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I am contemplating selling some old stuff on eBay. But after doing some math it seems there is a real chance of not making money, just getting rid of stuff, after the fees for extra photos, reserve fee, Paypal, etc. etc. etc.

Anybody have any tricks to selling and still making money?
John
 

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Don't pay for photos. Upload your photos to www.photobucket.com. When you're done editing your listing text, change it to HTML format and copy the HTML code from Photobucket onto the end of your listing. Add a page separator between each picture to keep the pics from stacking on the same line. Then switch back to text mode and make sure the photos load ok. I can't type a page separator because it just enters a blank line into my post, lol. It's three characters, a left triangle (SHIFT comma), the letter P and a right triangle (SHIFT period).

This way the pics are much bigger than Ebays pics and it's free. Use Photobucket's autosize feature when uploading to keep them at 1024x768 so they're not too big. Take good pics, they're important.

Start your auctions at .99c. It costs you less to list the item and if it actually has value then it'll get bidded up. The more bids an item has the more "interest" it appears to have, therefore making it more appealing.

Don't have a reserve. If the item has value and you listed it properly then it'll get bidded up. If it doesn't reach a particular price you had in mind then you're probably being unrealistic about it's value. Remember, something is worth what someone is willing to pay for it, not what you're willing to take for it. Plus reserves cut into your profit margin. If you're TRULY convinced that something has a certain value, but there's not enough interest to bid it up, you can list it as a buy it now/best offer, or just use Craig's List.

Finally, don't pay for ANYTHING extra, except maybe a set start time listing. Gallery photos, listing background, subtitle, etc is just a way for Ebay to take your money and in the end doesn't really help make your item more appealing in any way. If you pay for a set time listing (only ten cents) you want your auctions to end on Sunday night. An auction is most looked at in the last day or two, and people are most likely to be looking on the weekend. You want those two fields to coincide. I usually end my auctions at 9:00 PM EST on Sunday. So start your 7 day auctions at that same time. Don't pay for 10 days. Nobody looks at an item that ends in 7 days, let alone 10.

Good luck. If I think of anything else I'll post it later. I gotta run.
 

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Oh, and look for completed listings of similar items to what you're trying to sell. You can gauge the value of what you're trying to sell this way to decide if it's worth your time and what your competition looks like. Also you can copy the listing title and descriptions of successful listings.
 

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ebay and Paypal fees are crazy and you lose a lot from it. Also, as a seller, ALWAYS get delivery confirmation at the bare minimum when shipping if done through USPS.

Anything above $100 and I usually make the buyer pay extra for signature confirmation due to too many scammers these days.

Personally, CraigsList is much safer if you're smart about it and not meet the person in a unsafe place. Indoor mall next to the security booth always work great for me. :)
 

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Reserves cost money. It's cheaper to just start the bidding at your bare minimum, but that can scare people off.

But don't be afraid to use reserves or higher starting bids. Ebay is full of lowballers. If you only get lowballers bidding and don't have a way to protect yourself then you'll get screwed on final price.

By offering free shipping and passing the cost to the price you'll pay higher fees through ebay Final Value Fees.

Buy it Now costs money

Take pictures of your packing/shipping before you ship so you have recourse when a company demolishes your packaging. Even with insurance, it isn't easy to get that money refunded
 

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Everyone keeps pointing to Craigslist, but Craigslist is NOT ebay. They might both be places to buy/sell goods, but they are apples and oranges after that.
 
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