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Selling on eBay, Small Business Tools

eBay Store ToolKit

Selling on eBay delivers a wide range of opportunities for an online business owner, and having an eBay Store provides can provide an even bigger boost to sales. The following eBay Store tools and tips can help you improve your success selling on the world’s largest online marketplace whether you’re a novice seller or an experienced business owner looking to ramp up sales.

  1. Become an eBay buyer firstBefore you jump into online sales with an eBay Store, it makes good sense to first experience it as a buyer. This will give you better insight into how the site functions and what works from a buyer’s perspective.
  2. Figure out what you should sellWhile you can purchase nearly everything on eBay, you will greatly improve your chances of success by selling items that are used or specialized. If you want to sell new items, you will want to stick to those that you can buy cheaply enough to make a profit.
  3. Start by listing just a few products firstIt can take some time to ramp up to eBay top-rated seller status. Start slow and learn the system first, and then gradually add products to your eBay store as you become more comfortable.
  4. Use great photosGood quality images are absolutely essential when your customers can’t experience your products in person. Do take shots from multiple angles and close-ups to showcase features.
  5. Become an authority on your productsPotential buyers will inevitably have questions about what you’re selling, so you should be prepared to answer. You can also showcase your expertise by creating content that can further position you as an authority.
  6. Brand your businesseBay Stores gives you the ability to customize your pages with colors, templates, and logos. Take advantage of these capabilities to strengthen your brand with customers.
  7. Get a sales tax numberObtain a sales tax number from your county or state office. This will enable you to buy products for resale from wholesale companies.
  8. Understand your costsHey, you have an eBay Store to make money! This requires you to make a profit on everything you’re selling. Pay close attention to your cost of goods and operating expenses to determine how to price your products.
  9. Create a clear sales, payment, and delivery policyYou definitely don’t want your buyers to be guessing about any aspect of your sales, payment or delivery policy. Define this before you start selling, and update as needed to ensure that you protect your rights while providing good service to your customers.
  10. Automate your auctionsThere are auction management services that can help you manage your auctions while also providing tracking of inventory and sales. Some of these services also automate emails to customers and post feedback once a payment is received.
  11. Consider using audioAudio gives you a unique ability to communicate additional information about your products. Consider creating short descriptive blurbs that will support your written product descriptions and photos.
  12. Strive for good feedbackPositive feedback is essential to your success on eBay. An easy to way to build your feedback score quickly is to sell a large amount of a single item at a very low price. For example, a pair of $2.00 earrings or a $1.00 baseball card. List 50 or so of them and mail your products out quickly. Make sure to email them the hyperlink to the feedback post afterwards to get feedback.
  13. Polish your headlines and descriptionsThink of your headline as the advertisement for your product. It should be compelling enough to get your potential buyers to want to know more. Use those 80 characters wisely! And, in your description, don’t forget model number, color, size, etc.
  14. Incorporate keywords into your descriptionsConsider what words prospective customers are using to search for products like yours and make sure that they’re prominently placed in both your headline and description.
  15. Don’t scrimp on the specificsThis is particularly important on used or unique items. Carefully explain any flaws or particular features that are note-worthy.
  16. Get help when you need itGoogle offers a tremendous amount of resources for online business owners just starting out. As well, there are lots of eBay Store experts who can help you set up and maintain your store.
  17. Keep inventory freshTo maintain traffic to your store, you will need to continuously add product. Don’t have any new products to showcase? Then, take new photos and write updated descriptions.
  18. Know what to do when someone doesn’t payThe first step is to send the buyer an email to ask them to pay. If you get no response, head to eBay’s Resolution Center where you can file a claim to get a refund of your fees.
  19. Offer an unconditional money-back guarantee on everything you sellAs a business owner, you need to stand behind your products, and this should be clearly communicated by offering a money-back guarantee. To have a success with an online business, you absolutely need happy customers.
  20. Create an email signatureAn email signature is a quick and easy way to remind your customers who you are and to direct them to your website and social media channels.
  21. Automate your shippingeBay and PayPal have an automated shipping system that is integrated with UPS. It will save you both time and money!
  22. Sign up for BuySAFEDo you sell expensive products? BuySAFE helps protects your buyers with fraud insurance. It’s inexpensive and it gives your customers extra added assurance.
  23. Answer emails immediatelyGood service depends on your ability to promptly communicate with your customers. Set a policy for yourself to never wait longer than 24 hours to get back to customers. Ideally, this should be even quicker!
  24. Reveal any flaws with your productsYou don’t want your customers finding flaws once they have received their purchase. This is a surefire way to have a return. Disclose all flaws and defects upfront and save yourself the hassle.
  25. Don’t overcharge on shippingYour customers are calculating the shipping as part of the purchase price. So, to be competitive, it should be as inexpensive as possible.
  26. Don’t overpromise on any productAs the old adage goes, under promise and over deliver. The goal should be to pleasantly surprise your customers with products that are even better than the images, wrapped professionally, and arriving on time.
  27. Always package your products carefullyProducts damaged during shipping can eat away at your profits. Better to overwrap, then under-wrap.
  28. Learn a bit of HTMLWith a little bit of knowledge about HTML, you can easily bold, underline, or italicize content.
  29. Launch a supporting websiteYour eBay Store will undoubtedly be important, but a dedicated website can serve as a secondary online store or even a destination for customers to find out more about what you do.
  30. Use Facebook to promote your eBay StoreFacebook is a great place to publish products and share other information about your store. Twitter and Pinterest can also be useful.
  31. Communicate frequently with buyersDon’t let the relationship with your buyers end once the sale is completed. Stay in touch with them with email newsletters or even just a quick note to say thank you and to encourage them to come back and check out your new products.
  32. Create a mailing list of your buyersStaying in contact with your buyers requires you to maintain a database. eBay Stores enables you to do this with their platform and send out customer emails in bulk from the list.
  33. Offer combined shippingWhenever possible, combine the cost of the product and shipping into one price.
  34. Stay InformedeBay offers workshops, tips, and discussion forums. Take advantage of these free tools.
  35. Stay positiveNot every day is going to be the same when you’re an online seller. There will definitely be periods that are busier than others, so it’s important to stay focused on your long term goals and ride the waves as you navigate towards your success.