Ebay success stories please - sellers only.

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This has turned into a comprehensive resource about selling on eBay. Do post your own eBay success story. Definitely include how you began, what kinds of things you sell, the best sources of product, what kind of a return you are making, and whatever else experience has taught you.

There is a New York Times article embedded in the 13th page of posts. Article is about what they call "Agents" - people that sell other people's stuff on eBay.

It really depends what you plan to sell.
Some seller barely make $1000 in gross sale (not net profit), some sellers easily make $10000 in gross sale each month. So it really depends on what you have to offer.

The fees suck, but I've made a decent amount of money. Since I live in LA, I shop at like warehouse sales and stuff, for designer clothes. I wear em a few times, get sick of em, and sell em on eBay. Sometimes I even end up selling it for than I bought it for in the first place, usually to people in middle america and stuff (they dont have barney's warehouse sales out there!)

I've sold some things, and have always been happy with the prices I've gotten. It's usually a good idea to search for the item you plan on selling, and watching those auctions so that you know what the close at. Just searching isn't good enough, cause now the trend is that everyone bids at the last minute so items shoot up within the last hour.

Tips:
- Take pictures, clear pictures
- Know what the going rate is
- Have a well laid out, and attractive auction page (use HTML)
- If the item is a little pricer, consider using the gallery picture.
- Clearly state your terms (payment methods, shipping costs, etc)

- Start you auctions on the weekend, so that they end on a weekend. And consider the time your starting your auction, account for reasonable East to West coast time. Because a auction which starts at Monday at 9am (EST) isn't going to benefit the people who work, and especially the West coast bidders. You'd be surprised how much of a difference this makes.

Why does it matter what time I begin the auction since it's ongoing?

Also what are your experiences with reserve prices and other quirky options?

emaij said:

<< Why does it matter what time I begin the auction since it's ongoing?

Also what are your experiences with reserve prices and other quirky options?
>>



When auction ends depends on when auction begins... Most of the bids are made during 1/2 hour before end of the auction. Hence you would really want your auction to end when there are many eyeballs on eBay.. I have found auctions that end on friday between 8pm to midnight or a little later have higher bids. Saturdays are also good.. Sundays mornings are good.. but dont make a mistake of ending it on sunday evening...

This is just one factor and my opinions.. there are lot of other things that you can tweak to make few more bucks than you would normally do.. 3 bucks more on a 50$ auction is 6% more of profit..

why do you say dont end sunday evening?? i end most of mine sunday evening, figuring people will be eBay surfing..would like to hear your take...


I have over $50k in eBay sales, the majority from cars, and about $5k in electronics...profit margin always over 100%..search the hot deals forum

Sunday nights are the best nights. It is ebays highest traffic night. Friday night and saturday nights are not so good everyone is out eating, going to the movies, bars and parties. I list Sunday night thru Thursday night from 9:45pm - 11pm cst That way it wont interfer with my bidders prime time TV watching. Sunday and Monday nights are my best nights. My ebays sales over the last 2 years are $230,000 . I make my own one of a kind items and have a huge profit margins. My cost per item is about 20-30 cents to make and I sell them for $7-$14 per item. My eBay fees per month are $700-$900 per month. You need to start small and work your way up after your understand the whole process and develope your own system that works for you. You have to keep on top of your emails also I list 200-300 auctions per week and if I dont answer my emails every 4 hours they start to pile up. I get 40-50 emails per day not counting ebays end of auction emails. I also have a 99.7% feedback rating. You will run into your share of freaks on eBay you just have to deal with it and move on to the next deal.

I'm a powerseller and have learned a lot... I will post some tips tomorrow.

Right now I'm turning 16 in a few days... after my 15th birthday I had $300 laying around so I decided to attempt investing it into goods to sell on eBay. I started buying books because I found a place to get them at a great price... made enough to start buying electronics to resell, then it just kind of took off and my money multiplied until I made about $5500 in 8 months. Not great or anything, but for doing it just for fun and only a few hours a week I'm making at least what my friends make at the fast food places and grocery stores. Plus, here I couldn't get any other job if I wanted to since you have to be 16. (Yes, you are supposed to be over 18 to use eBay... but the account is technically in my dad's name.)

My original goal was to be able to afford a decent car by my 16th birthday, and I just bought that a few days ago. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0>

This week I hope to buy a car to resell; we'll see how that goes!


edit: Wow Trifate... that's terrific... congrats!

When you sell so much on eBay, doesn't it get frustrating to ship those items?
You have to package them inside a box, print the shipping label, and do other minor labors for each item you sell. (This can take up quite a bit of time)

And the worst part is going to the post office, wait in line, and then wait for the slow clerk to process the packages.
Sometimes, you need to make two, three trips to the post office.

That's why I quit selling on eBay.
Too much hassle.. I won't do it again unless I can make at least $50 in profit for each item I sell.

yeah shipping can be a hassle, but if you are making $100k per year profit like trifate (and maybe taxfree) this isnt just hassle...its your job!

trifate...yeah thats why i do sunday nights too....


BTW trifate can you link one of your completed auctions? i think we would like to see your items!

You get use to the everyday things like labels, emails, paper work and the post office/ fedex and UPS and going the bank. eBay is a large part of my total income I dont have a full tiem 9-5 job so I like getting out of the house and going to the bank and the post office. I spend about 4 hours per day Monday - Friday on my eBay sales. Not a bad part time job. The key is to find suppliers that you can buy items in bulk. That way you only have to make up one auction for 100's for the same item. If I had to spend time making an auction up for each auction and take pictues of each item it would be a 80 hr per week job. I make up and auction for an item I sell it takes me about 30 mins to do but I then use that auction to sell 100's of the same item.


succkisstaples last time I gave out my eBay ID on fatwallet I got nothing but problems from people bidding on my auctions and not paying and about 50 emails and PM from users asking me to help them get rich on eBay and even a few stoled my pictures from my auctions to use on there own auctions. I do resell some of the hot deals I find on fatwallet. I just dont want the same problems I had last time.

I don't make $100,000 per yet but but I made about $70,000 this year the $230,000 is gross sales not net profit. I do sell other items that I dont make myself like computer parts, toys or just about anything I can make good alot of profit on. edit

sounds a lot like me! why work 9-5 when ya dont need to...it gives you tremendous freedom...and boy it may be a hassle but it sure feels GOOD getting checks in your mail (or your PMB!) =)


im sure youll hit 100k net soon...ebay keeps growing...i understand you dont want to post your eBay id publicly...

PMB?

Are you basically cutting & pasting when you do multiple items or is there a way to copy your own and other eBay pages to modify?

How much of the fee is actually saved when you list on a no-fee day?

What does it cost you when an item is not sold at all?

PMB= private mail box (like mailboxes etc) ...so you can do business w/o revealing home address....

these are better than a PO Box b/c you have people send you fedex and ups packages there (they dont deliver to PO Boxes) plus you can just tell someone 123 any street #5567 and it seems like its an apartment...

I personally use a POBOX but would love to upgrade to a PMB. I hate not being home and missing those fedex packages. How much do you pay for them? Is it a big difference from a POBOX. For the second smallest POBOX, I pay about $30 for a 6month term. And do you have access to it during late hours or is it just accessible while the store is open? Thanks for your time.

Do you guys really pay Income tax on what you earn? I mean is that stuff taxable??
Moreover I am an international student on F1. Does anyone know if I can sell my own stuff on eBay??
Thanks
AP

I pay taxes on all my eBay income. If you make a profit on items you sell you should pay income tax on it but I guess it is up to you. It is amatter of time before the IRS starts cracking down.

Hi, trifate,

Just a few short questions, thanks!

trifate said:

<< Sunday nights are the best nights. It is ebays highest traffic night. Friday night and saturday nights are not so good everyone is out eating, going to the movies, bars and parties. I list Sunday night thru Thursday night from 9:45pm - 11pm cst That way it wont interfer with my bidders prime time TV watching. >>



I think I agree with you on Sunday nights, but I feel it's hard to find a time not to interfer with TV watching for all bidders from four different time zones. What do you think?



<< Sunday and Monday nights are my best nights.
Why are Monday nights good for you? any tips?
Thanks!

jeffrey

My ebays sales over the last 2 years are $230,000 . I make my own one of a kind items and have a huge profit margins. My cost per item is about 20-30 cents to make and I sell them for $7-$14 per item. My eBay fees per month are $700-$900 per month. You need to start small and work your way up after your understand the whole process and develope your own system that works for you. You have to keep on top of your emails also I list 200-300 auctions per week and if I dont answer my emails every 4 hours they start to pile up. I get 40-50 emails per day not counting ebays end of auction emails. I also have a 99.7% feedback rating. You will run into your share of freaks on eBay you just have to deal with it and move on to the next deal.
>>


trifate said:

<< I pay taxes on all my eBay income but I do get some cash payments in the mail and from local buyers I dont pay income tax on that. If you make a profit on items you sell you should pay income tax on it but I guess it is up to you. It is amatter of time before the IRS starts cracking down. >>



I do the same. I have revenues well in excess of 20K a year.

It has alot to do with your customer profile for the items you sell. If you sell to stay at home moms you want to end you auctions during the day. My customers tend to be 16-30 year old men. I dont really know why Mondays are so good for me but Thursday nights are my worst nights. I change things up now and then just test the market.
this webiste tracks total listings on eBay link
Here is a good website full of great tips
link

trifate said:

<< It has alot to do with your customer profile for the items you sell. If you sell to stay at home moms you want to end you auctions during the day. My customers tend to be 16-30 year old men. I dont really know why Mondays are so good for me but Thursday nights are my worst nights. I change things up now and then just test the market.
this webiste tracks total listings on eBay link
>>



Got it, thanks, much appreciated man!<img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>

Good thread.

A different spin: I always have lots of stuff to get rid of, but little or no time to do it. Meanwhile, much of the stuff depreciates. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-sad.gif"border=0>

Is there any well-qualified person/service willing to sell stuff on eBay FOR people? I'd gladly pay a reasonable commission to a powerseller who really knew what they were donig, and could be far more efficient than I could be with it.

DaveHanson said:

<< Good thread.

A different spin: I always have lots of stuff to get rid of, but little or no time to do it. Meanwhile, much of the stuff depreciates. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-sad.gif"border=0>

Is there any well-qualified person/service willing to sell stuff on eBay FOR people? I'd gladly pay a reasonable commission to a powerseller who really knew what they were donig, and could be far more efficient than I could be with it.
>>



Dave, Many people offer this on eBay. You can find them in a section on eBay...personal sellers I think they're called. They usually take 10-25% of the item sold, but will do everything for you.

If you guys pay taxes then under what section do you count the tax? Is it called business? or something like selling and purchasing shares.

I am more curious bcos I am an international student who cannot do business. However I can purcase shares and stuff. I have lots of new (FW) stuff to get rid off but don't know if I can sell it or not <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-sad.gif"border=0>

Any help would be great. Thanks <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>

For any of you guys that play role playing games online, there is a huge market for selling items in the game... and these items don't even exist in real life! I have sold game items online. I guess I could call it a second part time job and it was something that I enjoyed doing! The good part is is all the transactions take place at home and I don't even have to go to the post office and wait in line! I just click and drag items to the other player. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>

I have seen other people make tons of money doing this. Some don't even have to work at it because they make macros to do all their killing and hunting in the game and just sell items from there...

I'm interested in this role playing games online.
What sites are there? I guess most are not free?

And where does one go to if they want to sell their item?
Do they go to eBay and list it there?

Well, in my opinion, you have to do research and find a game that will stay around for a while and where a ton of people play. The one that I got into was Asheron's Call... there are others like Anarchy Online, Ultima Online, and Everquest. Those are some of the older ones that are still around. I have not done much research to see which ones are up and coming...

If you do a search in Ebay for any of those games and click on completed items, you can see the mass amounts of items that people sell and those that have been sold... There are pages upon pages for each of these games. Some people sell their characters for 1000s of dollars...

The only costs are the game itself, your computer, internet connection, and the monthly fees to play the game on the servers (usually around 10 dollars or so)...

Thanks given2trade. 10-25% seems a little steep unless you're talking about very low-cost or high-margin items. Still, if anyone here does this and has excellent references, I'd certainly be willing to listen to a proposal.

DaveHanson said:

<< Thanks given2trade. 10-25% seems a little steep unless you're talking about very low-cost or high-margin items. Still, if anyone here does this and has excellent references, I'd certainly be willing to listen to a proposal. >>



I would agree that on face 10-25% seems high, however, selling a commodity item with Seller A: A brand new eBayer with 0 feedback and Seller B: A powerseller - most likely, B will return 10-25% higher final bid anyway, hence the fee.


Basically, it costs you "nothing" to have them sell it for you.

DH, the people you are looking for are called TRADING ASSISTANTS...their commisions can be as low as 5% plus eBay fees, or as much as 50%....its up to the individual seller how much they wise to charge

at the top of www.ebay.com, click on "services", then go down to TRADING ASSITANTS...type in your area code and a list of people who sell items for others in your area will pop up...each seller has a different specialty and some only sell certain types of items...some sell anything, and all have different fee structures...i would highly recommend doing this for the items we never get around to donating or placing in a garage sale...

Thanks SIS, just found 10 or so promising assistants in my town, and sent out a wave of emails. I will report back with my experiences in a new thread if anything comes of it.

I am a very small seller and dont make much. Cant find enough stuff to sell.

Anyway, I try to list mine for 1 week ending on sunday night.

But since i sell multiple identical items and they seem to be impulse buys, I tend to also have 2-4 auctions ending at other times to catch those who just happen to be looking at auctions ending soon. It costs another $1.50 to list them but I make about $10-12 each and figure its worth it.

Also, i pay the extra 25 cents for the picture to be listed.

My problem is private adult auctions do not allow buy it now or dutch auctions, WHY THE HECK NOT ?

mikeB48 said:

<< I am a very small seller and dont make much. Cant find enough stuff to sell.

Anyway, I try to list mine for 1 week ending on sunday night.

But since i sell multiple identical items and they seem to be impulse buys, I tend to also have 2-4 auctions ending at other times to catch those who just happen to be looking at auctions ending soon. It costs another $1.50 to list them but I make about $10-12 each and figure its worth it.

Also, i pay the extra 25 cents for the picture to be listed.

My problem is private adult auctions do not allow buy it now or dutch auctions, WHY THE HECK NOT ?
>>



You having fun with the webcam again <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0> <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>

trifate, you're my idol.

trifate said:

<< I pay taxes on all my eBay income but I do get some cash payments in the mail and from local buyers I dont pay income tax on that. If you make a profit on items you sell you should pay income tax on it but I guess it is up to you. It is amatter of time before the IRS starts cracking down. >>



I noticed Paypal started taxing my CA customers automatically for me...

This might be a bad thing to say, but I'm not paying taxes on my eBay sales unless I really have to. I pay enough taxes on my 40-hr job's income.



<< I noticed Paypal started taxing my CA customers automatically for me...

This might be a bad thing to say, but I'm not paying taxes on my eBay sales unless I really have to. I pay enough taxes on my 40-hr job's income.
>>

^^im w/ stupid. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>

I am thinking about the same thing, but I'm just too afraid if I get caught by IRS <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-sad.gif"border=0>

isofilez said:

<< I noticed Paypal started taxing my CA customers automatically for me...

This might be a bad thing to say, but I'm not paying taxes on my eBay sales unless I really have to. I pay enough taxes on my 40-hr job's income.
>>

^^im w/ stupid. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> >>



Are you calling me stupid?

>>

Are you calling me stupid? >>

lmao, no. just an expression.

Skipping 925 Messages...
Many online suppliers and manufacturers will not even speak to you if you dont have a tax certificate though....



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