Ebay hints, tips and general moans

12 Facts About eBay That Will Make Your Hair Stand on End

12 Facts About eBay That Will Make Your Hair Stand on End


1. British singer songwriter James Blunt once auctioned his sister off on eBay. Blunt told GQ magazine that his sister was upset that she couldn’t attend a funeral in Ireland because the planes were on strike and the ferry was out of season. He said he put a listing on eBay that read ‘Damsel in distress seeks knight in shining armour! Desperate to get to a funeral in southern Ireland, please help!’ The guy who won had a helicopter, saved the day and they ended up getting married three years later … the sister and the helicopter guy not James Blunt and the helicopter guy.

2. One of the most expensive items sold on eBay was a $265,000 Malibu airplane and was purchased using a mobile phone.

3. During the Space Shuttle program the only place NASA could source defunct tech like floppy drives and Intel 8086 chips was eBay.


4. In 2008 scientist Richard Harrington purchased a previously unknown sea urchin on eBay “sea urchin and an insect of a previously unknown species encased in amber some 40-50 million years ago “ He attempted to have the discovery named Mindarus ebayici which was rejected and the urchin was given the snappy title of Mindarus Harrintoni.

5. EBay was founded in America but the award for the nation that buys more items per capita goes to Britain.

6. When eBay went public it was with a suggested share price of $18 which surged to $53.50 on the first day. The 30 employees of the company at the time did the conga round the office. The first CEO of eBay, Meg Whitman has a net worth today of just under $2 billion.

7. The most expensive item to date sold on eBay was a Frank Mulder designed Gigayacht which was snapped up by Roman Abramovich for a cool $168 million in 2006. Rumours that Abromovich stayed up all night to snipe the auction at the last second remain unconfirmed.

8. In the early days eBay was known as Auctionweb and the site featured a logo in the shape of a rectangular, black and white box known by staff as the “ death bar “


9. EBay founder Pierre Omidyar travelled to Sacramento to register a name for his planned business Echo Bay Inc. but the name was taken and on the spot he came up with eBay instead.

10. EBay’s headquarters in San Jose, California consists of seven buildings and they’re all named after categories on eBay.com Collectibles, Jewellery, Motors, Music, Sports, Technology and Toys.


11. The first eBay member to reach a feedback score of 1,000,000 was Jack Sheng who took eight years to reach the impressive score. To congratulate Sheng eBay staff created a new shooting star in his honour and named a conference room at their headquarters after him.

12. In 2004 a Florida woman listed for sale a grilled cheese sandwich which she said bore a portrait of The Virgin Mary. The seller claimed she made the sandwich ten years earlier and it never went mouldy. The sandwich sold for a whopping $28,000.

Published by Zebra Removals

Ten Tips How To Sell and Make Money on eBay

 Published By Zebra Removals

Ten Tips How To Sell and Make Money on eBay


Don’t Start Auctions at 99p / 99¢ – You’ll lose money

We’re going to go against the grain here, you’ll read a lot on the internet about starting an auction low to build up interest which might have worked a few years back but for a lot of items it doesn’t work now. If you start an auction low you run the risk of it ending on a low price or even for the opening bid of 99p EBay used to have the market to itself and creating a buzz about an item with a low opening bid was easy but things have changed, other sites have appeared and buyers’ expectations have changed. Buyers don’t want to hang around for seven days to see if they win their bargain, they want to buy it and move on. If you’ve got a unique item then do your research and find out what it’s worth. That doesn’t mean look on websites to find out what top end dealers are asking for something similar, it means check the item out using the completed listings option on eBay, see what it really sells for and use that as your price point. Try going for the top price the item’s achieved and adding best offer to your listing, that gives you the advantage of still being able to hit that top end price but gives you a bit of flexibility if the right buyer comes along and makes an offer. Yep, you’ll get low ball offers; the decline button is your friend there.

Don’t Let Listings Run For More Than Thirty Days.

Obviously we’re referring to buy it now listings here. If you list a unique item i.e. not a multi quantity listing then it goes without saying that your listing will never have a sales history, until it sells. In other words every time your listing gets a view or an impression and it doesn’t sell it will be negatively affected in search. Cassini will see that your item was viewed and didn’t sell and will push other listings in front of yours. Remember new listings are coming along all the time and they’ll have a boost when they’re first listed. If you’re using good ‘til cancelled then end your listings at thirty days and use sell similar to create a new listing, don’t use the re-list function or you’ll carry over the last thirty days worth of not selling. While you using sell similar take the opportunity to re-visit your listing and ask yourself why it hasn’t sold. Change the description, alter the title maybe lower the price but make some tweaks.

Answer Messages Fast.

This should be a no brainer – if someone sends a message then they’re at their computer/tablet/phone right now so answer the message right now. It’ll inspire confidence in your selling ability if prospective buyers can see you’re on the ball.

Ship Internationally

Another no brainer but one that is so often ignored. EBay’s a worldwide selling platform so why on earth would you want to limit your market to your own country? The two reasons I hear most often for only offering domestic shipping is that it’s easier and it’s safer. It’s actually neither of those things; it’s just as easy to post internationally as domestically particularly now that eBay offers the global shipping programme. Your item is just as likely to get lost or stolen if you ship it to the next town or if you ship it across the world. If you’re worried that a buyer in another country may be out to scam you but a buyer from own country isn’t then you may want to re-think your future in on-line selling completely.

Take Good Photographs

This is one you’ll have seen a thousand times before but we make no apology for going over it again. If you take blurry, dark, unclear photographs then your item either won’t sell or it won’t reach its full selling price potential. You don’t need to spend loads of money on kit for this; you don’t need a super expensive camera and super expensive lighting system or light box. You need – a reasonable camera, tripod, a background, and some lights. We’ll leave you to decide on what the best camera is for you there’s plenty of review sites for that but you don’t need to spend more than £100 on it, probably much less. Tripod – eBay’s your friend there, background – use sheets of white card or use a large-ish cardboard box, cut the front and top off and line it with white cartridge paper. Lights – use normal desk lamps fitted with daylight bulbs. Here’s one we made earlier.


Write A Proper Description.

Describe your item properly, fully and in detail. Describe the good stuff and don’t hide the bad stuff. If it’s scratched tell people it’s scratched describe the scratch and tell people where it’s scratched. Imagine your listing is not going to have any photographs so the buyer will have to conjure up a mental image of your item just from your description. Use key words in your description as well as your title, Cassini will crawl your entire listing and pick up on those words when it decides whether to show your item in search so get those keywords in there but don’t overdo it. Keep it friendly, keep it accurate and and try and keep it concise without missing anything out. It’s a big ask but it’s worth spending some time on your description and writing killer content. Lastly check spelling and grammar, it might be ok on Facebook to write “ r u alrite hun, wanna by my chester draws “ but it’s not good enough for a professional listing.

Ship Fast

Your buyer loved the item and now they’ve handed over their hard earned cash for it and they want to see it in the flesh. Don’t get off on the wrong foot by shipping slowly, get the item wrapped and get it shipped fast. If your buyer isn’t impressed with your delivery time then they’re going to be extra critical when the item arrives so amaze them with your fast turnaround. Dispatch stuff AT THE LATEST the next working day and if it’s humanly possible dispatch on the same day. Obviously there may postal hold ups and delays, these things are unfortunate but they’re out of your control. At least get right the stuff that you can control.

Account Protection.

This is a big subject and something we’ll just touch on here and go into further in future posts. Your account standing is based on lots of factors including customer feedback and site rules compliance. In other words if you pick up negative feedback, if you pick up defects, if you break the rules then your account will suffer and your listings will be demoted in search. You may even face an account suspension or lose your account altogether.

Choose Your Market.

When you’re looking for items to sell then it’s great to look at what sells on eBay but remember there’s a lot of competition. Sure a ton of iPhone and iPad cases get sold on eBay every day but do you really want to compete in a market that competitive? Look for items that are unique, check out car boot sales, garage sales, charity shops, second hand shops, auctions etc. It’s hard work finding those killer items that you can flip for a big profit but they’re out there. We’re not going to go into what exactly you want to be buying either, there’s a load of sites on the internet already where you can get help there. Which leads us to ….

How to Buy the Right Item

You’ve found what you think is something you can sell on eBay so ask yourself some questions. First of all will it actually sell? You have a great tool at your disposal here with eBay’s completed listings, use them to gauge whether it will sell and for how much. How easy will it be to ship the item? It doesn’t necessarily follow that the easier and cheaper the item is to post the easier it’s going to be to sell in fact the opposite may well be true. Your item might be quite large and quite heavy but it might still be possible to ship it and the other sellers may be offering their items without a shipping option. You can steal a march on them here by listing your item with delivery or even better build the delivery cost into the item price and offer it with free shipping.

By Zebra Removals