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Old 04-21-2018, 04:05 PM
3,292 posts, read 1,299,470 times
Reputation: 3419


Originally Posted by fluffythewondercat View Post
You've gutted it out longer than me, that's for sure. But I wasn't "fluffythewondercat" on eBay.
Ah, ok. There was one on ebay that hung out on the message boards they used to have.
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Old 04-25-2018, 12:07 PM
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It's funny reading this thread. I started right at the end of college on ebay in March 1998 right before the place took off. I did it full time for a bit, then part time, then to just being the occasional casual seller as my other career took over my time. I have also always made money and my net profit in some years was 50% after all expenses.

The reason it's funny reading all of this is because I remember on the ebay forums back then sellers basically bitching about the same things. Nothing has really changed in that sense, things have evolved over time, but it's mostly the same bitching about things. It's no different now than then. The sellers trying to flog the same crap that everyone else can source have low margins or lose money. The sellers that don't do a great job with photos or descriptions lose out. The sellers who don't have their shipping and packaging costs and time under control lose money. The sellers who don't keep their buyers on a leash and in frame lose money.

I learned very quickly from the jump that if I didn't have my shipping and packaging costs under control I would lose money, so I what did was be very upfront with buyers in my description. I only used quality packaging, there was a cost to that and in order to sell on ebay those costs would have to be met or else I wouldn't be selling. As a result I had very little in the way of kickback on that from buyers and I never described it as "shipping and handling" but "shipping and packaging". Last I sold on ebay a few years ago, ebay had discounted shipping with preprinted labels from Pitney Bowes. That helps some.

Also with ebay as I learned quickly, if you want to make money in business, have a niche you know well and do well with. Bring something different to the table no one else or few people are doing and bring something that people want. My niche was sourcing collectible things in Europe that were harder to find over here.

Lastly today in some ways ebay is easy. 20 years ago everything was very manual and laborious. Many categories for listing products were ill defined, listing things took a long time, all end of auction emails with payment info I had to send out manually to the buyers(lots of copy and paste), there was no Pitney Bowes print out a shipping label stuff integrated with ebay, you had to sit and wait for a money order or check to arrive in the mail, etc.
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Old 05-06-2018, 07:54 AM
4,665 posts, read 2,980,770 times
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Has anyone else noticed that EBay marks up the standard rate for USPS shipping, they then add on their discounted rate, and then it’s the same price as the advertised USPS rate. I always thought that was quite the sham.

If you are selling small packages that don’t weigh much, USPS is the only way to go. A lot of people probably make that mistake starting out. My first sale I used Fedex and it was double what it cost me through USPS. Also, really pay attention to packing costs. USPS flat rates boxes and bubble envelopes are free on the USPS website. Under 15 oz’s and in a bubble envelope is the best rate. I actually forgot the name, maybe just Priority Shipping. Typically you can mail a basic package for $3-5. For small heavier packages I use flat rate bubble envelopes which is close to $7. Small flat rates boxes are similar.

I try not to sell anything big or heavy. A friend of mine owns a steam vacuum factory in China and they have a tiny profit margin. The steamers are $80-100 and shipping is expensive. Things like computer parts have a better markup and shipping can be very cheap.
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Old 05-30-2018, 11:47 AM
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Once the package goes over 1lb, I use FedEx smart Post shipping and its usually cheaper. But I always compare what USPS Priority mail will be.

Shipping kiils your profit on items after you give Ebay 10% and Paypal 3%
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Old 05-30-2018, 11:54 AM
Location: By the sea, by the sea, by the beautiful sea
61,576 posts, read 44,469,039 times
Reputation: 33084
When I was selling some things on Ebay I didn't care for them making you use PayPal as Ebay owned it at the time, I'd clearly state in my listings that if you paid with PayPal you'd have to pay whatever percentage PayPal charged over and above the winning bid price.

I prefer payment by Postal Money Order, it protects buyer and seller, the PO does not take kindly to mail fraud.

I found Craigslist to be a viable option for many things and it costs nothing to try.
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Old 02-19-2020, 06:26 PM
7,791 posts, read 12,548,903 times
Reputation: 7499
Pretty much many buy their products from Alibaba and re-sell it on Ebay. On a different note, has any Ebay seller here noticed sales dropping after they are required to charge the sales tax due to the Supreme court requiring online businesses to charge sales tax after the states attorney general filed suit.
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