How to make hundreds of dollars on eBay in 37 minutes

How we made over $1,000 from selling things on eBay. Plus, insider tips on how to make money on eBay from Peter Griffith, a senior executive at eBay.

Here’s the exact steps we used to make $1,000 selling things on eBay over the last two months. Plus, we surveyed readers who make more than $1,000/month using eBay (including one who earned $50,000 over the last year), and we spoke to a senior executive at eBay to get insider tips on how to make extra money with eBay.

Below, you’ll find:

How to make money on eBay

One day, I mentioned to my friend, Susan, that I was going to be selling a few things on eBay and she looked at me skeptically. We’re both fans of Big Wins, so I understand the skepticism — can you really make a lot of money selling on eBay?

Bonus: Want to learn even more ways to make money fast? check out myFree Ultimate Guide to Making Money.

We decided to spend time to create a useful guide on how to make significant amounts of money using eBay. I’ve earned over $1,000 in the last 2 months by selling stuff there.

Rather than generic advice, Susan went to the source: a senior executive at eBay. We also asked I Will Teach You To Be Rich readers who’ve earned over $1,000 on eBay to share their specific tactics for selling at higher prices.

Here’s an excerpt of what Susan learned.

Selling on eBay: too much work, too little gain

True or false?

You’ve heard Ramit talk about the CEO model – cut costs, earn more and optimize spending. Saving more money isn’t just about cutting spending, and your income ISN’T always fixed.

You already know that you can sell stuff on eBay, but, like me, you probably haven’t ever gotten around to doing it. What’s the point of learning and getting involved in a whole new system if all you’ll get out of it is $15 for a pair of your Sevens jeans?

I was thinking the same thing you’re thinking:

“Too much work, too little gain”

Then recently, I ended up having a phone conversation with Jim Griffith, the dean of eBay University. Griff teaches thousands of people how to use eBay as a platform to build their businesses, was personally hired by Pierre Omidyar (one of the eBay co-founders) as one of their earliest community / customer focused employees (15 years ago), and has been an expert seller since eBay got started.

After Griff shared a few really good eBay tricks and tips with me, I started to feel bad about being such a hypocrite about eBay.

“Your income’s not fixed, earn more don’t just save” … I’d say these things to my friends all the time, but I never lifted a single finger towards it.

So, I decided I’d list something to see exactly how much work and how little gain it would be.

Expert sellers share their eBay tips

Before setting up my listing, Ramit and I asked I Will Teach You To Be Rich readers who’ve made upwards of $1,000 on eBay to share their secrets.

Here’s how they optimize their eBay listings, in order of importance:

  1. Use lots of really good pictures
  2. Write complete descriptions and think about potential buyers
  3. Do your research
  4. Time your listing right and avoid reserve prices
  5. Choose what to sell carefully

1. Use lots of really good pictures

  • Quality: They use really good pictures – not blurry and not old-looking. They don’t have to be perfect, but should show NOT ONLY the item BUT ALSO that the item lives in a nice environment. I don’t care how much of a deal it is – I’m not buying a designer sweater that’s being photographed in a coal plant.
  • Quantity: They use lots of pictures. If you’re buying something from an unknown eBay seller, your confidence goes up with the number of real photos of the item in question. One reader told us her secret was “LOTS of pictures. Use an outside app to manage listings (I use Garage Sale) and to upload photos to your own server so you don’t have to pay eBay’s prices for extra photos.”

2. Write complete descriptions and think about potential buyers

  • Completeness: Fill out all the fields in your listing, and make sure your textual description gives a LOT of information about the item. It’s just stupid not to, and yet SO many sellers don’t do this. Laziness I guess? Whatever the reason, don’t be like them.Think like your buyer – if I’m dropping $200 for a rare book on eBay, I want to know EVERY detail about it. I don’t care how mundane or even repetitive it is, I want every reason to have faith that my $200 will be well spent.
  • Search optimization: Use targeted keywords in your item title AND description. You don’t have to be a tech wizard for this. It’s as simple as asking yourself, what would a potential buyer for this item type into the search box? The more closely your description matches that search query, the more visible your products will be. If it’s a brand name thing, then people will probably be typing in the brand, not just the name of the item itself, so make sure to include the brand –eg. [pottery barn queen duvet] versus [queen duvet]. One reader told us “Don’t misspell brand names” – who’s searching for Calfin Kline, anyway? Yeah, it’s obvious. But people still get it wrong.

Bad eBay listing title - this is NOT how to make money on eBay

Bad eBay listing title – this is NOT how to make money on eBay

Good eBay listing title - THIS is how to make money on eBay!

Good eBay listing title – THIS is how to make money on eBay!

3. Do your research

  • Is there a market for your item? Taking 5 minutes to Google your item and learn its true market value – on eBay AND on a bunch of other e-commerce sites – helps you to sell it more competitively because you’ll find out whether or not there’s a market for your item, you’ll see the right price, and you’ll figure out the right search keywords to write into your listing.

4. Time your listing right and avoid reserve prices

  • One reader gave us a good tip for timing your listing: “Use the 10 day listing starting on a Thursday, that gives you two full weekends of eyeballs. Weekends typically have the highest traffic.”
  • This same seller told us even more about reserve pricing: “99.999% of the time I never use a reserve price. My goal is to make as much money as I can, so I reduce the amount of upfront money I have to pay. I also do this by using a low starting price of $0.99. This keeps me competitive with everyone. I would rather get little for it than have it sit on my shelf and have it COSTING me money.”

5. Choose what to sell carefully

  • The survey respondent who made the most money off of eBay ($50k+ in the past 12 months) gave us an interesting tip on what to sell: “Find a niche market, and go deep (do you have a hobby – if so, can you sell supplies for it? If selling hobby supplies, make sure your customer has purchased everything necessary for a successful project (i.e. provide fantastic customer svc/support. Selling “irregulars/seconds” can be lucrative.”
  • This was also one of the key takeaways from my interview with eBay’s Jim Griffith. Keep reading for more on this point.

Case study: How to make money on eBay

With all these tips in mind, I decided to go for it myself.

Here are the 6 exact steps I used to sell my first item on eBay in just 37 minutes:

  1. Sign up for an eBay account (2 min)
  2. Find something to sell (2 min)
  3. Research the product and the price (5 min)
  4. Market your eBay listing (15 min)
  5. List your first item on eBay! (5 min)
  6. Fulfil your eBay sale (8 min)

Step 1: Sign up for an eBay account

Sign up for an eBay account to make money on eBay

This was very straightforward. If you know how to use email and read this blog, then you don’t need additional explanation.

Time taken: 2 min

Step 2: Find something to sell

Selling my Seychelles shoes on eBay

Almost everyone has something lying around for eBay. Last month, for example, Ramit sold his broken laptop (the one he ruined with a latte, of all things) for $661. (In fact, he used an assistant to do the market research, write the eBay page, and ship it, but that’s a story for another time).

Apparently, someone out there knew how to fix it. This highlights one of the greatest things about eBay – its wide reach means that you’re likely to find a buyer for almost anything that you have to sell. While most people don’t have tons of spare high-value electronics laying around, you probably do have something else. As for me, I had these too-big shoes in my closet that I’d never worn.

Remember, the point of this post to understand and optimize the process, so let’s use the shoes as an example.

Time taken: 2 min

Step 3: Research the product and the price

Under Step 3 Research

I didn’t want to make the mistake of setting an arbitrary price based on emotions, or not knowing what the hot keywords are for describing these shoes.

Here’s how I researched:

  1. Searched for the product name with Google Product Search [ Seychelles Share the Wealth ]
  2. Looked at the top 5 ecommerce sites selling the product. This gave me the price AND, more important, lots of details about the shoe and the brand to put in the description to make it look super professional.
  3. Saw the item I have has one major distinction – a hard-to-find color. I’ll highlight this in the description.

Note: it’s hard to Google ‘value of broken laptop,’ but in this case, Ramit’s damaged computer was making $0 sitting on his shelf. Remember the tip about pricing at $0.99 we heard from our power seller-it’s always better to make some money from your item than to get all emotionally attached to it and not make any at all.

Time taken: 5 min

Step 4: Market your eBay listing

Since I already did the research, this was the easy part. I took photos and then determined the title and description copy from the other sites I saw that were selling this product, making sure to highlight the major distinction (its color) along with the standard brand distinction.

I took the reader tip and decided to list on a Thursday, for a 10-day auction to get in two weekends’ worth of eyeballs.

Here’s what I did:

  1. Borrowed the title and best descriptions from the other sites I saw. (5 min)
  2. Took photos and did some minor editing. (10 min)

Note: when Ramit was trying to sell off his broken laptop, he used brand identification (it was an Apple Macbook), photos of the actual item being sold, and added an honest, thorough description – ‘this laptop has some damage, but it’s definitely reparable and it’s a steal if you know how.’ The brand name draws in lots of viewers, and the honest, thorough description targets the listing to just the right person who’ll end up loving the purchase.

Time taken: 15 min

Step 5: List your first item on eBay!

Listing my first eBay item

eBay makes this really easy. I chose to offer free shipping because this attracts more buyers. I bundled the estimated shipping cost into the price of the item.

Time taken: 5 min

Step 6: Fulfil your eBay sale

It’s really, really important to get those good seller ratings, even if you’re not quitting your day job. Fullfillment means being a reliable seller, packager, and shipper, and getting the item to your buyer ASAP.

Time taken: 8 min

Total time taken: 37 min

Article by: RAMIT SETHI from iwillteachyoutoberich.com

3 thoughts on “How to make hundreds of dollars on eBay in 37 minutes

  • 26th January 2019 at 7:20 am
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    Everything is very open and very clear explanation of issues. was truly information. Your website is very useful. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  • 25th April 2019 at 4:30 am
    Permalink

    Hey, how’s it going?

    I want to pass along some very important news that everyone needs to hear!

    In December of 2017, Donald Trump made history by recognizing Jerusalem as the captial of Israel. Why is this big news? Because by this the Jewish people of Israel are now able to press forward in bringing about the Third Temple prophesied in the Bible.

    Jewish Rabbis have publicly announced that their Messiah will be revealed in the coming years who will be a leader and spiritual guide to all nations, gathering all religions under the worship of one God.

    Biblical prophecy tells us that this Jewish Messiah who will take the stage will be the antichrist “who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God” (2 Thessalonians 2:4). For a time, he will bring about a false peace, but “Therefore when you see the ‘abomination of desolation,’ spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (Matthew 24:15)…then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21).

    “Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour” (1 John 2:18).

    “The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12).

    More importantly, the power that runs the world wants to put a RFID microchip in our body making us total slaves to them. This chip matches perfectly with the Mark of the Beast in the Bible, more specifically in Revelation 13:16-18:

    “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

    Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.”

    Referring to the last days, this could only be speaking of a cashless society, which we have yet to see, but are heading towards. Otherwise, we could still buy or sell without the mark amongst others if physical money was still currency. This Mark couldn’t be spiritual because the word references two different physical locations. If it was spiritual it would just say in the forehead. RFID microchip implant technology will be the future of a one world cashless society containing digital currency. It will be implanted in the right-hand or the forehead, and we cannot buy or sell without it! We must grow strong in Jesus. AT ALL COSTS, DO NOT TAKE IT!

    “Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name” (Revelation 14:9-11).

    People have been saying the end is coming for many years, but we needed two key things. One, the Third Temple, and two, the technology for a cashless society to fulfill the prophecy of the Mark of the Beast.

    Visit http://WWW.BIBLEFREEDOM.COM to see proof for these things and why the Bible trul is the word of God!

    If you haven’t already, it is time to seek God with all your heart. Jesus loves you more than you could imagine. He wants to have a relationship with you and redeem you from your sins. Turn to Him and repent while there is still hope! This is forever…God bless!

    Reply

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