Any ebay experts? Got a Q...

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Im looking at expanding my personal training business to include selling equipment through an ebay store. Ive found a really good supplier, currently negotiating prices - looks like there'll be about a 4 week turn around from my supplier until the products are in my hands, my aim is sell the product before they land - has anyone got any WSOs or advice to help me achieve this?
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  • Profile picture of the author ProfessorSeo
    Banned
    I used to sell and make a lot of money on ebay using a dropshipper. If your starting out make sure you dont sell more than $2000 your first month if you make too much money paypal with freeze your account!

    Pm me and tell me what your looking for I will be happy to help
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    • Profile picture of the author John Thornhill
      Am I right in thinking you want to list the items on eBay before you actually have them in your possession?

      This could be risky, especially if this is the first time you have dealt with the supplier. What if delivery gets delayed? What if the products are poor quality? This could seriously effect your eBay feedback.

      My advice would be to wait till you have possession of the goods you intend to sell.

      John
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    • Profile picture of the author emdubl
      Originally Posted by ProfessorSeo View Post

      I used to sell and make a lot of money on ebay using a dropshipper. If your starting out make sure you dont sell more than $2000 your first month if you make too much money paypal with freeze your account!

      Pm me and tell me what your looking for I will be happy to help

      So will they freeze it if you start making too much money right away? Can you gradually work up to over $2000? Or is this a set monthly limit that always triggers an account freeze?

      just curious...
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      • Profile picture of the author Andrew Milburn
        Originally Posted by emdubl View Post

        So will they freeze it if you start making too much money right away? Can you gradually work up to over $2000? Or is this a set monthly limit that always triggers an account freeze?

        just curious...
        Hi

        I hate using the phrase "It depends", but it all depends on the niche you are in, how long you have had an account etc etc.

        One of my clients sells in the baby niche and they sell on average £2,000 a day of items, yes they did have limits and yes they still do, but these increase week by week. They are a new business, so eBay does it to protect them customers and eBay/Paypal.

        Once you have sold items, sent them out, had feedback, paid bills etc, then your limits will increase.

        If it happens speak to eBay and as long as you are verified all should be well
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    • Profile picture of the author Brian John
      Originally Posted by ProfessorSeo View Post

      I used to sell and make a lot of money on ebay using a dropshipper.
      do u still sell on ebay? if not, why did you stop?

      i've been thinking about selling there.
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  • Profile picture of the author Andrew Milburn
    Originally Posted by Steve Foulds View Post

    Im looking at expanding my personal training business to include selling equipment through an ebay store. Ive found a really good supplier, currently negotiating prices - looks like there'll be about a 4 week turn around from my supplier until the products are in my hands, my aim is sell the product before they land - has anyone got any WSOs or advice to help me achieve this?
    eBay is a great platform to start selling on and also is a good platform all round. And remember eBay is just that a platform. Yes they drive massive traffic every second to the site, but the shop/store needs to be set up in a correct fashion and using proper keywords and pictures and writing a good description.

    Are you talking about selling the items before you have them in your hands? If so you can do this (but eBay do not really like that), they allow drop-shipping though !!!

    But what you need to be careful about is customers what the product fast. And you could run into challenges if the supplier says you will have the goods on 10th August and then on the 9th it changes to the 20th, customers will be unhappy, eBay unhappy, PayPal unhappy , feedback very unhappy.

    You will need to firm up the dates.

    I have a client who is selling a high end item, and they have had account restrictions several times. This is no reflection on them or you if it happens, this applies to new sellers and also some niches. For example my client was selling 3 items a month when I met them in March, they are now selling 10 a day (average price £300.00 per item), so eBay rightly so watch the account closely. They know this and we work with eBay to manage the listings.

    Hope all goes well for you
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    • Profile picture of the author steveniam
      I used to have a thriving business (make more than $10k profit a month) on eBay for about 5 years before eBay suspended my account about two years back when they have frequent changes of policies and I did not manage it properly. I was then one of the top seller (South East Asia region) for a certain category of apparel.

      My DSR went down from 99.9% to 92% in less than a month when I was on vacation during the period when they start to disallow sellers to post negative feedbacks on buyers. Buyers have a field day to post negative feedbacks when I do not accede to their requests.

      Not long after I start to receive calls from eBay (locally and from US) to remind me of feedbacks and subsequently I start to receive limits on my listings before I was finally suspended.

      Paypal also suspended my account later for almost a month before they allow me to withdraw all the balances. After my withdrawal I was not able to access the account but they allow me to open a new account.


      Originally Posted by Andrew Milburn View Post

      I have a client who is selling a high end item, and they have had account restrictions several times. This is no reflection on them or you if it happens, this applies to new sellers and also some niches. For example my client was selling 3 items a month when I met them in March, they are now selling 10 a day (average price £300.00 per item), so eBay rightly so watch the account closely. They know this and we work with eBay to manage the listings.

      Hope all goes well for you
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Foulds
    Im importing from China, just negotiating minimum orders. I worked in international freight for almost 10 years, so im not worried about that side of things. I plan to buy of everything I need for my personal use to assess quality, shipping times etc.

    If all is well, ill buy in bulk - to cut the BS, my main issue is default on my credit file makes it hard to get loans. (The default is crap, im fighting to get it removed from my file, the ombudsman already ruled in my favour in the circumstance, i just found out about the default.) - this is why i need to minimize the amount of $ i need to find before the shipment arrives - i COULD say, something like "please allow 4 weeks for manufacture" but i do understand people want products they know are ready to be delivered (but i dont seem to have much competition either)

    I also plan to have either a seperate domain or page on my current website with the meta keywords, that hyper links to the ebay store. As much as Id like to have a full blown ecommerce site, its only secondary income, id like to keep it easier to manage.
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    • Profile picture of the author ProfessorSeo
      Banned
      People will wait if they really want the product. Some of my customers had to wait 6 weeks for to recieve their items. They didn't t seem to mind because I told them it may take 2-6 weeks before they recieve their item.
      As long as they can track what they paid for they don't mind waiting.

      If you don't have the time for a full time ecommerce you should create a ebay store, it will make your ebay account look more professional and bring in some nice income as well.

      If you could get the company to dropship the items for you and put your business info on their and provide tracking numbers you could to that to build your rep and customer base until your loan is successfully processed.
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  • Profile picture of the author michaelcorvin
    I used to be heavy into ebay. About 100,000 items sold. One thing you want to be careful of is selling items on eBay that you 1) cannot ship immediately 2) the supplier cannot ship immediately. You want to focus on a) becoming a top rated seller 2) keeping 4.8 or higher DRS's (Detailed Seller Ratings - hint...offer free shipping...pad your price) 3) keeping your feedback high.

    If you sell items that take a month to get to you...you are going to be axed on your feedback, no one will buy and will get your account terminated.

    Unless your margins are MASSIVE you do not want to be buying inventory unless you can get terms. Cash flow man...cash flow...putting your capital into inventory for a small return will eat you up. BUT...if you can get the supplier to ship for you and ship quickly...you use your paypal debit card to pay the supplier...AFTER the customer pays you...ZERO cash out of your pocket...then you have cash flowing machine.

    Michael
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    • What he said.

      It doesn't matter that you put "delivery in 4 to 6 weeks" in the auction -- you'll get hammered on DSRs anyway, not to mention chargebacks.

      Is there some reason why you're not considering Amazon? Fees are higher and they *really* won't like you dropshipping (so don't do it) but overall they tend to be less punitive than the Bay.

      fLufF
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  • Profile picture of the author ProfessorSeo
    Banned
    Amazon is a lot easier than ebay for different things they dont mind you dropshipping but you will have to take it slow and you shipping has to be 7-10 shipping days.
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  • Profile picture of the author gtlovesellipsis
    now a days there are so many great (and free) wordpress plugins available that will allow you to run your own auction!
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve Foulds
      Originally Posted by gtlovesellipsis View Post

      now a days there are so many great (and free) wordpress plugins available that will allow you to run your own auction!
      Thats interesting, my website is built on wordpress - I was actually just wondering if i was to only have "buy it now" prices, i may be better just putting pay pal buttons in a gallery and bypassing amazon & ebay all together - or use both. Biggest reason i considered ebay straight away was traffic
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Foulds
    Very interesting - Im from Melbourne, Australia. Shipment will take apx 14 days to arrive from Shanghai, then 2 weeks conservatively to unload, clear and deliver container to me for unpacking, then 3 days MAX for interstate delivery.

    Amazon does not have the same top of mind awareness here ebay does, thats the only reason i have not considered it - BUT if i make the page on my website or a new domain that links to the amazon/ebay store it wont matter as much.

    Ive been on ebay for about 8 years, my feedback is about 99.8% positive, if not 100%, but the store would be in my business name, my current account is in my personal name.

    My margins are fair, most products im looking at will cost $500-600 USD and retail here for $1300 AUD
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  • Profile picture of the author Andrew Milburn
    Hi Steve,

    The only reason why I asked where you were in the world was because in the USA there is something called Kabbage. They are able to help eBay sellers with cashflow, from my friends over in the states they say it is a good service and they look at you as a seller and feedback rather than credit history. They are planning on expanding round the world sometime.

    And as you say eBay has the traffic.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Foulds
    Would it make a difference if you manually paid your ebay bills as soon as you got them, as opposed to waiting the 30 days for them to automatically taken out of your nominated account?
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    • Profile picture of the author CoMpUtErGoD20XX
      Originally Posted by Steve Foulds View Post

      Would it make a difference if you manually paid your ebay bills as soon as you got them, as opposed to waiting the 30 days for them to automatically taken out of your nominated account?
      No, this doesn't matter. The fees are the same in both cases.

      Depending on your listing volume and number of transactions an eBay store may give you reduced fees. In addition, if you meet their top rated seller or Power Seller requirments for 3 months you will be able to get up to 20% off of final value fees. This certainly helps but it doesn't make too much of a dent overall as you still pay listing fees, final value fees, paypal fees, and potentially an eBay Store fee (like I do).

      Personally, I prefer "Buy It Now" with a "Best Offer" option as I find them to make it much easier for me to deal with. In many of my auctions it seems to take buyers forever to pay and a good portion of them don't pay requiring me relist the items. My eBay business strategy is "Buy It Now" listings only and run huge amounts of auctions (100s to 1,000s) when they go on sale.

      If your product is a name brand product I would strongly recommend you checkout Amazon as well. I have had good success selling items on Amazon. They sell very fast and the selling prices are usually higher. Amazon's fees are higher too, at least for most of the items I sell.

      If you want to look at all of the different fees for eBay, Amazon, and more market places HERE is a good tool. Use the links under the "My Web Based Tools" section in the right sidebar. I use this tool all the time to examine margins.

      I am in agreement with most other poster too about the shipping issues and DSR related problems you may run into if you expect customers to wait 4+ weeks for an item. Most buyers on eBay want their item fast! If they don't get it fast you may have a hard time keep up really high DSRs which can affect search rankins etc. If you could keep the time to about 2 weeks or so I think this is much more reasonable. Personally, I have all my items shipped next day or faster. Buyers on eBay and eBay itself really pushes free shipping. I offer free shipping on the majority of my items to ensure I get the highest DSR ratings available for shipping cost.

      The real benefit to sites like eBay and Amazon is they bring the traffic. And, a ton of it for that matter. My normal eBay item averages 100+ views in 5 days. I have multiple "Buy It Now" that have seen more than 15,000 visitors in a year. If you really want to startup fast I would use eBay and/or Amazon to get going but figure out from the beginning how you will get this traffic from eBay to your own website. It may be as simple as some kind of flyer giving a discount for their next purchase on your website or promoting an email list inside the box or some other method. Whatever method it is the real benefit is being able to sell to them later. I figured this out after my first 1,000 buyers on eBay and had to start from scratch.

      I hope all this helps you out and doesn't overwhelm you. I feel like I could talk forever on the ins-and-outs of eBay.
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      • Profile picture of the author Steve Foulds
        Originally Posted by CoMpUtErGoD20XX View Post

        No, this doesn't matter. The fees are the same in both cases.
        I wasnt chasing a discount on fees, I was referring to the posters previous comments on their accounts being frozen due to large sales increases/fees etc. If eBay was froze accounts to protect themselves, I wondered if they'd be more lenient if they didnt have to wait 30days to get the substantial fees from the sharp increases in sales they picked up.

        To try explain it better, purely for numbers sakes, if they made $1 on every auction and one seller went from 10 auctions a month to 1000 quickly, and you paid that $1000 in fees rather than waiting 30 days til the months

        BTW, why dont you make a WSO/eBook/become a consultant on Ebay?
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    • Profile picture of the author Andrew Milburn
      Originally Posted by Steve Foulds View Post

      Would it make a difference if you manually paid your ebay bills as soon as you got them, as opposed to waiting the 30 days for them to automatically taken out of your nominated account?
      Hi Steve,

      No it does not make any difference really......................but I always tell clients to do this as it saves them a nasty surprise at end of month.

      I tell people to pay them weekly, so by doing this you know once you have paid eBay money in your account is yours. (less tax etc)
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  • Profile picture of the author Dee Odus
    Ebay buyers are not the patient types but that being said as long you emphasize in your listings that item will take 4-5 weeks for delivery then you will not have much issues. The truth is some buyers don't even bother to read the entire listing before bidding, so they will send you email after 4 days asking you where their item is, and if you remind them it will take 4 weeks they may not have the patient, this may result in a negative feedback. The solution to this is to write in BOLD RED COLOR at the top of the listing the shipping terms.

    I have been trading on ebay on/off for 5 years and still maintain my 100% positive feedback, if you tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth, you will not have any issues.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jim Cockrum
      Some ideas:

      If you can figure out the hottest 3-4 items that bring you the most profit I suggest you stock up on those and sell ONLY what you have on hand. Anything beyond 3-4 days shipping is going to lead to trouble on amazon or ebay.

      Amazon FBA is a fantastic option for customers in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, France and Japan ESPECIALLY since you have heavy items (they'll ship anything under 150 pounds out of their warehouse at rates far better than you can get on your own). You can likely arrange to have items sent directly from your supplier to Amazon.com's warehouse if you have a flexible source of inventory that is willing to accommodate you.

      Here's an idea for you. It's a "semi-safe" strategy that requires some out of pocket money, but protects you from customers that don't read the shipping info in your listings: I suggest you have one or two of each item on hand "just in case" for fast shipping and then as each auction ends communicate with the winning customer and let them know of the long shipping time they should expect. Make sure that they still intend to leave you 5 star feedback once it arrives. If they balk at the long wait send them the single unit you have on hand (tell them you've paid extra to expedite it because you have actually paid shipping twice in that case) and then order another one for yourself (due to arrive to you before the next auction begins). Some customers won't mind, others will - it's a case by case thing.


      My credentials on the matter:

      10 years 100% perfect feedback on ebay as top rated seller. Best selling eBay ebook online, and top selling Amazon FBA course online.

      I hope this info helps you out!
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      • Profile picture of the author Steve Foulds
        Originally Posted by Jim Cockrum View Post

        Some ideas:

        Here's an idea for you. It's a "semi-safe" strategy that requires some out of pocket money, but protects you from customers that don't read the shipping info in your listings: I suggest you have one or two of each item on hand "just in case" for fast shipping and then as each auction ends communicate with the winning customer and let them know of the long shipping time they should expect. Make sure that they still intend to leave you 5 star feedback once it arrives. If they balk at the long wait send them the single unit you have on hand (tell them you've paid extra to expedite it because you have actually paid shipping twice in that case) and then order another one for yourself (due to arrive to you before the next auction begins). Some customers won't mind, others will - it's a case by case thing.
        GREAT idea!
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  • Profile picture of the author onegoodman
    I used to sell on ebay for a long time. If you need some help PM me.
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  • Profile picture of the author Andrew Milburn
    Thank you CoMpUtErGoD20XX it is wonderful to see someone give an open and honest answer to eBay. To often people just bash eBay and Amazon without stopping for breath.

    I agree with the Buy It Now with Best Offer, I find this works time after time and will often increase your sales.

    Many Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
    I was a Platinum Powerseller years ago.

    You WILL fail if you cannot ship immediately. It's really that simple. Buyers do not and will not want to hear excuses (before or after the sale) about why it takes so long to ship.
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