How to Start Making Money Selling Items on Ebay for Others

Mon, Aug 4, 2008, by ClickityClick

Money Making

A brief overview on how to become a consignment seller on eBay.

If you have a basic knowledge how to buy and sell on eBay, you can help others sell their trinkets and collectibles on eBay, and you can earn a little pocket change.

Begin by becoming an eBay member, if you are not a member already. Membership is free. New members should start buying low-cost items, such as e-books, to start getting a feedback score. Your feedback score is very important on eBay because it denotes how people perceive you as a buyer and a seller. Once you start buying items, make sure to pay for the item as quickly as possible. Sign up for a PayPal account, which is also free. PayPal is the most popular way for exchanging money online.

After you achieve a feedback score of 10 or greater with a 100% positive rate, take a dip into the selling pool. Find something around your house that is collecting dust, like a DVD or CD you never play anymore. If you have a scanner, scan it; if you have a camera, take a picture of it. If you have neither, ask a friend for assistance. Crop the image as best as you can so not to distract from what is for sale. Write up an honest description of your item. If you a selling a CD without the jewel case or the artwork, put it in the description. Honesty is always the policy. Being upfront about a nick on an old Beatles album saves you many headaches in the long run. Be sure to use spell check with everything you write.

The next thing you need to figure out how much it is going to be to ship your item. A word to the wise: don’t try to ship things such as large appliances, large furniture, large exercise equipment, golf clubs, etc. because you are going to come out on the wrong side of a losing battle. Reserve large items for the local pickup only option. If you have a DVD or CD you need to ship, you can buy appropriate sized mailers at your local office supply store, or you can also find great buys on eBay for shipping supplies. It is also important to pack your items well and professionally. If a package arrives all ragged and dented, it projects that the seller cares little about the item sold. Take a trip to your local post office to find out what you can about shipping rates and the different options. If you have a portable shipping scale, you can weigh and measure the package so that eBay can calculate the shipping costs. Don’t forget to add in a $2 to $3 handling fee for your time. Once you get accustomed to shipping, you can do all your shipping tasks from home.

Once you setup your payment options, you can list your item. Auction-style items usually run for 7 days. Price your item appropriately. If you price your item too high, you run the risk not getting any bites. If you price it too low, people may assume you’re selling junk. Only put a reserve price on those items you can’t afford to sell below a certain price. The eBay fees will probably be less than what you spend on a cup of coffee.

As you begin building a strong presence on eBay, your confidence is going to grow. You have sold what you can from your attic and basement. You have heard people in your local coffee shop speak about an antique Tiffany lamp they found and want to sell. Your interest peaks; you want to sell the Tiffany lamp. You speak up and inquire if they have any familiarity selling on eBay. They answer: “What’s eBay?” They don’t even own a computer-hard to believe in the 21st century. Your wheels start turning in your mind. You offer to sell the lamp for a percentage fee-35 or 40 percent of the final sale. You shake their hand, promising to return the next day.

Immediately, you run home and draw up a consignment contract for selling items for people. You try to think of every stipulation possible; you copy all the options and fees available to make a sale. It’s typewritten neatly. You return to the coffee shop the next morning, with consignment contract in hand. You get the deal done and arrange to go take pictures of the lamp. Soon, it will be on eBay, peaking every Tiffany lamp collector’s interest out there. A week later, the lamp sells for a little bit more than you thought. All parties are pleased.

The rumors get around town that you are the person to go to when somebody needs help selling something. You put flyers and business cards up in every public place out there. Three months later, you have your open a part-time business working from home.
A word to my readers: selling consignment items on eBay is possible, and many people are successful. Like anything else, selling successfully on eBay takes work and a little research. Don’t get discouraged if every sale is successful. It may take some trial and error to get things right. Be optimistic in everything you do.

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