Products » Education » Seven Secrets to Selling More on eBay

Seven Secrets to Selling More on eBay

Lily O'Halloran


Learn seven simple secrets to selling more on eBay. Sell more to earn more. Use these easy tips and techniques to increase your sales and make more money with your auctions.


1. Don’t compete with yourself.

Minimize your competition by staggering your auction selling times, so that your own auctions are not competing with each other. Think of supply and demand. Too many listings for the same product drive the price of that product down. By staggering your listing times you are able to reach more customers and potentially earn higher winning bids for your auctions. End auctions on separate days; this will enable buyers to bid on your auctions in the event that they either lost the auction, or forgot to bid while watching the listing.

Want to sell more? List one of each type of product as a Buy It Now with a reasonably high set price. This practice benefits you two-fold. First, a buyer that doesn’t want to wait for an auction to end doesn’t have to – they can buy it now. Second, by using a reasonably high price for the buy it now price point you are setting the bar for what that product is worth. If a customer happens to win the product through one your auctions listings for less, than they will feel that they got a great deal. Who doesn’t love a deal?


2. Select an appropriate starting price.

Choosing a starting price is a little tricky. If you start your item too high then you might not get any bids; however, if your auction starting price is too low – and stays low—you cheat yourself out of a reasonable selling price. The best way to handle selecting an appropriate starting price is to research the market. Examine other auctions to determine what price the product has been selling at; look at current auctions to see what price point the product is earning. Use these figures to determine a reasonable starting price for your auction.


3. Avoid keyword spamming.

What is keyword spamming? First let us take a look at keywords. Keywords are important; they are what connect buyers to sellers. Buyers enter words as search terms; those words are called keywords. When the keywords in a search match your auction, then your listing appears in the buyer’s results. As a seller, you want your auction to reach as many potential buyers as possible. The temptation to add as many keywords as possible is overwhelming to some sellers; so much that they add irrelevant keywords just to increase the exposure of their auctions. Adding irrelevant keywords to an auction is known as keyword spamming.

What harm can keyword spamming cause? Keyword spamming is not helpful to buyers or sellers. Keyword spamming wastes time. Buyers search for a specific type of item. When a buyer clicks on an auction with the keywords “iPod Nano” only to find out that the auction is for a cell phone, he is going to be frustrated. With hundreds or thousands of search results, who has time to read irrelevant listings?

Keyword spamming makes selling difficult. In the example above, the seller who listed the cell phone as an iPod Nano makes selling iPod Nanos harder. Buyers must weed through more auctions than necessary to find what they are looking for; some buyers give up after wasting too much time reading unwanted auctions.

Keyword spamming gets my auction more exposure, so why not do it? Fortunately, eBay has started cracking down on keyword spammers. Notorious keyword spammers are often banned from selling on eBay. Good riddance!


4. Create interesting and appealing auctions.

Buyers shop visually. Buyers want to see what the product looks like, and prefer to bid on auctions with appealing listings. What makes an auction appealing? Think about auctions that you have bid on. Most sellers were buyers first. What characteristics do the auctions you have bid on share? They probably have a photo. Pictures are a must! Rarely do buyers bid on an auction without a picture. Even a blurry, out-of-focus photo is better than no picture. Of course, well-lit, sharp, close-up pictures are the most informative and appealing.

Auctions listings should be easy to read and to understand. Written content should be informative, honest, and use correct spelling. Too many misspelled words lead buyers to believe that either the seller is not a professional and doesn’t care much about his auctions, or is just too lazy to worry about it. If a seller is too lazy to create quality auctions, what else will he skimp on? Most buyers won’t want to find out.

Backgrounds should be simple, professional, and easy on the eyes. Animated graphics, cluttered backgrounds, and clashing colors should be avoided. It really does make a difference! Buyers find too much animation distracting, and cluttered backgrounds annoying. Clashing colors can make content difficult to read. Style your listings carefully. Consider your listing from a buyer’s point of view. Would you bid on your auction?


5. Accept more than one form of payment.

Make paying easy for buyers. The more forms of payment you accept, the easier it is for a buyer to pay you. Have you ever noticed how auctions that state “PayPal only” or “money orders only” get fewer bids? Well, they do. In fact, I have been able to purchase quite a few products from these types of auctions. The seller’s loss was my gain. Don’t fall into that trap. There is not one form of payment that is always better. Accommodate as many buyers as possible by accepting a wide range of payment types.


6. Keep your auction title consistent with listing content.

The product mentioned in your eBay title should be the same one listed in your auction listing. If you are selling an iPod Nano in your title, then the listing should be for an iPod Nano – not just iPod accessory. If you are selling an iPod accessory, say so in the auction’s title. Stay consistent throughout your auction to avoid confusion and disappointment. Auctions that are contradictory in nature are avoided by most buyers.


7. Feedback matters.

A high percentage of positive feedback is important to buyers. The better the feedback, the more trusted the seller is in most buyers’ eyes. Unfortunately, some conflicts will arise throughout your selling career. What should you do? Remain a professional. Remember that customers are valuable. Your goal should be to make your customer happy -- within reason, of course. Listen to the customer’s problem. Seek out an appropriate solution that makes you both happy. If you come across a terribly disgruntled customer, it may be worthwhile to take a small loss and move on with your perfect feedback intact.

You can do a few things to avoid unnecessary conflicts:

  • Be precise in your auction. Say exactly what you mean; state the facts.
  • Include shipping, return, payment, and feedback policies, if you have them, to avoid confusion and disappointment.
  • Treat your customers with respect; without them you would be out of business.

The more feedback you have, the better. If you are new to eBay, you might consider winning some auctions yourself to build feedback. Being a buyer also gives you the chance to determine what works, and what doesn’t, for other sellers.



Drop Ship Access is an excellent dropshipping source for brand name products at wholesale prices. You can learn more at DropShipAccess.com