As many of you who may follow my blog already know, I used to sell on eBay. I made a living from doing so for close to 10 years. In the blog, I will discuss some of the pros and cons of what many seem to think is a business of quick money. Sure, it could have been years ago but today, things are a bit different. I want to discuss a few key points and facts regarding eBay from the seller’s (my own) prospective.
Cutting into your profit
EBay is hands down one of the largest auction websites. As a matter-of-fact, more than half of the US uses it; plus some other countries I can’t even pronounce, but you get my point. As times and demands have changed, I feel eBay wanted a bigger cut of the action. By wanting a bigger piece of that action, they started charging sellers more on each sale. But when this happened it made it much harder to sell for a profit. So all-the-while, eBay is raking in the cash for my products and getting next to nothing in terms of profit. That may be acceptable to some but, certainly not me.
eBay recuses the post office
In my own delusional theory, I fully believe eBay single handedly saved the post office’s ass. As people were more and more people were find the post office useless, eBay turned it all around for them. Shipping in unbelievable volumes, thanks to their sellers. One thing that eBay has over looked is the fact that it takes sellers to keep eBay alive. Yep, you guessed it, these are the very people that eBay has turned their back on. Buyers don’t feel a bit of this pain, not saying they should but this is all left on the shoulders of a seller; whom yep you guessed it right again, keeps eBay in business. I look around eBay and I am not sure I like what I see. A lot of the organic sellers seem to be gone, the people that really define what eBay is. I can’t say that I blame neither them nor myself. It’s strictly a smart business decision on our part. Anyone in business for themselves is clearly doing just that to make a profit.
Scott’s best tip
The best tip I can offer is to find a product with little to no competition. Not as easy as it sounds, I know. Unfortunately, there are so many people out to make a quick buck these days that it is nearly impossible to sell anything. A saturated market will not help your odds. You need to think outside of the box.
Scott quits eBay
About 2 years ago, I quit eBay because in my opinion, it has really gone downhill, or as I like to put it, “it has jumped the shark”. The costs have risen and support has suffered democratically. Well we can’t forget the obvious; we also know that eBay wants a bigger piece of the action! A friend of mine, Jeff, started selling on eBay about a year ago with some good results over-all. BUT, I can’t stop thinking about when I sold on eBay, and how much it’s changed.
I have quit eBay, the reason I came back is, I came across a few items that I think would go well on eBay, and when I mean a few, I do mean it, (I have sold less than 10 things). I will never go on the same way I once did, the price is just too high. But, I wanted to test it! When you sell something, and you add up the cost, you can see for yourself. Think about the stuff like, shipping supply’s, gas to the post office, it really adds up, and to be honest it feels like everyone has their handout. One item I sold for $10.00, I had to pay to ship, that should never happen. Where in the hell if my profit from that? I actually think I spent money to list and ship this item. Could you afford to do this on a regular basis?
If you are looking at making money off the web, eBay is really now, a side step.
Stuff I sold on eBay
(*I found some niche markets for products that inventory was easy to come by, cheap and had a reasonably high demand.)
· R/C airplanes – I went to airplane auctions I picked up some great items for cheap, I made some auction purchases with ROI of about 13 dollars for every dollar spent. It was dicey; you never knew what you would find.
· The pawn shop – I went partners with an owner of a pawnshop, getting 35% of the total sale. I moved some hard to find items, but I had a hard time making money. Then he was getting greedy and wanted to change the deal. Over all, it was a push.
· Storage auctions goods – This really was the best deal, simple because you get a verity of items from storage units, it was very juicy, and I was always finding new niche markets.
· 50,000 baseball cards- I once found 50,000 baseball cards in a storage unit, my first reaction was this has to be worth some money! I paid to ship it, loll!
Selling on eBay was a very interesting experience. My feedback number is 468, at a 100%, I can’t confirm any real profits, and one-thing is for sure eBay made some really good money off me!
Currently, I am selling a few of my websites; I just have too many websites! So I am down-sizing a bit. I’ve recently sold three networks of forty websites (I went little nuts a year ago; I had almost 100 websites at one time.) Not’ an easy thing to do. I got what some may call ADD of websites.
The number one question I get asked, is there still a living on eBay?
That is a good question; I think so, only problem is, the many doors of opportunity seem to be open for a short time. From time to time, I stumble over niche that may be worth a few dollars although, it is short lived.
Recently, a massive exodus of power-sellers left eBay over rising fees.
Check out what I am selling on eBay these days.