8 Things You Need to Know before Selling on eBay

Would you like to expand your market by selling your products on eBay? Join us as we discuss 8 things that you need to know before you begin.

Online Auctions

Established online marketplaces like Amazon and eBay offer an excellent opportunity for Volusion merchants to add to the success of their online store. Each platform presents its own challenges, however. In a previous article, we covered a few tips for expanding your market on Amazon; today we will expand on that knowledgebase with advice for promoting your business on the world’s largest auction house, eBay.

The Basics of Selling on eBay

1. What types of merchants benefit the most from selling on eBay?

Ebay is full of success stories from a wide variety of merchants selling a wide variety of products. The merchants that benefit the most, regardless of their product specialty, are those who develop their reputation, provide excellent customer service and carefully position their listings. Your reputation will be your strongest selling point; if you are committed to strong customer communication and service, you are already in a strong starting position.

  1. How much money can I earn from my eBay products?

The beauty of an auction platform is that you have the potential to earn much more than your typical asking price. That potential comes at a price, however: risk and uncertainty. The best way to determine what products like yours are selling for is to search for completed auctions and examine the winning bids.

  1. How do I ensure a minimum price for my products?

There are two ways to set a minimum price for your listings:

  • Set a higher starting bid. A higher starting bid creates perceived value in your product and prevents your from having to settle for a low winning bid.
  • Set a reserve price. Bidders can compete, but no one will win the auction unless the highest bid beats the reserve price. Users will not be able to see the reserve price amount; however, a “Reserve Has Not Been Met” notification will display until the reserve has been surpassed.
4. How do I get more bids for my eBay products?

Unfortunately, the methods above tend to discourage bids. Ebay users are more likely to bid for a product if the current bid is still low and they know that they are not still competing against a secret reserve amount. You can encourage more bids by listing your products for longer periods of time, and you can minimize your risk by setting a Buy It Now price rather than a reserve price.

Frequently Asked Questions about Selling on eBay

5. How do I make my eBay listings stand out?

As with any ecommerce site, detailed images and well-constructed product descriptions will make your products stand out against similar offerings without such promotional material. Keep in mind that a keyword-rich product description will also make your product stand out in eBay’s search results. Your reputation will also distinguish your storefront from others—for better or worse.

  1. How do I earn more reviews and higher ratings?

The best way to earn more positive reviews and a higher seller rating is to stay in contact with your buyers throughout the auction process. Message them as soon as their product has shipped—preferably within a day of the end of the auction—and again if you have not heard anything within two days of delivery. Respond to all questions and complaints promptly, particularly if a buyer requests a refund.

  1. When is the best time to sell my products?

Ebay’s peak traffic occurs between 8:00pm and 10pm PST and is especially high on Sunday afternoons. You can take full advantage of this traffic by setting up 7-day listings that begin and end on a Sunday afternoon. Be sure to monitor your auctions, though, to see if your experience differs from others’. You may find that your market is more active in the middle of the week.

  1. What are some important eBay policies?

The customer is always right in eBay’s eyes. If a buyer claims that they never received their product, eBay has the means to enforce their refund policy. Protect yourself by assigning a tracking number to all of your shipments. One convenient way to do this is to take advantage of eBay’s postage labels, which automatically generate just such a tracking number.

Volusion’s eBay integration makes it easy to sell on the world’s most popular online auction house. If you have any more questions about the best way to sell your products on eBay, or if you have more advice to share, be sure to join the discussion in the comments below.