supreme
    Ebay is definetly still alive and profitable for sellers. People are making a lot of money on ebay. I make £175 profit on each iphone 32GB s I sell on ebay and $100 on each camera I sell. There just too products I happen to sell. You just need the right suppliers, not only that but you can also make a lot of money by directing traffic to your ebay listings. Many people on ebay are selling items at a $2-$5 profit margin. Obviously the only way to make decent money from this is by selling a large quantity.

    Dropshipping is a great way to start but eventually you will want to buy goods on wholesale and thats where your profit margins increase drastically

    There are many tricks people dont utilise to get the most out of selling. For example

    1.directing customers back to your website when they receive your product in the post.

    2.Selling in countries that a product may be difficult to come by.

    3.Using the ebay classified ads.

    4. Using the power of craigslist to sell your products through ebay. There are so many other methods than just listing your ads.

    5. The aim is to get repeat customers. Having a customer you just sold to on your list is a powerful thing as they have trusted you to buy your product in the first place.

    6. Make sure you target a hungry niche and set your ebay business around that 1 niche. Think about it you dont see many who sell health products selling ipods or mobile phones. Become the "go to person" for your niche. Selling items that customers will need to buy again, for example batteries is a good way to go.

    7. Knowing what time of the day to sell your items is crucial especially if you are selling by auction. Theres no point in having your listing ending at 2 in the morning. Have it finish at 7 or 8 in the evening and you will notice a substantial increse in profits.

    8. Many people complain about receiving negative feedback. The best way to look at it is, if you are serious about a long term business you should refund the customer or even come to an arrangement with them and try go out of your way to get positive feedback.

    9. Testing is crucial.

    10. Just like IM keywords are very important on ebay

    Selling on ebay and making a profit is not difficult in my opinion you just need to know how to get the most out of ebay. These are just a few points to staying on the right track.
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  • Profile picture of the author bond007
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  • Profile picture of the author bozz723
    Ebay is definitely still a solid tool, but I wouldn't call it a home based business and that alone.


    You can still utilize Ebay big time for marketing purposes. It is just too far changed to begin with the old ebay business schemes. New tactics must arrive.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dodiekaley
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  • Profile picture of the author Powertreb
    Well, here's the thing...

    The traffic is there. In recent years there have been loads of auction sites popping up, but they have only made a tiny dent for ebay (at best). I know they have screwed their startup community, and many sellers left ebay.

    I remember a mass exodus of sellers leaving ebay in protest. The thing is...How does that type of protest accomplish anything? ebay relies on the buyers. They know there will ALWAYS be sellers. But the more buyers ebay has, the better it is for them.

    They are not a little company anymore. ebay is now a giant, and has been for years. It's the nature of the beast. The "Mom & Pop" approach does not have a place on a multi-billion dollar global scale. Show me a single billion dollar corporation that favors the little guy over the behemoth? Any mega-corporation (or any smart business for that matter) will follow the 80/20 rule. 80% of your profits will always come from 20% of the producers.

    And those sellers that left eBay...the only thing they accomplished was giving their competitors that stayed tons of new customers. The buyers don''t care about a seller's fee. They care about getting a good value.

    I've never had success ebay. Well I've sold stuff but I never put in a full steam effort to start up an ebay store. I sell stuff and buy stuff on ebay from time to time. But as someone at the beginning of the post commented, you need to learn to adapt. And if a small hike in seller fees forced you out, then your business model had flaws in it.

    There's no room for emotion or personal loaylty in business. Sorry, I know cheesy movies with happy endings drive home a different point, but that is why they are MOVIES. Reality ends differently, and the rules of business have not changed much since the days when Adam first figured out he could sell fig leaves to naked travelers.

    You're free to complain and all, but those of you that completely left ebay and gave up your entire customer base to search for a better auction site or revenue channel...can you perhaps envision just tweaking a few things to make back the profit being lost to higher seller fees? Don't you think that may have been a smarter long-term approach?

    You're paying the monthly anyway. Did a small percentage hike actually put you in the red? Because if that's the case then I can't imagine much of a profit before the fee hike. Unless you were making thousands of sales...which in that case would indicates fantastic customer traffic and it would be foolish to give that up completely.

    It's like owning a restaurant with a good amount of traffic...you've been there for years. Suddenly, your rent goes up, your electric bill is higher, and supplies are higher due to increased gas prices.

    So instead of tweaking, adjusting, and adapting, you say "screw this", and pack up your things, abandon the restaurant, move to a completely different state. Find a new place, buy it, renovate it, and then start trying to get your first customer to your new restaurant that noone has ever heard of.

    Just sounds like the wrong choice to me.
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    • Profile picture of the author SlfMastery
      Originally Posted by Powertreb View Post

      Well, here's the thing...

      The traffic is there. In recent years there have been loads of auction sites popping up, but they have only made a tiny dent for ebay (at best). I know they have screwed their startup community, and many sellers left ebay.

      I remember a mass exodus of sellers leaving ebay in protest. The thing is...How does that type of protest accomplish anything? ebay relies on the buyers. They know there will ALWAYS be sellers. But the more buyers ebay has, the better it is for them....
      __________________________________________
      Well said "Powertreb"!!

      If eBay did not have the (buying) traffic, then I would say forget eBay, too. But like I mentioned, there are ways to tap into eBay's traffic, yet avoid their "buyer friendly" rules.

      I still have lots to learn in IM but here's a couple of the things I've learned/ am learning from Jim Cockrum's book and other sources he mentions in his newsletter:

      1. Use eBay Classified Ads - He suggest building a mailing list and that's one thing I still have to try in the future. As far as being able to link directly to a vendors "Pitch Page," here's a quote from a book I just bought, "Unfortunately, no one, currently not even eBay staff will say for certain that PayPal buttons and direct affiliate links are banned from eBay Classified Ads. I know that for certain because I've asked the question of eBay staff and outside eBay experts, and I've searched blogs and forums and found no definite answer."

      2. Form Joint Ventures w/ Sellers that have targeted traffic. I think this is a more andvanced strategy where you capitalize on impulsive purchases on the backend. It's the same idea supermarkets use when, for example, people go shopping for beer, they have products that complement beer drinking, i.e. coolers, chips, bottle openers, etc.

      New creative ideas surface as new tools, products, and rules come about and I let my "buddy" Jim figure all that out and just go with what intrigues ME (not what other's say is the "best" way to make money).

      Re: Change. It is inevitable so this is how you deal with change. It is summed up in this great children's video. Here's "Who Moved My Cheese?" Viddler.com - WHO MOVED MY CHEESE!!! - Uploaded by VHGNYC

      Aloha!
      CM
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  • Profile picture of the author BertTassoni
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    Well put. :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author entrepreneurjay
    I know a lot of people hurting on ebay these days. Sales way down because of new rules they have and the economy. People are selling more just using craigslist.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kadekaden
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    • Profile picture of the author E-supreme
      The way to look at selling on ebay is that the fees you pay are merely for advertising. No where else can you get that same amount of targeted traffic for such an unbelievable price.

      I make a killing from ebay and one of the best ways I accomplish this is keyword optimised ads. They get picked up in the search engines very quickly and double the traffic you would get from just ebay alone.

      People come onto ebay with the view to purchase and your ad has to fulfill all their requirements.

      There are so many lazy sellers that do not write up descriptions and it puts their bounce rate through the roof. I was selling a particular xbox game on pre launch and sold over 250 within the space of 1 week with a 75% conversion rate- (75% of the people viewing my listing purchased).

      Its always good to sell something that buyers have to have and new games that are due to be released can make you some serious money. I was making €8 profit on each game. Its not difficult you just need the right resources and the right suppliers.
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  • Profile picture of the author danielmcclure
    This has definitely been an interesting post. I used to sell regularly via eBay and was one of the sellers who stopped when they made a policy change. I know it was due to the way I had things structured back then so I have no doubt I could have continued with a little tweaking but moved on to different things. I have recently been considering getting involved again. The best way to go forward I beleive is simply testing and seeing if it works for you in your niche.
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  • Profile picture of the author thatkiwiguyonline
    Ok then if ebay is losing it's shine do you have anything out there that is good
    Like Me for instances I just join up with Dubli
    Brand new product's and all and you can sell it on Ebay
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  • Profile picture of the author gcintermed
    eBay is just a channel connecting potential buyers with sellers. As they change, it's going to effect what works, and you'll have to adapt to be successful. No hard feelings necessary, just test and adapt to new conditions.

    But eBay does have a strategic problem which is why their business is in trouble. They started out as a "trading community" bringing together lots of small players, in a way that only the internet could do. But then they got seduced by e-commerce and the potential of being the distribution channel for mass merchants. They looked over at Amazon and decided that's where the growth is. Now they are stuck in the middle. They'll never beat Amazon for efficiency and consistency of shopper experience. And at the other end, the p2p transactions are flooding to Craigslist, for which 'Kijiji' is no match.

    I see the future of eBay as a wholesale marketplace, because its biggest strength is that people expect and find great deals, and they get floods of traffic. If you want a reliable, predictable transaction, go to Amazon. If you want to spend some time looking for a killer deal, go to eBay.

    This of course has implications for sellers. If you are the low cost seller in your niche, or looking to generate leads, you'll do great on eBay. For everyone else... not so much.
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    • Profile picture of the author Mikyalah123
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  • Profile picture of the author freudianslip27
    I have found ebay to be quite saturated in the markets I wanted to explore. I understand the potential is still there, but stuff I use to do I can't anymore.

    It does seem inviting though, to be able to sell dropshipped items. Talk about a low-risk business to start out with. Great idea for people willing to put the effort in.

    Matt
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  • Profile picture of the author Calvin Tan
    not sure about e-bay. may be i will try it one day. free upgrade from buyer to seller. =D
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    • Profile picture of the author buckapple
      Hi,

      Interesting thread. I've been on eBay since 99 and became a powerseller a couple of years ago. I would agree with most of the posts here. If you got " me too" products it can be a tough.

      I think your product has to be unique or you have products to dump at wholesale prices to make a go of it. I was able to get an exclusive before I ran a campaign because I knew the source would be approached after my auctions took off.

      If you're good at research you might find a niche and a dropshipper and make out.

      Classified ads are good for email collection.

      eBay itself is good for people starting out learning IM. For instance you're going to learn the ins and outs of using paypal, writing ads, headlines, finding keywords, all the things you're going to have to learn, you can practice there. The good side is the traffic, it's already there.

      Sure their fees suck but with the new arrangement, it's all on the backend, by that I mean after the sell is made, to just list an item now is something like .35, so you can experiment.

      There's a lot of shoppers that still go to eBay because they "think" they are going to get a deal.

      Cheers!
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      • Profile picture of the author papeter
        I started in 2001 and sold all sorts of rubbish and got good prices. I then bought tons of Xmas lights from Costco and re-sold them for 50% profit. I later found out there was an auction held every Saturday of costco's returns and faulty goods. For the next 3 years I sold
        tons and tons of HP inkjet printers, laptops, PC's. All with faults but still in warranty and got HP to replace the printers with factory refurbished ones. They soon cottoned...It was great though whilst it lasted.

        Haven't done much with Ebay since then, but may do sometime in the future. It's still a superb and viable business model for newcomers to start their online business. Now is the perfect time during UK's recession, for people facing or made redundant to put their thinking cap on and promote something totally unique to generate some moolah!

        Sell overstock items on behalf of local shops/businesses and take a 20% - 30% cut!! That's what I would do.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sosu
    Ebay is not like it was. During the dot com bust, I would buy unix server parts cheap off Ebay, build unix servers and load O/S, and put them back on Ebay for huge profits. I sold everything else from swords to domains. Now it just seems hard to keep my auctions from getting pulled. I would put an auction up, go to bed and find it removed in the morning for some trivial issue they had.
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    • Profile picture of the author Martyn Walker
      I stopped selling on ebay a couple of years ago because it was becoming tiresome with the ever changing rules.

      But I still buy. Although I rarely go into shops these days, when I do, and see something I like I'll note the model number and price and research forums, ebay and Amazon etc before I buy. That is of course if I can resist the "must have it now - greedy pig - gimme the damn thing now" feeling.
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    • Profile picture of the author proshop
      Absolutely agree. We also had some very valuable family pieces that sold for nothing, so it ended up being just another job that was no longer fun.
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  • Profile picture of the author TrafficMystic
    The cost and reliance on ebay is just too great for someone wanted to create a monthly income stream from home.. one minute you may be doing very well then a policy is suddenly put in place or something changed and you income stream is gone..

    I was a powerseller on ebay for over 2 years, I was importing goods direct from china and selling them through a proper company I had set up specifically for ebay. But being a bit blinkered in my early days, I didnt expand my income stream to any thing else.. Then over the space of 6 month when ebay increased fees / changed the visibility of items as well of many policies, enforced the use of paypal for certain items (more expenses) is was just not worth the effort for the return anymore.

    It was very time consuming packing things up, you always had around 10% of buyers trying to scam you and because of poor paypal protection (I was selling electronic items) is was always 50/50 if you would win even through you had followed all the big list of criteria..

    At the end of the day ebay have killed the selling of items on there own site and the income of fees off those sellers. I would suggest maybe using ebay as a small part of your income stream but have others streams in parrallel in case one drops off..

    as they say 'dont put all your eggs in one basket'
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Johnson
    The most recent changes to eBay rules has swung things slightly back towards the favour of the seller. Things like "top rated Seller" and improvements to the dispute resolution process.

    I used to rely on eBay for my main income until a raft of changes made it very difficult for me to continue that way. It prompted me to start up my own e-commerce website, I haven't looked back since. I have the best of both worlds, I sell for good profit by sending traffic from google to my E-commerce site using SEO techniques, I then sell slow selling and clearance items on ebay, utilizing their huge automatic traffic.

    My advice to anyone trying to make money by selling physical products online or dropshipping, is to use eBay's great traffic but don't totally rely on it, find other sales channels too.
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  • Profile picture of the author ddistco
    I actually started selling online on eBay. and i thought it was great for about 2.5 years. I didn't know much about interent marketing and found that when I listed things on eBay I was actually getting sales and that was enough to suck my in for that 2.5 years. I then got away from eBay to get into real estate and just recently started the IM strategy again. I found that eBay was very thin in profitability after all fees.

    Finding products that you can purchase and resell seemed to be teh issue that I finally ran into until I started selling information products and then my profitability went back up and it made sense to start marketing outside of eBay.

    I made a vowel that if I wanted to really learn how to market on the internet that I would have to be off of eBay so that I could control my cost and not be concerned with what ever the latest eBay rules are this month.

    I remember I had been selling a product on eBay for about a year and one day I noticed that my eBay auctions were cancelled becasue eBay decided that my auctions didn't meet their requirements. That was the event that taught me that I needed to be outside of a website that held all the rules and regulations.

    Haven't been back to eBay ever since...3 years and counting.

    I wish those that continue to run with the eBay business much success. I know it works as long as you're willing to work with the eBay authorities.

    Thanks for reading...
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    Mark Coble
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    Local Search Marketing Services
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  • Profile picture of the author Alexchan338
    I dont knwo about that yasser, thats the opposite, there are thousands of fake or false products on ebay, especially cosmetics, branded clothings...I used to shop on ebay, but now...even cellphones are fake. Seller can post nokia phone and sell you a china copied phone. Then you have to go through the whole stupid paypal process....annoying...now i buy through amazon more often.
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  • Profile picture of the author Stuart Turnbull
    You are so right about collectors still spending their cash in a recession.

    My market is collectors and my final values have never been higher!

    Check out my sig for some examples
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    http://stuart-turnbull.com - NOT your run of the mill marketer
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  • Profile picture of the author Silas Hart
    eBay's goal is to completely weed out the small guys and small little companies and only cater to the big boys, and they want to be more like Amazon, and less like Craigslist. eBay CEO's have been saying something like that for years. They don't really care about the auction aspect of eBay, and this is apparent with all of the opportunities they are giving out with free auctions, but never free Buy It Now.


    I absolutely wouldn't be where I am on the eBay market place if I werent an actual business, and I didnt have such direct sources. Now I've got teams who do my networking, logistics, and research. I started out just going to yard sales and garage sales and flipping things I knew were profitable, and then auctions, then dropshipping, and now I buy in bulk directly from china with no middle men and I still dropship directly from China to myself or to my customers.
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