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When do you decide something will not sell on eBay?

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When do you decide something will not sell on eBay? Do you put it on twice or maybe at best offer? I have some cheaper stuff that I though would go, but I still have it!


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This is a great question. I’ve seen sellers spend more on listing fees than their items were worth because they weren’t paying attention.

The answer differs a bit depending on whether you have an eBay store. A store owner pays an insertion fee between 10 cents and $2.00 for an auction listing or 20 cents for a fixed price listing. (Some store owners pay less for fixed price listings, but pay higher monthly store fees.)

If you don’t have a store, you get 50 or more free auction style listings a month. Usually 50, but eBay runs specials for higher numbers frequently. Any other fees like reserves are not free on these listings. So assuming you don’t incur other fees, you can list the auction for free.

If you use turbolister to list your auctions, you can save the unsold listings in a new folder and then launch them later with a few mouse clicks. This means you can use your free listings to get exposure for these hard to sell items rather than letting them expire.

As a store owner I listed a bunch of costume jewelry with fixed prices. This cost 20 cents per listing. If the item didn’t sell and there was no interest – watchers or auction views, I didn’t relist it. Items with interest were relisted at lower prices or with Buy-It Now options. (Buy-It-Now costs up to 25 cents extra per listing depending on price.) Items that didn’t sell were listed in lots of similar items as auctions with low opening bids just to get rid of them.

If something is expensive, but has low demand, store owners should list it with a high fixed price and the Buy-It-Now option. (Watch the final value fees here — it is usually cheaper to refuse an offer and then list the item as an auction with the offer as the starting price. People without stores should list these expensive low demand items with high opening bids and no reserve.

Another consideration is ease of packing versus expected selling price. I have some large items that have low values. For example a 24 inch long box a toy truck came in back in the 1950s. I know a person with the truck would buy the box on eBay, but packing would be a hassle due to the long length. The truck is only worth $25 so I doubt the box would bring more than $10. I’d have to charge close to $10 for shipping which means the box isn’t worth listing at all.

Notice that nowhere in my answer did I consider the cost of the items. This is because either you bought them at a cost that allows a profit or you didn’t. The cost is never a consideration when selling on eBay. If you made a mistake and overpaid, take the loss and move on. Don’t make matters worse by wasting money trying to find a buyer who will also make a mistake.

See also: How To Use eBay Listing Upgrades And Options Efficiently.

Did this answer your question? If not, try looking at the questions and answers within the ebay stores, General category, or do a search for other questions.
If you are unable to find an answer to your question, send me an email, and I will answer it.

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