Do you want to work from home? In our Home Business Ideas article we looked at some home business ideas.
Today I am going to give you a quick overview on running an eBay business and some ideas for starting a business on eBay.
eBay Business Ideas
Where to find products to sell
- Go direct to manufacturers
- Locate liquidators and sell discounted merchandise and products that you purchase
- Build relationships with wholesalers
- Visit auctions and pick up items cheap and sell at a profit
- Visit outlet stores as they often have big discounts
- Visit garage sales
- Search through the newspaper and other websites such as Gumtree.com.au
Items you can sell on eBay
- Luxury items
- Mobile phones
- Sporting equipment
- Sports uniforms
- Beauty products
- Arts and craft
- Baby products
- Household products
- Cleaning equipment
- Power tools
Although not essential, it is always more enjoyable working on something you are passionate about. If you are knowledgeable in a subject, it will show through in your customer service and business decisions.
There is no point in selling products that nobody is interested in. First you need to conduct market research to identify products that sell well.
Make a list of categories or niches that you would be willing to sell in. Then head over to eBay and do some basic searching around. If you are logged in, you can enable the “Completed Items” filter to see what has been selling and for what prices.
- eBay Trends – This is a brief but interesting insight to eBay’s trending items.
- Adwords planner – Although not strictly for eBay, this tool can give you insight to Google’s database of trends. Type in your product ideas to check and compare search volumes.
There are many ways of sourcing products for eBay, here are a few options:
- Make them yourself – If you can make something that is unique and interesting, this will often give you the highest profit margins.
- National wholesale – Wholesale directories are an “eBay for eBay sellers”. Start small and test the market before investing large sums.
- Importing – carries more risk but potentially a higher return. Make sure you understand import and carriage charges fully before making an order.
- Cheap Stock – Everyone is looking for a bargain. Check local auctions to find some bargains.
Make sure you read up on eBay’s terms of service and charges. If your products or selling practices violate their terms they will take down your item.
Try to be as descriptive as possible in your description and provide clear imagery. Review prices from competitors to make sure you are competitive.
Provide Exceptional Service
One of the benefits of a multi-vendor market place like eBay is the feedback system. The whole plat form is built on a community of buyers and sellers who can rate their experiences with each other. This can often be a strong trust signal and indicator to buyers on whether to buy from you or a competitor. Describe items well, ship in a timely fashion and follow-up with good feedback if appropriate.
Be aware of not so exceptional buyers
Like everything community on the internet, some savory characters can sneak in and take advantage. Make sure to always post to the address listed on the order and report anything out of the ordinary.
Make sure to always post recorded and insured. eBay’s buyer protection scheme is only valid when using a track able, verified delivery method.
Optimise your listings
Visibility is everything, eBay is much like Google. Optimise your product listings for relevant keywords to ensure your products are found. Do not overdo it and spam with too many keywords as eBay frowns on this.
Happy eBaying! Check out the eBay community for more tips and advice.