What Should I Sell on eBay?

cems120x300The following article is reproduced from www.skipmcgrath.com with kind permission of Skip McGrath

This is the most asked question I get from my newsletter readers and book buyers.

And it’s just as important to know what you SHOULDN’T try to sell on eBay.

What Should I Sell On eBay?

Let me say right up front: “There is no way I can answer that question.”

No one can answer that except you.

But more about this later.

First I want to answer another very important related question.

What SHOULDN’T I Sell On eBay?

So what shouldn’t you sell on eBay?

Unless you have very deep pockets I can tell you what you probably cannot sell on eBay:

Plasma TVs, iPods, the latest model laptops, digital camera and DVD players, Xbox, Gucci shoes, the latest perfume and other hot consumer products.

The wholesale distribution of all these products are tightly controlled by the manufacturer.

For example, if you want to buy iPods wholesale to sell on eBay, the distributor requires that you have a $200,000 line of credit. Channel will only sell their perfumes to a select few stores.

You can buy overstock or surplus famous designer items (Gucci, Prada, Hermes, etc.) through a few outlets, but the latest merchandise is only sold through their stores and a few select upscale retailers.

Lately several supposedly wholesale suppliers and drop ship companies claim to have Xboxes and iPods at prices where you can make money. Be careful. Several of my readers have sent thousands of dollars to companies for a shipment of Xboxes that never showed up.

Others listed them from drop ship companies that never delivered and never answered emails once the item was sold and paid for. Companies selling iPods via the drop ship channel have such a high price once you add in the shipping and drop ship fees that you can’t make any money.

Other companies claim to have iPods, but once you pay their $199 membership fee, all of a sudden they are “out of stock.” The only place I have found iPods selling for less than on eBay is at my local Costco. And they were only about $12 less which is just not enough to make a profit.

So back to the original question: What should I sell on eBay? As I said, only you can answer that question, but here are some tips to help you figure out what to sell:

Sell Items On eBay Which You Know About

You have probably heard this a dozen times, but sell what you know and love.

I have collected Starbucks mugs, bears and cards for quite a while. Last year I started selling and have built up a very nice small –yet profitable niche. Because I know so much about them, I recognize a good value when I see it and can often double or triple my money when I buy a collectible piece.

I love my new laptop, but I am just not a computer expert. If I were a complete computer guy, I could not afford to become a distributor for a computer company, but there are sources of surplus and re-manufactured computers.

If I really knew computers and the market, I would know which ones were a good value for the price and how I could market and sell them. Not having this knowledge however, would make it very risky for me to buy a pallet load of surplus computers from someone such as Liquidation.com.

Find a Niche On eBay

Try and find a niche. A niche can be a product, a product category or even how you market a product.

The main advantage of selling in a niche is that you really get to know the product, the market, the pricing and the sources and because it is a niche, there is far less competition.

Pick products where you can be assured of making money. Making a small margin on something that sells for over $500 is fine, but if you are only making 10% after expenses on a $50 item, you have to sell a lot of products to make $500 a week. If I am selling anything for under $100 I look for a 25% net margin after cost, shipping, and eBay and PayPal fees.

Research, research, research ! Don’t buy anything to resell on eBay until you have thoroughly researched the product, the market and the competition. Make sure the item will sell at a profit.

There are lots of research services. I have tried them all, but by far, my favorite is HammerTap from Bright Builders. This was always a good tool, but the new release really blows the competition away. You can get a one-month trial run for just $1.00

If you are really stuck, start by selling things from around your home, then move on to selling items you buy at garage sales and thrift shops. As you do this you will see patterns emerging –things that sell well and are easy to buy. If you are patient and try a lot of things this will lead you to a niche.

One person who did this found that old fishing gear sold very well and was easy to find cheaply at garage sales. He now has a large eBay business selling vintage and collectible fishing gear such as reels, fly rods, lures and so on.

Another woman I know found that jig saw puzzles sold very well. Some went for just a few dollars while others would bring high prices –as much as $50 each. With experience she has now learned which ones to buy that will return huge profits. A few hours spent at garage sales spending less than $20 can often return over $500 in sales.

Children’s books sell very well if they are in excellent condition and children’s pop-up books can bring a fortune if they are not broken or torn. The best sources for books are garage sales, flea markets and your local thrift shop.

Selling Information Products On eBay Can Be Lucrative

Information products and taking advantage of eBay’s new policy on selling digitally downloaded products may be the most profitable niche on eBay.

Non-fiction books sell very well on eBay. Look for books in good condition on subjects such as art, photography, transportation –  cars, trains, planes, etc, how-to books, courses.

I once found a cassette tape course with a workbook on Winning at Black Jack at a garage sale for $5.00. I sold it on eBay for over $70), local and regional history, antique and collectible price guides (less than 5-years old) and books on animals. Stay away from cookbooks unless it is a very famous one.

I did a great teleseminar with Tim Knox who is an expert on creating and selling information products. His book on creating information products is one of the best on the market.

Whatever you decide to sell, test with a small quantity or research it first to make sure there is a market before committing a large sum of money and make sure you have a stable source of supply.

Good luck with your selling on eBay!

Open Your Own eBay Store

CompleteSystemsky1newIf you want to open your own eBay store, then The Complete eBay Marketing System from Skip McGrath will show you how to make big profits on eBay.

The Complete eBay Marketing System has now sold over 5,000 copies in the US and Canada.

It’s the most COMPLETE eBay business system ever created.

The Complete eBay Marketing System has now sold over 5,000 copies in the US and Canada.

The author, Skip McGrath is himself a professional eBay marketer and eBay PowerSeller since 1999.

Skip McGrath runs the oldest and largest resource site for eBay and Amazon sellers, providing tools, advice and information for professional online sellers. He’s also the author of several books about selling on eBay and online.

Skip later went on to create The Complete eBay Marketing System training program to teach others how to set up and operate a successful eBay store.

The The Complete eBay Marketing System is probably the best quality course available for both newcomers and experienced eBay sellers.

And what’s more, it’s fantastic value for money.

If you’re interested in finding out more about how The Complete eBay Marketing System can help you increase your eBay sales, Read my Review of The Complete eBay Marketing System or go to www.skipmcgrath.com

CompleteSystemnew2 Open Your Own eBay Store With The Complete eBay Marketing System

Image Attribution: ebay – courtesy of Kazuhisa OTSUBO

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  1. BreakingOut.NET Want To Start Your Own Online Business - April 13, 2014

    […] What Should I Sell on eBay? (Part Two) […]

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