Top 10 tips on how to sell on eBay successfully
eBay is a common place for individuals to sell one off unwanted items. However, with the popularity of this market place increasing across the world, businesses are now using the platform as a successful route to market.
For new users looking to sell higher volumes or businesses, one of the key concerns is how to successfully sell on eBay. Therefore, we have put together 10 top tips on how to sell on eBay successfully.
Let’s get started.
1. Product Research
Your initial research should expand much further than just determining what type of products you wish to sell and there needs to be some practical problem solving first.
First think about the type of product you wish to sell and then look into what competitors are doing. With thousands of new listings appearing every day on eBay you need to be able to capture your market and make sure your products are found. Competitor research will provide some insight into listing types you should consider, potential formats and keywords.
From a practical standpoint, consider what space you will be using to store your products and prepare them for shipping. If you’re starting small, are you dedicating an area of your house or if you're starting with a larger operation do you need a commercial space?
2. Know your suppliers
It’s vital to secure a reliable and cost effective supply chain. Get to know your suppliers, and their competitors, and buy smart.
Also, investigate suppliers during your initial research, as well as continually review your supply chain to ensure great service and quality products.
3. Be aware of seller fees
It’s important to know the eBay fee structure. Even one penny can make a significant difference in the fees charged by eBay to list your products. This difference can add up to hundreds of pounds when you start listing a large amount of products, ultimately impacting on profit.
As a result learning to price your products effectively to gain the most profit is essential.
4. Understand eBay seller limits
eBay has certain seller limitations that are implemented across their platform, but these are stricter for new sellers. One reason for this is to reduce fraud on their platform.
The best thing to do is start by developing a positive selling history with a few items and then you can request higher selling limits.
5. Think about your branding
Your branding and username can impact the performance of your business, both in terms of the initial capture of your customers and turning them into repeat customers.
When choosing a username, it should reflect what you sell and if it sounds catchy your customers are more likely to remember and search for you again. Make sure to check that your ideal name hasn’t already been taken before you get too set on your eBay username!
When listing your products, develop your own style when it comes to product descriptions, images and showcase a brand that will make you stand out from the rest.
The text will have a big impact on visibility of product listing as well as if the user gains the right information about your product before purchasing. Then your images should show off your product accurately.
It’s important to be clear and accurate within your product listings as we’ve all bought items online before and when they have arrived are nothing like what you expected. This can lead to negative feedback and ratings on eBay.
6. Packaging & Shipping
When considering packaging for your products, there are a couple of different options you can choose from. We naturally advocate cardboard packaging as the eco-friendly option.
If you decide to choose cardboard boxes, there is a large variety of options available on the market so you can be guaranteed to find a solution that works for any product. Ensuring products reach their new owners in perfect condition is paramount, especially if you want them to reorder in the future
Our box finder tool may be a useful resource for you to find boxes which suit your products, and you may wish to consider buying boxes in bulk which is not only cost effective, but elevates the risk of running out, particularly in peak sale times.
Once you have worked out your packaging, you need to think about shipping. Which postal service you will choose to use and how much will it cost to ship?
For many eBay users, offering free shipping is an added incentive to buy from a particular user. So, if it’s a possible offering for you, it might be worth it.
For more detailed information on postage for eBay sellers, we have a dedicated article for this topic which you can read here.
7. Selling Tools
If you are selling in bulk e.g. more than 25 listings a week, then it would be a good idea to consider using the eBay selling tools.
Turbo Lister is ideal for prepping your listings early and uploading in one go. There are also other tools available which may be useful.
If you are going to sell more than 100 items per week, you may want to consider using some 3rd party providers such as Marketworks or Channel Advisor who you can find details about online.
8. Get feedback
When you become an eBay seller it’s important to get feedback from your customers, ideally 100+, but certainly 25 positive feedback posts to start with. Feedback gives customers confidence that you are a genuine business. In the beginning you may need to contact previous customers and prompt them to provide feedback.
Reviewing other sellers' feedback is also good to gauge their overall performance in the marketplace.
9. Stock Control
If you intend to start selling products in volume, it’s important to have a certain level of stock to get started. Then systems need to be in place to allow you to keep track of orders and current stock levels.
You will also need to factor in lead times from suppliers, both for your product and packaging so that you have stock readily available to sell for future demand.
10. Time Management & Customer Service
Selling on eBay can be time consuming, therefore think about how much time you need to allocate to this sales activity.
Setting up some processes and procedures could be a good idea to get off to a good start with some clear direction. This will help you be efficient for getting your products to your customers in a timely manner.
Providing a good customer service also includes offering a fair returns policy and being responsive to customer communications.
Other things to consider when you want to sell stuff on eBay
How will you answer questions about products, or will you put additional information in the product listing?
How will you handle negative feedback?
Will you be including compliment slips or flyers with each parcel sent out?
If you’re looking to start selling on eBay, and want to get your packaging boxed up, please do not hesitate to drop us a line through our contact form.