Sunday, August 10, 2008


Hello again, I'm back to try and finish off the basics of how to sell on Ebay.

I left off about the description and copy & pasting any shipping or detailed information at the end of all your descriptions.
  • K, now after you figure out what you want to copy & paste at the bottom of your auctions. Such as "USA bidders only" or that you ship International, ect. then it's time to decide what you want to start your auction at. Also spell check is a good idea which is located at the top of the description box.
  • I start all my auctions off at .99 there are many reasons such as the insertion fee is lower if it's .99 or lower, you get more potential buyers looking and bidding on it. I figure if I keep with my rule of thumb which is not to pay over $1. on anything unless I'm sure it will make me money then if it sells for .99 then I didn't lose that much and if your item is just as described then you have a possible positive feedback. Just remember that you can't please everyone even if it is just as described. I have ran into a few and it's not a pleasant experience, but just be as nice as you can even though you would like to tell them off and please never call anyone names in e-mails or feedback. It's very bad taste and will make potential buyers that see the feedback you leave want to leave also. If you plan on doing this as a business then treat it as one and one happy customer could mean 5 potential customers. I have had alot of my repeat buyers tell others and now I sell to their best friend, daughter and son's teacher, ect. I'm sure you get my point.
  • The next thing is to decide weather you want to set off your auction right after you are done writting it up or if you want to schedule it for a later time.... What I do is schedule my auctions for a week ahead of time, but I set them off manually at the time I think is best for my auctions to end. So when it's time to set off and for me it's about 9 p.m. my time on Sunday night then I edit my auctions and change the from the scheduled start time to "Start Listing Immediately" and do that with the rest of my auctions and that way you don't have to pay the .10 I think it is for each auction to have Ebay set them off for you. It's really quick and painless after you have set off your auctions a time or two.
  • The next step is to decide what type of payments do you want to receive. I accept Paypal, Money Orders/Cashiers Checks and Personal Checks. Personal checks you should wait for them to clear your bank first. Usually 10 days tops. Me personally if it's for under $10. and they have good feedback then I won't wait the 10 days, but also if they have purchased from me before and have been a good paying customer then I won't wait either. It all depends on the amount and their feedback weather I will wait till it clears or not. In the 5+ years I have only had 1 check returned and it was an error on their part and they happily sent me a money order.
  • The next part is if you want a Shipping & Handling calculator on the bottom of your page so people will know exactly what they will be paying to have the item shipped to them. You don't have to put in the weight, but it will again save alot of time answering questions on shipping and handling costs and you won't lose potential buyers.
  • Now you have an option to put in the weight and how you will ship their package in the next section. Before I use to box up everything so I could get the exact weight, but you don't know how much wasted time and wasted tape and then unboxing the items that don't sell I did. I now have a good sense of what to add on to each item for the box and packing materials. I weigh everything on a postal scale that I purchased off Ebay for $20. and then after I weigh them I add whatever I think is appropriate for the box and packing material. For small items such as small figurines, trinket box, ect. I usually add 7 0z. onto the weight of the item. For bigger items such as wall mirrors, pictures, ect. I add anywhere from 1-2 lbs. Medium items it's usually around 10 oz. That is what works for me and it all depends on the size of the item also. If you decide to do it this way then you will get better at the guestamations in time. It's alot better then boxing up items and saves alot of time.
  • Next you want to decide how you would like to ship your item. I like to ship USPS because I find it to be a cheaper way to ship and they will come pick up your packages from your home for free as long as you have a printed prepaid label on them and you must have at least 1 Priority box for them to pick them up for free. It works great for me because my auctions end on Sunday night, I box them up Monday morning then I print off the labels Monday evening and tape them on the boxes and put in a 'Carrier Request' through USPS for the next morning. I live out in the country so it's nice. Our Post Man picks up the bulk of my packages on Tues. morning then I ship off any straglers after that whenever I am in town. Here are the shipping methods I use...
  • First Class Mail - This is only good for packages 13 oz. or under.
  • Priority Mail - I use this for anything 14 oz. - 1lb. 4 oz. and you can get free Priority boxes from the Post Office or order them for free on and they are shipped to you for free also.
  • Parcel Post Mail - I use this for anything over 1 lb. 4 oz. or bigger items.
  • Media Mail - This is the method I use to ship books, DVDs, VHS tapes, CDs, magazines, ect. There are specifics of what you can ship Media Mail. This is a very cheap way to ship those heavy cook books, Lot of magazines, ect. But please only use this method for how it's intended. You don't want to risk getting your package shipped back to you and then you must reship it on your dime. They will not reimburse you for the shipping charges you lost because you didn't follow the rules.
  • Then there are First Class International and Priority Mail International which are for shipping packages to other countries. If you are not going to ship International then you don't have to worry about these 2 methods, but I recommend becoming familiar with these shipping methods because chances are you will get questions about people that want you to ship International and you might want to do it from time to time. I recommend eventually shipping International when you are more familiar with it to help your sales and to open up to a wide variety of potential buyers. One of my greatest friends who I met through Ebay and buys from me quite abit is from Canada and I would have never met her if I didn't ship International and I'm so glad I do now.
  • Now the next step after you put in your weights and how it's going to be shipped is to decide if you want to charge a handling fee and if so then how much? Handling charges cover tape, Fragile stickers, packing material, gas, time, ect. I charge $1. handling for each auction. I see other sellers charge WAY too much in my opinion. But you decide what is best for you. I am fortunate to have access to some packing material and boxes. But you decide how much handling is right for you, but remember that most Ebay buyers especially if they have been buying on Ebay for awhile pretty much have an idea of how much it will cost to ship that item to them and if they see that you are for example charging $15. for S/H on an item that will only cost $6.20 then you might lose potential buyers that don't like the high handling charge.
  • Now the next part is if you are going to ship International or not. If you don't plan on it then you don't need to read this part, but if you are then please read. First Class International is a cheaper alternative to International shipping. The transit time "varies" but it doesn't take any more then 3 weeks normally this way, but it can take as long as 3 months as I have had this happen to me a time or two. Priority Mail International costs more, but takes a shorter time in transit. There are specifics for it to be shipped First Class International such as the package has to be under 4 lbs. and the package has to be under a certain dimention. So please goto again to become familiar with the size requirements and weights for packages.
  • Then that is pretty much the basics....I think? I have been doing this for so long that I don't even think when I list so I am probably missing quite a bit.
  • Please, Please, Please....Ask any and all questions...No questions is stupid or goofy, just the unasked questions. Chances are if you have a question in your head that you think is goofy then I probably had that same question once upon a time and others have that question now and are wondering which poster is going to ask it so they don't have to embarrass themselves and do
  • If this helps at least 1 person fullfill their dreams then my job is done. Please remember this is only my advise and this is what works for me, I'm sure you will find better ways that work for you or might get advise from others. I just wish I could have read something like this or had someone I could have asked any questions to when I first started selling... It would have saved me alot of stress and grey
  • Thanks so much for checking me out and Happy Ebayin' :o)


  • Hello again!! As you can tell by the name of my page...I'm an Ebay Mommy...I sell on Ebay and get to be a stay-at-home Mommy to my sweet 2 year old little boy. I started sellin about 5 years ago and have never looked back. If you are considering selling on Ebay then please post any questions you might have and I will try and cover that in upcoming posts. First thing is first...
  • You should have an Ebay account which is a no brainer...
  • If you have a name that has lots of numbers or would be hard for potential buyers to look up then I advise changing your Ebay name to something simple and maybe even about what you are selling, ect. My ID name is a_lil_of_everthing which is what I sell is a lil of everthing...Yes, the "y" is missing because I had a brain freeze when I changed it and once you change it you can't change it again for at least 30 days and by the time 30 days was up I have had comments on how cute that was because that is how their child or they even say everything...but anyways that is my id name if you want to look me up and see how I do it.
  • I advise getting a Paypal account if you have not already....I think Paypal is very safe even though you might hear it's not. I have had paypal for 5+ years and have NEVER had any problems at all. You just have to be very careful about any e-mails you get that look like they are from Paypal or Ebay. If Paypal or Ebay sends you an e-mail then never ever click on any links and automatically delete them to be on the safe side. If they really did send you anything then you can log into your accounts and it will show up in your e-mails on your Ebay account or on Paypal in alerts I believe. There are alot of clever people who can send out e-mails with Ebay and Paypal logos and make them look legit. So to be on the safe side....NEVER click on any links in an e-mail....
  • K, now we got your account on Ebay and your account on Paypal (a Paypal account is not needed to start selling, but advised as it's the easiest way for you to get your money and for buyers to personally I will not bid on anything on Ebay unless they accept Paypal).
  • You have to decide what you want to sell...I don't recommend any "dropshippers" alot of Ebay sellers have gotten bad marks because the dropshippers didn't ship or they ran out of the product after it had been bid on and won and were not able to ship. For me I sell mostly vintage, collectible and home decor items I find at rummage sales, auction sales, thrift shops or even stores that are going out of business. I love to rummage and go to auction sales so it's a fun job for me!! If you love to rummage sale then you are off to a good start if you can get up in the morning and hit those sales early. I have found so many great stuff for Ebay and plus for myself and family. So it's a win-win situation when you can find clothes or home decor for yourself and plus find things to sell on Ebay.... You save money by buying clothes at rummage sales and I have found some really nice name brand clothes for under $1. which brand new in the stores would be over $50. a piece.
  • My rule of thumb when looking for stuff to sell on Ebay...I never pay over $1. unless I am pretty sure I can make more. Usually I can find cute little figurines for .25, Home Interiors pictures for $2. , Fenton pieces for $2. ect. You got to have a little knowledge of what sells and I advise to look around on Ebay. If you know you can find alot of Home Interiors pieces then search for Home Interiors on Ebay and check the 'completed' box and then go to the highest sold and see what type of price certain things bring. Or if you know you can find alot of Avon bottles, figurines, ect. do the same just to get familar with what sells and what doesn't. You will also learn as you go along. I didn't really have a clue at first when I first started and I am still learning more everyday, but as you become familar and know what to look for it will be more rewarding.... I love to find that "Gem in the rough" which I have found a time or two and it's a great feeling to bring your treasures home and to look them up on Ebay to know if you did find a treasure.
  • K, you got all your treasures home....Do you have a digital camera? I do see people that do list items without pictures and 9 times out of 10...they don't sell...I strongly advise you take pictures of your items you want to sell...
  • Don't have a digital camera? Maybe you know someone who does and wouldn't mind borrowing it to you to use like once a week so you can take your pictures until you can save up enough or make enough on Ebay to buy your own. I have a 8.3 Mega Pixels FinePix Fujifilm digital camera which I love!! I have had this camera for about a year now...The digital camera I had before which still works, but is only a 3 Mega Pixel is also a Fujifilm. So I am favor Fujifilm cameras because they take such great pictures and I have dropped my cameras a time or two and they are very well made and have never broke or stopped working.... They are very easy to use also. That's just my opinion...I'm sure the Kodak or other cameras are just as good, I just never have had any experience with them.
  • K, you have a digital camera or borrowed one? Now you need a nice clean spot to take pictures of your findings. I have an old library table that I lay a white sheet over and there's a window with lace curtains for the background. They do have picture boxes with the lights and sides and backings that you can find at Walmart and maybe other places, but those are only good for smaller items like figurines, small pictures, ect. I have one myself that my hubby bought for me and I love it. It does work nice and the pictures come out good, but they also come out good on my table, so a picture box is not needed and if you can take good pictures elsewhere then I would recommend not wasting your money on it.
  • Now you got a nice clean spot to take pictures? Remember lighting.... I have a flourescent floor light that I use and love. When I take pictures of pictures I just have to remember not to have it reflect in the glass. You don't need a flourescent light of course if you don't have one. Just an open curtain on a nice day will be good and even after you take the picture and it seems too dark because the flash didn't go off then there are ways to brighten your picture with any photo software. I use PhotoImpact 8 and love it. You can brighten or darken pictures, you can crop the extra from your picture and you can frame your picture. I advise framing with a bright color so it stands out from the rest. You will be surprised how many people don't take the time to frame their pictures.....You don't have to frame your pictures, but it doesn't take long and will be noticed more in the gallery pictures. I advise also to take pictures of any maker's markings and added them to the picture that you took. Merging it in or "copy & paste" it in. I seldom ever use more then one picture for any of my auctions...The first picture is free, but extra pictures are usually I think .15 each. Unless it's big and you can't catch all the details in one picture, I recommend one picture to save you money and keep your profits up. Every little bit helps.
  • You don't have any photo software? Then borrow from someone.... You can easily borrow some type of photo software from a friend or relative and load it onto your computer and then just give them back the disc. You don't need the disc anymore once it's loaded onto your computer so that's a cheap alternative to some type of photo software. I advise the PhotoImpact, but it's only because this was the easiest software for me and did what I needed. That way if you have any questions about PhotoImpact I can try and help otherwise you are on your own with that one...
  • K, you got your treasures, got a nice spot for taking pictures, took pictures, load them onto your computer, use the photo software you have on your puter to crop and frame your pictures....Now your pictures are all nice bright and great looking...what now?
  • Goto your Ebay account and log in and click on "Sell" which is at the top. A box will come up that you type in what it is you are selling type in things such as "Avon Figurine", "Precious Moments trinket box" , "Home Interiors Picture", ect. and it will give you a choice of catagories that best fit what you are selling. Click on what you think is the best one and click on next....
  • Now the want to try and use as many as the characters as you can to make your item more searchable. For example...Say I have a cow bell to sell...what more can you put then "cow bell"?? Well you can put "Old Metal cow bell~cattle~bull~animals~collectible" get the point? I believe that if you just put in "cow bell" then you are loosing the oportunity for other people to find you....maybe they are looking for "collectible bells" lost that person....maybe they are looking for "animal bells" which is different then a cow bell, but they do come across your auction and think to themselves...'hey, that's neat and it's cheap! maybe I should bid on that for my kitchen, or for my sister, ect."
  • K, now the description...... always get to the point unless you wanna have fun with it or what it more personable. But please never ramble on and have someone loose interest after the 10th sentence. I advice just saying what it is, always note any imperfections, chips, repairs, breaks, ect. and measurements are always good and will save you time with questions of people asking for the measurements. After you do that it's good to have a "copy & paste" of your payment policy, ect. I don't have any auctions up at this moment, but will tonight at about 9 p.m. so you can check out my copy & paste just to get an idea of what I mean.
  • OMG!!! I have been writting for so long that I didn't pay attention to the gotta get a few things done around the house and I will try and be back later to continue this talk...if you have any questions then please ask away and I will try and help you if I can...
    Thanks for reading Part 1 so far....Part 2 coming soon.........

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

This is my very first Blog! Let me know how I did...

This is my first ever blog and I'm kinda excited about it....I'm from Northern Minnesota with a little 2 year old boy and a husband of 5 years whom I adore. I sell on Ebay and LOVE it because it lets me be a stay-at-home Mommy and I love to meet new people which I do selling on Ebay. I have actually met some really interesting people and some of whom I consider my great friends that I e-mail quite regularly. I mostly sell collectibles and vintage items. I have been selling for over 5 years and think I have a good grasp on what sells and what doesn't. Not to brag, but I think I have a good eye for unusual and unique pieces that some people wouldn't see the beauty in, but a little cleaning up and sometimes a little paint can go a long way. I have now just started buying vintage furniture which I am going to restore for myself. Last Saturday I bought a vintage yellow & white metal kids high chair with the steps that pull out so you can use it as a step stoll also. It's in pretty bad shape with dirt and surface rust, but it was only .25 and I am going to fix it up with removing the rust and repainting it with my son's name on it. I don't know if I can in a blog since this is my first blog, but I would like to post before and after pictures on here. But anyways.....for my first blog, I think I did pretty well....I have a great sense of humor and have lots of stories I will more then likely blog about later on. Well if you made it this far and haven't fallen asleep by now then I "Thank You"....Please check back for more......