Clever Tips For How to List Items on eBay to Sell Fast

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Are you looking for eBay listing tips and tricks for how to list items on ebay? If so, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve been selling on eBay for a while now and have learned a few valuable tools along the way.

how to list items on ebay

eBay Listing Tips and Tricks for Photos

#1 – Snap Quality Photos

Nothing will kill a sale faster than a bad picture. So, how do you avoid that? Here’s a few simple tricks I use:

  • 2 large (12” x 18”) white construction paper sheets. You can grab these at craft stores or even your local grocery/pharmacy for just a couple bucks. These make great backdrops for your photos. Lay one sheet flat and stand the other sheet straight up (may require tape to hold in place).
  • If using the camera on your phone, stand back a bit and zoom in on the picture. This helps eliminate shadows.
  • Clean up preowned items so they look as best as they can.
  • Find a well-lit area to take your photos, natural sunlight is best. If you’re lighting options aren’t great, a relatively inexpensive option is a light box for smaller items.

#2 – Take Photos from all Angles

This is especially important if there are flaws on the item you are selling. You absolutely want to do zoomed in shots of any damage there is on the item you’re selling. In turn, this will reduce returns and create happier customers because they know exactly what they’re buying.

Related Article: Explore 11 Critical eBay Selling How to Ideas

#3 – Tips How to Position Select Items for Photos

  • Clothes.  If you plan on selling lots of clothes a mannequin torso form is probably your best bet.  Sure, you can buy a full priced one, but you could also check out any clothing stores in your area that are closing its doors for a better deal.  While clothes look best on a mannequin, the next best position is to fold them nicely.
  • Shoes. A zoomed in side photo with someone wearing shoes always makes for a nice photo.

How to List on eBay – Pricing

#4 – Decide on a Fixed Price or Auction Listing

Early on eBay was most known for its auction style listings.  However, over time, a fixed price model has taken precedence on eBay.  You can use either option for your eBay listings today.

Which option is better depends on the item you are selling?  Here’s a quick checklist for when an item might be good for auction:

  • High demand.  Remember Tickle Me Elmo?  That toy was in high demand and people were willing to pay up for it.  This would have been a perfect auction item.
  • Low supply.  When something is hard to find, it can drive up the cost. This is particularly true on older items that might have a nostalgic feel to a buyer.
  • Rarity.  Unique items, often antiques, where only one of its kind exists can make it hard to determine the value of an item.   This is where an auction style listing is ideal.
  • Unsellable.  Fixed cost items that aren’t selling for you might do better as an auction listing if you are just looking to get rid of it.

Fixed price listings are great for more common, everyday items where there are comparables to use when determining the sale price for your item. 

#5 – Offer Fast and Free Shipping

Before you decide on the final price for your item, put it on a scale with the box you will sell it in and any shipping supplies (bubble wrap, tissue, etc.) you will use.  Then, determine how much the shipping fees will be and build it into your final price.

While offering fast and free shipping is essential on eBay, it doesn’t mean you have to eat the cost.  By doing this, eBay will sometimes give your listing an extra nudge and call out in green lettering that the item has “Fast and Free Shipping”.  It will even give the customer a guarantee by date in green.

how to list on ebay

#6 – Accept Returns

This is a must if you are trying to grow a successful eBay business.  However, if you are just looking to make a few extra bucks here and there then this isn’t necessary.  Accepting returns builds trust with your customers and puts them at ease when making a purchase. 

If you don’t offer returns, it’s probably worth reading through the eBay Money Back Guarantee policy Because, even if you don’t accept returns you might be forced to accept them in certain cases.

Related Article: The 25 Best Things to Sell on eBay to Make Money

#7 – Price Your eBay Listing Competitively

Before setting the price on your item you need to do a little research and determine what other people have been buying that item for.  Depending on the rarity of the item, it may be hard to do this but it’s always worth a try.  Check out this video for how to use eBay to do this.

How to List Items on eBay and Get Noticed

#8 – SEO

For those who don’t know, SEO stands for search engine optimization.  Simple put, it means any search engine like eBay, Google, YouTube, etc. looks for related keywords when a user types in a word or phrase to search for something. 

So, when you go to eBay and type in “women’s shoes size 9”, eBay searches its database for listings with those words in it.  Therefore, SEO is important when it comes to listing your items.

When possible it’s good to repeat the key elements of your item in different places.  Your title should include as many keywords as possible, while still being reader friendly.  A long string of keywords with no systemic order is difficult for people to read.  And make no mistake, people are reading your titles.

Another good place to add lots of keywords is your description.  When done correctly, you can even repeat the main keywords over and over in your description. 

The more keywords that are sprinkled throughout your listing, the greater chance your listing has of showing up high in the search results.  The secret is to find a good balance between customer readability and a keyword optimized listing.

#9 – Populate eBay Item Specifics

The more information you can provide eBay to explain what you are selling, the better chance you have at showing up in the search results.  When people search eBay for an item, they start with a keyword or keyword phrase.  Then, there is often a list of filters people can choose from to dig in further.  This is where using as many eBay item specifics as possible comes in handy.

#10 – Positive Feedback

The more positive feedback you get as a seller, the better you will look in the eyes of potential new customers.  A good way to encourage this is by leaving a positive review for the buyer a few days after their item has safely arrived at its destination.  This will remind your customer of the great item they just bought and hopefully prompt them to give you feedback.

Another way to encourage your customers to provide feedback is through leaving a friendly little note in their package.  The note could say something like:

Thank you for your purchase.  I hope your item has arrived safely and to your expectations.  Please email me at [fill in] with any concerns you might have, and I will do my best to address the issue.  If you had a positive experience with the product and service, please take a moment to provide a review on eBay.  I appreciate your business and look forward to working with you again.

#11 – Create Templates for Descriptions

People don’t want to read long texts of information so skip writing paragraphs on the items you are selling.  Instead, draft up templates for the category of items you are selling and call out the key elements of the item in your templates.  Here’s an example of a template I use when selling pants: 

Stylish, lightweight jeans. Pre-owned. No obvious flaws or defects. Front button and zipper are in good working order. Belt loops are intact. Little or no wear on the hem. Free shipping! Ships USPS Priority Mail.

  • Inseam is x”
  • Waist is x”
  • Rise is x”
  • Hips is x”
  • Cuffs is x”

Please message me with any questions.

And don’t be afraid to bold or underline important parts in your description either.  Adding a little variety to the text makes it easier to read.

Extra Tips How to List on eBay for Increased Sales

#12 – Look for Special Listing Promotions

Starting on August 1, 2020, eBay now gives non-store sellers up to 200 auction or fixed price listings per month.  This is up from 50 a month.  Prior to that, eBay would send an occasional message under the My eBay section within my eBay account with special promotions.  Some of these messages went to the email address I have listed on my account but not all of them.

Most of the special promotions were to give additional free listings, which isn’t as valuable since they increased the base number per month.  However, I have also received 50% off the final value fee on certain categories.  For the right person, these offers could be very valuable.  You never know when eBay might give you a special offer or what that offer will be, so check your eBay messages!

how to list items on ebay

#13 – Give Quick Responses

Unless you’re selling a rare item, it’s unlikely you are the only one selling an item like yours.  If a potential buyer has a question, it’s in your best interest to reply quickly.  People don’t like waiting for answers and if they are forced to wait too long, they will likely move on to the next best thing.

When you don’t have an immediate answer as the item is not in front of you, send a quick note back.  Let the potential buyer know you will answer their question within the next # of hours or by the next day.  Your engagement will help keep them engaged.

#14 – Let Buyers Make You an Offer

To keep sales moving, allowing the buyer to make you an offer can help.  If it’s a low ball offer you don’t have to accept, and it’s likely not worth your time responding.  However, when it’s a more reasonable offer, I suggest countering with an offer to meet in the middle. 

For example:  You have an item listed for $20 and someone has made an offer for $15.  You could respond saying,

Thanks for your interest.  Would you be willing to split the difference with me and pay $17.50?  I look forward to hearing from you.

People want to feel like they are getting a deal and even a slight reduction in the list price can get them to buy your item.

#15 – Fill Out Your eBay Profile

The more relevant information the buyer can find on you the better they will feel buying from you. For starters, make sure to add a nice quality photo of yourself to your profile.

Also, add a description to your profile that tells your potential buyer why they should trust you (without saying those exact words though). If you’ve been selling for awhile include that in the description. If you have a long-standing passion for the items you’re selling make sure to note that.

Good Luck with your eBay Listings

Sometimes the best way forward and up, is to play around with a variety of options and see what works best for you.  So, go ahead and start trying these eBay listing tips and tricks.  You may find some are better than others.  But you won’t know which ones until you get started.  Happy selling!

how to list items on ebay

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