I’ve always wanted to start my own business. Every since I was a kid, I dreamed about owning my own bakery and creating an empire of conglomerate giants. But over the years the dream dwindled as work and life got the best of me, and I never had the chance to realize it.
It wasn’t until last year when I was about to move that I decided to try selling my stuff online. I started with the simplest venue I knew: eBay. Starting from scratch, I read the eBay selling tutorials and went about taking pictures of my unused or unwanted stuff. I wrote descriptions for the items using my marketing knowledge, which was quite enjoyable for me.
It wasn’t until two weeks later that I got my first sale. I was ecstatic. I shipped it out right away, but little did I know that I didn’t account for the shipping cost in my original cost, so I actually ended up with a negative balance after shipping. It was a good learning experience, as it taught me how to start with a bidding price that would attract buyers while not hindering my bottom-line.
Afterwards the sale started trickling it. Sometimes buyers would purchase the item at the buy-it-now price, which was 3 times more than my starting bid price! It was then that I realized that anyone can be an entrepreneur using the internet as your international marketplace.
Here are some tips on starting your own business on eBay:
1. Figure out shipping costs – they could make you or break you!
2. Before listing, search on eBay for similar items to see how other sellers price it. Auctions do much better than fixed-price sales, especially if your starting price is low. You can choose the duration of the auction – for me, 7-day auctions work the best because it gives enough exposure on the market so more people can bid on it.
3. List often and take advantage of eBay’s free listings. Sometimes you can get up to 50 listings for free. Make sure to be as detailed as possible – people appreciate the honesty, especially if the good in question is slightly damaged.
4. Download the eBay app so you can easily take pictures with your phone.
5. Make sure to give feedback to your buyers. It’s an important part of developing rapport with your buyers and getting those coveted stars.