How to sell on eBay?

e-Commerce is one of the most dynamically developing sectors of today’s economy. Only in 2018, the total sales of products in e-shops covered an amount of $2.93 trillion globally. Additionally, every year approximately 1.92 billion people shop online. One of the best ways for reaching foreign customers with your sales offer is through eBay. Do you know how to do that?

What is eBay and how does it work?

eBay is available on many international markets so it is a great tool for companies that want to offers their products and services abroad. The service was established in 1995 and it is currently used by 182 million users worldwide. 

The “Global E-commerce Report 2018” prepared by the E-commerce Foundation shows that shopping through this service is the most popular among users from the Middle East, Asia-Pacific as well as South America. Taking into account the fact that these continents are most populated, the conclusion is clear: this is a great tool for everyone who is thinking of expanding their business abroad.

Sales on eBay – is it profitable?

Thanks to this sales platform, access to international markets is easy. It is a great solution for any company wishing to offer their products or services to customers worldwide. The above is evidenced by the increasing popularity of this shopping platform used by more and more shoppers each year. Also, keeping in mind the fact that the number of completed transactions has been increasing, the conclusion is simple: it is worth using eBay as one of or the key sales channel.

There are disadvantages of online sales

Presence on eBay and online sales in general involve large risks. According to Bisnode’s report regarding the condition of the e-commerce industry, only 30% of shops operated for more than 8 years as of 2017-2018. This proves that there is a huge competition in this market sector and if you want to be a part of it, you have to keep the above in mind. The relatively low entry threshold is the reason why there are many online shops created every month. The number of competitors increases, who wish to reach the same customers as you.

How to sell on eBay internationally?

Starting sales on eBay is quite simple. The first thing you need to do is register an account. For this purpose, use a form where you will specify all the required details. If you want to operate as a business, go to “Settings” and then “Information about account”. Click “Edit” in the “Account Type” section. When you activate a business account, you will be asked for several details. To start sales, you will have to fill out simple information in the settings section. It is also recommended to create a PayPal account which will simplify payments for customers. What you should know is that account registration at ebay.pl, for instance, makes it possible to also log into ebay.co.uk or ebay.de,etc.

eBaymag – post products on several markets simultaneously

With an eBay account, there is a possibility of posting your products on several markets at once. You will have such a possibility when you decide to use the eBaymag tool. For sellers, this is a huge simplification especially when you wish to create sales offers in several or all eBay services. Currently, the dedicated services are available in the following 9 countries: Poland, Germany, UK, Canada, France, USA, Spain, Italy and Australia.

What should be sold on eBay?

The service gives you the possibility of checking the objects that the users are searching for. When you use ebay.de or ebay.co.uk all you have to do is start entering a specific name in the search engine. For example, when you start typing “furniture” you will be shown a list of phrases used by other users. Unfortunately, this option is not available for ebay.pl.

You can check what is worth selling on eBay as well as the standard market prices. The service features an advanced search engine where you can specify your search parameters, such as: product name, price, products that were already sold and several other preferences. Due to this solution you can research information about what is worth selling on eBay but you will still not know details of market trends.

How to follow trends on eBay?

Sales trends on eBay can be checked on two pages: explore.ebay.com and ebay.co.uk/trending. Unfortunately, these tools only let you know what the most popular products are on the German, British, American and Australian markets.  Dedicated tools for checking trends are not available in all countries. In this case, you have to use external services such as Google Trends or Google Keyword Planner.

Selling internationally through eBay – what to keep in mind?

There are several aspects that must be considered when you decide to sell abroad using eBay. If you want to post offers in Germany, there are a few formal aspects applicable. Practice has shown that when a shipment is posted from a German address, there is a bigger chance of sales. However, this involves the necessity to register in the German VAT records. This obligation is quite new and it results from eBay’s announcement: accounts with German address were deleted as of 1 October 2019 unless their owners were registered as VAT DE payers. What’s worth noting is that such an obligation mainly affects three seller groups on ebay.de:

  1. Companies that ship from a German address.
  2. Companies that offer shipping of their products to any country exceeding EUR 100,000 of the value of products sold.
  3. People who chose Germany as the country of taxation at the start of their business.

Make sure that the descriptions of your eBay bids are properly translated

You don’t only need to post your products in foreign eBay services. If you don’t ensure good translations of your product descriptions, the chance for acquiring international customers will be minimised. Especially that users are more eager to buy products whose descriptions they can fully understand. When translating such product descriptions, you should pay attention to accuracy of the message and also to the degree in which the language is adjusted to the culture and customs of the recipient. 

The key principles when posting an eBay auction

Effective sales on eBay requires to follow certain key principles that will significantly increase your profits. First of all, be sure to mark your bids as “Good Til Cancelled” with the feature “Out of Stock” activated. The first option will make it possible for your auction to never expire so that you can create a sales history. This will increase trust in your shop of potential customers. Thanks to the “Out of Stock” option, you will still be visible in the search results when the number of available products in a given bid drops to zero.

Starting in June 2018, every seller has to specify the EAN code with all their products. The purpose of such changes was to make it easier for customers to find products. You do not have to specify the above code if you are selling pre-owned or collector’s products as well as other products that are unique.

How to sell on eBay internationally? Is it profitable?

Launching sales on eBay is quite simple. All you have to do is register an account on any of the platforms belonging to eBay to be able to post auctions on different markets. There is also a possibility of creating offers in several platforms simultaneously, which is possible with the use of eBaymag. Just make sure you know the sales limitations applicable in particular countries. It may turn out that you won’t be able to post an action according to standard eBay terms. It is a good idea to use eBay which is evidenced by the fact of significantly longer life cycle of shops offering sales through this service, as compared to e-shops using their own servers.