Selling on eBay

Selling on eBay

As a budding captain of e-commerce, you are probably canvassing all your options for selling your products. Perhaps you’ve even already started using Ecwid to manage your storefront and have added a Facebook store or maybe even a second website, but how do you expand that reach? The smart money is on using simple services that people already enjoy using. Selling on eBay is one of the Internet’s tried-and-true options. Everyone who is on eBay is already shopping so you have a captive audience and now you just need to get your products in front of them.

Many business owners approach eBay with caution because it looks confusing. Some simply don’t know how to sell on eBay, while others think that selling on eBay is simply a lazy man’s garage sale. Let’s dig into why getting your product to sell on eBay can be an easy, effective means to grow your business’s footprint.

It’s easy to set up an account so you can sell on eBay, but it’s more important that you take steps to be successful after you do so. If you fail to prioritize customer service or getting your product out to customers in a timely manner when selling on eBay, you too easily attract negative attention, and your efforts can end up being damaging, not helpful.

Take care of the customers

Of the biggest steps you need to take when you decide how to sell on eBay is to plan on providing the best customer service you possibly can. For example, there is a Japanese store that operates on eBay, and it includes a folded paper crane and a letter thanking each customer for his or her purchase, then it asks them to keep them in mind for future purchases. Operating professionally and with care sends a powerful message to the customer and helps them remember they bought from your store rather than from eBay — which means they will come back to you.

You also need to respond to customer inquiries in a timely matter as well. Any dissatisfaction a customer has will be reflected in your seller rating, and even if you only know a little about how to sell on eBay, you know that your rating is your social proof and currency. Respond quickly, be thoughtful and empathetic, and ask if the customer is 100% satisfied with your service at the end to keep your ratings high. A couple bad ratings can kill you on eBay so you need to be willing to be flexible and easy to accept returns.

eBay’s software can automate a lot of the busywork attached to selling, scheduling sales in the future and the like, leaving you free to focus on customer service and keeping your seller rating strong. That seller rating will ultimately impact where your listings show up, and if you don’t do a good job at taking care of your customers, eBay will punish you with low visibility.

Strategists have the most success

While selling on eBay, you also want to make sure you are the most attractive option to the customer. Keep a strategic eye on your competition. Watch their prices, note what they do well, and note what they do poorly. Offering free or discounted shipping will appeal to many buyers, but make sure your price stays competitive with the competition at the same time.

Considering that you can actually search for “power sellers” when on eBay, you can find blueprints of how a successful eBay business operates and implement those ideas as you see fit. Just remember to put your own spin on things; copycat tactics will only ever go so far.

Setting a good price is an important step in planning how to sell on eBay. You’ll most likely want to sell a majority of your items through the “buy it now” options, but you might experiment with eBay’s ubiquitous auction method, starting items for sale at some amazingly attractive prices and watching them go up as people bid on them.

Make products you can’t normally sell work for you

Selling on eBay can also give you a chance to move distressed product as well. Did you end up with some returns, or were some items lightly damaged in shipping? Instead of tossing the product, list it on eBay as-is. Make sure that you take the time to actually explain what is damaged about your product and how it can affect the product’s performance. If you are less than 100% clear on those issues, your customer will surely make sure they tell everyone else after they figure it out. This is not an excuse to start selling things damaged beyond being useful. Consider your brand and what it deserves!

If you decide to move distressed or lightly damaged product on eBay, you can easily integrate that within your e-commerce site with a few simple links. Customers that end up finding the listed product will already be looking for a savings while the customers that come from your e-commerce site will be looking for a chance to save on the products they are already familiar with. eBay customers may be interested in seeing your standard offerings options as well, sending more eyeballs to your standard domain from eBay.

Don’t be afraid to try to move bundles of product as well. If a customer thinks there is an advantage to buying 2 pieces of product that may have some wear on it over buying one brand new piece, eBay is a natural place to facilitate that sale. Once again, just make sure that any product abnormalities are clearly noted so that you are covering your bases and the customer doesn’t feel like you are taking advantage of him or her. If you want to play it completely safe, reach out to those that do make those purchases just to confirm they understand the nature of what they’re buying.

eBay is the better early marketplace option

Google and Amazon offer options to independent merchants as well, but their services have a significant difference in fees. If you aren’t running around with a ton of disposable business income, you want to go with the cheaper options first. It doesn’t mean these other marketplaces won’t be options later, but eBay is totally the right first choice.

The other two primary marketplaces also use a hierarchy to their product listings. Google generally favors big-box retailers to appear among the first search results, meaning that the customer actually click through a page or two (or more) to buy from smaller, lesser-known sellers. Amazon is always going to offer its own inventory before yours, so it’s unfortunately possible that customers that may even think they are buying from you, only to order ordering from Amazon instead.

eBay gets yet another feather in its cap for offering payment protection through PayPal. Google and Amazon’s procedure for this is much more complex, and generally favors the buyer.

Once you have delivered your products and completed the transaction remember that the customer is now yours — not eBay’s. So you should market to them through email and social media to drive them back to your main Ecwid website. Not only will you avoid paying eBay their share of fees you will also be building a connection with that customer directly.

Hopefully we’ve convinced you that selling on eBay is awesome

Once you have identified the products you will be selling on eBay, you will build a vetted customer base, generate revenue, and even get some traffic to your own e-commerce domain. This is wonderful because eBay is a natural marketplace that has access all across the world. With 162 million users active on eBay each month, converting any portion of them to new customers for your e-commerce site will be a total win.

If you are looking for a more technical how-to of how to list your Ecwid products on eBay take a moment and check out or blog post that goes in-depth on how to sell on eBay. It elaborates on how to export your Ecwid products to implement everything you need to establish a successful moneymaking presence on the Internet’s de facto auction site. Every country has a different way to connect so our current integration is currently set up to for US merchants to sell on eBay in the US and for merchants in other countries to list on eBay in the US.

By integrating your Ecwid-based inventory with an eBay seller presence, you’ve already taken steps to outperform competitors that haven’t determined how to sell on eBay yet. Ecwid’s high-level integration with this and other marketplaces makes e-commerce management a no-brainer, and there’s nothing to lose by selling on eBay. You can only generate more sales, and what’s not to like about that?