by Ewan Lumsden Banned
23 replies
Hi,

I'm thinking of starting up a small eBay business. I think I'll just start selling some various household items to get the feel for eBay and see if I like it or not. Then I'll start the business. I've heard of drop shipping etc where you buy products for very cheap and sell them for a lot more. I've never sold on eBay before.

Is there any essentials I must know before diving in?

Thanks!
#ebay
  • Profile picture of the author TimGreen1
    I think this is the wrong place to be asking this!
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  • Profile picture of the author Butazi
    You are way better off creating your own website and finding high ROI items to dropship.

    Outside of high ebay fees and tough standards, you have to account for how much true profit you are going to do deal with. Most of the time you'll find yourself dealing with products that have 25% margins BEFORE ebay takes 10% of that away. It's fairly easy to optimize ebay since they have a momentum based formula when it comes to selling.

    It would also help build credibility to your dropship vendors if you have a real website. Probably use a platform like volution or something to get started.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ewan Lumsden
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Butazi View Post

      You are way better off creating your own website and finding high ROI items to dropship.

      Outside of high ebay fees and tough standards, you have to account for how much true profit you are going to do deal with. Most of the time you'll find yourself dealing with products that have 25% margins BEFORE ebay takes 10% of that away. It's fairly easy to optimize ebay since they have a momentum based formula when it comes to selling.

      It would also help build credibility to your dropship vendors if you have a real website. Probably use a platform like volution or something to get started.
      Thanks, haven't actually considered setting up a website to sell it. I'm unsure I want to pay the prices for the software though.
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      • Profile picture of the author Butazi
        Originally Posted by Ewan Lumsden View Post

        Thanks, haven't actually considered setting up a website to sell it. I'm unsure I want to pay the prices for the software though.
        I think Volution is 19.99 or 24.99 for 100 items or something like that. I think the cost of having an ebay store 14.95/month if you wanted to make a real ebay store.

        It's easier to get your items noticed on ebay, I won't lie about that. I work at a eCommerce company that has a few ebay stores. It's pretty much the wild west, last year Ebay came to our town and talked about how they talked about pricing structures, how to be #1 in the search and says top seller / free shipping is a major contributor as well as price.

        It's all crap. It helps, but their are easier ways to get #1 in ebay. I mainly hate how ebay can completely shut you down in an instant if you have one insanely angry person, or you can get a bad rep simply by existing.

        Their buyer protection is a joke, I know a guy who get's free stuff all the time because he requests refunds on "broken" laptops and junk. He will ship back a rock in the laptop box and keep the laptop for himself and sell it, and he gets refunded.

        You need to do a lot of volume to make up for losses. It happens, it just varies on how often. At least you aren't at the mercy of ebay when you have your own site.
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        • Profile picture of the author Ewan Lumsden
          Banned
          Originally Posted by Butazi View Post

          I think Volution is 19.99 or 24.99 for 100 items or something like that. I think the cost of having an ebay store 14.95/month if you wanted to make a real ebay store.

          It's easier to get your items noticed on ebay, I won't lie about that. I work at a eCommerce company that has a few ebay stores. It's pretty much the wild west, last year Ebay came to our town and talked about how they talked about pricing structures, how to be #1 in the search and says top seller / free shipping is a major contributor as well as price.

          It's all crap. It helps, but their are easier ways to get #1 in ebay. I mainly hate how ebay can completely shut you down in an instant if you have one insanely angry person, or you can get a bad rep simply by existing.

          Their buyer protection is a joke, I know a guy who get's free stuff all the time because he requests refunds on "broken" laptops and junk. He will ship back a rock in the laptop box and keep the laptop for himself and sell it, and he gets refunded.

          You need to do a lot of volume to make up for losses. It happens, it just varies on how often. At least you aren't at the mercy of ebay when you have your own site.
          I might actually consider selling items on a site and not on eBay then. I have heard lots of stories about scammers on eBay etc... I suppose that can happen on nearly anywhere though. The only thing I'm worried about by hosting it on my own is that it won't get noticed at all. I don't want to go spending hundreds on PPC ads and I'm not an expert at social media.
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          • Profile picture of the author honestim
            Hi Ewan,

            Both the strategies have their own advantages and disadvantages. For example eBay and Amazon are two huge market places that get a lot of people who come there to buy. So you are basically keeping your products in front of the customers who are already there for you, thanks to eBay and Amazon. On the flip side of dealing with eBay everything that Butazi said is a concern for many. So its a trade off and you got to decide what you want to live with.

            If you want to create a site/store of your own and then sell products through it you will have the additional burden of creating your own market place and getting targeted traffic to have a look at what you have to offer. Now that is certainly not un doable, its just an extra task on top of myriad of tasks like shipping and handling, product sourcing, invoicing and accounting that you would have on your plate.

            Which ever way you go, make sure you have a good look at the pros and cons and make an informed decision.

            Cheers
            HonestIM
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  • Profile picture of the author MacMiller
    DONT dropship unless you personally know the personally know the person that is shipping out your item.

    At the end of the day, if the items aren't of quality, or they aren't shipped out it is on YOU not your drop shipper. Try buying items in bulk at wholesale prices and then selling them on ebay. That way you are in total control.

    Another bit of advice, stay away from fakes! It may seem tempting because of the low prices and huge markups, but eBay will literally tear you apart and you can kiss your PayPal away before you can say "But, but, but..". Stick to genuine items, make sure you know the quality of them, and buy low sell high!
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    • Profile picture of the author Ewan Lumsden
      Banned
      Originally Posted by MacMiller View Post

      DONT dropship unless you personally know the personally know the person that is shipping out your item.

      At the end of the day, if the items aren't of quality, or they aren't shipped out it is on YOU not your drop shipper. Try buying items in bulk at wholesale prices and then selling them on ebay. That way you are in total control.

      Another bit of advice, stay away from fakes! It may seem tempting because of the low prices and huge markups, but eBay will literally tear you apart and you can kiss your PayPal away before you can say "But, but, but..". Stick to genuine items, make sure you know the quality of them, and buy low sell high!
      Thanks. Dropshipping's beginning to sound more of a risky business, but isn't everything I wouldn't be planning to sell fakes at all. I would never risk anything happening to my Paypal account or personal reputation.
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      • Profile picture of the author MacMiller
        Originally Posted by Ewan Lumsden View Post

        Thanks. Dropshipping's beginning to sound more of a risky business, but isn't everything I wouldn't be planning to sell fakes at all. I would never risk anything happening to my Paypal account or personal reputation.
        Exactly. As long as you treat it like a real brick and mortar business you have nothing to worry about.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ewan Lumsden
    Banned
    Thanks honestim,

    It's going to take a lot more thought than I imagined to make the decision.
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    • Profile picture of the author honestim
      I bet it will take a long time. But then there comes another problem which we call analysis paralysis. Most of us internet marketers get into the mode of doing the research and analyzing things way more than we should actually be doing. What we forget is no amount of analysis is going to yield any results until we take action. Therefore whether you will succeed or fail will be known only when you take action.

      So Ewan, open yourself to the habit of doing, learning, failing, learning, doing and succeeding. Make your share of mistakes, learn from them and then modify your strategy and take action. Some reach their faster than others and the only way of knowing that is by doing it.

      Cheers
      HonestIM
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  • Profile picture of the author johnmorales
    Originally Posted by Ewan Lumsden View Post

    Hi,

    I'm thinking of starting up a small eBay business. I think I'll just start selling some various household items to get the feel for eBay and see if I like it or not. Then I'll start the business. I've heard of drop shipping etc where you buy products for very cheap and sell them for a lot more. I've never sold on eBay before.

    Is there any essentials I must know before diving in?

    Thanks!
    I like your plan. I started like this: First I opened a buyers account and began to build a good feedback reputation. I bought stuff that I would buy anyway from ebay sellers. Like, printer ink, paper,batteries anything I would normally buy in a store and I still do.

    If you don't have much money, buy cheap stuff like: base ball cards, coupons, stamps, anything cheap just to get 10 or 20 positive feedbacks.

    Watch how sellers pack and ship and learn by their mistakes and how they do things right.

    After that, register as a "seller". Check your stuff and see what sells the most on ebay. Start with stuff that you can afford to lose if the bidding does not go high enough for you.

    After you get some experience, auction or sell your better stuff. When you run out of stuff to sell, sell other people's stuff for a fee.

    Learn how to buy stuff on ebay cheap and resell later for a profit.

    There's a lot of stuff you can do. Jump in and try it. It's a lot of fun. Just learn the rules, do things right and stay out of trouble.

    Drop shipping is a lot more risky and complicated so I would stay away from that for right now.

    There are a lot of good books you can read on the subject too.

    There are not many ebay fans in this group so don't expect too much information from them because ebay is small potatoes compared to IM.

    For me, ebay is a good side income in my niche for right now but I would not want to make it a full time career. The advice from the other posters is where the big money is.

    Hope this helps,
    John
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  • Profile picture of the author Matson
    In stead of drop shipping, I like to use Fulfillment By Amazon. You know it will be delivered when promised, and you don't have to warehouse anything.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ewan Lumsden
    Banned
    Thanks for all the advice. I'd prefer to stay away from Amazon as it's a lot harder to manage by the looks of it.
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  • Ebay is saturated with low price items. If you are going to sell on Ebay, you need to find high dollar items, $100 or more, with a good profit margin built in. Ebay fees will eat you alive if you are not careful.

    I believe it is better to start your own website and promote affiliate products or create your own product.
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  • Profile picture of the author jamesbrands
    Hi,

    Why not sell on both an ebay store and e commerce store?

    The problem you have with ebay are the fees, insane buyer protection, and a feedback system that can strip you of seller status overnight and potentially harm your business. The competition is definitely competitive, low margins etc.

    One thing ebay does provide is traffic to your listings and plenty of it, which is something that will more than likely be lacking in a new e commerce store.

    Selling an item on ebay is a great way to direct that customer to your online store.

    As a basic example, you can send promotional material with the item you sell on ebay, promoting your e commerce store, offering a discount, loyalty card etc etc.

    This kind of system works fantastically well with sticky items, and is a good way to get that traffic from ebay to your own site.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ewan Lumsden
      Banned
      Originally Posted by jamesbrands View Post

      Hi,

      Why not sell on both an ebay store and e commerce store?

      The problem you have with ebay are the fees, insane buyer protection, and a feedback system that can strip you of seller status overnight and potentially harm your business. The competition is definitely competitive, low margins etc.

      One thing ebay does provide is traffic to your listings and plenty of it, which is something that will more than likely be lacking in a new e commerce store.

      Selling an item on ebay is a great way to direct that customer to your online store.

      As a basic example, you can send promotional material with the item you sell on ebay, promoting your e commerce store, offering a discount, loyalty card etc etc.

      This kind of system works fantastically well with sticky items, and is a good way to get that traffic from ebay to your own site.
      I'm leaning over now to starting an eCommerce store instead of selling on eBay now. I sell on Fiverr and have some experience inselling and communicating with the customer. I'm not so good at getting targeted traffic though, thats the problem. So maybe the eBay and eCommerce could work together.
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  • Profile picture of the author Amy Harrop
    I use both Fulfillment by Amazon and multichannel Fulfillment to Ebay and it works well...but it can be expensive, as Fluff mentioned, you really need to look at your fees.
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    • Profile picture of the author Mark Andrews
      Banned
      Hello Ewan

      This guide on how to make money with eBay is brilliant.

      And at the end of reading it you'll know and understand why dropshipping is not your ideal answer / solution.

      What it will give you is the best advice possible to set up a highly successful eBay business all explained in very simple language...

      Pre-Owned Profits The ULTIMATE RECESSION BUSTER!!!!

      Warmest regards,


      Mark Andrews
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  • Profile picture of the author Tad 100
    If you want to make a lot of money and earn more than 5 or 10% profit use this strategy:

    Import products from China and resell them on eBay.

    For example this seller from USA is selling product from China.
    8GB SPY CAMERA PEN HD 720P HIGHEST QUALITY CAMCORDER DV | eBay

    Same product on Alibaba:
    720P Camera Pen products, buy 720P Camera Pen products from alibaba.com
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  • Profile picture of the author ebaypowerguru
    Always offer great customer service, the customers will keep on coming back!
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  • Profile picture of the author prismkuet
    Try to understand the total process first. Give more times to find out the pros and cons of every method. Though the way of learning is "learning through mistake". Just start it, wish for the best.
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    check out the Pros and Cons of CPA

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