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How to get Started on EBAY

By Charles Hopkins Published 04/20/2006 | Business and Finance
EBAY is a 70 billion dollar a year industry giant. The really interesting situation is that they are dependent on entrepreneurs, like you, to make that business figure grow. In 2005, the number of people making money from working on EBAY increased by 68%. Over 724,000 million people either make a full time or a supplemental income from working EBAY. And another 1.5 million say that EBAY gives them additional income throughout the year. EBAY, Inc. 2005 offers these figures.

What is interesting is that there are many ways to get started working EBAY for an extra income. The main thing is to get a plan and work the plan. Gather up some income products from around your home, your relatives, garage sales, thrift stores, salvation army, big lots, consignment shops, etc. Invest a set amount, say 200. Make sure that you get items that are useful or entertaining and that provide a quick turn over. The way to do that is to think about your own buying habits. Would you purchase this item if you saw it advertised, does it appeal to a mass market, is it a niche product people might be willing to purchase? What you want are items that you can pick up for very little money and that you can put up on EBAY for a small price and, thereby, create an immediate cash flow. At first, you will want to return almost all your profits back into purchasing some more items to sell. You will do this until you have a comfortable amount of money invested in your business and then you will have set up your own profit stream.

To get your items ready to market what you need to do is to take a quality digital photo of the item from different angles. For smaller items, you should use a whiteboard backdrop to get the maximum amount of light with few reflections. For larger items, outside shots work well, just have the sun behind your back when taking the picture. You also need to write up a very good description of your item and do not try to hide any imperfections. Point out the usefulness and benefits as well. A description that is fair and honest will result in much better comments received in EBAY feedback. I will explain this more in a later paragraph.

You can open a starting seller's EBAY store for just 15.95 a month and have about five pages to sell your items. You also receive a free month when you start your store, so you can get a feel for how it all works. You will have to pay EBAY for their sale fees which amount to an insertion fee and a selling fee. I will attempt to explain each in an example format.

The insertion fees differ based on the listing price, but for example, you will pay a fee of .60 for an item listed from 10.00 to 24.99 and when that item sells, you will also pay 5.25% of the selling price. If that price is 24.99, then you would pay 1.32, so it has a cost of 1.92 to sell this item. Since you have several items to sell, you will want to know the following qualifications. The insertion fee for multiple items, dutch auctions, and fixed price items is based on the opening value of your listed items. The opening value is the starting price or fixed item price multiplied by the number of items you list. The maximum insertion price from EBAY is 4.80.

The final value fee charged by EBAY is determined by taking the multiple items or dutch auctions final value fee of the lowest successful bid item and multiplying it by the number of items sold. The final value fee charged by EBAY for a multiple value fixed price listing is calculated on per item sold, based on the final sale price of the item.

A EBAY Store is a very effective way to display your items, drive traffic to a website, or to display a couple of your best items in EBAY auctions and get people to visit your other items through your store listing on your auction websites.

After you sell an item, you will be eligible for "feedback." This is where the buyer makes comments about your service, your responsiveness to email questions, and general comments about how it was interact with you as a seller of EBAY items. You want this to be 100% or as close as possible to it. If there is a dispute on any item, you will try to work it out and make sure that the buyer is satisfied within your own selling descriptions. You have a right to have your terms met, but you also have to satisfy the buyer as much as possible. You want return customers and you want others that will check your feedback section to be sure to find good comments about your service. This enables those who have not conducted business with you to know your track record and feel more confident that they will have a good buying experience with your company or store. Another thing that happens is that you should return the feedback to the buyers account so that they also have the good notations on their membership listing as a buyer. For instance, "buyer pays promptly, buyer is easy to deal with, buyer is welcome back to your store," etc.

If you have any qualms about listing or do not know how to list, there are actually places you can take your EBAY items and have them do the marketing, listing, and selling for you. However, if you really want to make this a good source of income, I suggest learning to do the listings yourself and capitalize on more profits. But the key thing is to GET STARTED.

EBAY will only continue to grow as more and more people make money with them, so why not capitalize on this easy to do program. Go where the people are looking to buy...that is EBAY right now!