Opening your own eBay store is a great way to make some extra money without too much work. Learn more about how to start an eBay business.
If you’re an aspiring solopreneur, it’s likely that you’re thinking of ways to make money without working too hard, doing something that you like and if possible, from the comfort of your home office.
Do you have a good eye for vintage wares or have an extensive collection of various items that you know are worth a lot of money? eBay allows entrepreneurs of all ages and experiences to start a business and become their own boss.
Not only will we discuss how to start an eBay business, but we will also tell you about some of the benefits of having an eBay store and give you a few helpful tips.
The Benefits Of Having An eBay Store
eBay is one of the largest online marketplaces and a popular online auction site. Even if you’re not a regular eBay shopper, you’ve probably made a few purchases or put in a bid or two on some items.
With millions of sellers on eBay, you may wonder if you’d be a good fit and if you could have some of the same success by setting up shop. Here are some benefits to consider, when thinking about opening up an eBay business (store).
An Affordable Way To Have Your Own Storefront
Buying or renting a space for a brick and mortar store can be expensive, particularly if you’re just starting out on your own as an entrepreneur. eBay is a great way to start selling because the monthly fees for having a shop are merely a fraction of what it would cost to rent or buy a space in a bustling shopping district.
You Can Be Your Own Boss and Work From Anywhere
More than half of Americans want to be their own boss and have control over their work schedule. If you have been thinking about starting an eBay business, you probably fall into that category.
While eBay is technically “in charge,” you have the freedom to sell your own products (as long as they’re legal), set your own prices, and work the hours you want. One of the best parts? You can work from the comfort of your home, on the go, or even at your local coffee shop.
You Can Network and Get Established
If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, it’s important to network and “be seen.” Setting up shop on eBay can help you achieve this a little easier, but don’t assume that all the business will come to you without having to do any work.
Before You Start A Business
While you can create an eBay business account right now and get started, there are a few things you may want to consider before you learn how to start an eBay business.
What’s Your Plan?
Just like any business, do you have a business plan? What do you plan to sell? How many items? While many people envision eBay as a prominent online auction or garage sale, it’s best to stick with selling one type of product (like vintage clothes or jewelry) and allow that to be your “thing;” think of it as your brand.
Do You Have Time and Commitment?
You also need to consider if you have the time to run your eBay store. While having an eBay business allows for some flexibility, you need to put a little work into your shop, be available for potential buyers, and be present just like if it was a brick and mortar store.
Although many eBay sellers are successful, it’s likely that their success didn’t happen overnight and without a lot of work. While eBay may not be full-time work (unless you want it to), you will need to treat it like a job and devote some time. Keep in mind that it may take awhile before you see a significant profit.
Ready To Set Up Shop? Steps On How To Start An eBay Business
If you’ve thought realistically about opening up an eBay shop and are willing to work hard to make it grow, you’re ready to learn how to start an eBay business.
Step 1: Join eBay and Create A Shop
If you don’t have an eBay account, the first step is to create an account. Once you have an eBay account, you can go to “Subscriptions” and then select the correct type of store. You will have the opportunity to personalize your store, organize the inventory, and preview how it will look before it goes live.
It’s a good idea to become a verified member and choose an eBay user ID that is easy to remember and reflects your business. Once you have more visitors and buyers, you want to be able to stand out among the millions of other eBay stores.
Step 2: Familiarize Yourself With eBay
You’re probably eager to stock up your inventory and go live as soon as possible. Even if you have some experience with using eBay, it’s good to take some time and browse the site. Consider reading the articles on selling as well as some posts on the community forum.
There’s a lot to take in once you join eBay and it may not all make sense right away, but it’s good to start educating yourself and doing a little homework. Another good way to get a feel for a site is to start buying from other sellers (maybe inventory for your store); it can help with networking.
Step 3: Set Up A Work Space
While having an online store means that you can work from anyplace that has good wifi reception, you still need to have a designated workspace. Before you set up shop and start creating listings, take a little time to organize and devote a physical space for your inventory.
Step 4: Creating Listings
When you’re ready to create a listing, don’t rush so that you can get it in your shop. Take the time to take good pictures (from multiple angles) of your product and write an excellent description. Write the product description as if you were the buyer and had questions; don’t forget to check your grammar and proofread.
Don’t know what to write? Take a look at top sellers on eBay and take a few tips from their shops.
Step 5: Provide Excellent Customer Service
Whether you have a “buy it now” option or buyers are bidding on an item, you’re likely to get questions about the product. Answer them as clearly and quickly as possible. Even if a potential buyer doesn’t end up buying, they might remember your shop and how fast you responded.
The attention you give to your potential and buying customers can make or break your ratings and overall success on eBay.
Step 6: When You Sell, Ship ASAP
Your first few sales will probably be your most exciting (and maybe even a little confusing). Whatever you do, don’t sit on the product too long. Get it out the door, have reasonable shipping fees, and send out a tracking number to your customer. Remember, they are probably just as excited as you so don’t keep them waiting too long.
Additional Tips To Consider When Starting An eBay Business
Once you set up your eBay store, the rest is relatively easy just make sure that you move products as quickly as possible and respond to any inquiries (negative or positive). Here are some more tips to think about as you’re getting a little more comfortable and may be ready to grow as an eBay store.
Having A Hard Time Moving Merchandise?
Do you have some items that are just sitting in your store and not getting any traffic? Try changing up the description or taking new pictures. You may also want to consider sharing the item on your social media page or drop the price a bit.
Treat Your eBay Business Like A Regular Business
As we mentioned earlier, starting an eBay business requires time and commitment. Regardless of your goals for your online business, you should treat it like a regular and “real” business. Set up a business account, stay organized, set weekly working hours for yourself, and don’t start to slack off once the store begins making money.
With so many eBay businesses that sell similar products, you may not have as much visibility as you would like (just like the real business world). You need to get creative, think about what your competitors are doing, and think of ways to make yourself stand out.
When you are financially able to do so, consider advertising on eBay and think about a marketing campaign. Running an eBay store means that you always need to strive to be ahead of other sellers like you; with a little hard work and dedication, you can be an eBay entrepreneur.