Buying and selling online is a great way to make a little extra and/or pick up some fantastic bargains. Always popular are children’s bits and pieces – from clothes, toys and books to buggies and other baby equipment. Here are some tips for buying and selling on eBay and other online sites:
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#1. Never Share Your Personal Information Online!
Addresses and contact numbers should be exchanged via the private message facility, and never on an open forum.
Bank account and credit card details should never be shared with buyers and sellers online. Only purchase online when you know the site you are buying from is secure.
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#2. Where Possible, Try to Collect Items
Try to meet in person to collect an item. If this is not possible, Paypal is a safe, fast and secure way to pay or receive payment.
If you do not have a Paypal account it is easy to set one up. Never send cash by post: postal order or cheque is recommended.
#3. Don’t Be Afraid to Negotiate
As a buyer, it is in your interest to try and negotiate!
#4. Take a Look Around Your Home
You will be surprised at just how many unwanted bits and pieces you have lying around – and just because you don’t use something anymore doesn’t mean someone else won’t!
Things in particular I have found to always be popular are buggies, books, certain toys and kids clothes, especially unusual or hard to source items.
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#5. Be Realistic with Your Pricing
Selling on eBay and other online sites is a market where people are looking for a bargain.
My rule when selling is this: if something is new and unused, I sell it for 50% the original price; and if something is used, I sell it for 33% of the original price.
Remember, if something is not selling for you, reduce your price!
#6. Get Visual
A good clear photograph of what you are selling will help to make the sale.
If you are selling several items, photo-sharing sites such as www.photobucket.com or www.flickr.com provide free options which allow you to set up online photo albums that you can link to your ad.
#7. Check Your Postage Costs
Postage costs can be off-putting if too high, but you also don’t want to lose out by undercharging.
You can check how much an item is to post online at www.anpost.ie and can weigh an item on your kitchen scales at home. For heavier items check out local courier companies as sometimes this can work out a lot cheaper than posting.
Don’t forget to think green! All packing items such as envelopes, mailing bags and boxes can be reused.
#8. Check the Selling Condition
Make sure all items are freshly washed and clean before selling. If there are numerous pieces, make sure they are all present.
#9. Post in Timely Manner
It may seem obvious, but do not post an item until you have received payment. Once you have been paid, make sure the item is dispatched as quickly as possible.
#10. Offer Items for Free if Not Selling
Not everything you have will sell, so if you have items you want to be rid off you might want to offer items to other parents for free. Alternatively, you could donate them to a local charity shop.
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Article written by Deborah, mum and experienced online buyer and seller
Do you have any tips for other parents looking to start selling on eBay and other sites? Leave a comment below and let us know – we’d love to hear from you!