What Mistakes To Avoid When Selling On EBay

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Selling on eBay is mostly a matter of experience, knowing what and what not to do. The following is a list of some basic mistakes that sellers should avoid when they go on selling items on eBay.

Product selection
Make sure you are not mixing emotions when it comes to products you are about to sell. Picking your items in such a way is wrong, and in most cases it will proof to be a non profitable decision. You should know that a “hunch” on eBay plays no roll – the goal is not to gamble on products hoping they will sell, but rather selecting items only after you have checked, calculated and measured the odds for success, and a good way to do that is tracking existing items that show on eBay. It is recommended to go on selling items that are frequently sold and have the potential for high revenue.

Lack of knowledge
Lots of times people try to sell on eBay without even the most basic knowledge of the website rules, and that may lead to exploitation of you by experienced buyers. There are hundreds of play rules, little details of “to do” and “not to do” you should know. Without the knowledge, it is sometimes enough of a single over-ruling of the website trading rules to get kicked from eBay. Before starting your eBay career, it is advised that you learn basic stuff with a guide.

Choosing more than one category
This is one of the most common mistakes when coming to sell items on eBay, because the eBay system recommends to register items in two different categories, claiming that an additional category will increase exposure by 17%. It is hard to say that it’s true because most buyers use the search box to look for items and not browsing deep into the available categories. The reason we think eBay recommends that, is because they charge a double fee for adverting. We avoid more than one catergory at all costs.

Product title that is not “capturing”
Many times, beginners are not aware of the fact that nearly ALL of the item lookups are done with keywords using the search engine of eBay and not using categories. When you upload a new item for sale, the keywords that you assign in the title are the most important for the chances of your item to rank high on eBay search results, and in many cases, to the ranking on Google too. Search engines like Google and Bing do show results from the eBay inventory, but for that to happen you need to stick with a proper SEO structure for your items pages. Also, buyers on eBay need to get as much information as possible directly from the title. Your goal is to get as many impressions as possible to your items.

Low quality images
The saying “one picture worth a thousand words” is the most appropriate one for eBay. The quality of the pictures you upload to eBay influence a lot on how the buyer is evaluating the seller, which is you. You must remember that buyers will first look for the item pictures and only then will go on reading the description. It’s an emotional decision when one decides to buy an item, especially if the price is high, so make the effort to produce quality images, and if necessary you can use image editing computer programs like Photoshop to modify pictures.

Wrong sale format
The sale format is part of your strategy as a seller. Expensive items and cheap ones, should get a different sale format. A starting price (or a low one) as “buy it now”, might cause buyers to doubt your sale and suspect that it’s a fraud sale. Experienced buyers sometimes “stalk” unexperienced sellers and make very low bids, hoping that the seller took no protective measures for his items, like a reserved price. In a case like that, when there is no reserved price and a buyer placed a very low bid, the deal is on now and there is a commitment of the seller to the buyer. To overcome this, it is recommended to set a starting price that is equal to the cost price of the item (the price that you paid in the beginning). You can also make the sale as “buy it now” where you know that it’s now possible to deliver this item for an unreasonable price. “buy it now” price should be much higher than the starting price, so that the buyer is tempted to believe that the starting price is a bargain.

Unattractive postage rates
It is common, and even recommended, to make a profit on the postage rates, but if in a certain category most sellers are asking for lower postage than you are, you become less attractive for buyers. Ebay are putting an eye on this and if a seller is asking exaggerated postage rates, eBay might delete this sale, and in some cases even suspend a seller. Adjust your rates to other sellers, and if you want to attract buyers, free shipping is best. We run a strict No P&P Profit scheme on all out listings and shout about it.

Omitting the sale policy
Many times, sellers write very little details for the sale policy like definition of payment methods, shipping, warranty, items return policy and more. This might confuse a buyer and result in a lack of expectations. If, for instance, you accept only PayPal as a payment method, you must specify it someplace visible enough because if not, it might put you in inconvenience with a buyer that wasn’t aware enough.

Selling seasonal items
A common mistake is trying to sell a seasonal item like a scarf, in the summer, or a Christmas item (which is in December) in March. It is recommended to select items based on their seasonal demand like in holidays or even sports events.

No contact information
It’s not a critical mistake, you can still sell items even if they have no contact info. Experienced sellers offer several ways to make contact, so that the buyer won’t think they are trying to hide themselves, and it’s also a part of the reputation a seller build for himself.

Bad customer service
Many are not aware of the importance of customer service on eBay. The customer service you give to buyers, or even to potential buyers, is part of the experience on eBay and it will also have its impact on the feedback you will get when the sale has ended and the buyer got his item. Be generous, polite and pleasant, or you won’t have a returning customer. Don’t risk a negative feedback.

Inappropriate packaging
Your first encounter with the customer is when he, or she, opens the package you sent. An item that was received in a broken condition, you should take full responsibility for it, or risk a negative feedback. You should pack items that you send properly. You are responsible for the shipping, and if the item is fragile or expensive than you should consider courier shipping.

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