Five tips for eBay success

Consumer expectations have skyrocketed over the past few years with the evolution of online shopping. Regardless of whether they’re shopping on eBay or at their local mall, buyers want instant gratification – they want their experiences to be personalised, intuitive and hassle-free.

PACK & SEND recommend the five tips below for satisfying these fickle customers and building a successful presence on eBay:

1.       Do your homework

 This is eBay selling 101 – always do your research before listing an item. Search for your item not only to work out what to charge for it, but also to gauge interest. It’s also worth checking to see if any similar items have recently been sold – if something’s just been sold with several bidders you could try a ‘buy now’ at the same price to entice one of the losing bidders to buy your item immediately.

2.       Strategic auctioning

Determining your listing duration and auction timing is all about knowing your audience. Think about who you are trying to target and what works best for them, but also consider what’s convenient for yourself. A lot of questions tend to come in last minute and it’s important you’re around to answer them as the auction heats up.

One way to feed a bidding frenzy on your item come auction time is to use a low opening bid price and no reserve, attracting a high number of bidders. The more people bidding on your listing, the more likely two or more of them will get into a bidding war, increasing the chances of them paying more just to beat out the competition.

If you've got a desirable item, be prepared to receive a few requests to end the auction early and outside the eBay framework. Be wary of these enquires and don’t accept any kind of payment for an out-of-eBay auction like this – they could be scammers.   

3.       Optimise your listing

First and foremost, make your title work for you. Many successful eBay sellers would argue the most important aspect of any listing is the title because (by default) the title, not the description, is used for search results. Avoid punctuation marks and too many acronyms, focus on keywords and be sure to use the full 80 characters available.

Your description is also extremely important and if done well can differentiate you from the other hundreds of similar items competing next to you. When listing your auction, make sure your description covers all of the essentials about what you are selling and why you are selling it. Honesty is always the best policy when describing the condition of the item – highlight the top selling points but make sure you’re open about defects so you don’t face returns. As we all know, returns go hand in hand with negative feedback – the kiss of death for an eBay seller.

When it comes to photos, a picture really does speak a thousand words. People like to see what item they’re bidding on – plain and simple – so make sure your photos are up-close and clear.

4.       Customer is always king

Your feedback score is extremely important in gaining and keeping potential buyers' trust. Treat your eBay store like a physical retail environment – put your customer first and offer prompt and courteous responses to any questions they might have. If you're consistently delivering outstanding customer experiences, your customers are more likely to return to shop with you again.

5.       Policies and logistics

Ensure your eBay store clearly lists your terms and conditions as well returns, warranty and guarantee policies. Logistics solutions are also something to focus on – your courier services should enable you to consistently deliver promised outcomes to customers by enhancing all aspects of the supply chain.

eBay is undoubtedly one of the best sites for selling items. As a seller, however, it is up to you to invest time and effort to ensure your store is successful. Take the above tips on board before your next auction and watch your online reputation (and profits) grow from strength to strength.

 Michael Paul

CEO and Founder Michael Paul established PACK & SEND together with his wife in 1993 after noticing that businesses and consumers were looking for one-stop-shop solutions for sending anything, anywhere – that also included a convenient packaging service. Under Michael’s guidance and leadership the company has evolved from a single retail outlet to offering services through multiple sales channels that include a vast network of convenient Retail Service Centres, Logistics Fulfilment Centres, Call Centre, Online Courier Booking systems and Online Retail Integrations. The PACK & SEND brand has also expanded to the UK and New Zealand.