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How to Sell on eBay for Beginners + Time-Tested Selling Tips

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Do you think it’s challenging to start an eBay business? Many gig workers feel the same way until they discover how easy it is to begin one.

eBay is a renowned e-commerce marketplace that has been serving buyers and sellers since 1995, so it’s safe to say it’s well-established in the industry.

If you want to supplement your income by selling on this platform, we can help. Continue reading our comprehensive guide on how to sell on eBay for beginners to get you started on the right foot!

Why You Should Consider Selling on eBay for Beginners

There are many e-commerce platforms available, so why consider eBay? Let’s highlight some of the perks of using eBay as a selling platform:

  • Large and diverse customer base: eBay caters to a wide range of niches and was recorded to have 134 million active buyers in 2022.
  • Simple to use and affordable: The platform is extremely user-friendly, making it a breeze to operate. There are no upfront or start-up costs to open an account.
  • Seller fee transparency: eBay discloses all types of fees so that sellers can easily calculate their profitability.
  • Various payment options: Sellers can collect and manage payments using several methods, including credit cards, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and PayPal Credit.

Problems With Selling on eBay for Beginners

When it comes to the downsides of selling on eBay, there are mainly four to be aware of:

  • Extensive competition: eBay was reported to have over 18.3 million sellers in 2022, making it a highly competitive online marketplace. There’s also fierce competition in the e-commerce industry as a whole, with equally popular platforms like Amazon and Etsy.
  • Managing packaging and shipping: Sellers are responsible for packaging and shipping their products to customers, which adds time and expense to the process. eBay has a strong shipping policy in place that, if not followed, results in unfavorable scenarios such as hiding or canceling your listings from search results.
  • Multiple seller fees: While there’s no starting price for selling on eBay, they do charge a variety of commission fees along the way. For example, there’s a fee added to each sold item as well as if you exceed your maximum number of listings.
  • Scammers and difficult customers: On eBay, sellers deal directly with customers, which can be challenging in some situations. Demanding customers can cause problems both during and after the sale if they leave negative feedback on minor details. Plus, if you were the victim of a scam, you’ll need to try and resolve it before going to the eBay Resolution Center.

What You’ll Need to Sell on eBay for Beginners

To prepare for your journey as an eBay seller, there are a few essential supplies you’ll need to have on hand. The following three will help you ensure a smooth and effective selling experience:

  • Postal scale: Having a reliable scale is critical when shipping orders, and postal scales are an excellent example. Obtaining the exact weights of your products will allow you to calculate accurate shipping costs so you don’t end up paying more than expected.
  • Decent camera: A study revealed that online shoppers are more likely to trust listings with high-quality photos. You don’t have to own a professional camera, but if you want to attract more potential buyers, you’ll need to use one that captures high-resolution pictures.
  • Packaging materials: Buy packaging materials appropriate for the products you’re selling. The most important thing is to have them available at all times to avoid shipping delays. Remember to ask the shipping company if they provide free packaging; for example, USPS offers free shipping supplies such as boxes and envelopes.

What to Sell on eBay for Beginners

As a beginner in this field, knowing what to sell will make or break your experience.

That’s why we’ve compiled a list of some of the best things to sell on eBay to boost your earnings early on:

Auto Parts and Accessories

Automotive parts and accessories are among the most profitable items on eBay. These include products such as:

  • Body and external parts
  • Motorcycle and scooter parts
  • Lighting and bulbs
  • Engines and their components

Why This Product Sells Well

The fact that this platform has different types of suppliers for this product category makes it a go-to for buyers. It simplifies the process of examining various products and comparing their prices.

That’s why it comes as no surprise that three parts or accessories are sold on eBay every second!

Clothing, Shoes, and Accessories

Whether the items are for men or women, the clothing, shoes, and accessories category on eBay is constantly booming. Some of the top-selling goods include:

  • Men’s clothes
  • Necklaces
  • Bags and handbags

Why This Product Sells Well

According to a 2022 Statista survey, 51% of Americans voted for clothing as their most common online purchase.

This explains why men’s clothing is at the top of eBay’s best-selling products list, with a sell-through rate of 17,700% out of 13 million listings.

Women’s clothing, bracelets, and necklaces are also among the items on that list with promising sales figures.

That said, expect strong competition in that segment. You have to focus on factors that’ll set you apart, such as making offerings at a competitive price or listing unique products, like selling a vintage item.


Collectibles represent items people like to collect and are willing to pay much more than their original value to acquire. The more scarce the product, the higher the price.

Here are a few examples of collectibles selling on eBay:

  • Historical military equipment
  • Rocks and fossils
  • Knives and swords

Why This Product Sells Well

The collectibles market has recently been on the rise. Its sales jumped by 104% in 2022, so you have a good chance of making a pretty penny from them.

However, the collectibles’ condition is one of the pivotal factors in determining their worth.

If a collectible is in an excellent state, it has a better chance of selling; if it’s in poor condition, don’t expect to get much for it.

How to Sell on eBay for Beginners: Step-By-Step Instructions

After you’ve done your research and decided on the products you’ll sell, it’s time to learn how the process works on eBay. We’ve boiled it down to four simple steps:

Step 1: Open an eBay Account

Click on register to create an account. Then, you’ll be given the option of creating a personal or a business account. In both cases, you’ll be able to sell goods.

Once you’ve created your account, you’ll need to polish it so that it appears credible. Start by changing the name eBay assigns you, which is made up of letters and random numbers.

To do so, navigate to your name in the upper left corner and select “Account settings” from the dropdown menu. You must enter your contact information (address and phone number) before accessing your account dashboard.

Click on “Personal Info,” and from there, you can change your username to something buyers will recognize.

Add a photo and an introduction about yourself by selecting either your name or the admin picture from the dropdown menu we mentioned earlier.

After that, you’ll be directed to a page with “Edit Profile” located on the right. Once you click on it, you can enter information in the “about” section and upload a picture.

Step 2: Set Up Payment Methods

Now it’s time to add your preferred methods for collecting your payments. Click on “Payments” under “Payment Information” in your account dashboard to add all of your payment options.

Step 3: Create a Listing

Before we get into the specifics of making a listing, we want you to be aware of the associated costs. eBay primarily levies two types of fees: insertion fees and final value fees.

You get 250 free listings per month; if you go over that, you’ll be charged a flat rate of $0.35 per product, which is known as an insertion fee. It’s deducted before the sale and is non-refundable even for unsold items.

The final value fee is deducted when the product is sold and ranges between 10-15% (depending on the product type).

To create a listing, simply click “sell” in the top right corner of your eBay account. Following that, you’ll be taken to a page with a “List an item” button.

When you click that button, enter a brief but detailed description of what you’re selling (ex: Size 8 – Adidas UltraBoost 20 x Stella McCartney Black). Then, you’ll have two options.

The first is to “Find a match,” which entails selecting a product identical to yours that has been posted by another seller. 

The second option is to select “Continue without a match” and manually complete all product descriptions.

Step 4: Optimize Your Listing

To make an effective listing, you’ll need to spruce it up so that it reaches more buyers.

One strategy is to use keyword search tools to add popular and competitive keywords that your niche typically types into search engines.

You should also make formatting and images mobile-friendly since 60% of eBay transactions are done via mobile devices.

Another tried-and-true technique is to add an informative video whenever possible. It could involve instructions for using the product or simply viewing its condition. The more useful details you include in your listing, the higher its chances of ranking!

Once you’ve finished optimization, you can choose whether it’ll be an auction listing or a fixed-price listing.

Finally, you’ll get to select from a variety of shipping options or “local pickup,” which allows nearby buyers to get the product directly from you.

Things to Consider When Selling on eBay for Beginners

Before we wrap up this guide, we still have three tricks up our sleeves to help you develop into a successful seller:

  • Use eBay’s promoted listings to boost your sales. They improve your listing’s search ranking, allowing it to reach more potential buyers.
  • When you’re ready to go pro, sign up for one of eBay Store’s plans. You’ll gain access to more listings without having to pay insertion fees, as well as lower final value fees, which will save you lots of money in the long run.
  • About 93% of online shoppers say online reviews influence their purchasing decisions. Pay close attention to buyer questions and make their experience as pleasant as possible so that they leave positive feedback.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should You Sell on eBay?

Selling on eBay is a fantastic option if you have products that you want to reach an enormous customer base quickly and easily.

However, you must first consider multiple factors, such as eBay selling fees, delivery charges, and niche competitiveness. This will determine whether or not you get profitable deals.

I Created a Listing but Why Isn’t It Posted?

New eBay listings take about 24 hours to become active and appear on the results page. If you still haven’t found it, you should revise it for flaws, which you can check on this page.

That is, assuming your listing wasn’t removed due to a violation of eBay’s policies or laws.

Similar Tutorials to Check Out

Once you get to experience how rewarding it is to start an e-commerce business, we’re sure you’ll want to keep it going. So here are three useful resources to help you:

Wrapping Up

As the adage goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day. We’d be lying if we said that money would start pouring in once you start your eBay business. It takes time, but when done properly, it can turn into an easy and lucrative revenue stream.

Remember to focus on creating detailed listings with high-quality photos and making a good impression on customers to stay ahead.

Let us know in the comments if you found this article helpful, and even better, share it so that more people can benefit!

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