Sell Your Stuff on Ebay

So you finally decided that you want to give the Ebay thing a try. You’re late to the game, and so was I,  but sometimes it’s better late than never! In this guide for beginner Ebay sellers, I’m going to teach you how to list and sell your stuff on Ebay. I wish that I had found a guide like this before starting my online thrift store.

The Listing

  1. Create a Paypal account, this is how you will get paid for your sells.
  2. Navigate to www.ebay.com, and click on either the “sell” button above the search bar or the blue “create listing” button. Choose “single listing” from the dropdown menu.
  3. After the page refreshes, type a brief description of the item that you’re selling in the white description box. Click “get started” or hit the return key.
  4. Make sure that the Ebay-generated category, which is based on your description, is appropriate for your item.
  5. Scroll down to “upc”. If you are selling pre-owned clothes, you will probably not have access to the upc on the tags, so choose “does not apply”. A upc is not required to sell your stuff on Ebay. If you enter the upc, it just makes it easier for a buyer who’s looking for a particular item by giving your listing maximum visibility in their search results.
  6. Select the condition of the item by using the dropdown menu. There is an explanation of each condition provided if you need more clarification.
  7. Next is the “condition description box”. Make sure to include any visible flaws on the item. It is always best to fully disclose any damages or flaws so that the customer cannot file a complaint against you later for the item not being as described. Everything sells on Ebay to the person willing to pay the price.

The Photos

  1. Now it’s time to add the photos. If you use your smartphone and the Ebay app to take the photos, then you can either finish the whole process on your phone (not taught in this post) or hop on your computer to retrieve your photos and complete the listing.
  2. If you have an iPhone, go to your App Store and search for the Ebay app. For Androids, go wherever you Android people go to find new Android apps. Can you tell that I’m an Apple girl? Install the Ebay app, and link it to your account
  3. Start by touching the blue “list item” button, type a title, approve the category, and wait for the page to refresh. Click “add photos”, and get to snapping. Click the “save” button.
  4. After you take pictures with the app, they can be retrieved on your computer. Go to www.ebay.com, and then find the “listings” header toward the top of the page. Hover over it, and then click on “drafts”. Search for your listing, and click the “completed draft” link next to it to be taken into the listing.
  5. Taa daa! All of the item pictures should appear in the listing now.

    Ebay Photo layout
    Ebay Photo layout

Back to the Listing

  1. Check the “item specifics” section to see if you would like to apply any suggested details to your listing. item specifics
  2. Next, go through and fill out all of the fields with the red asterisks next to them. The more details you include, the easier it will be to sell your stuff on Ebay. As you begin to list more and more items, you will get a feel for the important fields to fill out, and you’ll get faster at listing as well.
  3. In the next section, the “item description”, you can enter in information that you couldn’t input in the “item specifics” category, or you can simply reiterate what you entered in there.
  4. The item description should be bulleted, brief, and straight to the point. item description example

Selling Details

  1. From the “format” menu, choose whether you want to set a fixed price or put the item up for auction. In order to help you set a reasonable price, you will need to find a comparable price (a comp). Read this post to learn how to find one.
  2. Set your duration. Seven days is the default for an auction. I recommend that duration in order to generate enough buzz to sell the item. The default for a fixed listing is 30 days. If you don’t want to keep re-listing and unsold item, you can choose the “Good ‘Til Cancelled” option and the listing will automatically relist every 30 days. Just be mindful that you will possibly incur a listing fee at that time.
  3. If you don’t choose the “Good ‘Til Cancelled” option, below the return policy option, you can check the button to automatically relist the item up to 2 times if it doesn’t sell. Fees may apply for each relist.
  4. Next choose to either start your listing right away, or to pay for a scheduled listing. I always go with free.

Pricing and Payment

  1. Next, enter your “buy it now” (BIN) price. If you choose an auction format, the BIN price will be the price that a buyer will pay if they don’t want to wait until the auction ends. In that case, it will be 30% higher than the auction’s starting price.
  2. Now you must make a choice about whether to accept best offers or not. Ebay feels that allowing potential buyers to negotiate the price will increase your chances of selling. You will have to test it out to see whether or not you agree. Keep in mind that you can choose to accept, decline, or make a counter offer.
  3. Enter in your quantity, and make sure that the Paypal box is selected and includes your Paypal-associated email.
  4. You may require immediate payment by checking the “Buy It Now” box. Use this option if you want the buyer to pay immediately with PayPal. Your item stays available for purchase until payment is complete. If you choose the auction-style format, this option will be overridden. The buyer will then have up to 2 days to pay you, which totally sucks!
  5. Next choose whether or not to make your customer pay sales tax. Lots of sellers don’t. Sales tax is not required to sell your stuff on Ebay.
  6. If you are just listing to get rid of a few things around the house, you may opt to not accept returns. If you are going to pay to have an Ebay store, or if you’re going to work up to that, you should consider having a 30-day return policy. Doing so will help you achieve a Top-rated or Top-rated Plus seller status. Those statuses will helps put more eyes on your items as well as offers you other benefits as a seller (i.e. seller’s fees discounts, etc.). Here is my return policy. return policy

Shipping

Shipping was the thorn in my side when I first started selling. I didn’t understand it or know the weight limitations for the different classes of mail. As a seller, it’s very important to get the weight correct.

  1. Choose the calculated shipping from the drop-down menu.
  2. Beneath that, click on the “calculate shipping” link and wait for the page to refresh.
  3. Whether you’re shipping clothing or shoes, choose the “package for thick envelope” option at the top of the page.
  4. Enter the dimensions, which may be on the mailer or the box itself, or just enter in any random numbers. These dimensions will not matter, because on the next step you will choose the appropriate package size.
  5. Enter the weight. It is not necessary to use the sliding scale for the weight if you enter in the weight. I always add 2 ounces to the actual weight just to account for the label and thank you card that I put inside of the package.
  6. Input your ZIP Code and choose “domestic” if you are shipping within the US. Next, click the “calculate shipping” button.

    Ebay shipping calculator
    Ebay shipping calculator
  7. At the top you will see a summary of the information that you have just entered on the previous page. Check to make sure that the weight is correct.
  8. Click the United States Postal Service tab, and check the “online rate” option. According to the weight of your item, you will see economy and expedited delivery shipping options with or without the standard delivery option. View the USPS classes of mail from a previous post (scroll down a little).
  9. I recommend choosing the one best shipping option so that your customer doesn’t get overwhelmed by the options. That should be the cheapest, most appropriate shipping option.
  10. Once you click it, it will become highlighted a light blue color and will appear in the right sidebar. In the side bar, click the dark blue “offered shipping services”  button and wait for the page to redirect you to your listing.
  11. You can choose to allow your items to be picked up locally, which means that the buyer has to set up a time to meet with you for the exchange.
  12. If you are working towards the Top-rated or Top-rated Plus seller status, you will want to choose the 1-day handling option. If not, choose any handling time that you like. Just know that buyers love to get their items delivered quickly! That makes for a great impression.
  13. The package weight and dimensions should already be pre-populated since you entered that information in already with the Ebay  shipping calculator.
  14. All that’s left to do now is to list your item by using the button on the bottom left, or you may use the middle button to preview your listing before it it publishes, or you may save and continue it later. If you save the listing,  you will have to retrieve it in the drafts section by following step #3 under the photos headline. I hope that this has been informative to you. Happy listing.

View More Ebay Tutorials

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