I want to clue you in on a little secret- ANYBODY CAN MAKE MONEY ON EBAY– including you and I! And I don’t mean drop shipping!
How I Started on Ebay
If you have read some of my other posts, you know that I ran into some serious financial trouble a few years ago. You may also know that I am not the type of person to roll over and take a beating. When financial troubles hit me, I went searching for ways to hit back!
Enter my beautiful big sister! My sister has been selling on EBay for years, but I had never even considered doing this myself. I went to visit her one holiday (she lives about 8 hours away), and she told me that I could start selling on Ebay for extra money. She taught me so many tips, from where to find inventory, to how to get buyers to look at your products. I went on to make about $1200 within about 3 months!
*Disclosure: Affiliate links are included in this post, however, all opinions are truly my own.
How To Get Started
First of all, you need a good camera, a computer, and a postal scale. I already had a computer, and my sister gifted me a camera to use for the pictures. Once you have that, you need to secure some inventory.
Once you have these necessities, sign up for an EBay sellers account. I opened up an EBay store because my goal is to eventually make about $1000 per month.
My sister also advised me to set up a United States Postal Service account. You are able to print shipping labels through EBay, but USPS will deliver free shipping boxes to your home for use with your business.
Where To Find Inventory
Ebay inventory can be found anywhere. Honestly, you will be surprised at what people will buy! I recall my sister saying to me “people will buy broken shit, but you have to let them know that the shit is broken!” She was right! Here are a few places that inventory can be found:
- Around your house. Look at old clothes, textbooks, children toys, and electronics. Some of the items that I have made the most money from included textbooks, broken toys, and coffee mugs. When my son was younger, he collected Ben 10 toys. I was able to sell some of these toys for $20 each!
- Thrift Stores. I thrift on a regular basis, but do not always find items that are usable. I like thrifting because I can conspicuously check what items are selling for on EBay before deciding to purchase.
- Yard Sales. Yard sales are a major goldmine for me! I once purchased a bag full of broken Monster High dolls for about $5.00, and made over $100 from them! The key is to buy low.
Listing your First Item(s)!
As a beginner on EBay, you will receive a pretty low selling rate (maybe 10 items per month). I knew that I wanted to sell more than this right away, so I called EBay and asked them to raise my limit (and they did!).
To list your first item, look up the item that you are trying to sell. For example, if it is a Getty Vase, I would type that in. Sometimes, you do have to Google information about your item if you are not familiar with it. Once you see a product similar to yours, click on it and then select the “Have one to sell- sell now” button.
Before listing, make sure that you have cleaned the item up well, and also taken nice pictures. I like to crop my photos and add a filter before using them.
Upload your pictures to your listing, and make sure that all information has been filled in. Be sure that you fully disclose all information about the product! Remember from before, people will still buy it if they know about the problems beforehand! Pay close attention to these parts of your listing:
- Title. I try to include all words that a person may search for. If it is a coffee cup, I put the word cup and mug in the title.
- Condition. If it is used, be sure to list that. A box will pop up if you select used. Put in as much detail as possible here, and make sure that you disclose everything about the product.
- Item description. Repeat what was listed in the conditions box. Also include information that may help the buyer make their final decision.
- Format. I normally list items as auction style for 7 days, and if they do not sell within that time frame, I relist them as a fixed listing with a best offer option.
- Return Options. I give buyers the option for returns on everything except books. As long as it is returned within 14 days, I will accept it.
- Shipping. Be sure to list a decent shipping price. When I first started out, I was putting the shipping for my coffee mugs at $3.99. Way too low! I ended up losing money there!
Now list your items and start making some cash! Items that I have sold in the past include:
- Pandora boxes
- Popular children toys (Ben 10, Monster High, Barbie, Super Heroes, Build-A-Bears)
- Coffee Mugs
- Card Decks
- Games (Board and Video Games)
- Electronics (I recently sold an 8 year old Fitbit!)
- Miniature Doll house items
These are just a few ideas, but you should really sell whatever you are interested in and knowledgeable about. I do not have a niche, but I sell whatever catches my eye.
Leave me a comment, or feel free to email me if you are interested in really getting started on EBay! Happy selling!