Some people might be surprised to find out the minimum cost of a basic sale on eBay is 52 pence. This would be an auction sale of 99p with minimum UK postage of Letter size under 100 grams. You would get just 47 pence but even less depending on your pay-out option cost and also this doesn’t take into account what you might have paid for the item and assumes you are just selling unwanted items you have at home. So if you work out that each listing take 15 minutes you earn £1.81 from eBay and they make £2.04 for each our you work for them. But, what some people don’t figure out is if they sell these low value items and have pay for international shipping they’ll almost certainly end up in a loss position. If this example item had to go to Ireland the profit would drop to just 28 pence.
All this really make the original reason eBay was successful not obsolete doesn’t it? the risk of listing in auction format at the lowest start 99p is now way too high for everyday people.
So the reason I know this is because I am at the moment selling lots of unwanted items on eBay. The act of sorting out stuff you can’t keep because you are downsizing norming starts with these levels – Keep, someone in family will want, sellable, might be of interest and rubbish. The “keep” and the “rubbish” are easy handled but the other 3 levels is where the work is and I’m currently stuck on “might be of interest” or perhaps better termed as “can I get any money for it” 🙂 These items tend to be what you have the most of because they boarder on the description “should get rid but might have value” and only an idiot takes something of value to the council tip. Of course the is also the charity shops but having experience of the stuff they get given I know what they can sell and what they can’t and if they can sell it so can I 😉 although some items I box up for that route simply based on time.
well, I needed to determine what’s worth trying to sell based on what it might bring after the costs and how much time I would have spend preparing it for sale. Clearly selling something for 99p is NOT worth anyone’s time so what is? Well, the factors to consider mainly are the size and the “considered” value – that being the value you consider it to be worth. The strange thing is, in todays UK item light enough to be under 100 grams, less then 5mm thick and over £5 in value is a sweet spot. The next sweet spot is item valued over £50 and weighing over 2 kg. The reason for this one is 2 kgs has a cost of £2.99 and a parcel twice the dimensions weighing 5 times more only costs £5.99 and 20kg only £9.49. Don’t get me wrong UK postage is a massive rip-off .
To my mind any item that won’t sell for £5.00 or won’t fit into a Large Envelope size is not worth my time. Those items I get a return of £3.77, now sell for of those for your hour’s work listing and you have earning real money in your spare time £15.08 an hour. Won’t get your rich but this is not a get rich exercise. What it is is getting you into a making a living sort of area for your time.
But still, taking advantage of eBay seller offers is vital. What I do is create all my listings as drafts, I aim to have at least 100 item sitting in my drafts folder waiting for that 70% discount on final value fees. But these item need to be high value: Using our first example and applying a 70% final value results in a return of 62 pence instead of 47 pence. On £5.00 sales with £2.30 Large Letter postage the return goes up from £3.77 to £4.42 so make sure you look out for those offers. But remember all this is based on the items having no cost to you. If you intend to buy and sell items on ebay you need to do a lot of calculations. Perhaps a eBay shop would be better or even Amazon. Whichever good luck!