eBay Selling Tips

I’ve sold quite a bit of ‘stuff’ on eBay and my listings generally attract higher than average prices.

For the benefit of all, listed below are my golden rules for a successful eBay listing:

  • Use an established eBay account with a good feedback history (preferably 100% positive) to list your item. There is nothing that puts a buyer off more than a new seller with no history.
  • Choose a sensible end time for your auction. My personal favourite is Sunday evening when people are more likely to be at home and able to bid in real time. Don’t underestimate how much the frenzy of a live auction with active bidders can push the price up 🙂
  • Include a decent photo set:
    • Avoid using stock images
    • If it’s something technical then include a shot of the thing working
    • If there is a settings or status screen then include a photo of that
    • If there is any damage to the item then include a photo of that too
    • If you still have the original box and packaging then mention this in the description and show these in the photos
  • Provide pertinent technical details – include the model number, version and firmware revision. If there it’s an updated firmware available then upgrade to the latest version.
  • Make your item description clear and concise. There is no need to include superfluous blurb. If the manufacturer has a decent online spec sheet than provide a link to that instead. Avoid confusion by listing exactly what is included – and what isn’t included.
  • If the same item is sold for a lot more by an online retailer then link to their page and show how much the item sells for new. It doesn’t harm to point out what a bargain the prospective buyer will be getting.
  • Give realistic postage costs. Check the size and weight of the packaged item and find out exactly what it will cost to send (use Royal Mail’s Price Finder). Don’t inflate the postage costs in an attempt to boost your profits.
  • Finally – package the item well, send it quickly and keep the buyer informed. That way you’ll get good feedback.


The 2012 Global Online Shopper Report confirms that 8.05pm is the most common time for UK consumers to make Internet purchases, so having your auction end just after 8pm is a good idea!

Global e-shoppers spend on average 22% (UK average: 25%) of their annual outgoings on goods and services online, shop for 5 hours a month (UK average: 6), watch TV whilst shopping online (global: 46%, UK: 51%) and make the majority of their purchases at 20:40 (UK: 20:05), according to the Global Online Shopper Report commissioned by WorldPay.