So you want to be a minimalist? Or just rid yourself of the extra clutter filling your life? Or you’re strapped for cash and want to make a few extra bucks? Look no further, you’ve found all of my hard earned secrets that I am now passing on to you! I’ve recently just finished ridding myself of all the unnecessary crap in my life. Let me tell you, I’ve never felt more free! With owning less things, I have now opened the door to experience more and continue a life that isn’t revolved around worldly possessions! I’ve sold over 300 items and have donated thousands more. I’ve made over $6,000 in 3 months and had zero eBay experience when I began this endeavor. If you need a little motivation to rid yourself of all the clutter read my post on the benefits of living a simple lifestyle.
How to entice and attract eBay buyers even when you don’t have ANY feedback or experience
When you first set up an eBay account, you won’t have any reputation built from buyers. Who’s to say you’re not a scam trying to steal money from the naive and innocent?! Never fear. This is the most difficult and most daunting hurdle to hop over. Put yourself in the buyers’ position – what would you want to see from a seller? You want to make sure you’re not buying into a scam where you’ll get a moth eaten, mold covered item that isn’t even remotely close to what you saw in the photos, right? RIGHT! So give the buyers what they want.
- Offer free shipping – When you’re just beginning to build your eBay reputation, ask yourself why someone would want to buy your item over the exact same item that is already listed on eBay? I know, this sounds counter productive and a waste of time, “Why would someone want to buy my junk when someone else’s junk is already listed from a reputable buyer?” You can’t change your lack of feedback, so do everything you can to be different from what is already out there. Offer free shipping, price the item lower, and write an enticing description.
- Take clear photographs – No one will want to buy your item if the photographs are blurry and they can’t zoom in to see every little detail. More photos are better than less and all angles of every little nook and cranny should be photographed! It’s helpful to have a designated photography area where the background is either all white or all black. Nothing should be in the background of the photo and make sure there is ample light. eBay buyers are fickle, they’re used to seeing clear and photoshopped images of everything they buy online, try to replicate a professional with your photographs!
- Be honest – In the description, let the buyers know that you are just starting out on eBay and are willing and able to answer any addition questions they may have about the item and provide additional photographs. Buyers want to see that you’re a real life person sitting behind the computer screen. It also helps to include with the description why you’re selling the item. Again, be honest. Buyers want to know what, if anything, is wrong with the item you’re selling and why you don’t want it anymore. I included something like this in my description – “I am selling this item because I am moving to a smaller space and need to downsize my possessions.” If you’re selling clothes your little quip could be “I am selling this shirt because it no longer fits, it wasn’t my style, it was a gift, etc”. Tell the buyers as much as you know about the item as you can!
- Be friendly! – 🙂 When buyers reach out to you, always give them a quick and upbeat response (even if they send you emails that are full of typos and they’re demanding). Chances are, your buyers are busy and they’re reaching out to multiple sellers. You can stand out by providing a positive and friendly response! My responses go something like this “Thanks for reaching out to me! …..Answer the question….. Hope this helps, happy bidding!” A little extra goes a long way.
How to list your junk, Buy it Now (BIN) or Auction
This is one of the hardest decisions when beginning you eBay endeavor.
- Auction – If your item is rare and hard to find (collectible, older/vintage, limited edition), list it in an auction format. If you don’t know if your item is rare or what it is worth, list it in the auction format so you can let the buyers determine how much it is worth. This way, if your item isn’t worth anything, it’ll show. If it is worth $500, the buyers will likely bid it up to that amount.
- Buy it Now (BIN) – If your item is common and there are numerous eBay listings for the exact or similar item that you’re selling, list it as BIN. I like the BIN feature because it also allows sellers to offer it at best offer. This is great because if I have an article of clothing that I don’t know how much I’ll get out of it, I’ll overprice it on BIN with an OBO option and take what I can get.
Do ample research to see what else is selling, how it is listed and at what price. It’s a good idea to look at the sold listings to see what similar items are selling for. I had limited time, so I listed my items at a lower price than my counterparts just because I wanted a guaranteed sale rather than $5.00 extra.
Other relevant tips and and things I learned
- Before you start, do yourself a favor and write down the reasons why you’re selling your things. Tape it next to your computer. You need a goal, a light at the end of the tunnel, to be successful in this. You’ll have a day (probably soon) where you’ll be banging your head against the wall wondering why on earth you’re doing this to yourself. You’ll need the reasons why you’re putting yourself through Hell.
- eBay is hard work, it’s frustrating, it’s tedious, it’s monotonous. My best advice to you is just JUMP IN! Give it your best shot for two weeks, post a variety of items, and see what works and what doesn’t. Keep a list of everything you sell on Excel to do a recap at the end of 2 weeks to regroup.
- Things I thought would sell really well, didn’t. Things I thought were junk, sold faster than a hummingbird flaps her wings! This proves that either it’s hard to predict what will sell or I’m a complete moron.
Don’t lose your courage! eBay is a great way to rid yourself of the excess in your life that can be a benefit to others! It’s a daunting task to commence because you will never know if something you consider junk will sell or not! All you can do is give it a go! Chances are, you’ll be a few (or a few thousand) bucks richer!!
We would love to hear from you!! Have you sold on eBay? What have you learned? What works vs. what doesn’t?