As an aspiring ecommerce merchant or retailer, you find yourself exposed to a big array of earning opportunities, and as someone interested in making the most out of every situation by increasing your income streams, you may have come across eBay.
If this is the case, you could be doing some research to determine if this ecommerce site would be a good opportunity or not. If this sounds like you, then you will be glad to know that eBay would be a great income earning platform for you if you follow the rules of the platform, but most importantly, if you understand how eBay works.
You should also be happy to learn that in this article; we look at and guide you through everything you need to know about the eBay business model and how you would get started.
But before we go too deep, eBay represents one of the oldest, but also one of the most popular ecommerce auction platforms. Despite being old, eBay’s popularity hasn’t fizzled out yet, with 2019 reports showing that this ecommerce site recorded upwards of 182million active buyers by the of the second quarter of 2019.
At the same time, eBay averaged 1.8 billion site visits each month, coming in second to Amazon. Therefore, if you are interested in launching an online career or ecommerce business, eBay sure does sound like an excellent platform for you to get started on.
One catch though; like other ecommerce sites, selling on eBay may not be as easy, and you have to put in a considerable amount of time and money, while also investing in the right set of skills and being a whole load of dedication.
You also need a lot of insider information to be able to sell on eBay, which is where we come in. Through this article, we’ll share important insights on how to set up a store and sell on eBay in a step-by-step manner to ensure that you have all you need to get started.
The Basics of Starting an eBay Business
The process is fairly simple, and you could easily set up your store with eBay today if you wanted to, but the truth is that there is a bit more than you need to work around, figure out, and do for you to create and run a successful business on eBay.
Some pre-planning is essential, and in a nutshell, you have to determine the products you will be selling, the best places to source the products from, the acceptable payment methods, meeting your customers’ needs, shipping options, and you also need to understand the customer service policies that apply to eBay businesses.
At the same time, you must be aware of the seller rules and policies put up by eBay and how to work around those policies. But these are not the only considerations you need to keep in mind when thinking of an eBay business. Before you get your hands dirty, consider the following things:
- Brand name – the biggest and the most important consideration for an online business is the creation of a brand and also the availability of the opportunities that would allow you to create a big brand. The reason for this is that it gets to a point where the brand name sells more than everything else you do. So, as you think and work on creating an online store, ask yourself if the platform you are working on will allow you to build a strong brand or not.
- Cost-efficiency – will you afford the subscription fee and all the other fees you will have to deal with as the store runs and grows?
- Promotion – how much exposure will your products get, and where will the products get that exposure? Traffic is important for all online stores, and the good news is that when you are working with eBay, there are millions visiting the site already, and this translates.
Steps to take when creating your eBay Business
1. Choose the Account Type
The first thing you need to do when trying to set up your Amazon business is to identify the account type that will match your business needs in the best ways possible.
For you to get started with your eBay business, go to the Register Button on your homepage. There, you will be directed to a web page for account creation. Regarding account type, eBay lets you choose between the personal and the business account.
What the difference? The personal account would be ideal for casual selling, while your business account would allow you to run a business as a serious seller dealing with large product quantities.
For the business account, you also get to register your legal business name, and you could also customize your business store using your branding features (the customization options are, however, limited).
Now, while you don’t have to pay to create your business account, you will pay a seller fee to list and sell products on eBay. Remember to stay up to date with all the latest updates to the eBay seller policies.
You don’t want to break any rules and get kicked out after investing in the business. Also, the business plan is highly recommended if you will be doing the eBay seller business for some time.
2. Account Registration
Next up, you will be required to register your eBay account. Here, you need to provide the details of your business, such as the legal business name, phone number, email, and you will also create your password here. The next step prompts you to establish your store’s username.
Also, you will be required to provide the registered business address plus your phone number for credentials verification. Once verified, click Register.
3. Account Setup Preferences
When you log into your account, you will be required to adjust the account preferences – shipping information, communication preferences, buyer requirements, address, etc. To change these preferences, go to the Account Settings area then update these details.
In your updates, don’t forget to update the payment method – which represents your preferred payment option for the selling fees. Your payment options include credit/ debit cards and PayPal. Note that the account/ card will be charged automatically, depending on the seller invoices.
4. Decide what you will sell on eBay
You may already have an idea of what to sell on your eBay store, but you need to take a step back, evaluate the market, and determine if the product ideas worth pursuing or not.
Also, there is the fact that you cannot sell just anything on eBay. While this e-commerce site has over 1.2 million product listings along with hundreds of product categories and subcategories, there are things that you cannot sell or won’t be as profitable as you anticipated.
- Some of the considerations you need to bear in mind as you search for the best products to sell on eBay include:
- Pricing – The best products for you consider are the ones within the $150 and $300 because the profit margins will not be too low, and you won’t have to sell the products in large quantities for you to breakeven?
- Weight – you need to find some of the best small and low-weight products to lower the cost of shipping. The heavier items would lower your profit margin.
- Niche Markets – this is the other important consideration when it comes to the search for the best eBay products. Essentially, the niche markets with competitive pricing are to be avoided. You need to focus on the niche market with high-demand, but low competition.
- Simplicity – you also need to sell the products that are easy to use and easy to assemble.
- Knowledge about the products – the other thing you need to bear in mind is that the products you are selling must be items that you have expert knowledge and experience about.
- You could also identify the best markets to tap into by checking out the Trending on the eBay section.
5. Product listing
Once you’ve identified the best products to sell on your store, the next steps involve adding inventory and updating your products’ listings.
To add inventory, click on the sell button at the right-hand corner of your account page. Here, you will have two options for adding inventory – quick from the listing or the advanced listing.
The quick listing approach has a listing tool that will expedite the process by making it easy for you to enter specific descriptive keywords for your products, and then eBay will place the products into the existing product categories.
The advanced option, on the other hand, takes in more product details from product description to the selling, payment, and shipping information. While at it, bear in mind that eBay will charge a fee if, after selling an item, you upload higher quality images, write new titles based on what buyers are looking for, or if you incorporate a comprehensive description.
Tips to follow
- Have at least 25 product listings at a time for better management of inventory
- Have a payment method recorded in a file for automatic charges
- Use a verified PayPal account
- Choose the right subscription (options include Basic, Premium, and Anchor)
- Choose a unique, professional, and memorable name
- Build a newsletter emailing list