Selecting Products To Sell On Ebay

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One of the keys to successful selling on eBay is to find the right products to sell -- in other words popular products that will sell quickly. You have to have a decent margin between your purchasing price and your selling price in order to make a profit, so how would you go about choosing products that will sell quickly and have a high enough profit margin?

EBay can be quite a difficult site to sell on because the popularity of products seems to change frequently -- it can be a matter of luck and timing as to whether you sell successfully or not. Not every product you choose will sell but it is worth checking carefully on the latest trends before you spend money listing products for sale. Many hot products will have a short life cycle, so you have to get in there quickly before everyone else gets on the bandwagon.

New or used items?

A lot of people selling on eBay are just selling unwanted used items, and it is possible to set up a business selling used items on eBay. It's relatively easy to track down a variety of items from flea markets, yard sales, repossessed goods, classified ads and so on. This form of selling can be very profitable if you have an eye for a bargain. If you can also spend some time renovating old furniture or polishing up antiques, for example, then you can add a lot more value into your items.

There are also many businesses selling a range of new products that are sourced from wholesalers, manufacturers and liquidators. Whether you want to sell new or used items you should decide which you will focus on before you start because the way you approach these two types of business are rather different.

Sourcing new products

If you prefer to sell new and you are selling other people's products rather than your own manufactured products, then you need to locate suppliers -- manufacturers, wholesalers and liquidators. The cheapest way to buy products is to get them in bulk from liquidators or manufacturers, as the wholesaler will need his cut and prices are inevitably higher when you buy this way. Also, beware of drop shipping merchants because although it seems like less work for you, there is a lot less profit too and you have to sell a lot of items to make it worthwhile -- drop shipping can work, but do your homework carefully.

Manufacturers generally sell their products through wholesalers and then on to retailers and if you can cut out the wholesaler, so much the better. Liquidators also sell their items to retailers but they deal in stock such as customer returns, overstocked items, rejects, imperfect items or seconds and fire sale or damaged goods. You will get these items at cut price, but be careful because there will be a proportion of items that cannot be sold because they are too badly damaged. Electronic goods especially have a high proportion of items that cannot be sold when you buy via liquidators.

You can get some fantastic deals when you buy from liquidators but if you are a novice, do some research and make sure you understand their terms so you can find the right products. Liquidators use terms such as:

Shelf pulls: items pulled from the shelves because it's the end of the season

Customer Returns: items that people have returned, especially from catalogues

Overstock: when a store has too much stock and cannot sell them

Overruns: when a manufacturer has made too many of an item and there is a surplus

Imperfect: often clothing and home furnishings that have slight imperfections and cannot be sold as top quality by a retailer

Make sure, especially before you buy in bulk, that there is a market for your items. Think about what you will do with your products if you cannot sell them on eBay -- do you have other outlets you can try? EBay is a great place to buy and sell, but it can be a bit of a gamble and there is no guarantee of success.