Building a Seller Rating on eBay as a hedge against tough times.
Your reputation is critical on eBay. You might want to build your Seller Rating gradually. That way, if you ever need to sell on eBay, you will have a decent rating. You might think that you don’t need to sell but there are two reasons you might.
If you find yourself unemployed for a period of time, that might be a good time to declutter and earn some extra cash. Depending on what you are selling, eBay sales might not amount to a lot of money, but it will be something. You might also find yourself downsizing or settling an estate. You can hire people to liquidate things or you can do it yourself.
If you want to sell on eBay, you need to have a decent Seller Rating.
Suppose you suddenly decide you need to sell your collection of Elvis velvet paintings to make the mortgage payment. If you sign up for eBay and try to sell, you probably won’t get too far. Buyers will be looking at your feedback rating. If it is low, they will hesitate to buy. Also, when you have a low feedback rating, you are limited to some extent with your selling options.
If you did some preparation over time, you could build up a decent feedback rating and also become familiar with how to sell. The first step is to sign up for an eBay account and, if you don’t have one, a PayPal account. Then look for some small items to purchase. You will probably be better with “Buy it Now” fixed price sales. If you try auctions you will probably find it difficult to actually win an auction until you get the hang of it. What you want to do is:
- Look for relatively inexpensive items you can actually use that are “Buy it now” fixed price auctions.
- Be sure to pay for whatever you buy as soon as possible. (within 24 hours or less)
- Repeat this about 25 times.
- Monitor your feedback. Your goal is to get to get a feedback rating of about 25 or so.
You earn points (atta boys) for positive feedback. But ONE “Aw crap” wipes out a good portion of your atta boys.
The goal is to NEVER get a negative feedback. Learn the rules and play by them religiously.
Once you build a decent reputation as a buyer, it’s time to try selling. You need to be committed if you sell. Be absolutely sure that you will be able to ship on time. You can either try selling some things you have around the house such as children’s clothes that no longer fit. Some guidelines are:
- Take high quality photos. Most cell phones can do a great job.
- If there are ANY defects in the product, take a closeup of that and mention it in the description. You want ZERO unhappy customers.
- Make sure you have shipping boxes. Find out how similar products are shipped. If they are shipping via priority mail, you can get free packaging from the post office. Also, make sure you have packing materials to guarantee that the products will arrive undamaged.
- Look at other sales for similar products.
- Decide if you will sell as an auction or ‘buy it now’. Collectibles often sell for more as an auction.
- When you search for something, there are filters on the left side. Look for the checkbox marked ‘sold listings’. This way, you can see what items actually sold for.
- Don’t put everything up at once. Put one or two items up and go through the whole process. That will allow you learn the process.
- Make sure you have a decent printer. You can print shipping labels from the selling dashboard along with a packing slip.
- (1) SHIP ON TIME (2) SHIP ON TIME (3) SHIP ON TIME.. and, in case you missed it SHIP ON TIME!!!!
- After the sales, be sure to leave feedback for your buyers.
- Repeat until you’ve made about 25 sales or so.
Now, between your buyer and seller feedback, you will have a feedback score of about 50. In addition, you will have a seller’s track record. If you were diligent enough, it will be a perfect track record. If you don’t use eBay regularly, check in every year or so. Make a couple of purchases and sell a couple of things.
Now you will be prepared if the Pointy Haired Boss gives you your walking papers or if you suddenly decide to sell your McMansion and move into a one room cabin in the mountains.
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