What are the easiest things to sell

eBay Classifieds: 8 Tips for Successful Selling

This article was published on September 3rd, 2020 by Orange - the young portal of the Handelsblatt.

When I look into my over-packed closet, my gaze falls on the bottom compartment. Cardboard boxes and odds and ends are piled up here. Some time ago I put all the things I would like to sell into this compartment: my first digital camera, an unused crêpes maker, old toys and more.

eBay Classifieds: 8 Tips for Successful Selling

A lot of stuff that is too good for the bin. Without further ado, I put things on eBay classifieds. But even after 60 days and the advertising period has expired, the things are still in my closet. I didn't get any money. I want to change that now.

eBay turns 25 this Thursday. In the online business, the company is already part of the old guard. After it started on September 3, 1995 (at that time as the AuctionWeb website), eBay experienced a steep rise. Today the group is bobbing around in the shadow of Amazon and Alibaba and is no longer one of the top tech companies.

In 2020, eBay will again experience a small flight of highs. The online shopping boom in the Corona crisis is generating strong business growth. This also applies to eBay classifieds. During the lockdown in March, users posted a good 25 percent more ads than usual. Today, around 1.5 billion offers can be found on the marketplace at any given time.

eBay classifieds: Selling is free at first

Selling on eBay classifieds is initially free. Only if you run more than 50 ads within 30 days will you be charged. For many, the Graftis offer from the online flea market is enough.

But that doesn't have to be the case. With the right tricks, you can sell successfully without extra fees. Sales professional Mark Steier explains to me what these are. From 2001 to 2012 he was one of the most successful eBay auto parts sellers. He later started a career as a consultant, speaker and editor-in-chief of wortfilter, one of the largest German blogs about online trading.

What Sells Well on eBay Classifieds?

The first question that arises for me is what is best for selling. “As on all platforms, children's toys and children's clothing always work well, and inexpensive electronics also work almost everywhere. But there is nothing that goes particularly well or badly on eBay classifieds, ”explains the expert.

For starters, I'll try a Medion digital camera, a crêpes maker, and a toy ship. Children's toys and electronics are already included.

I can use eBay classifieds as standard via the Internet or as a mobile app. You can easily register on the platform with just an email address. Then you can start selling.

eBay classifieds - tip 1: good photos

For a good and successful advertisement, the photos are especially important, advises expert Steier. “Photos are the first impression. A high-contrast background can go a long way here. You can also tell a story with pictures. "

Editing the photos with simple means is also advisable in some cases. “How many photos make sense always depends on the product,” he says. More photos give a potential customer the opportunity to inspect the goods closely and increase the chance of a sale. eBay Classifieds allows you to upload up to 20 photos per ad.

I take my photos in daylight and choose a light, neutral background. For some photos, I help with filters and simple editing tools for color and contrast. It doesn't take long, but it does make a difference.

After the photos are in the box and edited, I can create my ads. I first have to choose a product group from various categories and sub-categories. Then I upload my photos. I choose between seven and nine photos per ad. Unfortunately, I have to say that the quality of the photos suffers quite a bit when uploading them and that some things seem fuzzy.

eBay classifieds - tip 2: meaningful title of the ad

Now it's about the product title. It is particularly important here: “You should definitely not incorporate errors,” says Steier. After all, nobody is looking for a misspelled product or brand name.

The more informative a title, the easier it is to find the ad using the search function. Instead of many unnecessary filler words, I use typical keywords, that is, the name of the product and the respective brand. Just what I would look for if I wanted to buy something.

eBay classifieds - tip 3: Description in bulletpoints

The description of the product follows the title. eBay Classifieds gives me the opportunity to use 4000 characters. But I don't need that much. Because the following applies here: less is more.

“You should give all information briefly, ideally with bullet points, and answer all questions about the product and highlight the benefits of the product. eBay classifieds is mainly used on the move, so readiness to read is rather low, ”says sales expert Steier.

Said and done. In my three advertisements, the main focus is on specifying the condition and important, particularly technical details of the product. For the most part, I orient myself to the information that I can also find on the packaging of my products.

eBay Classifieds - Tip 4: Honesty

Everyone wants to present their products as well as possible when they are sold. Small dents or missing parts sometimes fall under the table. Sales expert Steier advises: “The more honest you are in the description, the better. So you should also indicate small damage that you might not consider important yourself. ”Because honesty inspires trust. And trust increases the likelihood of sales.

I take the tip straight to heart and indicate with my display to the camera that I am only selling two batteries instead of the original four, as the other two cannot be found.

eBay Classifieds - Tip 5: Compare Price

Now that the ad is ready, only the price is missing. I find it difficult to set a price for my products. I know roughly the new price, but I can't even estimate what else I can ask for.

At eBay classifieds I can choose between a fixed price, negotiation basis (VB) or "to give away". “The basis for negotiation naturally shows that you are ready to negotiate. This often encourages potential buyers to contact the seller and negotiate, ”says Mark Steier.

"In order to find the price, it is good to search other platforms such as momox, Medimops, reBuy or Shpock for the product and then orientate yourself around ten percent below their price."

I find the same or similar products for my products on eBay as well as on eBay classified ads, so that I can simply use the prices of my fellow sellers as a guide. Since I choose a basis for negotiation, I set the price a little higher than what I would like to have for my product.

eBay classifieds - tip 6: Post your ad in the evening

Now all I have to do is publish my ads. The timing can be crucial for a successful purchase. EBay classifieds items are sorted according to the upload date.

“Most people are online from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., which is exactly when I would place my ad. This increases the likelihood of sales to a great extent, ”says the expert Steier. Now all you have to do is wait until a potential buyer contacts me and is interested in one of the items.

eBay classifieds - tip 7: offer cash payment

Steier also has a tip for the subsequent payment: "It is best to have the sold goods picked up and then to hand them over for cash." Because although eBay classifieds is primarily a local sales platform, buyers always want to have goods sent. Steier advises: "In such cases, I would have the money transferred to me in advance via PayPal."

eBay Classifieds - Tip 8: Beware of Scammers

Questions about payment do not only arise as a seller but also as a buyer. The great popularity of eBay classifieds attracts again and again rip-offs and fraudsters who make money through various scams and want to pull both buyers and sellers over the table.

"It is very difficult to protect yourself against fraud," says Steier. Due to the anonymous registration without age and name verification, there is no protection mechanism on the part of eBay. Just like for sellers, the same applies to buyers: It's best to pick up the goods on site and then pay in cash.

“If you are interested in goods from further away, it makes sense to use your social media network and see whether you have acquaintances who can buy the product. Then the goods can be picked up and paid for in person, ”explains the sales expert.

Maybe I can easily pick up and pay in cash without shipping. I am curious to see if I can sell my products successfully at eBay Classifieds with the expert's tips.

Editor's note: The article first appeared on Orange in spring 2019. On the occasion of the 25th birthday of the platform, we have updated it again.

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