How to make money on eBay – Pros and Cons of eBay
There are a number of advantages and disadvantages to using eBay. Here, we take a look at what they are:
eBay is well established as the biggest and best auction site on the web now, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s perfect. There are a lot of things that are brilliant about it and same things that aren’t quite so good. If you ask your friends or just Google around, you’ll find just as many poeple who will tell you it’s the best thing since sliced bread as well tell you not to ever, ever use it. The point of this article is to help you have the best possible experience on eBay. If you’re paying attention to what you’re doing, then will a bit of luck, you won’t have any problems. Still, it’s worth looking at the pros and cons of using eBay before you dive in…
It’s the biggest auction site there is : eBay is gigantic. it’s hard to really comprehend just how big it actually is; it has literally millions of active users, buying and selling things every single day. Just as there are advantages in going to a bigger ship over a smaller one, there are advantages to using ebay over smaller sites. If you’re selling, those millions of users mean your customer base is potentially enormous, which means you’re likely to find a customer and potentially sell your item for more money than you would elsewhere. If you’re a buyer, that huge marketplace means not only that you’re likely to find the thing you’re looking for, but that you’ll have a choice of sellers, so you can pick the one you’re happiest with, whether that’s the one offering the thing you want at the most competitive price, the one offering free shipping or the one with the highest feedback score.
It’s straightforward to use: Once you’ve used eBay for a little while, you’ll be able to appreciate how well designed it is. Everything has been made as simple and streamlined as possible. There’s no barrier to entry: you don’t have to be technological wizard to set up a shop or do your Christmas shopping. It’s as easy to buy something from eBay as it is any other online store, and you’ll find you’ll get the hang of selling quickly too. There’s nothing fiddly here, nothing to get confused over; it all just works. Why waste time getting frustrated over another site when you could just go with the one that’s had the most time and effort spent on making it easy to use?
Everyone’s kept accountable: You’re dealing with complete strangers on eBay, which might seem intimidating at first. However, eBay’s long established feedback system means you can see exactly who the trustworthy sellers are. You’ll see the effect of the feedback system right from the moment you first search for something to buy. In the list of search results, you’ll see some auctions are marked ” TOP RATED SELLERS”, which should give you confidence about those sellers straight away. When you click through to the listing page, you’ll see more information, like how many things that seller has sold through eBay and what percentage of those sales got positive feedback. Click through again and you can see the details of every transaction, so if you’re not sure about someone, you can see what other people have said about them. It’s a really good way of making sure that untrustworthy types get shown up. If lots of other people say a seller doesn’t send items quickly, doesn’t package them well or doesn’t really sell what they claim to, you’ll know to give them a wide berth.
You really can find anything
This is an extension of the fact that eBay is the biggest online marketplace, really, but are a result of the size and the number and variety of different people selling on eBay, you can find almost anything you could ever want to buy. Want some clippings from a Victorian newspaper? Done. How about some imported sweets you can’t get in Tesco? yep, those too. It’s hard to overestimate just how briliant it is to be able to find anything you want, all in one place. Why waste time looking all over the place when you can just search eBay and find everything you want, all at once?
Some people can take advantage: Most people who use eBay are just like you and aren’t looking to rip anyone off. However, it’s worth bearing in mind that, no matter where you are, there will always be unsavoury types around. eBay is no different in that respect, unfortunately. There are lots of scammers on the itnernet looking to rip off naive buyers or steal from honest sellers, and that’ll always be the case, no matter how many measures are brought in to stop them. It’s worth being a little bit cautious about who you deal with and keeping track of your transactions so you know what’s going on – but you’d do that anyway, wouldn’t you?
It charges fees: Although it’s easy and convenient to use eBay, it does come at a cost: eBay takes a cut of all sales on its site, and how much those add up to depends on how you set up your listings. The fees eBay charges have changed over the last couple of years, and some people have taken umbrage to being charged more for the privilege of using the service. Disgruntled sellers who think eBay takes too much of their money are usually the poeple shouting the loudest about how you shouldn’t use it. And while you can probably see their point, eBay is a business and needs to make its money somehow.
You need to use PayPal: After some more recent changes, all sellers on eBay are obliged to accept PayPal, and very few alternate payment options are offered on the site. That’s because PayPal is owned by eBay (untill recently of course), so it obviously has a vested interest in making poeple use it. For most people, that’s not a huge problem, because PayPal is easy and convenient to use, but it is a limitation some popele aren’t willing to accept. PayPal, of course, comes with its own set of pros and cons, but if you want to use eBay, using it is non-negotiable.
You’re on its turf: By choosing to use eBay rather than other sites or making your own web store, you have to accept its terms and conditions. You also have to accept that eBay is entitled to change the rules, including changing how much it charges, whenever it wants to. eBay is a commercial entity, and when you’re using its service, you’re on its turf and have to play by its rules. Again, that’s not usually a problem, but it’s worth bearing in mind.
The choice is yours: Ultimately, no one can make the decision about whether you want to use eBay (and in what capacity) other than you. We reckon the pros far outweigh the cons, but it’s worth just being aware of the downsides, just so that you don’t get caught out. Plus, the more prepared you are, the better you’ll be able to navigate the site. It’s always good to find out what you’re letting yourself in for.
DID YOU KNOW?
Some UK sellers restrict their sales to UK buyers. This avoids problems regarding postal fees, and confused purchasers who opt for the cheapest, surface mail postal option and then expect it to be delivered in a few days.